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-   -   CHICAGO: Transit Developments (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=101657)

Steely Dan Nov 2, 2015 7:55 PM

well, the el system is once again complete. the yellow line has officially reopened after a nearly 6 month shut-down due to the accidental embankment collapse.

all 12 of the yellow line's daily riders rejoiced. :D

k1052 Nov 6, 2015 3:40 PM

In a surprise to nobody who uses it the EPA finds the air in Union Station and it's platforms is still really really bad. Somebody needs to tell Metra to either add emissions controls/AESS to all F40 rebuilds or buy new locomotives and Amtrak for it's part needs to start standing on necks to get all the ventilation working (and augment it if required).


Quote:

The 24-hour legal limit for particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns, the most commonly used measure of soot, is 35 micrograms per cubic meter of air.

At Union Station, average levels of soot jumped from 43 micrograms per cubic meter of air outside the station to 129 on the north platform, according to a summary of the EPA's results. Soot levels were significantly higher on the south platform — 203 micrograms on average.

Commuters were exposed to the dirtiest air at 5 p.m., when rush hour trains packed into the station led to average levels of 299 micrograms per cubic meter.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/w...105-story.html

streetline Nov 6, 2015 5:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by k1052 (Post 7225715)
In a surprise to nobody who uses it the EPA finds the air in Union Station and it's platforms is still really really bad. Somebody needs to tell Metra to either add emissions controls/AESS to all F40 rebuilds or buy new locomotives and Amtrak for it's part needs to start standing on necks to get all the ventilation working (and augment it if required).





http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/w...105-story.html

Ah, good reporting there, mentioning the legal limit and the actual values at different locations. I'd heard of this study, but the EPA's own article on it was so entirely devoid of context as to be meaningless. They said "The concentration of PM2.5 in air on the train platforms was 23 - 96 percent higher than concentrations recorded on nearby streets", while failing to mention that there even was a legal limit let alone that even those nearby streets were exceeding it!


I think it makes sense to prioritize improving ventilation in the very short term. But unless they filter their exhaust, that will just blow more smoke onto nearby streets that are already beyond the exposure limit for fine particulates.

I'd really like to see Metra move towards using hybrid locomotives, like New York uses for GCT and Penn Station where diesels are not allowed to run. I think they use third rails there, but a battery-hybrid system might work better in Chicago given the relatively short tunnels and the number of progress in that area of technology.

As I understand it, Metra's engines already use electric traction motors powered by generators turned by their diesel engines, so I would hope that adding a bank of batteries would be feasible. I'd hope that a battery system would pay for itself in fuel savings by eliminating waste when idling or coasting or running the engine outside of it's ideal rpm when accelerating. And simply not running the diesel in or near the station would help with particulates, both for the station and the surrounding neighborhood.

edit: This bit from the article sounds promising: "They also secured federal funding to equip locomotives with technology that automatically powers down the engines inside Chicago's downtown stations."

Ryanrule Nov 6, 2015 8:42 PM

Union needs a full gut rehab, an interior connection to ogilvie, and an interior connection to the el

CTA Gray Line Nov 30, 2015 12:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by streetline (Post 7225846)
Ah, good reporting there, mentioning the legal limit and the actual values at different locations. I'd heard of this study, but the EPA's own article on it was so entirely devoid of context as to be meaningless. They said "The concentration of PM2.5 in air on the train platforms was 23 - 96 percent higher than concentrations recorded on nearby streets", while failing to mention that there even was a legal limit let alone that even those nearby streets were exceeding it!


I think it makes sense to prioritize improving ventilation in the very short term. But unless they filter their exhaust, that will just blow more smoke onto nearby streets that are already beyond the exposure limit for fine particulates.

I'd really like to see Metra move towards using hybrid locomotives, like New York uses for GCT and Penn Station where diesels are not allowed to run. I think they use third rails there, but a battery-hybrid system might work better in Chicago given the relatively short tunnels and the number of progress in that area of technology.

