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SIGSEGV Apr 28, 2023 7:27 AM

^ I woulda thought this would be a continuation of the up-nw past Harvard?

ardecila Apr 28, 2023 4:24 PM

I don't think anybody has a firm plan for this, they're just looking at a map and drawing lines. Metra doesn't have the budget to run service into Kendall County, let alone other counties or states that are outside the Chicago MSA.

So far nobody has figured out politically how to do this. Kendall County and Boone/Winnebago don't want to pay the sales tax required to join RTA, but it's not fair to the existing RTA counties if those other areas get train service free of charge.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 9928297)
43rd St station renovation

This is nice to complement the big TOD buildings going up, but... that tribal pattern is not great. I appreciate the desire to have some African heritage, but there are so many better ways to do it! Even within the station, it would look better on the elevator towers.

Chicago Shawn Apr 28, 2023 6:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 9930993)
I don't think anybody has a firm plan for this, they're just looking at a map and drawing lines. Metra doesn't have the budget to run service into Kendall County, let alone other counties or states that are outside the Chicago MSA.

So far nobody has figured out politically how to do this. Kendall County and Boone/Winnebago don't want to pay the sales tax required to join RTA, but it's not fair to the existing RTA counties if those other areas get train service free of charge.

That’s the beauty of Rock County though, if they want in and pay for it, there is hardly any running through the free rider territory. With hybrid work in some form here to stay, this is a really unique opportunity to reimagine what service Metra actually provides. If not so crush loaded at peak times, this service can spread out through the day and longer runs can be implemented. Commuters will always be the backbone, but I’m really glad to see Metra being discussed as a true regional railroad system. It would also be good to not have to rely on Amtrak’s procurement of equipment which can be held up in budget disputes in Washington. If there is an appetite to grow, manage and fund a regional passenger rail network locally, then we should capitalize on it as much as possible.

ardecila Apr 29, 2023 12:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago Shawn (Post 9931114)
That’s the beauty of Rock County though, if they want in and pay for it, there is hardly any running through the free rider territory. With hybrid work in some form here to stay, this is a really unique opportunity to reimagine what service Metra actually provides. If not so crush loaded at peak times, this service can spread out through the day and longer runs can be implemented. Commuters will always be the backbone, but I’m really glad to see Metra being discussed as a true regional railroad system. It would also be good to not have to rely on Amtrak’s procurement of equipment which can be held up in budget disputes in Washington. If there is an appetite to grow, manage and fund a regional passenger rail network locally, then we should capitalize on it as much as possible.

The RTA Act is a creation of Illinois, Rock County can't join. Ideally they could set up a countywide taxing district to raise funds and do purchase-of-service with Metra (like the City of Kenosha does), but the Wisconsin legislature has put up various legal roadblocks to prevent rail expansion.

Even if they could somehow come up with the funds to operate service, the capital costs would kill them - the cost of upgrading tracks, building stations and storage yards, and buying extra trains to support the new service. Not to mention any upgrades that might be required in the Chicago area to deal with the increased rail congestion.

sentinel Apr 29, 2023 2:26 PM

This seems like pretty massive news:

New Transcontinental Rail Route Announced Through Chicago

https://chicagoyimby.com/2023/04/new...h-chicago.html

twister244 Apr 29, 2023 2:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sentinel (Post 9931707)
This seems like pretty massive news:

New Transcontinental Rail Route Announced Through Chicago

https://chicagoyimby.com/2023/04/new...h-chicago.html

Beat me to it.

Although I was going to put this in the economic thread as it really doesn't have direct implications for city/metro transit, no?

sentinel Apr 29, 2023 4:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by twister244 (Post 9931718)
Beat me to it.

Although I was going to put this in the economic thread as it really doesn't have direct implications for city/metro transit, no?

Yeah that makes sense, post it there too, spread the word! :)

ardecila Apr 29, 2023 4:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by twister244 (Post 9931718)
Beat me to it.

