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Mysterious2train

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About Mysterious2train

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  1. Don't worry, even if Uncle Joe and Congress actually do provide some Fedbux soon to fund phase 2, it wouldn't open until the end of this decade at the absolute earliest - more likely into the next decade. If the R46s are still around by then, the MTA will have much bigger problems to deal with.
  2. Indirectly, yes. In the Oct 2019 board and committee meetings the MTA board approved awarding a contract to Thales to install CBTC equipment onboard the R211s. The contract stated that the 2nd R211 option order of 437 cars would be in 89 4-car and 5-car sets. That works out to 405 cars in sets of 5 (81 sets, 40.5 full trains) and 32 cars in sets of 4 (8 sets, 4 full trains).
  3. Good 'ol former NYS Deputy Police Superintendent and Nassau County Assistant Police Commissioner David "Why should I ride and inconvenience myself when I can ride in a car?” Mack.
  4. The CBTC project was split into 2 phases. The first phase includes the QBL mainline from 8 Av-50 St to Kew Gardens and was funded in previous capital programs. The next phase is (was?) part of the 2020-2024 program and includes 63rd Street (the 6th Av-Queens line) and Kew Gardens to 179 St and Archer Av.
  5. No plans to do any through-running that I'm aware of (beyond the peak-hour SLE trips to Stamford that already exist, anyway). It would just be regular Shore Line East service. I do think the MTA or CTDOT paid a little lip service to the idea of limited through-running in some planning document or other a long time ago, if I'm not misremembering, but I don't remember off the top of my head. There's also SLE platforms and consists being a lot shorter than typical New Haven Line trains to consider as well. Could be even longer - assuming a standard express from NYC to Stamford, then local to New Haven, you'd probably be looking at closer to 3.5 hours from NYC to New London (compared to about 2.5 hours on Amtrak). Granted, making fewer stops like those (former?) peak-hour expresses certainly could cut down the run time. I get the appeal of Metro-North/SLE through service, though (and this is definitely getting out of Metro-North territory) I would much rather see Connecticut and Rhode Island complete their plans of bringing SLE and Rhode Island commuter rail service service together at Westerly, RI to help fill in one of the last commuter rail gaps along the Northeast Corridor. Not that either state has devoted much funding to this over the last decade though. Scoots between Wassaic and Southeast, typically every two hours. Prior to March 2018, there was also one through train from Wassaic to GCT each day on Saturday and Sunday, though this was discontinued due to track work.
  6. Something that apparently slipped under the radar: John Longobardi, Chief Transportation Officer at Metro-North, told the Connecticut Commuter Rail Council at their October meeting that the supplemental 60-car order of M-8s had started arriving, but hadn't started testing yet (almost a year late, since the order was approved in November 2016 and was expected to start arriving after three years, but obviously the least of Metro-North and Shore Line East's problems this past year). M-8 tests in Shore Line East territory are progressing as well, as they have been for some five years now?
  7. Some relevant tweets. So this route is starting this weekend, poles installed, and the MTA has yet to officially announce it to the public? I definitely don't see any info on the website.
  8. Kawasaki is a reliable carbuilder for the MTA, certainly more so than Bombardier at this point (as low as that bar is) but relying on them to be NYCT's sole carbuilder would be asking for trouble. Even if we assume Kawasaki acts with the MTA's best interests in mind and wouldn't try to take advantage of their monopoly, any delays they experience could have a domino effect on their orders. While we've all heard about the delays with the M9s, and we're prepared for the possibility that the R211s could be delayed too, there's also the additional 60-car M8 order for Metro-North (and (formerly?) Shore Line East?) - supposed to start arriving back around September and is now some 9 months late. I don't think we've heard anybody from the MTA/CDOT/Kawasaki come out and give a reason for the M8 delays, but I would assume the M9 delays have pushed back work on the M8s. Granted, delays and setbacks are normal, and the M8 order is a small, supplemental order meant primarily to increase service as opposed to retiring an older fleet, and there's presumably little need for those extra M8s right now with ridership down due to COVID. But in a world where demand shoots back up, we really shouldn't open up NYCT to a situation where an issue with Kawasaki or any hypothetical sole manufacturer production ended up delaying multiple big car orders. The MTA already only has a handful of bidders willing to work with it. Restrictive low-bidding laws are certainly something to look at, but going with a single manufacturer is just restrictive in a different direction.
