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Old February 3rd, 2015, 08:20 AM   #881
Nexis
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$20 million for SMART’s Larkspur extension in President Obama’s budget


FILE - A machine distributes the ballast on the SMART line between Fulton and San Miguel roads, in Santa Rosa on Thursday, July 3, 2014. (Christopher Chung/ The Press Democrat)

Funding for an extension of the North Bay’s commuter rail line to Larkspur was included Monday in President Obama’s proposed $4 trillion budget, giving the Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit authority a long-awaited source of capital to complete the southern end of the line.

The $20 million in proposed funding through the Federal Transit Authority’s Small Starts program plus an additional $20 million regional grant that was approved last year would fully fund the 2.2-mile line from San Rafael to the Larkspur ferry terminal, SMART officials said. Obama’s budget plan now goes to the Republican-controlled Congress, where it will likely be altered before coming back to the president’s desk.



You can reach Staff Writer Matt Brown at 521-5206 or [email protected]. On Twitter @MattBrownPD.
http://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/34...arkspur?page=1
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Last edited by Nexis; March 25th, 2015 at 08:31 PM.
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Old February 4th, 2015, 01:47 AM   #882
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^ Nexis, way to cut and paste my post from skyscraperpage!

(Just giving you a hard time )
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Old February 4th, 2015, 02:15 AM   #883
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Originally Posted by jchernin View Post
^ Nexis, way to cut and paste my post from skyscraperpage!

(Just giving you a hard time )
Wish you'd encourage some of the folks over there to come over here and post more--you (post your own stuff here), of course, but also some of the photographers they've got in the city.

I promise: our Mods are more friendly.
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Old February 4th, 2015, 03:31 AM   #884
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^ Nexis, way to cut and paste my post from skyscraperpage!

(Just giving you a hard time )
You have to be quicker
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Old February 4th, 2015, 05:04 AM   #885
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@Cal_Escapee indeed... we're some of the friendlier and more accepting folks around.

And I have too many new transit pics to upload shortly that I'm looking to do previews here before I bring them to my flagship photo thread dedicated to transit.
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Old February 4th, 2015, 04:56 PM   #886
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You have to be quicker
I know! I meant to post it here too but I got distracted. Thanks for doing that for me.

Really, I'm just really excited about the SMART project, and excited that others are interested as well. I'll be the first to admit that it won't relieve all the traffic on the 101, but more importantly it will provide an alternative.

I grew up along the tracks and used to watch the freight trains go by. I would dream of the day that Japanese-type passenger trains (I'm half Japanese and have ridden many, many Japanese trains) would run here in Sonoma County. I can't believe sometimes that it's all coming true!
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Old February 4th, 2015, 05:02 PM   #887
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What would really be nice if the system expanded East to Vallejo , Fairfield , Vacaville , Davis & Sacramento.
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Old February 4th, 2015, 06:07 PM   #888
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What would really be nice if the system expanded East to Vallejo , Fairfield , Vacaville , Davis & Sacramento.
The Capital Corridor already serves those cities well. It would be nice if SMART connected it at Vallejo, allowing people to transfer. It theoretically is possible as there is a railroad line that runs along the 37, with possible stops at Sonoma Raceway and Sonoma along the way. But obviously they want to try and build what they promised voters first before talking about possible expansions.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 06:48 PM   #889
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From Rail Journal:

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http://www.railjournal.com/index.php...tml?channel=00

Caltrain to invite electrification proposals
Tuesday, February 10, 2015



THE board of Californian commuter rail operator Caltrain has authorised the release of a design-build request for proposals (RFP) for the Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project (PCEP), the next step in the $US 1.5bn electrification of the 82km San Francisco – San Jose corridor

The RFP will be issued to six prequalified groups later this month and the contract is due to be awarded at the end of the year.

Traction power will be provided by 10 substations and prospective bidders are required to offer alternative configurations for catenary design, with a centre-mast arrangement being suggested to minimise trackside tree-felling. During the environmental review, Caltrain applied these alternative designs to five test cases. In one case, the number of trees required for removal was reduced from 50 to 14 using the alternative design

...
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Old February 10th, 2015, 08:55 PM   #890
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Have they decided what type of electric to use? Seems the most common for this type of line would be 25kv AC overhead caternary. But a few commuter rail like LIRR uses third rail use 750 V DC and BART which is commuter/metro hybrid uses 1kv DC 3rd rail.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 10:39 PM   #891
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nouvellecosse View Post
Have they decided what type of electric to use? Seems the most common for this type of line would be 25kv AC overhead caternary. But a few commuter rail like LIRR uses third rail use 750 V DC and BART which is commuter/metro hybrid uses 1kv DC 3rd rail.
Part of the reason for this electrification is to share tracks with the future California HSR therefore 25kv 60 Hz AC is the only logical choice. It's considered to be the most economical system at high speeds and virtually all new lines around the world are electrified in this manner. DC systems exist mostly for historical reasons. AC systems became widespread only in 50-ties.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 10:56 PM   #892
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SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA | Public Transport

Quote:
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What would really be nice if the system expanded East to Vallejo , Fairfield , Vacaville , Davis & Sacramento.