Although I was going to put this in the economic thread as it really doesn't have direct implications for city/metro transit, no?

It does potentially, since the "Falcon Premium" trains will be traveling on the NCS and Heritage Corridor lines. Those have poor service to begin with, possibly even worse after this.

The trains would likely use the EJ&E to avoid congestion in the Chicago terminal, so that could mean a lot more freight trains through certain suburbs and a lot more idling of freight trains in forest preserves or residential areas.

That said, I'm not sure this is "big news" the way it's made out to be. This is likely just something to keep the shareholders from panicking about CPKC, I'm not sure it will have a huge impact on ops.

Randomguy34 May 4, 2023 5:20 PM

Crain's is reporting that the Kennedy construction and increased train frequencies has resulted in ridership increase for many Metra lines. For weekday numbers, UP-N is now 71% of pre-pandemic, UP-NW is 65%, MD-N is 60%, and NCS is 53%. Amazing what happens when car use is discouraged and rail frequency is increased

https://www.chicagobusiness.com/tran...y-construction

IrishIllini May 5, 2023 4:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 9936096)
Crain's is reporting that the Kennedy construction and increased train frequencies has resulted in ridership increase for many Metra lines. For weekday numbers, UP-N is now 71% of pre-pandemic, UP-NW is 65%, MD-N is 60%, and NCS is 53%. Amazing what happens when car use is discouraged and rail frequency is increased

https://www.chicagobusiness.com/tran...y-construction

Great news, lets just take the whole thing down instead :D...or at least take out a lane each way.

lakeshoredrive May 5, 2023 7:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by IrishIllini (Post 9936976)
Great news, lets just take the whole thing down instead :D...or at least take out a lane each way.

Hear hear!

Roy_Batty May 8, 2023 1:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 9926592)
It’s a bigger project than you think, they are digging up everything in the park between Michigan and the rail trench, going two levels down, and rebuilding from scratch. The existing ramped tunnels don’t meet ADA slope requirements and they leak like a sieve, so hopefully the total rebuild will solve both problems.

They are also building a 4th mainline track and a 3rd platform east of the existing two, which should provide more capacity into Millennium Station for South Shore’s new line to Dyer.

I did check some info regarding the Silver Line Phase 2 in DC, and the total cost for a new station is about 700 million USD. Taking into consideration your comment, I guess it makes sense for this to cost 1/7 of that. Thanks for the feedback, hope the final result is as expected.

Nexis4Jersey May 8, 2023 7:29 AM

My proposed reshuffling of the Amtrak network in Chicago + my future rail services

Millennium Station – Electric East Division : High Speed Rail & Regional Rail

• 220mph High Speed Line : Chicago – Champaign – Springfield – St. Louis
• 220mph High Speed Line : Chicago – Fort Wayne – Toledo – Detroit
• 220mph High Speed Line : Chicago – Indianapolis – Louisville – Nashville
• 220mph High Speed Line : Chicago – Fort Wayne – Toledo - Cleveland
• Metra Electric Main Line : Chicago – University Park – Kankakee
• Metra Electric Blue Island Branch
• Metra Electric South Chicago Branch
• South Shore Line : Chicago – Gary – Michigan City – South Bend – Elkhart – Goshen
• West Lake Corridor : Chicago – Hammond – Dyer – St. John
• Calumet Corridor : Chicago – East Chicago – Hobart – Valparaiso


Lasalle Street Station – Eastern Diesel / Hybrid shared Corridor & Long Distance Services

