Northern Lights Express

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
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FISHMANPET
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby FISHMANPET » March 7th, 2018, 10:26 pm

I believe states own the equipment, and it depends on the color. California has their own paint scheme, as does the Cascades. I think North Carolina has a slightly different paintjob on the locomotive. But not all state services have unique liveries.

SurlyLHT
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby SurlyLHT » March 8th, 2018, 7:43 am

I did a quick internet search for high speed lines throughout the US. This would be one of the very few to come online in the past 20 years. (That is if you consider this high speed at 90mph)

talindsay
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby talindsay » March 8th, 2018, 7:53 am

The equipment will be owned by the funder, if they follow the normal model, and the funder will be setting the operational parameters, with Amtrak as the contracted operator. Regarding equipment, I don't know what they'll decide but new operations like these try to choose something a little more contemporary than standard Amtrak rolling stock.

RailRunner was the only example that came to me of something reasonably "intercity" that isn't operated by Amtrak. And of course although it's intercity, it's still set up like commuter rail.

Korh
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby Korh » March 8th, 2018, 8:04 am

DanPatchToget wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:21 pm

This may still be up in the air, but he said older locomotives may be used and perhaps also cabbage cars (locomotives that have been gutted and turned into cabcars and baggage holders) in a push-pull configuration. Assuming this is the case eventually Siemens Charger locomotives would be brought in. I forget if we talked about rolling stock too. Superliners, Bombardier bi-levels, or something else?
Since there is a chance the train will use some Siemens Chargers, I kinda wish they will order some of the new passenger coaches from Siemens for the NLX but its probably a long shot given how the coaches are brand new and probably cost a lot, and the issue of platform heights.
FISHMANPET wrote:
March 7th, 2018, 10:26 pm
I believe states own the equipment, and it depends on the color. California has their own paint scheme, as does the Cascades. I think North Carolina has a slightly different paintjob on the locomotive. But not all state services have unique liveries.
Here's hoping they decide to use a similar paint scheme to the old Great Northern Railway.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DanPatchToget » March 8th, 2018, 8:47 am

talindsay wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 7:53 am
The equipment will be owned by the funder, if they follow the normal model, and the funder will be setting the operational parameters, with Amtrak as the contracted operator. Regarding equipment, I don't know what they'll decide but new operations like these try to choose something a little more contemporary than standard Amtrak rolling stock.

RailRunner was the only example that came to me of something reasonably "intercity" that isn't operated by Amtrak. And of course although it's intercity, it's still set up like commuter rail.
This is a giant stretch, but in theory you could ride LA Metrolink Los Angeles-Oceanside, transfer to the Coaster and go Oceanside-San Diego. Two commuter rail lines, but they make an intercity route. No idea if this would ever be useful considering there is Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner that runs throughout the day.

talindsay
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby talindsay » March 8th, 2018, 3:05 pm

DanPatchToget wrote:
March 8th, 2018, 8:47 am
This is a giant stretch, but in theory you could ride LA Metrolink Los Angeles-Oceanside, transfer to the Coaster and go Oceanside-San Diego. Two commuter rail lines, but they make an intercity route. No idea if this would ever be useful considering there is Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner that runs throughout the day.
First, obviously that doesn't meet the "intercity" definition, so it's a bit non-sequitur.

However, funny you'd mention that because I'd actually gone so far as to plan doing exactly that the last time I was in San Diego. The combined cost of the two commuter rail tickets was, at least at that time, much, much cheaper than the Amtrak Intercity service. The big challenges I ran into were finding times that lined up both northbound in the morning, and southbound in the evening, when I wouldn't have to wait a terribly long time; and the fact that the transfer point was at a place that really isn't intended to be a transfer point.