  9. More pictures posted online and linked on Reddit: https://imgur.com/a/sgPWqO7
  10. I was interested in the discussion in the Random Thoughts thread on on-time performance in the wake of the R46/R160 swap, so I went through the board materials and crudely pasted together weekday OTP info for all of 2019. OTP for the fluctuated all last year. In particular there was a noticeable jump in August once the returned to using the express tracks between 36 St and 59 St in Brooklyn (Several other lines also saw improved performance in August). service to Coney Island ended on October 21 but it's hard to say what impact, if any, that had on OTP. There were also other events last year like signals being retimed, speed limits being raised on certain areas of track, and schedule changes (which might include runtime changes). The R46/R160 swap started early in December and we do see OTP drop on the and and rise on the and from December to January. But of course there are so many factors affecting performance and OTP is changing every month so I wouldn't blame the swap just yet. It'll be interesting to see the numbers for this month when they come out.
  11. Now I'm not saying these rumors are true at all (more just playing devil's advocate) but even if we ignore his interventions on big projects like the Second Avenue Subway and the L Project, Cuomo has certainly shown a willingness to micromanage MTA affairs in the past. Like when the Queens Midtown Tunnel was renovated post-Hurricane Sandy and he ordered the MTA to replace the white tiles with blue and yellow tiles to match NY state colors (which the NY Post claims cost an extra $20-30 million). You can even see it in official MTA board materials with the vague mention of "tunnel wall tile modifications to meet New York State branding guidelines". Not to mention the light shows on several NY state bridges (including some owned by the MTA) and the blue and yellow wraps on the R160s, R211s, R262s and M9s, it's clear Cuomo/his administration is concerned with appearances is and wiling to extend that to the MTA. I honestly don't think it's outside the realm of possibility for the Cuomo admin to hear about shabby-looking subway cars that are closing in on 60 years old, with reliability slowing falling, with a new fleet of cars currently arriving to replace them, and him then ordering the MTA to get retire those old cars as soon as is feasible. If he or a high-ranking admin. member did give the order, would the MTA really be able to say no? And on what grounds? Maybe arguing that retiring the R32s now would create a car shortage, but would even that work? And putting aside the rumors/speculation from this thread, there's also Dan Ravoli saying outright in the article quoted above and on his Twitter that the R32s are being retired this Spring. Now granted, he doesn't work for the MTA and could be misinformed, made a mistake or is flat-out lying, but I would hope he know better than that being a reporter. Given how he reports heavily on transit issues and is a fixture at board and committee meetings I'd like to think he's a little more trustworthy than the typical reporter, but who knows. He doesn't have a title at the MTA, sure, but literally appoints a plurality of MTA board members, including the Chair/CEO and as of last year, the state budget director. And we know he and his administration are more than willing to interfere with MTA operations of any level, from big projects down to trivial issues, and he often gets his way. Not to mention the state legislature giving him most of what he wants when it comes to MTA things that require legislative approval (which is of course the legislators' choice, but just pointing it out). He definitely has influence.
