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Old April 25th, 2014, 08:17 AM   #1281
dimlys1994
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News from LA:

Quote:
http://thesource.metro.net/2014/04/2...-improvements/

Metro Board approves contract for Union Station regional rail improvements
April 24, 2014

As part of the consent calendar, the Metro Board of Directors unanimously approved Item 21, a $31-million contract for engineering work to extend regional rail tracks south from Union Station — so that trains don’t all have to enter and exit the station from the north.

Here’s the news release from Metro:

"To prepare Los Angeles Union Station for expected growth in Amtrak and Metrolink passenger rail service, and to accommodate the future California High-Speed Rail system, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Board of Directors awarded a contract today to HDR Engineering, Inc. for environmental work and engineering of the Southern California Regional Interconnector Project (SCRIP).

SCRIP will change the configuration of some of Union Station’s “stub end” tracks to “run through” the station, allowing operational flexibility. Currently, all commuter and intercity regional rail trains enter and exit through the five track throat at the north end of Union Station. SCRIP will extend several of the tracks to exit the south end of the station, cross over the 101 freeway and join the railroad right-of-way along the west bank of the Los Angeles River. The preliminary cost estimate for the project is $350 million.

“SCRIP will allow Union Station to increase track capacity 40 to 50 percent and provide greater flexibility in scheduling as well as an increase in passenger loading with longer trains,” said Metro Board Chair Diane DuBois. “The “run through” tracks will allow one-seat rides between the various destinations in the Metrolink service area and greatly improve operations.”

The current “stub end” configuration requires an average turn-around time of 15 minutes per train, resulting in more than 40 cumulative hours of train idling at Union Station each day. SCRIP can potentially shorten dwell time for more than 50 percent of the passenger trains using the station to 2 minutes for passenger loading and unloading, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions of idling locomotives by an estimated 44 percent.

“This project is needed for the longer term rail needs of our region,” said Metro CEO Art Leahy. “Metrolink and Amtrak operations will be growing in the coming years and SCRIP is part of a statewide integrated passenger rail system designed to meet that growth,” Leahy said.

The California High Speed Rail Authority, which is a partner with Metro on the project, plans to connect high-speed train service directly to Union Station, thereby providing additional ridership for other rail providers and increasing the need for additional capacity.

The preliminary schedule calls for the completion of environmental and engineering work in late 2016 with construction to be complete in late 2019.

SCRIP is consistent with the long-term vision for Union Station, which is to provide regional connections to local destinations through a variety of transit modes including bus, high speed rail, regional, intercity and commuter light rail expansions."
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Old April 25th, 2014, 06:47 PM   #1282
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Metro Board approves $927-million contract for construction of Regional Connector project

http://thesource.metro.net/2014/04/2...ector-project/

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Old April 25th, 2014, 08:25 PM   #1283
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So let me get this straight...

- The Expo Line (currently terminating at 7th Street/MetroCenter) will be interlined with the Gold Line to continue on to Little Tokyo/Arts District
- The Blue Line (also currently terminating at 7th Street/MetroCenter) will be interlined also with the Gold Line to continue on to Pasadena and Sierra Madre Vista
- The existing Gold Line will keep the current alignment between Indiana in East Los Angeles and Sierra Madre Vista, and with the interlining of the Blue Line between the new connector, Little Tokyo, and Pasadena, it would then bolster service on the northern part of the line

Will then...

- the Expo Line keep the same name, or will it have a spliced name (like Expo-Gold Line)
- the Blue Line have a line extension to become the Long Beach-Pasadena service via Downtown Los Angeles
- the Gold Line have a "branch" line serving Downtown LA aside from its current configuration serving Union Station?
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Old April 25th, 2014, 10:38 PM   #1284
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fieldsofdreams View Post

Will then...

- the Expo Line keep the same name, or will it have a spliced name (like Expo-Gold Line)
- the Blue Line have a line extension to become the Long Beach-Pasadena service via Downtown Los Angeles
- the Gold Line have a "branch" line serving Downtown LA aside from its current configuration serving Union Station?
The Gold Line will no longer serve Union Station or Pasadena. It will run east-west from East LA through the Regional Connector to Santa Monica.