What's interesting to me about that specific case is that the two cities' commuter lines actually *do* share one station in common and yet they're two completely unlinked commuter services. Other cases where the same thing arises -- Seattle-Tacoma, San Francisco-San Jose, and all the big examples I can think of on the East Coast -- at least provide some semblance of an organized link between the two core cities in question. It's almost like LA and San Diego haven't yet acknowledged that they're a single megalopolis, still behaving like two distinct metropoli. I suppose that, unlike the other examples I cite (and kind of cite), LA and San Diego metros still only barely touch; as the two pull larger percentages of commuters from deep within the other's travelshed, we'll probably see more consideration of how to share commuter infrastructure.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DanPatchToget » March 9th, 2018, 9:30 pm

Odd that their website still has the Pendolino in the concept NLX colors. I would think by now they would do a 5 minute photoshop job on a Siemens Charger and some coaches.

http://www.northernlightsexpress.org/

gopherfan
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby gopherfan » March 10th, 2018, 1:41 am

Took 10 minutes, not 5 :p

Image

DanPatchToget
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DanPatchToget » March 10th, 2018, 10:03 am

Nice! I do prefer Brightline's version of the Siemens Charger over the regular version used by state DOTs.

Korh
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby Korh » March 10th, 2018, 5:41 pm

did they say for sure that the green and blue was going to be the final color scheme? I'm fine with it if it is even though it would be kinda a fun nod to have it in the GNR paint scheme.

Ah well I'll leave the idea of a bright orange train set alone for now, unless the second train to Chicago ever gets rolling again, I'm gonna question who ever designed the trains paint scheme if they don't decide to make a callback to the Milwaukee road/Hiawatha

tmart
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby tmart » March 28th, 2018, 8:43 am

A little more insight into the funding situation: http://www.kbjr6.com/story/37813521/nor ... ct-process

eazydp
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby eazydp » March 30th, 2018, 12:33 pm

I have to admit, I didn't think this project would still have legs. We should start issuing some betting lines on a completion vs non-completion and maybe even open up the finish year/month pools.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DanPatchToget » November 8th, 2018, 7:13 pm

Has anyone else heard of the experimental commuter rail service in Duluth in 2005?
http://news.minnesota.publicradio.org/f ... OE20V2kho8

mattaudio
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby mattaudio » November 9th, 2018, 10:57 am

I'm guessing the problem is that the Duluth Depot (and the parallel Soo Line depot that was once across the street) are stub-end depots. That makes it hard for any sort of commuter service from the Duluth north end short of an expensive reconstruction to add a wye into the line.

Related: Here's a fantasy Duluth/Superior rail transit network design from 2011 with 5 services: https://drive.google.com/open?id=18ucSW ... sp=sharing

Related: Concept to rationalize some of the ramps/weaving/rail if the I-35/Central Entrance/Superior St bridges need to get replaced. https://drive.google.com/open?id=1jMh3Q ... sp=sharing

MNdible
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby MNdible » November 9th, 2018, 11:45 am

I think they were using their Budd cars, so the Depot being stub-end shouldn't have been an issue.

Also, Matt, it's the EAST end, not the north end. Please.

DFPegg
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DFPegg » November 9th, 2018, 2:01 pm

MNdible wrote:
November 9th, 2018, 11:45 am
I think they were using their Budd cars, so the Depot being stub-end shouldn't have been an issue.

Also, Matt, it's the EAST end, not the north end. Please.
LOL

mattaudio
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby mattaudio » November 9th, 2018, 3:16 pm

MNdible wrote:
November 9th, 2018, 11:45 am
I think they were using their Budd cars, so the Depot being stub-end shouldn't have been an issue.
They still would have had to switch directions from the station to the mainline, since there's no direct track from the NSSR tracks to the station.

MNdible
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby MNdible » November 9th, 2018, 3:23 pm

Ah, I see what you're getting at. I guess I've never thought about it, but all of the excursion trains must have to do that?

Seems like there might be enough room and clearance around here to put in a new wye. Or maybe not.

Alternately, you could just make this into a proper station and connect to the Skywalk here -- that would be more convenient to the core of downtown employment anyway.

DanPatchToget
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby DanPatchToget » November 9th, 2018, 5:06 pm

How feasible would it be to go under I-35 from the depot?

Korh
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Re: Northern Lights Express

Postby Korh » November 9th, 2018, 10:47 pm

So what I'm getting from the article is that the test had two stops a parking lot 8 miles away and somewhere in downtown Duluth (interesting they don't mention if the second stop was at the NSSR station) for about a week. Though I'm still wondering how frequent they made the train (ever hour, every 2 hours, etc) and if they charged for a ride or made it free.


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