The problem would be the alignment: below the US-101 & CA-37 interchange in Novato (very close to where I live), there is a Y interchange that allows trains to go east to Sonoma County, but it does not go to Vallejo. Instead, it forks north towards Sonoma and Napa. You would have to do it via Sonoma and Napa Counties, bypassing Vallejo together... If you wanna do Vallejo, you would either build it through environmentally-protected marshlands or build a branch line south of Napa to serve American Canyon and Vallejo together.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 11:08 PM   #893
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Hasn't a Napa-American Canyon-Vallejo line been discussed at some point? And where does the ROW fork north to Napa? I don't know how the environmental protection works, but it seems like the best solution would be to build both a Napa fork, and service along highway 37 all the way to Vallejo. If you're building right along the existing highway it's hard for me to imagine how much damage you could do to the marshlands.
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Old February 10th, 2015, 11:12 PM   #894
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Look at the current alignment on Google Maps... The rail line goes by the southern side of CA-37, with its own bridge, and the line curves north with a level crossing at CA-37 then it goes north instead of east. If you wanna do east, it will be a challenge since you're dealing with marshlands.

As for extending the current Wine Train line from Napa down to Vallejo, I don't know the current progress of that endeavor. Once it is implemented, however, it will mean it will need to meet up with the line from Sonoma to make it happen.
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Old February 11th, 2015, 04:14 AM   #895
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Actually, the train tracks along 37 DO connect to Capital Corridor tracks. That's how the NCRA (North Coast Rail Authority) freight trains connect to the 'mainline'. Sonoma Raceway takes advantage of this by running trains from Sacramento, Davis and Suisun on race days (http://www.racesonoma.com/media/news...r-express.html).

"Last year's inaugural NASCAR Express sold out five days before race weekend, and this year’s train is also expected to be a sellout. To meet increased demand, seating capacity for the train has been increased from 500 to 700 passengers." - See more at: http://www.racesonoma.com/media/news....pBPFvVLB.dpuf

Of course the raceway fits over 100,000 fans so 700 is a drop in the bucket, but there definitely is a track connection going east.

Last edited by jchernin; February 11th, 2015 at 04:19 AM.
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Old February 11th, 2015, 04:29 AM   #896
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Where, then, is the junction that connects the Hwy 37 line to the UP mainline for Sacramento-Martinez? I've tried plotting that along the 680 and 80 corridors, yet it seems that I cannot see the connector. Unless you drop off passengers somewhere along the line (e.g. Fairfield), then I don't know the "missing link" between the UP mainline and the NCRA connector... not to mention, I don't see any active stations at the moment along the 37 corridor.
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Old February 11th, 2015, 04:49 AM   #897
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25kv AC is the way to go because they have the CHSR to deal with as well. Also there's the fact that Caltrain can run larger, Faster, and more powerful trains!
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Old February 11th, 2015, 04:52 AM   #898
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My main concern when the HSR and Caltrain share ops on one main line: the HSR will need to have bypass tracks more often to skip certain stations while stopping on others, in which, if shared with Caltrain, could mean the latter needing trains compatible with CA HSR's rolling stock. That means Caltrain will need to negotiate with the HSR Authority so that it can provide useful suggestions to upgrade its fleet, as well as working with Union Pacific, San Mateo County Transit Authority, Santa Clara VTA, San Francisco Muni, et al. to have advanced rail signaling technologies to allow HSR to bypass Caltrain trains with ease.
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Old February 11th, 2015, 04:56 AM   #899
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Honestly, I'm not exactly sure "where" it connects, but I know it does - I remember seeing a track map at one time. It may be difficult to see on Google because the tracks are in relatively poor condition. The reason there are no stations is because there isn't regular passenger service on the line. The Nascar Express runs just once a year, and last year was the first one. Since there are no stations, afaik, passengers just disembark close to the raceway.

Which brings us right round to square one: Yes, it would be nice if SMART could connect to the Capital Corridor and allow people to transfer between services - but the line would need to be rehabilitated. SMART's priority is to fulfill its promise to voters, a train AND pathway from Larkspur to Cloverdale first. And it doesn't even have funding for all of that.
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Old February 11th, 2015, 05:00 AM   #900
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Right. Not to mention that the Wine Train track breaks in Downtown Napa and does not go any further than that. Should there really be a connection between 37 and UP Main Line, then Sonoma, Napa, and Solano Counties should chip in to rehabilitate the line, redevelop it, and possibly expand existing lines (especially the Wine Train) so that more passenger services can be made instead of just relying on tourists and racegoers.
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