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Old September 30th, 2010, 11:45 PM   #41
diablo234
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West Line Construction


Grand opening of a pedestrian bridge that crosses the light rai tracks.
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Old April 5th, 2011, 02:29 AM   #42
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More progress on the RTD West Line which is scheduled to open in 2013.





February 2011 Construction Progress Presentation
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Old April 5th, 2011, 03:05 AM   #43
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Quote:
RTD to try out recycled-plastic railroad ties on West light-rail line
By Jeffrey Leib
The Denver Post
Posted: 03/01/2011 01:00:00 AM MSTUpdated: 03/01/2011 02:24:23 PM MST
http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_17506851

RTD is dropping a little bit of "green" into 12 miles of gray on its $710 million West Corridor light-rail line.

The Regional Transportation District is using about 40,000 concrete railroad ties on the train line that will serve Lakewood and Golden from downtown Denver.

The transit agency also is putting about 200 ties made from recycled plastic in the area of the track bed immediately before and after bridges on the West line.

Ties are the crosspieces on which steel track is fastened to make the rail right of way.

Historically, ties were made from wood treated to withstand weather deterioration. More recently, concrete ties have become a strong competitor to wood for the rail industry, in both its freight and transit segments.

For the West Corridor line, which is due to open for passenger service in 2013, the Denver Transit Construction Group is installing six plastic railroad ties at the ends of bridges where the track transitions from being supported by the span's structure itself or a 25-foot-long concrete "transition slab" that extends from the bridge end, said DTCG Track Superintendent Mike Spalding.

The more flexible recycled plastic ties are being installed where the track will sit on rock ballast and compacted soil beneath the ballast, he said.

There can be a tendency for the soil at approaches to bridges to settle a bit in the area just before the track encounters the transition slab or the bridge structure itself, said Cal Shankster, who oversees track, overhead power and signal system maintenance for RTD's rail operations.

The transit agency is using 10-foot-long plastic railroad ties — longer than the project's standard 8-foot, 3-inch-long concrete tie — to determine whether the longer crossties made from the more flexible recycled material will help "spread the weight and cause less compaction, less settling" in the critical locations at the ends of bridges, Shankster said.

The limited installation of plastic railroad ties on the West rail line offers a chance to assess whether they will perform as well as wood at the transition points just off the elevated structures, said Jim Starling, RTD's manager on the light-rail construction project.

"If there is an opportunity to look at a sustainable material and evaluate how the composite (recycled plastic) ties perform, RTD is interested," he said.

New Jersey-based Axion International makes the plastic ties that RTD is using, and Axion president Steve Silverman said that "the total installed cost of our ties are competitive with concrete."

His company recently signed a deal to deliver 50,000 ties to a major freight railroad, Silverman said.

According to the plastics division of the American Chemistry Council, "the railroad ties market is huge since each tie requires 200 pounds of plastic — equaling 1,200 bottles."

As many as 20 million railroad ties are replaced each year, according to industry estimates.

Jeffrey Leib: 303-954-1645 or [email protected]
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Old April 6th, 2011, 07:49 PM   #44
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The Denver system is eccentric, highly politicized- many governments have had to dealt with- each with their own deep pocketed interests. This is what has been happening throughout the US in the last 20 years, but unlike many metro areas, Denver is going to have a SYSTEM, not a line or two.

You can bet the pieces will not fit well together, because each addition reflects the politics that have gone on before. At each point in the growth of the system, from the starter line and its low platforms with high level trains caused by the fears of downtown businesses about how high level platforms might block store front access, to developers downtown and what they wanted.

I suspect that those overseas who see US transit are stunned by how such an 'advanced country' can make such weird, but charming, transit systems. Visitors from abroad likely have no idea how complex getting anything done in US metro areas actually is.

But, Denver is doing it.. and that is good.
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Old April 18th, 2011, 04:48 AM   #45
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Quote:
DIA, developers want more stations on RTD east rail line
By Jeffrey Leib
The Denver Post
Posted: 04/17/2011 01:00:00 AM MDTUpdated: 04/17/2011 10:05:38 AM MDT
http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_17...ce=rss_igoogle

RTD's plan to use a single track for a 4.5-mile segment of the train line to Denver International Airport may make it prohibitively expensive to add one or two additional rail stations in the Peña Boulevard corridor of the rail line.

