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RR503

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RR503 last won the day on August 1

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  1. Part of this is Cuomo, yes. But a lot of the issue here is the peculiarly American inattention towards operating built systems. Whether it’s highways, waterways or railroads, we as a country are much more interested in building than maintaining — a fact which alone explains the piss poor quality of much American infrastructure. This is most certainly carried through to NYC: the advocates and electeds (Cuomo included) all try to fund the MTA’s capital budget — it is that one which produces the ribbon cuttings, after all — and don’t pay more than lip service to the agency’s operating needs, let alone attempt to improve agency operations so that it can do more with less. We need trains to run on all these shiny new tracks and signals our capital money is buying — and as it so happens, it’s a lot cheaper to fund a year of increased train service than it is to build new lines. But alas, “we funded a service increase from 15 to 20tph” doesn’t have the same ring to it as “we installed modern signals” or “we opened a new subway line.” I think the “reducing agency cost base” point bears (a lot of) emphasis: it’s a broad generalization, I know, but if NYCT ran its subways at Chicago operating costs, the system would turn a sizable operating profit. I don’t expect NYCT to achieve those levels of efficiency at any point in the future, but even doing simple things like getting a handle on debt service could do wonders for maintaining service levels. A touchy, nuanced subject, but if any of you all are interested in advocacy, it’s one that should be on your radar. As for these cuts, I’m guessing it’ll just be more baselining supplements. 10 million isn’t all that much money.
  2. To be fair, TM5, there's really nothing wrong with asking "why can't my train go faster?" It's in fact a central tenet of NYCT policy these days. As that IG report itself says, the stopping distance issues that plagued the system's car equipment have by and large been fixed -- it isn't anymore a system where, as has been said to me by others, taking a brake application means you'll stop...eventually. It also isn't a system where many signals are not capable of stopping a train at MAS (though as I and others have written in the past, those mods aren't so simple and unquestionable as "they were needed for safety"). I think one of the great things about the past year in transit has been that people at NYCT have been challenging all of these bits of accepted wisdom about safety, and have found many many areas where safety and increased speed can coexist -- it's a subjective, culturally led concept, after all.
  3. I'd love to see a study of the potential runtime gains from simply running R68s at the design acceleration curve...
  4. Yes, hump switches are DOA for engineering reasons. Just make the Ditmars arrangement manageable. This is a totally defensible plan for the short term, though you're really pushing it with 22.5 tph through City Hall curve. 60 St is capable of 27 or more. Dunno the exact upper limit -- likely depends on dwells at 59 and the garbage signal system between 5-59 and 42 St.
  5. I don’t even think that it had signals for a while...likely used just for train storage. Remember that the IRT and BMT jointly operated the Astoria line until 1949 (hence the R booth numbers). I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the BMT Astoria-QBP shuttles laid up on it. Paging some of our more senior members for a history lesson!
  6. Yeah, Hudson Yards is a bit of a mess transportationally. Sure they have the , but squeezing even more people onto the already packed platforms and stairways along the in Midtown sure does not sound like a recipe for success -- especially if Hudson Yards-bound commuters have to fight the flow of Queens traffic to get to their trains. Agreed that the capital investment plan seems to be more than a bit dissonant from this perspective. The one thing that the West Side has going for it is that there's a good bit of room to grow on the 8th Avenue line. No small thanks to its merging pattern, that corridor runs well below capacity. If NYCT can harness it, it could play a big role in managing area capacity needs.
  7. Oh yes, historically pretty much everything (and everyone) ended up on the East one way or another. But just as the various housing programs of the 80s and 90s revitalized the South Bronx, dynamics in Midtown are changing too. There's a lot of office development taking place on the West Side, which has had the effect of increasing volumes. Outside the corridor, changes in ridership, loading and signalling patterns are putting a lot of stress on areas that were not as bottlenecked 10 or 20 years ago (ex: the Fulton-BG area on Lex). This is to say nothing, of course, of the future operational complexities that come with CBTC interacting with merges. Not necessarily saying that a flip is a good idea, just that it may be worth recontextualizing routing patterns and investment needs in today's system given the plethora of knock-on system-scale effects produced.