• Metra Rock Island District
• Amtrak 3 Rivers: Chicago – Fort Wayne – Youngstown – Pittsburgh – New York – 1x daily
• Amtrak Nickle plate limited : Chicago - Fort Wayne - Cleveland - Erie - Buffalo - 3x daily (local stops along HSR line)
• Amtrak Southern Tier Ltd: Chicago – South Bend - Toledo - Cleveland - Erie – Binghamton – Scranton – Hoboken -1x daily
• Amtrak International : Chicago – Ann Arbor – Detroit – London – Toronto – 2x daily
• Amtrak City of New Orleans : Chicago – Memphis – Jackson – New Orleans – 1x daily
• Amtrak Illini and Saluki : Chicago – Kankakee – Champaign - Carbondale – 4x daily
• Amtrak Floridan : Chicago – Indianapolis – Nashville – Orlando – Miami – 1x daily
• Amtrak Cardinal : Chicago – Indianapolis – Cincinnati – Charlottesville – DC – NY – 1x daily
• Amtrak Lake Shore Limited : Chicago – Cleveland – Buffalo – Albany – New York – 1x daily
• Amtrak Capitol Limited : Chicago – Cleveland – Pittsburgh – DC – 1x daily
• Amtrak Wolverine : Chicago – Kalamazoo – Battle Creek – Detroit – Pontaic – 6x daily
• Amtrak Blue Water : Chicago – Battle Creek – Flint – Port Huron – 4x daily
• Amtrak Pere Marquette : Chicago – St. Joesph – Holland – Grand Rapids – 3x daily
• Amtrak Hoosier State : Chicago-Lafayette-Indianapolis-Cincinnati – 4x daily
• Amtrak Mountaineer : Chicago - Cincinnati - Roanoke - Petersburg - Norfolk - 1x daily


Ogilvie Transportation Center - High Speed Rail – Regional & Corridor Intercity Rail Services

• 220mph High Speed Line : Chicago – Milwaukee – Madison – La Crosse – Rochester – St. Paul
• Metra Union Pacific North Line : Chicago - Ravenswood - Evanston - Waukegan - Kenosha - Racine - Milwaukee
• Metra Union Pacific West Line : Chicago - River Forest - Geneva - Elburn
• Metra Union Pacific Northwest Line : Chicago - Park Ridge - Barrington - Gary - Crystal Lake - Harvard
• Metra Union Pacific Northwest Line : Chicago - Park Ridge - Gary - McHenry - Johnsburg - Genoa City - Lake Geneva


Chicago Union Station – Regional & Corridor Intercity Rail Services

• Metra BNSF Line : Chicago – La Grange – Naperville – Aurora
• Metra Milwaukee District West Line : Chicago – Franklin Park – Roselle – Elgin
• Metra Milwaukee District North Line : Chicago – Glenview – Deer Field – Fox Lake
• Metra North Central Line : Chicago – O’ Hare – Prairie Crossing – Antioch
• Metra Heritage Corridor : Chicago – Summit – Joilet
• Metra Southwest Service : Chicago – Oak Lawn – Manhattan
• Metra CrossRail : O’Hare Airport – Union Station – Hyde Park
• Amtrak Hiawatha : Chicago – Milwaukee – 10x daily (local stops along HSR line) , + Appleton - Green Bay - 4x daily
• Amtrak Southern Superior : Chicago - Milwaukee - Green Bay - Escanaba - Marquette - 1x daily
• Amtrak Southern Superior : Chicago - Milwaukee - Green Bay - Escanaba - Sault Ste Marie - 1x daily
• Amtrak North Star - Chicago – Milwaukee-Appleton-Superior-Duluth -1x overnight with morning arrival
• Amtrak Lake Country Limited : Madison – Janesville – Rockford – Chicago – 3x daily
• Amtrak Quad Cities : Omaha – Des Moines -Iowa City – Davenport – Chicago – 4x daily
• Amtrak Black Hawk : Waterloo – Dubuque – Rockford – Chicago – 3x daily
• Amtrak Peoria Rocket : Springfield – Peoria – Ottawa – Joilet – Chicago – 3x daily
• Amtrak Illinois Zephyr and Carl Sandburg : Chicago – Quincy – Hannibal – 4x daily
• Amtrak Lincoln : Chicago - Joliet - Bloomington - Springfield -> shared HSR to St. Louis - 6x daily