Private developers who own land adjacent to the train route have long hoped to add stations near East 62nd Avenue and Peña, and East 72nd Avenue and Himalaya Road, as a way to help promote development in the corridor.

An environmental study that examined costs, station locations, travel times and more for the airport train settled on a route that did not include any additional stations between DIA's terminal and the station planned for East 40th Avenue and Airport Boulevard, near the south end of Peña Boulevard.

But the study assumed that the entire 24-mile train line would be double-tracked, and it allowed for DIA and developers to add passenger platforms at 62nd/Peña and 72nd/Himalaya if the additional stations did not interfere with operations of the airport train, and if DIA and developers would bear that cost of adding them.

Double-tracking the entire line would have made it easier to add stations, but RTD selected a private consortium to build the DIA train line, and to save money, that group included single-track segments in its winning bid, including a stretch along Peña Boulevard and the rail bridge over Interstate 70.

In an update on the DIA train, RTD officials said the 4.5-mile stretch of the rail line north of its intersection with 56th Avenue, which now is slated to be single-tracked, would need to be upgraded to double track if both the 62nd and 72nd avenue stations are to be added.

To add only one of the stations, about 5,600 feet of single track north of 56th must get the upgrade, they said.

Rail experts say it can cost an additional $15 million a mile, or even more, to go from a single-track to double-track operation, with the final price dependent on how many bridge structures must be constructed on the rail line.

Double-tracking the 5,600-foot segment of the line would require at least the addition, or widening, of two bridge structures, one at 56th Avenue, and another at the train line's crossing of First Creek, said RTD spokesman Kevin Flynn.

The $1.1 billion DIA train line is due to open by 2016 and RTD says current plans call for the nearly 24-mile trip to take 35 minutes.

It will add two minutes to the trip for each station that might be added, RTD engineer Greg Straight recently told agency board members.

DIA officials and developers said they need to know soon what it will cost them to add the new stations.

In an April 9 letter to RTD general manager Phil Washington, DIA manager Kim Day said, "We have been provided no official information" by RTD on the cost of adding one or two stations, or for other "betterments" that the airport may wish to make to the train line.

"To not have a station or two is not in the best economic interest of the region," Day said in a recent interview about DIA's hope for more rail stops in the Peña Boulevard corridor.

Gardiner Hammond, vice president of LNR Property LLC, which is developing the 1,600-acre High Point Business District near Peña and Tower Road, said he too is frustrated by the lack of data from RTD on the cost of putting in the additional stations.

The proposed station near 72nd and Himalaya would serve the High Point development. "A transit stop in this important economic development zone just outside DIA makes perfect sense," Hammond said. He also noted that "the time left for planning and executing" the station addition "has become minimal and jeopardizes the ability to see a station in this area at all."

On Friday, Washington said RTD encourages developers to incorporate their plans — including additional stations — in the design of the East Corridor train line.

But he added that when the winning private team came in with a bid for FasTracks projects, including the DIA train, that saved RTD $305 million — in part from single-tracking portions of the airport line — it "permitted us to invest the savings into starting work on six other FasTracks corridor projects that are not fully funded."

To suggestions that RTD should have reserved some of those savings to help get the additional stations built, Washington said, "We can't fund third-party requests at the expense of unfunded corridors."

He added that RTD is on an established timetable to deliver information on the cost of adding stations to DIA and developers by the end of this month.

..
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Old May 21st, 2011, 01:00 AM   #46
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Someone has done one of those fancy flyover videos on the West Corridor Project (see post #19 for photos)

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Old May 21st, 2011, 12:53 PM   #47
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SO they are single tracking on the west corridor for a couple bridges as well? How long are the single track sections?
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Old May 21st, 2011, 01:19 PM   #48
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Looking at the map it seems like the entire West Corridor is going to be double tracked except for the alignment along US 6.

http://www.rtd-fastracks.com/media/u..._Map_WCpdf.pdf
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Old May 24th, 2011, 09:34 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IanCleverly View Post
Someone has done one of those fancy flyover videos on the West Corridor Project (see post #19 for photos)

Thanks! The scale is really impressive, considering the whole thing is being built at once. And that it is only one line in the master plan. Good to see how they are shoe-horning the CML in with all of the ROA's around the Colfax cluster.