  8. Setting aside everything else, where is the track capacity for this? WillyB runs 3tph below its limit, and 6th Avenue 5tph below. But even if track capacity existed, reverse branching Jamaica onto Canarsie really isn't a good idea. For one, Canarise CBTC isn't interoperable with any other portion of the system, so you're either left with buying more unicorn CBTC equipment (which becomes useless as soon as the tracks used by this proposed service get equipped with mainline spec CBTC) or running all trains on fixed blocks south of the Junction. There's also the issue of the Jamaica Line: every train you run to Canarsie from the is a train that isn't heading out to Jamaica. Those stops are already criminally underserved, and hold massive potential for ridership growth and infill development if the subway service was there. You don't want to be further limiting that stretch. Finally, the notion that the needs relief there is somewhat incorrect. The vast majority of riders already use the transfer at Broadway Junction to access the -- there's relatively little through ridership onto the northern segment. And anyway, if we got the power and the cars, you could up capacity from 20 to 26 without any other infrastructure investment (though potential exists for much, much more).
  9. Fast speeds do not require timers absent sufficiently sharp curvature or a complex junction. You can design a signal system to handle any speed of traffic. The general categories of timers are: - those that exist to regulate train speed through areas with unforgiving track or tunnel geometry (ex: sharp curves) - those that exist to increase capacity by shortening control lines (for example on downgrades or on long express segments) - those that were installed to reduce maximum operating speeds to ensure that trains would always be able to stop before a collision or obstruction (these are the ones added post-1995)
  10. This is interesting. The above posted photo of the board book narrative suggests that 180-3/149 preferred Lex over 7th. Was this something they obfuscated? I had also heard that folks from WPR frequently had destinations in that 180-149 stretch. Is that true? Generally, the political game played in these sorts of service changes speaks to the impossibility of running a transit system. Operationally, there is very much a better and worse way to run the trains, and for cost and overall service quality reasons, it should be a priority that those patterns are achieved -- provided mitigations exist for any/all knock on effects. But as TM5 says, the MTA is very much a political entity, so unless the agency can articulate to all stakeholders why something that may seem inconvenient is actually better in the long run/on a system scale, these sorts of proposals are just fantasy. 180 to this day remains a big source of variability in involved services, and whether it's from an investment or routing perspective, I'd love to see it studied again -- these are the and , some of the system's busiest lines, after all. With growth in the South Bronx, you likely could not implement 7tph local service without serious operational and rider effects, but there are other ways to cut the pie, so to speak.
  11. The 35s entering Utica were, I believe, post WillyB control line safety mods. The sign about it being a 'fast station' predates them, and as you say is now somewhat useless.
  12. Almost certainly not, though of course if you invested in high speed switches, CBTC, maybe even tail tracks... I mean, if you're deinterlining 53 and 63 (which I assume you are given the existence of the , why not just run the to Brooklyn or WTC and kill Canal while you're at it.
  13. You’d likely be able to get to 30, maybe more idk. CBTC allows for reliable closing in in these sorts of situations, which is key to them maintaining capacity.
  14. CBTC, really. It’s exceedingly difficult to signal an area at high frequencies where speeds are so low (you either end up relying a ton on ST, or have to install GT starting waaaay back to keep control lines short), and frankly the cost justification isn’t there for intensive fixed block resignalling anymore.
  15. My point is that it’s difficult to schedule both Astoria and QB local onto Broadway local without signaling upgrades around City Hall Curve. 22tph isn’t enough for those two corridors, and Canal short turns are, at least in today’s operating environment, quite fraught. If we’re going to deinterline Broadway, I’d like to see an investment in City Hall Lower, a rigorous intervention in terminal ops, or better yet, cessation of 11 St cut service.

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