Chicago Union Station – Long Distance Services

• Amtrak Empire Builder : Chicago – Milwaukee – St Paul – Spokane – Portland – 1x daily
• Amtrak North Coast Hiawatha : Chicago – St Paul – Missoula – Spokane – Seattle – 1x daily
• Amtrak California Zephyr : Chicago – Omaha – Denver – SLC – SAC – Emeryville – 1x daily
• Amtrak Southwest Chief : Chicago – Kansas City - Albuquerque – Los Angeles – 1x daily
• Amtrak Lone Star : Chicago – Kansas City – Newtown - Wichita - Oklahoma City – Fort Worth – 1x daily
• Amtrak Inter-American : Chicago – St Louis – Dallas – San Antonio – Laredo – 1x daily
• Amtrak Texas Eagle: Chicago – St Louis – Dallas – Austin – San Antonio – 1x daily

Bonsai Tree May 8, 2023 7:19 PM

Looks like the 7000 series may already be on the way out. Not one of Rahm's best decisions. But I guess contracting with the Chinese was all in-fashion back then.

Quote:

Funding provided to CTA through this FTA grant program will support the commutes and travel of the millions who use the CTA and allow the agency to begin planning and designing for the future procurement of its next generation of railcars – the 9000-Series. This next generation of railcars would replace CTA’s oldest railcars that were manufactured more than 40 years ago.
https://www.transitchicago.com/duckw...r-replacement/

Busy Bee May 8, 2023 7:48 PM

I'm not sure this means the CRRC 7000 series contract is being cancelled - unless I'm missing something. Regardless, I hope the 9000 series will be the moment the Cta breaks out of this amber it's been locked in and orders a really forward looking car - and not just a nearly identical recycled body style with a half-assed update to the bonnet like the 7000 series. The original 7000 renderings looked promising, if a little conservative, but the production design just kind of fell flat and even managed to seem even clumsier IMO. I know US transit agencies are super conservative when it comes to rolling stock - both in materials spec'd like the ubiquitous stainless steel as well as body styling that seems to avoid forward looking industrial design at all costs. This is changing, but it's changing very slowly. MARTA is getting some nice looking new cars from Stadler, even though I am a huge fan of the classic 1970s futurism look of the original Belgian rolling stock. But even NYC which made an attempt at a sleek crowd pleaser of a car that wasn't as embarrassing when compared to foreign counterparts, still ultimately looks like the same train carriage of the last 30, 40, 50 years with a value engineered bonnet grafted on the front. And don't even get me going on the foot dragging over open gangways. Yes, they've finally got some prototypes but it's still totally unknown if they are going to modify and contracts for the R-211 to pull the trigger on open gangways like the rest of the planet already did like 30 years ago.

Randomguy34 May 8, 2023 7:59 PM

I believe the base order for the 7000s is 400 cars, with the option to purchase 446 additional cars. It's possible those additional cars won't be ordered and instead replaced with the 9000s.

Bonsai Tree May 8, 2023 8:57 PM

^^Yeah, that's probably it. Hopefully, they actually hit it out of the park with the 9000 series.

aprice1828 May 9, 2023 3:21 PM

Completely agree that the dated American subway car look needs to go. I know the appearance doesn't actually effect service but if you're going to be investing in modernization, send that visual message to your users. I was actually in disbelief when I first saw the Silverliner Vs running in Denver. A city with such a progressive image, investing heavily in electrified heavy rail transit, and they buy trains that look like they're in an early '80s movie in New York (yes I know they just piggybacked on SEPTA, which is equally guilty). I'm excited for MARTA's cars as well but I wish they had exterior doors rather than the pocket doors that greatly reduce window area. Cleveland going with Siemens S200s for the red line was a great decision.

