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Old May 8th, 2017, 01:01 PM   #3341
phoenixboi08
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zaphod View Post
So correct me if I am wrong, the budget deal that passed has preserved funding for Amtrak at previous year's amounts. So long distance trains survive another few years.

It's a common threat to cut them. At no point in the budget negotiations was the investments into the NEC and regional lines ever in question though.

Technically, this is just a stop-gap measure that was agreed to in order to prevent a government 'shut down.' It really only funds these programs at or above current levels for the rest of FY17.

I don't believe the current funding agreement has any impact on FY18, and the administration has already shown its hand regarding its priorities: The next budget is going to be even more contentious, because House Republicans are going to be able to [somewhat] correctly say they've already been generous/shown good will in past bills.

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Originally Posted by zaphod View Post
What I would do is identify current service corridors where there is either a need, a strong business case for better rail, or if not at least strong community support for it. If towns along the line have invested their own money into stations and advertise train service that needs to be an important factor.

For example, eliminate the Crescent as a New Orleans-NYC train. Then create a new train service that just goes from Charlotte to Atlanta, 2-3 round trips a day, and an Atlanta-Birmingham service as well. This greatly increases service on the segments of the route where there is the most demand, support, and need for it. This means you could focus investment on physical infrastructure as well, maybe even building a medium high speed upgraded corridor with 110-125 mph speeds.
Well...that's exactly what I've been saying as well...Although, I still disagree that they would even need to cut the long distance trains.

The problem though is that this is not really an administrative problem (e.g. that Amtrak doesn't recognize this would be preferable) but rather that it is political/economic (e.g. Congress won't properly fund them). This is why cutting these routes serves no purpose.

The major problem with these services is that they are expensive, not necessarily that they are slow. Amtrak has to effectively market many of these long-distance routes as 'Land Cruises' for no other reason than they lack the financial means to operate more frequent, cheaper, regional service (i.e. Houston-NOLA-BHM-ATL-Charlotte on the Crescent route).

If those 'roommettes' could instead be converted to 2x2, 2x3, or 3x3 configurations, I would have to believe many long-distance routes would be rendered cheaper/more attractive. Without funding to retrofit or acquire new rolling stock, however, this is likely not going to happen.

In any case, the introduction of increased regional capacity is something that has been emerging slowly - proposals, studies or actual improvements are already being carried out; particularly in the Midwest (in Illinois, Michigan, etc) and in the Southeast (in Virginia, Carolinas, and Georgia). This is one of the successes of the grants that were distributed from the ARRA that gets glossed over...
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Old May 11th, 2017, 05:51 AM   #3342
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Ringling Brothers & Barnum and Bailey Circus

The Ringling Brothers Circus will be hosting its final performance on May 21st. The circus used two almost 60-car long trains for its two shows.

This marks the last time the circus train pulls into New York:



IMG_8422 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8427 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8430 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8433 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8441 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8445 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8449 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8472 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8480 by GojiMet86, on Flickr

IMG_8482 by GojiMet86, on Flickr
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Old May 28th, 2017, 07:33 PM   #3343
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M II A II R II K
A 3-Part Plan to Rebuild New York's Old Penn Station


May 4th, 2015

By ERIC JAFFE

Read More: http://www.citylab.com/commute/2015/...tation/392261/





















Source: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=216940
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Old June 8th, 2017, 06:18 PM   #3345
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Could New York's Pennsylvania Station actually get rebuilt the way it was?

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Originally Posted by treehugger
I usually dislike reproductions and reconstructions, and believe that one can mix new and old. But Penn Station is a different case; it is righting a wrong, giving us back something that should never have been taken away. I wonder what Ada Louise Huxtable would have thought. What do you think?


Read More: https://www.treehugger.com/green-arc...ay-it-was.html
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Old June 8th, 2017, 06:26 PM   #3346
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Old June 11th, 2017, 08:07 PM   #3347
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixboi08 View Post
Technically, this is just a stop-gap measure that was agreed to in order to prevent a government 'shut down.' It really only funds these programs at or above current levels for the rest of FY17.

I don't believe the current funding agreement has any impact on FY18, and the administration has already shown its hand regarding its priorities: The next budget is going to be even more contentious, because House Republicans are going to be able to [somewhat] correctly say they've already been generous/shown good will in past bills.



Well...that's exactly what I've been saying as well...Although, I still disagree that they would even need to cut the long distance trains.

The problem though is that this is not really an administrative problem (e.g. that Amtrak doesn't recognize this would be preferable) but rather that it is political/economic (e.g. Congress won't properly fund them). This is why cutting these routes serves no purpose.

The major problem with these services is that they are expensive, not necessarily that they are slow. Amtrak has to effectively market many of these long-distance routes as 'Land Cruises' for no other reason than they lack the financial means to operate more frequent, cheaper, regional service (i.e. Houston-NOLA-BHM-ATL-Charlotte on the Crescent route).

If those 'roommettes' could instead be converted to 2x2, 2x3, or 3x3 configurations, I would have to believe many long-distance routes would be rendered cheaper/more attractive. Without funding to retrofit or acquire new rolling stock, however, this is likely not going to happen.

In any case, the introduction of increased regional capacity is something that has been emerging slowly - proposals, studies or actual improvements are already being carried out; particularly in the Midwest (in Illinois, Michigan, etc) and in the Southeast (in Virginia, Carolinas, and Georgia). This is one of the successes of the grants that were distributed from the ARRA that gets glossed over...
Is reconfiguring the most expensive tickets, which I would assume subsidize the rest of the train, really a good idea? I would think that if the goal is cheapness, adding more coach-class seats is the way to go.

