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Charlotte Gateway Station and Railroad Improvements

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Isn't high level platforms just some steel and concrete? This should be relativity cheap to do


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22 minutes ago, XRZ.ME said:

Isn't high level platforms just some steel and concrete? This should be relativity cheap to do


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Unfortunately, as with most things railroad, its not that straightforward. Since NS’s lease says that their ability to move freight must be unimpeded you can’t just pour some new platforms and be done with it. In oder to maintain NS clearances you would need to build a freight bypass of some sort along with the platform. In some locations it would be easy (Salisbury and Kannapolis) and in others considerably more difficult (High Point and Cary). There is also an issue of ADA access and existing elevator shafts and escalators in Greensboro and High Point.

None of this makes the job impossible, but it is more complicated than poring four feet of concrete. 

There are a couple of other alternatives. One is to use mini-high platforms which are set back from the tracks. These require the conductor to put out a bridge plate to cover the gap to the train. They don’t save much time since only one door can be used. Second, new rail cars can Be purchased with gap fillers (metal plates that extend to the setback high platform when the train stops). These are widely used in Europe and on Brightline (I believe), but they are completely incompatible with low platforms, so any train continuing beyond Raleigh or Charlotte (like the Carolinian or Crescent) could not use the high platforms (so NC stations would need to have both)

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8 hours ago, KJHburg said:

 

5 minutes ago, Yeahdoug said:

Yikes... they did a great job showing over a year old renderings lol. I was hoping for something new :( 

What absolute trash 'reporting' .  Everything wrong with local media encapsulated in that segment.  

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That's way too many stations overall between Charlotte and Raleigh if the goal is to have a fast train, competitive with driving.

Some of the smaller stations ought to be served only by some, but not all trains.  There could be a mix of locals and expresses on that route, just like the Washington-Atlanta line had until the 1960s.

Edited by Cityplanner
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On 9/7/2020 at 11:19 PM, Third Strike said:

When you look at the amount of current and proposed stations on the NCRR in the Charlotte region, plus the various planned improvements to the corridor, it really makes sense to create a plan for dedicated commuter rail to Concord/Salisbury. A0AED5C5-960B-4379-A12E-89C1D3248719.thumb.png.9b93b685bdd8eeedff462f58301ee865.png

YES. A Salisbury station would be used by people commuting to jobs (NFL NBA MLS... Uptown events etc.) and Concord station somewhere  at  Dale (exit 60?) or Exit 55 (hwy 73) will save 85 from turning into another version of 85 in Gwinnett Co. with 16 lanes across at spots... no thank you!!

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On 9/11/2020 at 3:03 PM, kermit said:

^ Lexington just got a $25 (million, oops) BUILD grant for their new station (plus a grade separation downtown).

https://www.the-dispatch.com/story/news/local/2020/09/11/lexington-receive-25-million-new-train-and-bus-station/3464501001/

 

Where exactly is the new station going to be?  I'm guessing along Railroad St where they knocked down several buildings?  I hope they don't tear down too much, there are a lot of early 20th-century structures in that area that would be game changers if a few were renovated.

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^ I have not heard about exact location, I was assuming around 7th ave based on track layout and clues in the article. I’ll bet @jtmonk knows.

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22 hours ago, nicholas said:

Where exactly is the new station going to be?  I'm guessing along Railroad St where they knocked down several buildings?  I hope they don't tear down too much, there are a lot of early 20th-century structures in that area that would be game changers if a few were renovated.

Correct, it's going to be along South Railroad Street between East 3rd and 4th avenue.   The buildings in that location burnt down a few years ago, we only planned to demo a 1970 addition and keep the rest but the fire destroyed everything between S Railroad Street and the tracks.  

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I don’t entirely believe this calculation but this guy says at 4+ hours will be cut from the CLT-NYP trip based on projects that are currently underway, planned or achievable (this includes the S-Line). A before 5pm arrival in NYP is a pretty big deal.

I don't know where the DC-NYC reduction is coming from. Washington-Richmond and Raleigh-Richmond (1:56) is a done deal with S-Line. I don't see where 50 minutes is coming out of Raleigh-Charlotte without high-platforms and electrification)

 

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17 hours ago, kermit said:

I don’t entirely believe this calculation but this guy says at 4+ hours will be cut from the CLT-NYP trip based on projects that are currently underway, planned or achievable (this includes the S-Line). A before 5pm arrival in NYP is a pretty big deal.

I don't know where the DC-NYC reduction is coming from. Washington-Richmond and Raleigh-Richmond (1:56) is a done deal with S-Line. I don't see where 50 minutes is coming out of Raleigh-Charlotte without high-platforms and electrification)

For DC-NYC, he says he is assuming Acela schedules. While the equipment used on these new round trips will likely be limited to 125 mph top speed, if the stops on the NEC are limited, it could probably still make closer to the Acela schedule than the NE Regional (I think the regionals average around 3:20 from DC to NY). Losing the engine change in DC helps too (that must be figured into the 4hr 8 min that he cites). Perhaps he is assuming a similar limited stop pattern on the Raleigh-Charlotte segment? That could be an appealing idea. By the time this project comes on line, we should have 5x daily frequencies making all stops between Charlotte and Raleigh (including the new Harrisburg, Lexington, and Hillsborough stations). An overlay of 4x daily trains that only make the major stops (Charlotte, Greensboro, Durham, Raleigh, maybe 1-2 others?) would be a nice option.

Also, there are various projects buried in NCDOT's STIP long-range plans for grade separations, curve realignments, and additional sidings between Greensboro and Raleigh. They are currently scheduled as piecemeal upgrades stretching well into the future, but perhaps a round of federal investment could see those projects bundled together and brought forward. IIRC, taken together they would provide a nearly continuous double-tracked railroad from Greensboro to Raleigh, while easing many of the worst curves that slow that section of the trip.

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1 hour ago, jthomas said:

For DC-NYC, he says he is assuming Acela schedules. While the equipment used on these new round trips will likely be limited to 125 mph top speed, if the stops on the NEC are limited, it could probably still make closer to the Acela schedule than the NE Regional (I think the regionals average around 3:20 from DC to NY). Losing the engine change in DC helps too (that must be figured into the 4hr 8 min that he cites). Perhaps he is assuming a similar limited stop pattern on the Raleigh-Charlotte segment? That could be an appealing idea. By the time this project comes on line, we should have 5x daily frequencies making all stops between Charlotte and Raleigh (including the new Harrisburg, Lexington, and Hillsborough stations). An overlay of 4x daily trains that only make the major stops (Charlotte, Greensboro, Durham, Raleigh, maybe 1-2 others?) would be a nice option.

Also, there are various projects buried in NCDOT's STIP long-range plans for grade separations, curve realignments, and additional sidings between Greensboro and Raleigh. They are currently scheduled as piecemeal upgrades stretching well into the future, but perhaps a round of federal investment could see those projects bundled together and brought forward. IIRC, taken together they would provide a nearly continuous double-tracked railroad from Greensboro to Raleigh, while easing many of the worst curves that slow that section of the trip.

Yep, the Piedmont Improvement Program benefitted the Greensboro to Charlotte rail line more. Triangle always gets the raw end of the deal when it comes to these things. 

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