Busy Bee May 9, 2023 5:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aprice1828 (Post 9939645)
Completely agree that the dated American subway car look needs to go. I know the appearance doesn't actually effect service but if you're going to be investing in modernization, send that visual message to your users. I was actually in disbelief when I first saw the Silverliner Vs running in Denver. A city with such a progressive image, investing heavily in electrified heavy rail transit, and they buy trains that look like they're in an early '80s movie in New York (yes I know they just piggybacked on SEPTA, which is equally guilty). I'm excited for MARTA's cars as well but I wish they had exterior doors rather than the pocket doors that greatly reduce window area. Cleveland going with Siemens S200s for the red line was a great decision.


I think I remember literally being sick to my stomach over that.

Though I can't remember if those were ordered pre or post-FRA waiver.

Randomguy34 May 10, 2023 2:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 9936096)
Crain's is reporting that the Kennedy construction and increased train frequencies has resulted in ridership increase for many Metra lines. For weekday numbers, UP-N is now 71% of pre-pandemic, UP-NW is 65%, MD-N is 60%, and NCS is 53%. Amazing what happens when car use is discouraged and rail frequency is increased

https://www.chicagobusiness.com/tran...y-construction

I'm just realizing that these routes might have some of the highest ridership recovering of any transit line in the country!

nomarandlee May 10, 2023 7:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roy_Batty (Post 9938387)
I did check some info regarding the Silver Line Phase 2 in DC, and the total cost for a new station is about 700 million USD. Taking into consideration your comment, I guess it makes sense for this to cost 1/7 of that. Thanks for the feedback, hope the final result is as expected.

Is that the terminal station at Dulles?

Who in the hell is getting paid? No wonder we can't help more nice things in this country. Isn't that a higher cost than the Obama Libabry is going to be?

ardecila May 11, 2023 11:03 PM

Yeah, $700M for the core/shell of Obama library. but that does not include the cost of building out the interior exhibits and collections ($90M) or all the infrastructure going on around it. All told, it's likely they will spend more than $1B in Jackson Park.

The bid tab for the Van Buren project shows they only got one bid, from FH Paschen. Other Metra Electric station projects had 4-5 bids. So basically everyone took a pass on this project because it was too risky, and the one GC who did submit a bid just decided to price in all the risk.

Randomguy34 May 18, 2023 5:02 PM

Rundown of projects Metra has planned for the Rock Island District, unfortunately electrification isn't one of them. The Root St connection seems interesting though:
Quote:

  • 16th Street tower relocation and diamond crossings expansion: Already in progress, this South Loop project would replace an aging control tower and expand the freight crossings from six to eight. The new crossings will allow Metra trains to triple their speeds from 10 to 30 mph.
  • Rock Island Amtrak project: Adding a third track from the Gresham stop to 17th Street would boost train capacity along the line. Along with Amtrak, Metra is also planning to upgrade five rail crossovers. The project is not yet in the design phase.
  • Root Street Wye connection: A rail bridge over the Dan Ryan Expressway at 40th Street, a bridge as old as the expressway itself, could link north and south Metra areas, allowing service equipment to bypass downtown rail traffic. Metra doesn’t own the bridge, which is in disrepair. “Just a concept, but a big concept,” says Kevin McCann, chief operating officer.
  • 51st Street Yard expansion: Adding more tracks to this rail yard near the Dan Ryan would improve efficiency of the center that services and cleans all Metra trains serving the Rock Island and Southwest Service lines.
  • 75th Street corridor program: Possibly the largest endeavor, which is actually 75 individual projects, seeks to untangle the notoriously congested confluence of trains from Metra, Amtrak and four other freight companies. The P2 project would build a Metra flyover at 73rd Street to connect Southwest Service and Rock Island lines, allowing Metra to direct Southwest Service trains to the La Salle Street Station, freeing up space for Amtrak trains at Union Station. “It really untangles the freight network, says Metra CEO Jim Derwinski. About half of the 75 projects have been completed.
  • Auburn Station: Metra broke ground on this new station last June, but the project has been held up by permitting issues with the city, Derwinski said. “We’re in the city of Chicago. Sometimes things don’t go as fast as you like,” Derwinski said. Hoping to start by the summer, the project would take two years to complete.
  • Vermont Street Station in Blue Island: A rehab in progress, this station makeover improves accessibility and would allow Amtrak to use it as an intercity station.