The Blue Line will run north/south from Pasadena through Union Station and the Regional Connector on to its current route to Long Beach.

The Expo Line will no longer exist.

There will no longer be service between Pasadena and East LA.
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Old April 26th, 2014, 12:16 AM   #1285
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and all of that is obvious from the words on the diagram, so I don't know how fieldsofdreams got what he did off it.
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Old April 26th, 2014, 03:54 AM   #1286
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I am curious as to see why transportation planners did not route the Blue Line from say Long Beach to East Los Angeles and the Gold Line from Pasadena to Santa Monica instead.
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Old April 26th, 2014, 04:05 AM   #1287
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I wondered the same thing. I'm sure there was a study that pointed to those being the most efficient alignments in terms of who commutes where, although I bet at least a sliver of the reasoning has to do with the simplicity of "Gold = East/West" and "Blue = North/South."

As much as I'd love to ride continuously from the westside to Pasadena for games at the Rose Bowl, it's such a long distance that I'm hardly gonna complain about a single transfer.
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Old April 26th, 2014, 04:24 AM   #1288
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sotonsi View Post
and all of that is obvious from the words on the diagram, so I don't know how fieldsofdreams got what he did off it.
My impression was that since some lines could have higher ridership than others, perhaps additional services from those lines could be made to allow even more direct services for passengers traveling around Downtown LA and beyond, especially that its rail (light and heavy) network is expanding quickly to accommodate for future population and job growth, hence my questions. It's like, I want to see how the Regional Connector could end up simplifying and expanding LA Metro's light rail network over time, and I was thinking if additional capacity will be made as a result of such construction (like more service on the Gold, Blue, and Expo Lines through interconnections)...
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Old April 26th, 2014, 01:52 PM   #1289
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Wouldn't it be cool if the line passing by Disneyland have a TRON theme going on, as well as the line to Magic Mountain having an Iron Giant theme?
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Old April 27th, 2014, 09:52 AM   #1290
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Is that going to be a one-seat ride from Long Beach to Asuza? That has to be close to 48-49 miles, outside the scope of many commuter rail lines, not to mention light rail. The MAX Blue Line, which crosses the entirety of the Portland-area urban habitat from west to east, is ridiculously long at only 32.7 miles.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 05:50 PM   #1291
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From The Source:

Quote:
http://thesource.metro.net/2014/05/0...t-for-fy-2015/

Public hearing set for May 14 to comment on Metro’s proposed $5.5-billion budget for FY 2015
May 1, 2014

Here is the news release from Metro and the proposed budget is above:

Quote:
A public hearing is set for 1 p.m. on May 14, 2014 to hear comment on Metro’s proposed balanced $5.508 billion Fiscal Year 2015 (FY15) budget, set to begin July 1, 2014. The proposed budget includes continued commitment to the largest highway and rail building program in America, bus headway improvements and $283.4 million in maintenance expenditures to keep the system in top form.

The public hearing will take place during the regularly scheduled meeting of the Metro Board Finance Committee at the Metro Board Room, 1 Gateway Plaza, Los Angeles. The public can view copies of the balanced budget proposal at www.metro.net/fy15proposed or request a copy from the Metro Records Management Center at [email protected].

The draft FY15 budget enhances many services while keeping fares at low levels, however, a decision on a proposed fare increase to eliminate a projected $36.8 million operating budget deficit by Fiscal Year 2017 is pending the May 22 Metro Board meeting.

As part of the $283.4 million targeted at maintenance, Metro will spend $192.7 million on bus service including the purchase of 550 new clean-burning CNG buses and about $50 million for rail improvements on the Blue Line and the Red Line subway in the next fiscal year.

Safety is critical to Metro passengers and the FY15 budget contains $48.7 million to keep the system as safe as possible. Enhancements include improvements to cameras and video monitoring, security kiosks are various rail stations, signal system rehabilitation on the Metro Blue and Green lines and pedestrian safety improvements on the Metro Red Line with an underpass and overpass bridge planned for Universal City and North Hollywood stations.

Metro continues construction on the most comprehensive public works program in America with Measure R and other funding sources. In FY15, Metro will have five major rail projects either under construction or prepared to begin including the Metro Gold Line extension to Azusa, the Metro Expo Line extension to Santa Monica, the Crenshaw/LAX Line and the Regional Connector. The Metro Purple Line extension to Westwood has cleared major legal hurdles and is expected to receive a federal full funding grant agreement by mid-May.

