Green Line / Central Corridor construction thread (archive)

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
mulad
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » June 28th, 2012, 5:41 pm

Yeah, Bus Driver Dude collected some photos and put them up on his blog:

http://twincitiestransit.blogspot.com/2 ... -work.html

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby Didier » June 28th, 2012, 9:53 pm

It's almost hard to believe that this still has almost two years to go.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby Lancestar2 » June 28th, 2012, 10:21 pm

Didier wrote:It's almost hard to believe that this still has almost two years to go.

technically not really, this summer was the last year of "heavy construction" and winter little work gets done. Also next summer is the last summer of work if I am not mistaken. Then a opening early 2014 I think. I can't even imagine what rush hour will look like with double the 3 car trains! :D sure gonna make downtown look like a very busy transit line!

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby spectre000 » June 28th, 2012, 11:34 pm

I really don't see this opening in early '14. Honestly, I'll be impressed if trains are carrying passengers by Labor Day '14. And I wouldn't be surprised if the line isn't 100% finished by Thanksgiving. I recall Hiawatha's full completion was several months behind schedule. The MetCouncil puts out xx% completion numbers. But personally I doubt their validity.

I'd settle for just having the heavy construction (roads, sidewalks) finished by the end of this year. It's been fun watching the daily progress in downtown. I try to walk the route down Cedar and 4th Street a couple times a week. Each time I notice a little bits of progress here and there.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » June 29th, 2012, 12:14 am

I'm expecting it to just be on time, which I'm figuring is sometime in the 2nd quarter of 2014. Hiawatha got delayed by several weeks due to the bus driver strike (which must have halted operator training), plus the Mall of America's last-minute decision to have a relatively integrated station rather than one on the other side of 24th Avenue made things more difficult on the southern end. It opened in two phases: June 26, 2004 between the Warehouse District and Fort Snelling, and December 4, 2004 from Fort Snelling to MOA.

Catenary installation and testing will take quite a while on Central, but I'm figuring the real long pull will be simply waiting for enough LRVs to arrive from Siemens and for them to be certified after arrival.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby Tcmetro » June 29th, 2012, 7:32 am

From my understanding, all road/sidewalk/track work should be finished by the end of the year. I don't know how realistic it is for the trackwork to be completed, or the U of M mall, but roadwork looks like it will be done on time.

Next year is electric work and caternary installation. I have no idea about the duration of those works, but I would imagine test trains will begin operating during the middle of next summer.

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spectre000
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby spectre000 » June 29th, 2012, 8:35 am

Tcmetro wrote:From my understanding, all road/sidewalk/track work should be finished by the end of the year. I don't know how realistic it is for the trackwork to be completed, or the U of M mall, but roadwork looks like it will be done on time.

Next year is electric work and caternary installation. I have no idea about the duration of those works, but I would imagine test trains will begin operating during the middle of next summer.
There is no way all track work will be done by this year. Roads and sidewalks yes. But tracks? They finished the roadway on the western half in St. Paul by the end of the last year. But they fell way short of installing all the track. Also the section in front of MPR is expected to take longer due to the extra vibration mitigation efforts. They'll probably be able to test trains on the Hiawatha line in '13. But they won't be running trains on the Green line till 2014.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » June 29th, 2012, 9:17 am

Getting *all* of the track done this year is impossible in my mind. I think there's a non-zero chance that the straight-through pieces can be installed by then, but I wouldn't place any bets on it. The crossover switches and the complex track layout at the operations facility will take quite a while to complete.

I've been annoyed that the Central Corridor folks haven't been more open about posting schedules -- I know I saw a fairly simple Gantt-style chart indicating that street reconstruction was planned to be done this year but track work was expected to extend into 2013. I can't find it now -- I suspect it's buried in the middle of a weekly update PDF somewhere, and I don't have the patience to dig through those.

I remember someone on Minnescraper came across this UMN timeline page which gives a specific date of March 17, 2014, but that's the only place anyone's ever been that specific.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby nordeast homer » June 29th, 2012, 9:50 am

mulad wrote: I think there's a non-zero chance that the straight-through pieces can be installed by then
So you're saying there's a chance...

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spectre000
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby spectre000 » June 29th, 2012, 10:29 am

mulad wrote:Getting *all* of the track done this year is impossible in my mind. I think there's a non-zero chance that the straight-through pieces can be installed by then, but I wouldn't place any bets on it. The crossover switches and the complex track layout at the operations facility will take quite a while to complete.

I've been annoyed that the Central Corridor folks haven't been more open about posting schedules -- I know I saw a fairly simple Gantt-style chart indicating that street reconstruction was planned to be done this year but track work was expected to extend into 2013. I can't find it now -- I suspect it's buried in the middle of a weekly update PDF somewhere, and I don't have the patience to dig through those.