https://i.imgur.com/ZrDctCMh.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/bt6eReHh.jpg
https://chicago.suntimes.com/2023/5/...ter-train-line

Randomguy34 May 30, 2023 2:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 9895224)
Glad to hear this is still alive, though. Hopefully they stop handicapping themselves and do the whole thing properly - a 2 track ramp into Union Station instead of single track, properly refurbishing the SCAL bridge, a 2-track quadrant connection at 16th St, triple-tracking the Rock Island (or 4-track passing segments), etc.

HSR Alliance updated their map for the proposed track layout. It looks like the ramp will FINALLY be 2 tracks, and they'll properly refurbish the SCAL bridge. There's now a potential "flyover" the RID, additional interchanges to the MED, and a smaller Amtrak yard. All these extra features are probably why Amtrak increased their funding request for the project.

New Layout:
https://i.imgur.com/rDRJlVtl.jpg

Old Layout:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/FkcjeFhX...png&name=small
https://www.hsrail.org/chicago-hub-improvement-program/

ardecila May 30, 2023 4:18 PM

I could be wrong (I hope I am) but I think the private HSRA is conflating the actual Amtrak grant request with their wishlist for CrossRail Chicago.

For example the new track connections shown in the diagram between the SCAL and Metra Electric around McCormick Place have no value for Amtrak under current service patterns.

CaptainJilliams Jun 2, 2023 11:55 PM

CTA to Kick Off Final Major Phase of Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project

Quote:

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) will begin construction on four new, fully accessible stations at Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr to replace century-old stations, and start rebuilding southbound Red and Purple tracks.
https://www.railwayage.com/passenger...RAchannel=news

https://www.railwayage.com/wp-conten...1.33.14-AM.png

sentinel Jun 14, 2023 2:33 PM

^^Another article, this one from Urbanize, about the same work (with more pics too):

https://chicago.urbanize.city/post/c...rt-final-phase

Randomguy34 Jun 17, 2023 6:45 PM

Due to the Kennedy closure, ridership recovery on all three Union Pacific lines have passed all other Metra lines. UP-N now has 66% of it's pre-pandemic weekday ridership, probably one of the best recoveries in the country. MED still dominates on the weekends, with over 110% of pre-pandemic ridership

Report: https://metra.com/sites/default/file...nds%20Memo.pdf

twister244 Jun 21, 2023 1:46 AM

Obviously boosted by TSwift, but still good news to see.....

https://chi.streetsblog.org/2023/06/...ince-covid-hit

Randomguy34 Jun 22, 2023 5:52 PM

This is going to be a shit show

Quote:

Even busy CTA bus lines like Clark and Broadway that run blocks away from the NASCAR site are being shut down in the Loop, for NINE days.

The CTA website buries the information in that press release, but it appears these bus lines will not "relocate", but simply terminate at one of three L stations: State/Lake, LaSalle, or Roosevelt. Can you look at the completely inadequate and irresponsible way the CTA is getting (concealing?) information to the public and see anything but gross incompetence?
https://twitter.com/LynnBecker/statu...20774322569216

Affected routes: https://www.transitchicago.com/ditch...d-festivities/

Steely Dan Jun 22, 2023 9:39 PM

^ they have to shut down those bus lines for 9 days to host a 3 hour street race?

The math here seems fucked.

If true, let's hope this nascar in Chicago nonsense is a one and done.

ardecila Jun 23, 2023 1:01 PM

It looks like mainly the south side bus routes are affected + the 126, since they travel over part of the race course (Columbus, Balbo, Michigan south of Jackson).

