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Everything posted by smallspy

  1. Well.......yes and no. The current issue is that the structural slab that the bus bays are built upon is failing. By tearing down Bay 6, they will be able to open up the south end of the property, and build a temporary loop/terminal that doesn't require the buses to operate on the slab. That is the immediate priority In the long run, the plan is to build a permanent - and smaller - bus terminal where the current kiss-and-ride is. And while the station is supposed to be made accessible by 2025, it seems that we're still a long way away from that happening.
  2. Except it's not free. Hamilton will be on the hook for operating costs. That's not insignificant. Dan
  3. CN and CP freight trains are absolutely scheduled, yes. And in some cases, the schedules can remain remarkably static and consistent over the course of years, and even decades. If you are trackside in the same spot at the same time over the course of several weeks, you will likely see the "same" train show up at more-or-less the same time. Their schedules can vary - some are 7 days a week, some are weekdays only, some are only 2 or 3 days per week - but they generally are pretty consistent. Obviously the further away from the train's origin you are, the more variable that the time
  4. If the piece of equipment is unequipped, then obviously the signal system will not be able to apply the brakes on it. But all of the TR trains are equipped, as are just about all of the MOW equipment at this point. And so the plan was that the signal system - wayside - was still going to be able to communicate with a train in MAN mode. It is a degraded mode that doesn't allow for full interaction with the signal system, sure, but the idea is that it was still going to be able to enforce the safety limits. If it felt that it was going to overrun its limits, than it would
  5. My understanding comes from people involved in the design - but not the installation and implementation - of the Alstom system being installed in Toronto. That is that the operation of a train in MAN does not override the limits as given by the signal system. Instead, and additional step must be made at the dispatcher level to give that clearance to the train. My understanding is that while this additional step is not common, it's not totally unusual, either. Dan
  6. The train may not necessarily be looking sideways - but the signal system is. Or at least, is supposed to be. And that's why the two are integrated into each other, and talk with each other. In MAN, most of the onboard protections are disabled, yes. But again, it doesn't turn off the signal system. It's still monitoring everything. It knows where everything is. And if a train is so-equipped and all of the parameters are met, the signal system can still put that train into emergency. Or at least, is supposed to. Dan
  7. If the signal system is active, then how did neither train sense the other? If the signal system was active it would have detected the train in the pocket, regardless of the state that it is in. Just because a train is being operated in CABS or MAN doesn't mean that the system doesn't know where it is. The fact is that it didn't - the train on the mainline never got a stop signal. Dan
  8. In the olden days, they detected train occupancy by measuring the voltage resistive difference across the rails via the wheels & axles, and there were about 7 different locations with which to do this on each switch. They've gotten rid of all of those gaps in the new system, and now use axle counters. They don't have nearly as many around the switches however, and so the system needs to calculate the exact location rather than detecting it. (If everything is working correctly, the train will also confirm this with the signal system.) Don't forget that the interlockings
  9. There are still a lot of questions that remain to be answered, as well as differences between the accounts of the TTC and the operating staff that need to be reconciled. As is usually the case, the truth is likely somewhere down the middle. One of the first things that popped up to me however, was that the signalling had been disabled into that pocket. To me, that is a serious no-no. The system has several different ways of knowing where a single train is, via the various communication loops from train-to-central and wayside devices such as axle counters. This is done to account fo
  10. Only trip down there would be the blind trip at the end of track in the pocket. The new signalling system doesn't rely on trips. If trains are on the track they are communicating with the signal system, which can activate the emergency brake if it senses something untoward. (The equipment onboard the train can also do calculations on this, and also apply the emergency brakes.) Unless the system's been turned off in a particular area. Which it was there. Dan
  11. I don't have an exact number, but it's around 60. Ballasted track can not absorb rain - if it did so, it would lead to a situation called "pumping" where the end result would be that track would be less stable. Properly designed, the ballast allows rain water to flow through it. On the full-sized railroads (and on the subway system) were the shoulders are open, the water flows into the ditches and swales. The ground underneath the tracks is compacted in layers, and is not capable of absorbing water. On the Queensway, drains had to be built to allow that water to flow