Also, for anyone who is interested:
http://www.denverpost.com/search/ci_18125049
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Old July 19th, 2011, 01:58 AM   #50
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Some renderings of the East Line and the EMU's that will be used on the East Line and Gold Line.







Renderings courtesy of http://www.railway-technology.com/pr...ommuterrailpr/
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Old July 19th, 2011, 08:25 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
Some renderings of the East Line and the EMU's that will be used on the East Line and Gold Line.
What kind of headways are expected for the airport line?
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Old July 20th, 2011, 06:20 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoulderGrad View Post
What kind of headways are expected for the airport line?
I could not find anything on their website, but I am guessing the frequency will be similar to SEPTA's Airport Commuter Rail Line in Philadelphia since they both share the same setup, so probably every 30 minutes.
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Old July 20th, 2011, 06:28 AM   #53
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Some recent construction photos of RTD's West Light Rail Line.













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Old July 20th, 2011, 02:15 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
Some renderings of the East Line and the EMU's that will be used on the East Line and Gold Line.







Renderings courtesy of http://www.railway-technology.com/pr...ommuterrailpr/

Oh for crying out loud, a brand new line and they use rolling stock as uninspiring as that? They really could do better than that, a lot of a metro system's appeal can lie in the aesthetics of the vehicles and stations along the route...
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Old July 20th, 2011, 02:17 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Sopomon View Post
Oh for crying out loud, a brand new line and they use rolling stock as uninspiring as that? They really could do better than that, a lot of a metro system's appeal can lie in the aesthetics of the vehicles and stations along the route...
I am happy that they are just building this, period.
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Old July 22nd, 2011, 01:44 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
I am happy that they are just building this, period.
True, I am probably acting out a little, it's good to see *something* at least
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Old July 24th, 2011, 02:20 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by Sopomon View Post
Oh for crying out loud, a brand new line and they use rolling stock as uninspiring as that? They really could do better than that, a lot of a metro system's appeal can lie in the aesthetics of the vehicles and stations along the route...
nothing too surprising unfortunately; Denver has never gone for good looking rolling stock, although I am really glad to see new EMUs in any capacity in this country.
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Old July 24th, 2011, 03:43 AM   #58
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http://maps.google.com/?ll=39.725705...00862&t=k&z=20
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Old July 24th, 2011, 07:30 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benn View Post
nothing too surprising unfortunately; Denver has never gone for good looking rolling stock, although I am really glad to see new EMUs in any capacity in this country.
Could it be the FRA regulations that prohibit RTD from buying seeker looking trains like those in Europe and East Asia?
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Old July 24th, 2011, 08:37 PM   #60
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DenverUrbanism

Quote:
Commuter Rail Car Display

Posted by Ryan Mulligan on June 15, 2011

As FasTracks’ first commuter rail corridor gets ready to come out of the ground, its appropriate to take a more in-depth look at the railcar that will be moving us to and from destinations along across the mega project’s northern reaches. RTD and Denver Transit Partners (DTP, RTD’s Eagle Project Concessionaire team) have assembled a mock-up of the electric multiple unit (EMU) that will ferry passengers and displayed it outside the Wynkoop Street doors at Union Station.

The mock-up shows the front 1/3 of a rail car. These rail cars are made by Hyundai Rotem USA – they have produced more than 15,000 electric and diesel railcars. These cars meet Buy America requirements with more than 60% of the vehicle made in America. The cars will be assembled in Philadelphia and then shipped to Denver once they are completed. These are the same model of cars that the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) in Philadelphia has ordered as well.


A few quick facts on the vehicle:
•Powered by 25kV AC overheard electrical system
•Top operating speed of 79 mph
•Room for 90 seats, 140 standing
•Will operate in “married pairs” – two cars traveling together; married pairs are more cost-effective to use and do not require operating cabs on either end of the car
•RTD will purchase 50 vehicles (at about $4 million each) to operate on all commuter rail corridors

This RTD mockup will be on display through June 18 between 8am-6pm every day. Get down there and take a look if you have a chance!
photos:







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