The changes to north side and west side bus routes are limited to the 3 day race weekend only. I still don't understand why, since none of them actually cross the race course. Possibly the city is worried about 2nd-order effects when thousands of drivers are blocked from LSD, Columbus and Michigan all at the same time, so they are trying to keep the center of the Loop open for cars. :yuck:

Unfortunately the NASCAR race is a 3-year deal. I assume it can be mutually canceled if the first one is a disaster. I'm not sure how much money NASCAR is making off this event, or if they are just writing it off as a colossal marketing expense for the franchise.

Tom In Chicago Jun 23, 2023 1:54 PM

I think this has more to do with safety than anything. . . better to shut down the bus routes in the Loop out of an abundance of caution for emergency vehicles. . .

. . .

Chi-Sky21 Jun 23, 2023 5:15 PM

I think it will be cool, but they really should have increased the size of the course. Not this figure 8 configuration. Should have gone further north on LSD to either Monroe if you need it to get back to Columbus or Randolph back to Michigan Ave.

sentinel Jun 23, 2023 10:35 PM

I am still trying to understand WHY this type of race needs to be in downtown Chicago in the first place, especially considering how a busy downtown area is not at all conducive to racing.

Busy Bee Jun 23, 2023 10:53 PM

Formula One at least makes sense as a concept. Think Monaco. But NASCAR on downtown city streets? Clotaire says that's about as off code as you can get.

MAC123 Jun 23, 2023 11:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sentinel (Post 9976578)
I am still trying to understand WHY this type of race needs to be in downtown Chicago in the first place, especially considering how a busy downtown area is not at all conducive to racing.

It doesn't need to be in DT Chicago anymore than it "needs" to be at Daytona.

Randomguy34 Jun 27, 2023 4:45 AM

How could Greyhound station sale affect riders?
Quote:

The Chicago Department of Transportation wants to buy the Greyhound station and create the city’s first public bus terminal. Earlier this year, CDOT applied for a federal grant to buy the terminal.

In a letter supporting the grant — called the Buses and Bus Facilities Competitive Program — the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning wrote that a public bus terminal would serve other bus lines besides Greyhound. The public station would also alleviate congestion on curbs near Union Station, where the other bus companies operate, CMAP wrote.

CDOT Commissioner Gia Biagi told the Sun-Times she is committed to making the South Loop site permanent for Greyhound. “But if we can’t,” Biagi said, “we’re committed to making sure there’s a place for Greyhound to dock in the city.”
https://chicago.suntimes.com/2023/6/...ion-department

Tom In Chicago Jun 27, 2023 5:59 PM

I have a working theory that the Greyhound system is a conduit for the movement of heroin and other hard drugs throughout the country. . . but I'm sure I'm also not the first person to think about that. . .

. . .

Busy Bee Jun 27, 2023 7:44 PM

I don't know about trafficking illicit drugs but I know they were good for shipping furniture until the service was ended last year.

LAsam Jun 28, 2023 5:50 PM

I'm visiting Chicago in a couple of weeks and will be flying into O'Hare (landing around 5pm) and staying in the loop. As locals... would you suggest taking the Blue Line to Washington and then walking 1/2 a mile to the hotel, or would you suggest going with Uber? Thanks!

twister244 Jun 28, 2023 5:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LAsam (Post 9980147)
I'm visiting Chicago in a couple of weeks and will be flying into O'Hare (landing around 5pm) and staying in the loop. As locals... would you suggest taking the Blue Line to Washington and then walking 1/2 a mile to the hotel, or would you suggest going with Uber? Thanks!

I take the Blue Line all of the time and haven't had any issues. If anything, I feel like it's gotten better over the last few months, but that's my own experience.

Chisouthside Jun 28, 2023 6:12 PM

I dont ride the blue line as regular as I used to but yeah, makes sense if you're arriving at that time to take the blue line.

