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Old 01-27-2015, 12:11 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tryska View Post
Are people generally ok with living alongside busy freight rail (in the South at least)? I know around Atlanta, it doesn't seem to matter the demographics of a neighborhood, all the older neighborhoods are right up along the tracks. maybe I am applying my own noise bias to things.
Noise as a nuisance will vary so much from metro to metro. If there is a significantly large portion of developable land in a given urban transect not on an in-use rail line, then that rail line will be a nuisance. If rail is pretty inescapable, or if supply is low, then people won't discount rail-adjacent properties as heavily.
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Old 01-27-2015, 01:07 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
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Originally Posted by MidValleyDad View Post
What kind of rail traffic? Unit coal trains? Intermodal? Then there is the worst kind Unit oil or chemical trains. Given the recent publicity derailments of crude oil trains or chemical trains have gotten I wouldn't want anything to do with revitalization along such a rail corridor.

How many tracks, how much traffic? Some multi track lines run almost constant traffic. A rail line that is empty isn't making money for the company so they will be looking to put traffic on it.
In Seattle it's two tracks, sometimes a train going in each direction. We get mostly intermodal, but also passenger, coal, grain, and garbage.
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Old 01-27-2015, 02:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tryska View Post
Are people generally ok with living alongside busy freight rail (in the South at least)? I know around Atlanta, it doesn't seem to matter the demographics of a neighborhood, all the older neighborhoods are right up along the tracks. maybe I am applying my own noise bias to things.
What Chicago76 said.

I think it really comes down to the particular situation. In Columbia most of the trains seemed to be during the day when a lot of people weren't home anyway . . . and then most of the residential stuff is new construction so it's well insulated with the noise in mind and since it's Cola. most people don't have their windows open for a good part of the year anyway.

Unless you're right up on the tracks and the trains are so heavy that your house is shaking I think it's really the noise from the horn at grade crossings that irks people.

When you're not hearing the horns the trains just become background noise. I used to live about 40 yards from the PATCO tracks in South Jersey and that goes by at 60+ mph every 12 minutes or less for most of the day then about once an hour on the overnight - but only the rare horn when they were doing track work - after a few weeks of living there I didn't even really hear it anymore.
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Old 01-27-2015, 02:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
What Chicago76 said.

I think it really comes down to the particular situation. In Columbia most of the trains seemed to be during the day when a lot of people weren't home anyway . . . and then most of the residential stuff is new construction so it's well insulated with the noise in mind and since it's Cola. most people don't have their windows open for a good part of the year anyway.

Unless you're right up on the tracks and the trains are so heavy that your house is shaking I think it's really the noise from the horn at grade crossings that irks people.

When you're not hearing the horns the trains just become background noise. I used to live about 40 yards from the PATCO tracks in South Jersey and that goes by at 60+ mph every 12 minutes or less for most of the day then about once an hour on the overnight - but only the rare horn when they were doing track work - after a few weeks of living there I didn't even really hear it anymore.

This is true. it's the horn that's most irksome. I don't think the train is that bad. But the existing HRT train (on a different track) is very loud. maybe louder than the freight rail. Maybe because it's moving faster? I have been across the street trying to order at the fast food joint over there and we had to just take a moment because neither of us could hear.

I think also, if there is residential along the block, they aren't allowed to honk the horn overnight are they?


The road that runs parallel and block up is the main connector between the "hospitality corridor" and our CBD - so the area has the potential to see a lot of thru traffic and needs to be attractive. Just need to get rid of the industrial blight. And figure out how to hide not 1, but 2 electric substations.
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Old 01-28-2015, 05:52 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Tryska View Post
Atlanta - it could be auto racks. I just saw the ventilation and presumed livestock, but they are double- height so auto makes more sense.

And I believe the track is CSX track here as well. I don't know if it will be using the actual rail or the RoWs alongside the freight rail.
Probably Autoracks. There is at least one large auto plant in the Atlanta area which would account for those and some oversized 'box cars' that are used to transport parts in to the plants.