In terms of highway projects, the mammoth undertaking of modernizing and expanding capacity of the I-405 will be completed in FY15 and other projects are moving forward including I-5 widening from Orange County to the I-605, the I-710 South Corridor, the North SR-710 study and a variety of other improvements including continuation of countywide sound wall construction and the Freeway Beautification Pilot Project designed maintain landscape and remove graffiti and debris.

The Metro ExpressLanes Project continues to provide travel options on the I-10 and I-110 freeways with future expansion of ExpressLanes to be studied. The Kenneth Hahn Countywide Callbox System continues operation along with development of the Motorist Aid and Travel Information System (MATIS).

Metro will continue to contribute both operations and capital funding to the Southern California Regional Rail Authority with FY15 capital projects including the Bob Hope Airport/Hollywood Way station, Van Nuys Second Platform, Vincent Grade/Acton and Lancaster Stations, Doran Street Crossing design, Raymer to Bernson Double Track and Southern California Regional Interconnectivity Program (SCRIP), which will increase Union Station Capacity
And some points of new budget:

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Old May 10th, 2014, 02:42 AM   #1292
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http://la.curbed.com/archives/2014/0...ail_action.php

West Hollywood Determined to Get In On All This Rail ActionFriday, May 2, 2014, by Neal Broverman

While Beverly Hills throws up almost every obstacle they can to prevent rail from reaching their borders, West Hollywood is ready to plunk down money to do just the opposite. Two councilmembers want the city to hire a lobbyist to convince Metro to place rail through WeHo higher on their list of priorities, WeHoville reports, especially with a future ballot initiative possibly opening up billions more for projects. When planning the Purple Line extension (currently in pre-construction) a spur was floated that would reach WeHo through San Vicente or La Cienega boulevards, but was cut because of the crazy price tag. The next most logical option for rail to WeHo is a northern extension of the Crenshaw Line, that would connect it first to the Purple Line on Wilshire and then up to the Hollywood/Highland Red Line stop via WeHo. Metro actually already did preliminary studies on just that (see map).
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Old May 10th, 2014, 02:44 AM   #1293
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http://la.curbed.com/archives/2014/0...e_subway_1.php

Bev Hills Has Used $3 Million in School Repair Funds to Lose a Fight Against the Purple Line Subway
Friday, May 9, 2014, by Bianca Barragan

For at least two years, the Beverly Hills Unified School District has been using Measure E funds intended for school renovations and improvements to fund parts of what's proven to be a losing battle against Metro's Purple Line subway extension, which will run under Beverly Hills High School. Now the LA Register reveals that they've spent at least $3 million of government cheese on their fight against what everyone but them can see is inevitable (not to mention freaking necessary). BHUSD is only supposed to spend those funds on specific projects on an approved list, which surprisingly enough did not include waging a war against the subway. Previously, school officials had maintained that the fight against Metro was a school improvement issue, but they never formally made it one by putting it on a "specific master list" that might explain how in the hell their legal drama is related to school repairs.

"I think all of us on the board would agree that we've spent too much money on this," says the Board of Education president, whose big fear now is that Metro will somehow wield ultimate power over the school and any future improvements. "It will be best if we just stay clear of each other." This begrudging concession echoes the BH City Council's recent cave-in; around the same time two of the city and school district's four lawsuits were dismissed, the council finally handed over permits to start work on the line (which they'd been taking their sweet time on). Meanwhile, the district and city do still have those two federal lawsuits to fall back on, but it seems like you're wearin' 'em down, Metro!

