Chicago Mayor takes tour of NYC Subways

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Chicago Mayor takes tour of NYC Subways
Posted by CandOforprogress2 on Wednesday, July 05, 2017 10:03 AM

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/chicago-mayor-rahm-emanuel-takes-big-dig-nyc-subway-crisis-article-1.3298095

If I remember both systems where about the same size in the 1940s...including elgin,north and south shores

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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Thursday, July 06, 2017 1:31 PM

Having ridden both systems, I would have to say that NYC's system is the big dog in this fight (or pissing contest). Bigger cars (10 ft wide, 60 or 75 ft long BMT & IND or 8' 9' wide and 51 ft long IRT) vs 9 ft 4 " wide and 48 ft long; Longer trains 10 vs 8 cars; 6418 cars vs 1190. Express trains and locals vs only locals. Frequency of trains, number of routes, route miles. Etc. Both are fun to ride but having lived most of my life in Chicago and only been to NYC about ten times, I am very much in awe of the service NYC delivers and its residents use. My perception is that Chicago is still more car centric than NYC and that a higher percent of NYC population use transit than Chicagoans. They both have strong union staffs and could stand a lot of modernization but that takes money which is not likely. NYC got rid of its grafiti and I salute them for that. And seeing some of the New York Elevated structures such as Quennsboro Plaza which had two levels, each with two tracks with the upper level having BMT and IRT Queens bound trains and the lower level Manhatten bound trains. The other structure that impressed me was the Broadway Junction where the Jamaica Line was built first (1884). It consists of three tracks and two island platforms. The upper level, serving the Canarsie Line, was added in 1928. It connected the Canarsie Line subway from Manhattan with existing trackage built in 1906 for the Fulton Street Elevated. There are two tracks, one side platform (on the outbound side) and one island platform. The Canarsie Line platforms must be one of the highest elevated platforms in the city, second only perhaps to Smith/9th Street, as it sits above the already-elevated Jamaica Line platforms. As high up as these platforms are, the tracks plunge abruptly into a tunnel at the north end. This end of the station slopes sharply downward, and it is less than 200 yards from the platform end to the tunnel's portal. This structure is very impressive. And while Chicago's line to Howard street is four tracks to Armitage, it used to be four tracks to Grand Ave. Its like the New York Giants against a pee wee football team. 

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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, July 06, 2017 2:52 PM

East New York was even more complicated when the Fulton Elevated was in operation.  Of course, now, in addition to complex elevated junction and station, there are also four tracks of the subway down below - with free transfer to the complex elevated station above.

Qeensboro Plaza used to have four tracks on two levels.  On each level the southernmost track, like today, was for trains to and from Times Square (OK, now they go furher to Javits-Center/Hudson Yards.).  The next track over, now to and from the 60th Street tunnel - Astoria, was for 2nd Avenue elevated trains over the Manhattan Bridge, discontinued in 1944.  ('42?)   Then came the 60th Street tunnel tracks, where trains, Brighton and 4th Avenue locals, reversed on a tail track, structure somewhat still in place.  And the farthest north track was for the BMT elevated-dimension cars (compatible with the IRT) on the Queensboro Plaza Flushing and Astoria services.

Probably the most impressive outdoor arrangement in New York today is the Coney Island Stillwell Avenue terminal, still with four different routes (B, D, F, N) and eight tracks and very fine architecture, like the historic train sheds.

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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Friday, July 07, 2017 2:07 PM

daveklepper
Probably the most impressive outdoor arrangement in New York today is the Coney Island Stillwell Avenue terminal, still with four different routes (B, D, F, N) and eight tracks and very fine architecture, like the historic train sheds.

Dave, Could not agree more. Four busy routes 

Is there any reason that Stillwell is a double ended TERMINAL rather than a run through Station? It would seem that there might be some efficiencies in making the routes through similar to what SEPTA did with Philly's PRR & Reading trains after the conection was made between the two terminals. Or are there IRT & BMT/IND equipment issues? It has four platforms and eight tracks that seem to be all the same clearance and I thought it was all BMT so runthroughs should pe feasible.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Saturday, July 08, 2017 6:44 AM

Runthroughs at Stillwell Avenue may be technically possible but geographically unlikely. 

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, July 09, 2017 1:34 AM

Coney Island, Stillwell Avenue, has been the joint Southernmost terminal of the Brighton (now Q), Culver (now F), Sea Beach (now N), and West End (now D) lines for 99 years, since it replaced several surface terminals used by the private steam railroads that we folded into the Brooklyn United elevated system, which then became the BMT, then part of the B-Division of the Transit Authority.  Only the N remains running purely on what were BMT lines; the others also use part of the IND and/or new post WWII constructed subways, with the Q now ending up on the new Second Avenue subway.  The station was constructed as a through station to provide flexibility in platform assignments and for easier access to the various yards north of the station, some tracks best accessed by running directly north from the station, while others are easier to approach by running south, turning immediately east on the F line tracks, which then turn north after West 8th Street Station and have yard access between there and Avenue X station on Macdonald Avenue.  Under the present operating plan each of the four routes has its own platform with a track on each side.  Headways and even train lengths and car types differ on the four routes, so through routing is not practical.  It does sometimes happen anyway, when there is a specific equipment move swap or an emergency.

In the past from about 1926 to around 1954, there was a through route:  Summer Sunny Sundays only.  Chambers Street Manhattan, south tracks on the Manhattan Bridge (connection not possible after the Chrystie Street tie of the IND and BMT), then via the 4th Avenue Subway express tracks, Sea Beach Express tracks (the only for-public service to use these tracks!), Coney Island, and the Brighton Line, express stops ony, to the Franklin Avenue shuttle and all stops to Franklin Avenue replacing the shuttle. I rode it.  It ran non-stop from 59th Street and 4th Avenue to Stillwell Avenue.  It commandiered the normal Brighton platform, and so Brighton and West End shared the normal West End platform with one track assigned to each.  If the Sunday was not sunny, only the Coney Island -Franklin service was provided, with the same platform relocations.

Also, there was once an emergency of some sort, and the Brighton line was out of service between Kings Hightway and Ocean Parkway.  During that period the Sea Beach line was extended to Ocean Parkway.

For the Sunny Summer Sundays route, three destination signs were used: Chambers Street, Coney Island, and Franklin Avenue.  The route sign said only "EXPRESS."  This used up all four sign boxes, so there was no room for "Via Bridge."   Only standard 67' steel Bs and As were used.   All Franklin expresses carried a white disk on the front pantograph, and this through service had it.

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