As I understand it, Metra's engines already use electric traction motors powered by generators turned by their diesel engines, so I would hope that adding a bank of batteries would be feasible. I'd hope that a battery system would pay for itself in fuel savings by eliminating waste when idling or coasting or running the engine outside of it's ideal rpm when accelerating. And simply not running the diesel in or near the station would help with particulates, both for the station and the surrounding neighborhood.

edit: This bit from the article sounds promising: "They also secured federal funding to equip locomotives with technology that automatically powers down the engines inside Chicago's downtown stations."

Sounds like an idea I had several years ago, I forwarded this to Metra's Planning Dept., but I have heard nothing back: http://regenerativehybridunit.yolasite.com/

ardecila Dec 2, 2015 7:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ryanrule (Post 7226202)
Union needs a full gut rehab, an interior connection to ogilvie, and an interior connection to the el

Might be sooner than you think.

Congress just approved a new transportation bill where Union Station qualifies for up to $1B in low-interest loans, secured by rent or other revenue from private development in or on top of the station.

Not sure they will ask for $1B given the revenue potential, but that will easily fund the renovation of the concourse and platforms.

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/artic...ortation-money

Randomguy34 Dec 3, 2015 4:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 7255477)
Might be sooner than you think.

Congress just approved a new transportation bill where Union Station qualifies for up to $1B in low-interest loans, secured by rent or other revenue from private development in or on top of the station.

Not sure they will ask for $1B given the revenue potential, but that will easily fund the renovation of the concourse and platforms.

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/artic...ortation-money

The Sun Times mentions that in their article about the transportation bill and that "over five years, the increases could amount to roughly $1.497 billion to the CTA and $880 million to Metra, preliminary estimates from U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski’s office indicated"

http://chicago.suntimes.com/news/7/7...l-transit-bill

jpIllInoIs Dec 3, 2015 9:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 7256087)
The Sun Times mentions that in their article about the transportation bill and that "over five years, the increases could amount to roughly $1.497 billion to the CTA and $880 million to Metra, preliminary estimates from U.S. Rep. Dan Lipinski’s office indicated"

http://chicago.suntimes.com/news/7/7...l-transit-bill

Look for the CTA to waste it on the Red Line extension.

My preference would be the Western Ave BRT or better yet, Metra CTA and Amtrak pool money for the West Loop Transit project.

N830MH Dec 4, 2015 5:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Steely Dan (Post 7220126)
well, the el system is once again complete. the yellow line has officially reopened after a nearly 6 month shut-down due to the accidental embankment collapse.

all 12 of the yellow line's daily riders rejoiced. :D

Wow! I didn't hear this. What happened? What's going on there? Why they shutdown for nearly 6 months?

emathias Dec 4, 2015 2:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jpIllInoIs (Post 7257033)
Look for the CTA to waste it on the Red Line extension.

My preference would be the Western Ave BRT or better yet, Metra CTA and Amtrak pool money for the West Loop Transit project.

It will almost certain go toward the RPM project - Red Purple Modernization, which is essentially the reconstruction of the tracks between Belmont and Linden which will include extension of platforms to enable 10-car trains and a flyover at Belmont for the Brown Line to enable increased frequency. Those two changes together will increase capacityon the north Red Line, which is currently at or exceeding max capacity, by nearly 50%. Because of that capacity increase, it is even eligible for New Starts funding.

Quote:

Originally Posted by N830MH (Post 7257544)
Wow! I didn't hear this. What happened? What's going on there? Why they shutdown for nearly 6 months?

The Water district was doing a project which caused the collapse of a barrier that was supporting the track embankment.

ardecila Dec 4, 2015 6:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jpIllInoIs (Post 7257033)
Look for the CTA to waste it on the Red Line extension.

My preference would be the Western Ave BRT or better yet, Metra CTA and Amtrak pool money for the West Loop Transit project.

Doubtful. Depending on how you slice it, the new superstation at 95th is an implicit admission by Emanuel that the extension is either dead or demoted to a very low priority.

RPM and Blue Line Forest Park Renewal are almost certainly the big-ticket projects in CTA's near-term future. Maybe Ashland or Western BRT.