As reality slowly sets in that the Purple Line is going to be built and it's going to run under the high school no matter what, perhaps the school district can focus on, you know, actual improvements to the school. A recent audit showed, as of June 2013, only one major project (an auditorium renovation) had been completed in the five years since the measure passed.
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Old May 10th, 2014, 05:34 PM   #1294
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From LA Metro, video about Union Station reconstruction, which includes new throgh tracks:



But one thing in this video is not true - Union Gold Line station is not underground, does anybody knows what station is shown in video?
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Old May 10th, 2014, 09:22 PM   #1295
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LA's transit efforts deserve a C- grade.
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Old May 11th, 2014, 04:12 AM   #1296
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Flexible scheduling

Quote:
Originally Posted by k.k.jetcar View Post
If you're aiming for timed overtakes, that implies an operation that has passenger volumes that warrant a "heavy rail" metro type configuration. In order for timed overtakes to occur, you need schedule discipline that will be hampered by any street running that seems the norm in N. America light rail applications (timed overtakes are rare enough in North America anyway).
I apologize for quoting so far back in the time stream, but, I have been thinking about the issue of scheduling and systems with passing tracks as well as street running.

IMO, real time schedule flexibility still has not evolved to where the available technology actually is.

Rigid scheduling in systems with street running primarily relates to having to look at modeling possible waiting time averages, picking some type of statistical compromise, and, then taking this figure and plugging into the entire system. Trains might have to wait at dedicated right of way station X for train B to arrive from on street running.

Historically, this has been the case as computer models using rigid blocks of time per identified train are easier to develop and follow, simpler to post on screens at stations, and, simpler for the rider to use. Today, however, riders are far more interface savvy, and, computer systems far more adaptable to real time changes.

Imagine trains are scheduled in probability brackets that might be 5 or 10 minutes long. While each actual train is a line segment, the computer scheduling system would have the option to move the actual line segment anywhere in a given probability bracket. In addition, probability brackets could overlap, as long as the actual time distance between two trains was greater than an established value. Whether train A was ahead of train B or behind is irrelevant, only the time distance is of concern.

The information could be communicated easily via display screens at stations, where a +/- column indicating minutes ahead or behind schedule would be added to the display. For example, 2240 Metro North, +5, or 0845 West Pine, -5.

Trains then, at stations with the capability, could pass one another going in the same direction playing with this 10 minute window, as long as time distances exceeded agreed upon minimums.

In high capacity systems this could be +/- 2 or 3 minutes with riders understanding that trains could arrive any time within a 5 (or whatever) minute window.

If wait times for feeder lines would be greater than the agreed time, then the waited for trains would fall back in time to the next probability interval, etc.

This would (largely) limit delays to those right-of-ways which due to street running or anomalous slow orders can not be scheduled within tighter confidence intervals, yet still permit same direction passing in stations with that track capability on the same system.

(Time deviations likely would more likely always be negative, with the scheduled time at the best available time, so riders would not miss a train. This scheduled time would be posted, and, perhaps color coded based on negative values. This is all due to the basic rule that a bus, train, or plane CANNOT leave early, but can always arrive a tolerable number of minutes late.)

Last edited by billfranklin; May 11th, 2014 at 04:20 AM.
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Old May 12th, 2014, 07:30 PM   #1297
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dimlys1994 View Post
From LA Metro, video about Union Station reconstruction, which includes new throgh tracks:



But one thing in this video is not true - Union Gold Line station is not underground, does anybody knows what station is shown in video?
That video is a nice find. Union Station's run through tracks are long overdue.

The subway station shown in that video is the Eastside Gold Line's Soto Station. Arguably the best looking Metro station in Los Angeles.
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Old May 12th, 2014, 07:54 PM   #1298
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Quote:
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That video is a nice find. Union Station's run through tracks are long overdue
And four new through tracks will be mostly used by Amtrak services, isn't it?
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Old May 13th, 2014, 01:34 AM   #1299
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dimlys1994 View Post
And four new through tracks will be mostly used by Amtrak services, isn't it?
Amtrak as well as Metrolink. The new tracks will allow Metrolink to do some through-running and treat Union Station as any other regular stop.
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Old May 13th, 2014, 11:53 PM   #1300
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Check out the whole thing. It's an interesting read.


L.A. looking to spend billions to improve traffic
BY JORDAN GRAHAM May 12, 2014 Updated May 13, 2014 12:33 p.m.



The way in which people travel to, from and around the San Fernando Valley will significantly transform over the next three decades.

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and other agencies are set to pour billions of dollars into beefing up bus and rail lines, freeways and bikeways. The result will better link Valley residents to each other and connect L.A.’s northernmost regions with the rest of the city.

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