You asked about rail parks. There are some. Usually they have substantial fences between the park and the active rails to protect the people from wandering onto the tracks.
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Old 01-28-2015, 06:53 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tryska View Post
This is true. it's the horn that's most irksome. I don't think the train is that bad.
The rail tracks I lived near had grade separated intersections nearby, so there wasn't a horn.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:59 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
active freight rail? It probably depends on the frequency, the length & weight of the trains, and the quality of the railbed.

Downtown Pomona, CA is mounting something of a comeback along a pretty busy freight corridor but it's mostly commercial and there's not much property that's right up on the tracks.

There is a lot of housing really close to the very Northeast Corridor - especially the densest part of it between Wilmington, DE and New Haven, CT - and I've noticed new construction in a bunch of different places really close to the tracks but this is mostly passenger rail and it seems that people are generally willing to put up with the noise (which is less than freight) in exchange for the convenience of being close to the station.
It may run a lot of freight but it also carries Metrolink's Riverside Line as well as some Amtrak lines.

Pasadena has a pretty good example of a re-purposed freight/commuter line - The Red Car used to connect LA to Pasadena via this ROW, and then I believe it was mostly used for freight purposes after Southern California dismantled its passenger rail system. Recently, the line has been repurposed as the Gold Line LRT, which runs between Eastern Pasadena and Union Station (for now, soon it will run from Azusa and connect with the Blue Line to Long Beach). The area south of Colorado Blvd that straddles the Gold Line is a mix of light industrial, commercial, residential and medical - if there was an "innovation district" of Pasadena, this would be it.

Here is a close-up of the tracks, which run right behind the buildings that face Arroyo Parkway and Raymond Avenue.

This is where Del Mar Station is located, with a mixed-use development built around the passenger loading and unloading zone. It's not the greatest example of TOD, considering all of the shops are located inside the courtyard and other than the side that faces Raymond Avenue, has a massive blank walls (though there are some front doors along Arroyo Pkwy).

Facing Arroyo Parkway south of Del Mar is this massive Whole Foods. Sometimes when contestants on Top Chef need to go shopping at Whole Foods, this is where the producers send them. Two stories, dozens of fresh-food kiosks, a vinyl record booth - it is really over the top.

Here are some new offices on Raymond Ave., as you can see from the surrounding landscape, it is still pretty industrial. One block west are some medical offices and just a bit further west is the Huntington Hospital. Here is an art college. Here is a large residential building on Fair Oaks.

The biggest thing that is missing is residential, though there are one or two new buildings going up in the immediate area, as well as a host of apartments just a block east of Arroyo Parkway.
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Old 01-28-2015, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Chicago - Logan Square
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The Ravenswood Corridor in Chicago has some similarities to what you're looking for, although there is almost no freight on it anymore - just commuter trains (Metra UP-N).

The area was originally an industrial district that grew due to it's proximity to the Chicago and North Western line being built in the late 1800's. Residential for factory workers was built in the area, but the areas close to the tracks were primarily industrial, and it was an active manufacturing area until at least WWII. As trucking overtook rail for freight the industries in the area left, and the area declined. Over the last 20 years the area has become much more desirable, with old industrial buildings being converted to lofts and offices and much of the older housing stock being restored. There is still some light manufacturing in the area (breweries, woodworking studios, etc.). Today it's one of the more desirable parts of Chicago.
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Old 01-29-2015, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Glendale, CA
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Austin has Union Pacific trains going straight through downtown along the MoPac (Missouri Pacific) tracks every day. When it goes through downtown it goes through a lot of new developed apartments, condos, etc.

See:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lr3MtqjgywA
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Old 01-29-2015, 09:05 PM
 
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There's too many areas with residential (including high-end residential) near freight rail in my state (NJ) to count.

One obvious example is the Norfolk Southern Lehigh Line. 25 freight trains per day with tons of residential built right up to the edge of the ROW in places like Piscataway, Metutchen, Woodbridge, etc.
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