Busy Bee Jun 28, 2023 6:29 PM

Metra's updating and simplifying their zone fare structure. Seems sensible:

https://www.trains.com/trn/news-revi...are-structure/


Current:

https://global.discourse-cdn.com/bus...67a677456.jpeg
___


Proposed:

https://global.discourse-cdn.com/bus...3149eb1ea.jpeg
___

ardecila Jun 30, 2023 2:36 PM

Agreed... this is a big step for regional rail trips. Now they just need to end all their other terrible low-level practices (hostility to bikes, keeping whole railcars closed off, idling diesels in the downtown terminals, etc).

And of course plan for the big stuff too: more frequent trains, better rolling stock/multiple units, electrification, high-level platforms, through-running.

It does feel like Metra is finally taking baby steps in the right direction of regional rail. But the fiscal cliff is still looming and zero plan from the state to deal with it.

homebucket Jun 30, 2023 3:33 PM

^ Are there any plans to electrify Metra?

homebucket Jun 30, 2023 3:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sentinel (Post 9976578)
I am still trying to understand WHY this type of race needs to be in downtown Chicago in the first place, especially considering how a busy downtown area is not at all conducive to racing.

There's plenty of examples of street circuits (Melbourne, Baku, Monte Carlo, Montreal, Jeddah, Las Vegas, Singapore, Miami). It would be a good thing for Chicago to increase its global clout. I agree with Busy Bee that it should've been F1 not NASCAR though, as it's far bigger on the international stage.

Shots like this would be epic.

Video Link


Video Link

Busy Bee Jun 30, 2023 3:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by homebucket (Post 9981905)
^ Are there any plans to electrify Metra?

Not seriously.

There has been some chatter about how ideal the RI line would be for electrification but no serious movement or announcements. Consider the agency here, I mean its amazing there not still using steam.

Busy Bee Jun 30, 2023 4:03 PM

Since we're on the subject here with Metra I have to say I cannot stand the ridiculous nomenclature they have for the system. In an effort to streamline and at the very least appear more comparable to other international systems I've been obsessed over the years with instituting a simple alphabet naming system. The logic they use, or don't use, where a bunch of lines are named after the host freight railroad, or the host freight railroad paired with another direction to distinguish it from another line, in some cases a host freight railroad that longer exists and then some lines are just randomly named like "Heritage Corridor" (I mean WTF?) or based on geography like NCS or SWS. Then you have a line that's named after it's mode of propulsion instead of IC.

:facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm:

It's so horrible.


Imagine the system map here below, in the service order shown and keeping the line color intact, but instead just using an A-K alphabet in round route bullets:

https://www.railwayage.com/wp-conten...p-1024x886.jpg
___


Just by delightful happenstance, you have the "Heritage Corridor" (I mean seriously WTF?) given an (H), Rock Island given an (I) (I know I know possibly problematic and wisely avoidable considering I looks like a 1, but it would work fine if a serif letter typeface was used) and Metra Electric a (K)... a (K)!!! How perfect is that? ME branch services could be designated K1, K2, K3 with a smaller number tucked into the circle or just (K) (L) and (M).

ardecila Jun 30, 2023 4:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Busy Bee (Post 9981919)
Not seriously.

There has been some chatter about how ideal the RI line would be for electrification but no serious movement or announcements. Consider the agency here, I mean its amazing there not still using steam.

I think this was partly because of the effort to make RI the new mainline for St Louis trains instead of HC.

RI has a much denser schedule of commuter trains than HC does, and since Amtrak is nonstop while Metra makes all the stops, that means Amtrak will either need to crawl behind Metra trains or overtake them with a new 3rd/4th track. Another, outside-the-box option is to electrify to increase the average speed of Metra trains without cutting station stops, since electric trains have far better performance/acceleration than diesel. This is how Amtrak coexists with MBTA commuter trains in the Boston area.

I'm guessing they decided to go with the overtake idea instead. A 3rd track is planned between 75th St and 16th St, and the Beverly Branch can also be used as an overtake. If they extend the 3rd track between 75th and 87th, that should provide all the overtake room they need.


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