  12. Not to my knowledge and anecdotally, ridership is fairly low on the Roosevelt Island portion at times with only a couple of people on some buses. Which is why I'm mixed on cutting service to the northern part of the island and undoing the round-robin pattern. But, I will argue the Q102 has garbo headways offpeak and has a ridiculous routing from trying to juggle several roles at once which hurts its potential. I understand two routes is never going to happen and I'd just be happy with the Q104/QT63. More anecdotes, but when the missus and I go from the island to Western Queens it's either to the shops along the Q104 route/Broadway (like Costco) or to Queens Plaza/Court Square. Now we just take Uber to the former and take the Q102 to Queens Plaza, or take Uber if the next Q102 is far away or it's somewhere a little farther from the Q102, like Court Square. If RI got the Q104 and Q39 we'd be set. If RI got the QT63 we would at least be set for Broadway (and even for trips Jackson Hts/Elmhurst if she could stand a bus ride of that length vs taking the ) and she'd probably Uber to Queens Plaza/Court Square. If RI gets the QT78 she'll probably just want to take Uber everywhere to avoid walking/transferring from the QT78 (unless we need the specifically and service is not stopping at Roosevelt Island for whatever reason).
  13. Mixed feelings about Roosevelt Island. MTA is trying to pull a fast one by not serving the entire northern half of the island with the QT78. I kind of understand as it's not as dense as the southern half and the Q102's round robin pattern is awfully awkward. If it happens, those people would be stuck with the Roosevelt Island bus service. However, the Q102 serves Coler Hospital on the northern tip of the island while the red bus doesn't; the red bus terminates at the Octagon building, which is a few minutes away from the hospital by walking. I would hope the Roosevelt Island Operating Company would extend the red bus to the hospital. I don't like the QT78 much; it's awfully barebones for Roosevelt Island. If we're stuck with a single new route I would much rather have the Q104/QT63 to reach places like Costco or the whole strip of businesses along Broadway. Right now to get around those areas we have to either take a circuitous trip on the Q102 and walk 8+ mins or transfer to the Q103 and Q104 on their high headways. The Q102 has an incredibly awkward existence as a circuitous Roosevelt Island-Queens Plaza/Queens Plaza-Astoria/RI-Astoria coverage route, but its connection to the Queens Plaza area is important. The Q102 saw a pretty nice 50% increase in weekday ridership between 2013 and 2018! Of course we don't know where that new ridership is distributed along the route but it's not hard to imagine some of it is from the new facilities on Roosevelt Island and its surprising population growth. The Western Queens Transportation Study IMO had the best of both worlds for RI by proposing sending both the Q104 and Q39 to Roosevelt Island - Q104 to serve the shops, Q39 to serve Queens Plaza/Court Square. MTA would definitely never go for that - seems like the QT78 is the 'middle of the road' option by serving some of Astoria/LIC/Sunnyside and for taking the straightest route to get to the subway and bus lines, while not really excelling at either.
  14. Realistically, to get backing from suburban politicians with the connection to Metro-North, and to keep the project simpler by keeping it in Manhattan (as sending it to an outer borough opens up a new can of worms). Also I know "Phase 2 should have gone to 149 St" discussions come up every other month in the SAS thread, but the big price tag shouldn't really matter either way; it's not like going 149 St wouldn't have the same cost issues as any other Capital Construction megaproject, and presumably would have been even more expensive, what with one additional station (with the stations being the most expensive elements of Phase 1) and having to build transfers to the and , and an underwater crossing, albeit a short one.
  15. darkstar8983 is not referring to the frequency but rather the span of service. The ran to/from Astoria for a longer span each day than the . Southbound service from Astoria ran from 6:02 AM to 11:01 PM. Northbound s arrived at Astoria from 6:34 AM to 11:34 PM. From 2008-2010 and from 2016 to 2018, the span of Southbound service was from 6:53 AM to 9:58 PM, and northbound service arrived from Astoria from 7:45 AM to 11:29 PM. Because service to/from Astoria started later and ended earlier than former service, bringing back the effectively reduced the number of trips to/from Astoria during those early morning hours and late evening hours. There were some news articles written back when the returned pointing this out. This was addressed in 2018 when the schedule was adjusted and the span of southbound service from Astoria was increased from 6:13 AM to 10:07 PM (with northbound trains arriving at Astoria from 7:47 AM to 11:48 PM). Of course, back in November 2019, evening service was adjusted to end a little earlier, with the last southbound leaving Astoria at 9:26 PM, and the last northbound arriving at 10:55 PM, but the increased service in the morning remains.
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