But then we get into a discussion about dumping more cash into long-distance trains. I can't speak to all of Amtrak's routes, but the Empire Builder (which I do love) makes very little sense beyond Minneapolis. Even with multiple daily trips at lower prices, taking a few days to go from Chicago to Seattle only works for sightseers, especially given the availability of inexpensive flights. Frankly, I agree with cutting it (although I would like to see the Hiawatha expanded to Minneapolis/St. Paul).

Honestly, cutting many of these insanely long Western routes makes sense, even if it does mean the death of those wonderful Superliners. I hate that we've gotten to a point where even the suggestion of a cut to some government organization is verboten, but that's a rant for a different thread.
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Old June 11th, 2017, 08:13 PM   #3348
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This is a strange thing to notice, but the signage at this station looks fantastic. Love it.

Wouldn't mind some photos of the interior waiting area... kind of a strange omission by IDOT.
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Old June 11th, 2017, 08:35 PM   #3349
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Quote:
Originally Posted by transit geek View Post
Is reconfiguring the most expensive tickets, which I would assume subsidize the rest of the train, really a good idea? I would think that if the goal is cheapness, adding more coach-class seats is the way to go.

But then we get into a discussion about dumping more cash into long-distance trains. I can't speak to all of Amtrak's routes, but the Empire Builder (which I do love) makes very little sense beyond Minneapolis. Even with multiple daily trips at lower prices, taking a few days to go from Chicago to Seattle only works for sightseers, especially given the availability of inexpensive flights. Frankly, I agree with cutting it (although I would like to see the Hiawatha expanded to Minneapolis/St. Paul).

Honestly, cutting many of these insanely long Western routes makes sense, even if it does mean the death of those wonderful Superliners. I hate that we've gotten to a point where even the suggestion of a cut to some government organization is verboten, but that's a rant for a different thread.
For those sightseeing routes, they should raise the fare and reduce the frequency from daily to weekly.
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Old June 11th, 2017, 08:36 PM   #3350
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexis View Post
Brightline Departs Sacramento

Holy crap, that is my new favorite US train paint scheme.

And it's a privately-owned railroad. Interesting. I'm willing to bet that we will begin to see more of these in the next few years, especially if Brightline proves popular.
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Old June 22nd, 2017, 03:34 PM   #3351
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Old June 28th, 2017, 07:46 PM   #3352
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Penn Station's West End Concourse finally opens to the public
It marks the first phase of the transformation of the James A. Farley Post Office building

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curbed
Following a few delays, Penn Station’s West End Concourse has finally opened to the public, NY1 has learned. Part of the overall revamp of the much-reviled station, the West End Concourse connects the James A. Farley Post Office Building to Penn Station, underground...


Read More: https://ny.curbed.com/2017/6/15/1580...se-post-office
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Old June 30th, 2017, 12:47 AM   #3353
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Governor Cuomo of New York Issues a State of Emergency in MTA Serviced Counties over aging Transit

the "Summer of Hell" is upon us.

PDF: Executive Order No. 168

Cuomo declares a ‘state of emergency’ for NYC subway

Quote:
[...]
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he has declared a state of emergency for the MTA, and that the state plans to allocate an additional $1 billion in funding to the agency’s current capital plan.

“We are now beginning to see what happens when mass transit systems break down,” Cuomo stated. By declaring a state of emergency, the state can “suspend procurement rules for the MTA, allowing the MTA to speed up repairs and the purchase of material and equipment to replace outdated infrastructure,”

[...]

Cuomo also announced that the MTA will work with ConEd on an “immediate investigation of their equipment, transmission and interlocks throughout the entire system.” That investigation, to be completed within 90 days, will then lead to repairs and better communication when problems arise, in theory, by the end of the year.
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Old June 30th, 2017, 02:35 PM   #3354
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That they only realize this by now. To be serious: looking at pictures of the subway shows that everything seems to be outdated. Those trainsets only are a glance of of what we said goodbye to long ago on this side of the Atlantic ocean.
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Old July 1st, 2017, 06:24 AM   #3355
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Source: nj.com
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Old July 1st, 2017, 06:52 PM   #3356
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Leased MARC cars entered service on LIRR yesterday; will be run on trains 613/664 for the foreseeable future. Will also be expanded to a 7-car consist starting Monday. Enjoy:


Other LIRR action from yesterday:






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Old July 4th, 2017, 08:34 PM   #3357
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Old July 5th, 2017, 07:18 PM   #3358
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An image of Grand Central from the book “The Gateway to a Continent.”

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/
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Old July 8th, 2017, 03:08 PM   #3359
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The Grand Central Terminal was built as the best railroad terminal in the world but its capacity was permanently constrained by its terminal layout.

The Pennsylvania Station was built as the through station of the Cross Manhattan Railroad and its construction required razing several city blocks, causing some disruptions to the neighborhoods.
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Old July 8th, 2017, 03:44 PM   #3360
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The above New York Penn Station track map highlights one of the most complex interlockings on the Northeast Corridor – A Interlocking – the critical sorting mechanism that routes trains entering and exiting Penn Station from the Hudson River tunnels and the Long Island Rail Road’s West Side Yard across 21 tracks. A Interlocking, the area shaded in orange, is where the infrastructure renewal work will take place this summer.

Source: https://media.amtrak.com/new-york-pe...newal-program/
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