CTA Gray Line Dec 5, 2015 1:01 PM

Chicago's public transu
 
http://www.redeyechicago.com/news/re...202-story.html

CTA Gray Line Dec 5, 2015 1:03 PM

Chicago's public transit ranks 6th among U.S. cities, new ranking shows
 
http://www.redeyechicago.com/news/re...202-story.html

CTA Gray Line Dec 6, 2015 12:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 7258095)
Doubtful. Depending on how you slice it, the new superstation at 95th is an implicit admission by Emanuel that the extension is either dead or demoted to a very low priority.

RPM and Blue Line Forest Park Renewal are almost certainly the big-ticket projects in CTA's near-term future. Maybe Ashland or Western BRT.

The RLE priced itself out of feasibility (what is it up to now -- $3 Billion?); and just to show you how they really DON'T give a Flying F about "improving service to the Far South Side", since they can't have their certified Gold Plated Toilet Seat RLE -- they won't/don't look at ANY alternative in it's place!

TOO BAD for the Far South Side ("We were just using you to generate Obscene Funding for Connected Campaign Contributor Construction Companies anyway")

orulz Dec 7, 2015 5:22 PM

Digging up and replying to a post from a few months ago.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 7195256)
The NS route into Union Station is fatally flawed because Amtrak trains will still have at-grade crossings with NS trains, even after they build Grand Crossing flyover. If a 2-mile long freight train is blocking a ladder track, you're back to having 20 minute delays on Amtrak. Even Amtrak's promotional video shows the conflicts, although it doesn't call attention to them.

It seems that it would not be too difficult to remedy this conflict by putting passenger trains on the existing, abandoned Nickel Plate underpass under the NS line. Put all freight trains bound for 63rd St Yard on the north side of the passenger tracks, and those headed for Englewood Yard to the south, and split them around the NKP underpass. Better still, you could put the outbound passenger track on the south side and the inbound on the north, effectively turning the underpass into a flying junction, so inbound trains from Carbondale would never have to cross the path of outbound trains to Michigan.
(Note: this comment was edited after I had another look at the current Grand Crossing plans.)

See my map here!

Quote:

The other problem with the NS route is that NS has used Amtrak improvements like Grand Crossing as a wedge to gain city, state and federal support for their plan to demolish half of Englewood to expand the railyard. I can't support such a huge injustice in the name of speedier Amtrak service when a far simpler alternative exists using the SCAL.
The principle of environmental justice is laudable, but it seems to me the case against NS's expansion of Englewood Yard is pretty much moot by now; the construction is well underway, isn't it?

Quote:

Even IDOT recognized the huge limitations of sending intercity trains through complex yards and junctions controlled by the freight railroads, which is why they want to send St. Louis trains to Union Station along Metra's Rock Island.
But north of 40th street they are still going to use the NS route to Union Station, right? Why build two routes when you only need one?

ardecila Dec 8, 2015 12:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by orulz (Post 7260775)
But north of 40th street they are still going to use the NS route to Union Station, right? Why build two routes when you only need one?

North of 40th, hypothetically, St. Louis trains can use the east side of the alignment to avoid any NS conflicts.

The diagram you drew up is clever as regards Park Manor Yard, but it isn't the approved plan that Amtrak drew up with NS, and only really eliminates the conflict for Carbondale and New Orleans trains. Michigan and points east trains would still have a conflict, just further south at some indetermined point (I guess that's where South Of The Lake picks up).

Nexis4Jersey Dec 13, 2015 5:09 AM

CTA Holiday Train & Bus 2015

Video Link

Busy Bee Dec 13, 2015 5:51 AM

Love the kid at 2:10

That's how I look on the morning of a revealed new tower announcement. Well... Beside being a white adult and sitting in front of SSP online... But otherwise...

ardecila Dec 14, 2015 6:53 PM

Loop Link will have a soft open this Sunday!

http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20151...running-sunday

k1052 Dec 14, 2015 9:17 PM

I'm eager to see the new dedicated delivery and livery/cab/rideshare standing lane in operation.


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