  12. Some more food for thought - not that we don't need to muddy the waters any more.... (Any more mixed metaphors that I can throw in there? "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't burn down the bridge that carries him across troubled waters?") Concrete is to a degree recyclable. Old concrete can be broken down and used as aggregate in new concrete (provided the mix/use is conducive to it). And by that token, ballast is reusable as well, although the cleaning process does require the use of energy and sometimes water. Frankly, even if we knew
  13. How about the maintenance impacts of using ties-in-ballast versus slab-track? Once needs periodic maintenance to maintain alignment, clean fines, etc. The other doesn't. And that maintenance is provided with diesel-powered equipment, so it's not like it's zero-sum. Dan
  14. Before COVID hit there were plans for some increases in service in September, yes. But hourly to Barrie? Every two hours to Kitchener? Hourly to Georgetown? No. There isn't enough track in place yet to run that level of service. Again, those are most certainly long-term goals - but only once there is enough track to run the service. They're still a little bit away from it. There was even a plan formulated over the summer to launch some new service this past October, in response to ridership improving slightly prior to the second wave, but that was kyboshed b
  15. These plans all still exist. But to say that they were "supposed to introduce a multitude of changes" as it was imminent? No. In this case, the COVID-based lockdowns haven't delayed anything (whether ridership rebounds to previous levels is another question altogether). That level of service will eventually happen at some unknown time in the future, but first off a LOT of new track needs to be built to allow it. And while they're working on it now, it is still several years before the majority of it will be ready. Dan
  16. This will help clear things up. https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2019/ep/bgrd/backgroundfile-131927.pdf
  17. They did. The capacity of the 3 yards is enough to store the current fleet plus the 60 more. If you go back and see those original 2009-era documents for the streetcar tender and the design of Leslie, you'll see that. But none of that reduces deadhead costs to routes in the middle of the City or to St. Clair. That's where the carhouse at Hillcrest comes in. So the TTC is pulling a bit of institutional slight-of-hand - and certainly not the first time that they've done so, and likely not the last - in order to squeeze a little more money out of the upper levels of govern
  18. The issue is not that it was a knife, it's size, or that it was a gift. It's the tacit acknowledgement of the company in charge that they can be used, even if just a visual signal, by someone who frankly is not trained to use it. Dan
  19. It's a basic rule, yes. But it also happens to work for the vast majority of the time - which is why it's a rule. You've actually touched on one of the biggest concerns about far-side stops - the double stop. Not because it costs them time (averaged over a whole route, and over the course of a service day, it doesn't), but because people get frustrated by the fact that they are so close to where they need to be, and can see it even, but still can't access it yet. Again, assuming all else being equal - and without transit priority - averaged over the course of the who
  20. That only works, however, in concert with functional signal priority. If there is no signal priority, than there no difference in having near-side or far-side stops. The location of the stop doesn't change the likelihood of a vehicle coming to an intersection and having to stop due to the signals. Dan
  21. First off.....I think that it's amusing that you think that I'm "riled up" about this. Second off.....I enjoy your attempt to brush off criticism - without any attempt to rebut against the criticisms themselves - by using the same sort of language and attitude that Metrolinx displays. If you think that I am the only one making these same criticisms than you are sorely mistaken. There are a lot of people in the various industries that engage with Metrolinx on a regular basis that have the same concerns. There are people who work for Metrolinx that have the same concerns.
  22. That whole passage could be easily summed into a single sentence - maybe two - and still be completely true and accurate. In fact, the paragraph written in red is not only the crux of their whole argument, but frankly the only one that actually contains any real information as to why their decision was made. That last paragraph is particular galling as the reason that they are giving for making the station and yard above ground is because all of our other yards are already above ground(!). As if "all of our others are all that way!!1!" really makes for a valid reason to do anything
  23. This passage just reinforces my disdain for this organization. It is so full of marketing wank, obfuscation and boosterism as to make a trader blush. Dan
  24. Of all the plans thrown about for this extension, at least the 2 most recent ones called for a large bus terminal underground. One version was a cruciform shape right under the intersection of Yonge and Steeles, and the most recent one that I can recall was a long, east-west alignment that featured ramps in the middle of Steeles east and west of Yonge for access. So yeah, an underground terminal here definitely seems to be in play. Dan
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