I remember someone on Minnescraper came across this UMN timeline page which gives a specific date of March 17, 2014, but that's the only place anyone's ever been that specific.
That's interesting. I think the MetCouncil said they won't have an idea on an opening date until they start testing in early 2014. Right now it's far too early for them to say.

The crossover sections are definitely taking a long time to complete. There's a section on 4th Street. They've been working on it all year and it still seems months away from finishing. A section on 12th Street also started earlier this year, but minimal progress has been made so far.

I recall the MetCouncil said they would start work on the overhead electrical lines this year on 4th Street. But so far nothing.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby writruth » June 29th, 2012, 11:27 am

The economics of having a $60 Million, national volleyball championship in MInneapolis in late June of 2014 and a Major League Baseball All Star Game at Target Field in early July will provide the necessary pressure to get the Central Line up and running before these two mega events take place.

Imagine the missed opportunity for national exposure of our intercity rail system if construction delays lag on past the All Star Game.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mplsjaromir » June 29th, 2012, 1:45 pm

It not official that the MLB All Star game is coming in Minneapolis.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby MSPtoMKE » June 29th, 2012, 3:14 pm

I don't see any reason that the track work needs to be completely finished this year for them to start testing by sometime next year. They won't be able to run the trains without installing catenary, so they can work on both next year. As long as they finish up by next fall, they should be able to do testing in the winter of '13-'14' and into the spring (I don't see why they couldn't test during the winter, it will be required to operate during the winter months!) I am not expecting an early 2014 opening, but early or mid-summer 2014 seem very doable to me. If I recall correctly, as of early this spring, they were saying they were a little ahead of schedule. If they find they are falling behind, they can halt work on finishing details (such as some of the signage and artwork that is already being installed at some stations), and focus on what needs to be done to begin testing.
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » July 1st, 2012, 7:57 am

Here's at least a version of the chart I was referring to, from this PDF. I guess it doesn't appear quite how I remembered it.
CCLRT-general-timeline.png
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby pfreyre » July 2nd, 2012, 12:49 pm

I ran across this article today and had to post it. Although the Central Corridor project is not mentioned, I believe the fist and third blue & yellow train cars in the default opening photo are the new LRVs that will be shipped out here soon! So, here's a sneak peak:

http://www.sacbee.com/2012/07/01/460254 ... plant.html

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Andrew_F
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby Andrew_F » July 2nd, 2012, 1:03 pm

Awesome! Do we know anything about the interiors yet?

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » July 2nd, 2012, 6:49 pm

I haven't heard much. The trains are Siemens model S70 or "Avanto" vehicles -- you might be able to get some idea for searching for photos, but they can be heavily customized (Metro Transit has requested over 1,000 modifications, many of which seem to be to get more stainless steel used on metal parts that can get weathered).

Anyway, maybe someone else knows more. I was just finally getting around to posting some phone-cam photos I took over the weekend. The bridges at the University of Minnesota have gotten some hefty collision barriers (I'm hoping they'll wrap these in metal to match the bridges, but we'll see...):

Image
Image link

Looks like they're getting close to laying some rail along the transitway. It seemed like they were in the late stages of grading soil near the intersection of the transitway and 29th:

Image
Image link

Getting ready to pour station footings at the 10th Street station along Cedar Street in Saint Paul:
Image
Image link

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby MSPtoMKE » July 2nd, 2012, 7:16 pm

Yep, those are definitely our new LRVs, thanks for the sneak peak! It really does look different with Blue instead of black, but I like each scheme in their own way... I will miss the yellow and black, though.

Why would they need such heavy duty impact shielding around the pedestrian bridge supports? Surely they don't expect a train to jump the tracks? I guess the plan is for buses to run in the light rail running way along the Washington Ave mall, but buses ran along Washington Ave before without need for such buttressing...
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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby mulad » July 2nd, 2012, 9:20 pm

Well, there's expectation and there's preparation.. As far as I know, there's only been one derailment of a Hiawatha LRV in revenue service that wasn't due to a collision, and it happened at 5-10 mph so there wasn't any damage. But when you're dealing with vehicles that weigh 50+ tons apiece, you take a few extra precautions...

I had heard at one point that buses would run in the LRT guideway through campus, but that sounds pretty bogus to me -- the doors would be on the wrong sides unless the U got some new buses.

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Re: Central Corridor LRT

Postby MSPtoMKE » July 2nd, 2012, 11:34 pm

I agree it makes more sense to run buses on the outside lanes, but I seem to recall that they were at least going to experiment with running buses on top of the tracks, and leave the outside lanes for bikes and emergency vehicles. Buses wouldn't use the center light rail platform, they would have separate curbside stops. Maybe they are no longer planning to run them in the center, however. I am sure they will have their reasons no matter what they choose.
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