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Old 01-14-2010, 09:56 AM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
12,381 posts, read 24,288,721 times
Reputation: 4534

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I just wanted know what you guys thoughts are on the planned Raritan Valley line restoration and extension to Lehigh Valley. Having lived out there for 1 year in Boarding school , i managed to fallen in love with the area. I also got to see the nice sides and bad sides of LV. Rail would once again place the Lehigh Valley Metro back on the map for alot of ppl, as a one day destination for New Yorkers and Urban Jerseyites, that wouldn't want to take there cars. The route would using existing ROW. The Current Raritan Valley line ends in High Bridge,NJ, service ended to Philpsburg in December of 1983. The first extension would go back to Philpsburg, and the second would would go into ABE. The Line would be diesel unlike the Planned Lackawanna cut-off which would be electric. The Line would also be doubled in Capacity to allow Trains in Each direction to use the line more frequently. When the new ARC Tunnel opens in 2016 or 17 direct service to New York Penn Station with begin. Right now service goes to Hoboken Terminal with connections to NY waterway & PATH trains. some people are worried that this line will create an influx of New Jerseyites and New Yorkers moving to LV, to those people and i'm sure theres some on this thread. Its already happened, this rail line will at least help reduce traffic. I just wanted to know you guys and gals opinion on this?

~Corey
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Old 01-14-2010, 10:31 AM
 
12,865 posts, read 29,484,981 times
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Sounds interesting, but according to what I've read, not very possible. Here's one article I found after googling " Raritan Valley line restoration, Lehigh Valley", http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raritan_Valley_Line

I like rail service from an environmentalist stand point but I don't especially relish the idea of making it so convenient that more people move here. Don't get me wrong newcomers, I have nothing against anyone personally, but I would rather have fields and deer instead of houses and crowded schools.

While it's true that some people move here and commute, many people choose NOT to move here once they find out there is no public rail, IMO.
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:06 AM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
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Eventually you will get the line , it is in the 2020 NJT plans , so sometime this decade you will get it. As for more New Jerseys & New Yorks moving there its happening faster, but if you build transit oriented communities around the Train stations and if you guys build a ABE Light Rail line , you won't get the bad traffic with it.

~Corey
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:53 AM
 
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They've been talking about a rail line into NEPA or this area for twenty years. I'll believe it when I see it.
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Old 01-15-2010, 11:34 AM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
12,381 posts, read 24,288,721 times
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Well the Philpsburg Ext is easy , since it would only require reinstatement of Tracks and Doubling. But into ABE the bridges across the Delaware are old and rustic , and can't support the weight of the Trains , even if NJT uses its new Non FRA weight trains, they would also constrict traffic to one track, so they need to replaced. Thats what is holding up the ABE part , but the part to Philpsburg will happen maybe in 6 years?

~Corey
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Old 01-17-2010, 03:31 PM
 
Location: Queens, NY
347 posts, read 542,940 times
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If you simply look at the current Raritan Line timetable, you'll see that the Raritan Line extension will be an absolute failure.....for people who want to commute to New York. It already takes about two hours for a train to go from High Bridge to Newark. In comparison, a Transbridge-Line bus takes only 1-1.5 hours to go from Clinton, NJ (just south of High Bridge) to PABT, and this is with the inevitable heavy traffic it encounters at the Lincoln Tunnel approach.

The problem? There are too many stops on the Raritan Line - stops keep the train's average speed very low. The two-track layout is the culprit here - it prevents any consideration for express service (outside of skip-stop service, perhaps). And if you know anything about the physical track layout, you'll know it's virtually impossible to add that third track to enable express service.

So to recap: permanent local service with no chance for express service + multiple stops + ~80 mile commute = no way in hell a New York commuter will ever consider taking it from the LV.

HOWEVER.... the actual number of LV commuters to New York is actually quite small. A far larger number of LV commuters actually work in western, central, and northern New Jersey. So the Raritan Line extension may actually attract more of these commuters, who have more options to actually reach their jobs from the NJT stops (like buses and other forms of transit). This is as opposed to the Clinton stop for Transbridge, which serves only cars and maybe taxis.

As for NYC commuters - they'd be better served taking either Transbridge or Bieber buses. The Bieber buses, in particular, run non-stop from Hellertown to PABT. If a train were to be built connecting LV and NYC to serve commuters, it would need to be both a high-speed train and have few, if any, stops between the regions. The best hope, IMO, is a high-speed train from Pittsburgh or Harrisburg to NYC, with a stop in the LV area.
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Old 01-18-2010, 05:27 PM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
12,381 posts, read 24,288,721 times
Reputation: 4534
There is plans to extend an Electric line down form Dover to Philpsburg JCT , that would probably have more users then Raritan Valley ext, since it would be Electric it would be faster. but the Raritan Valley line with definitely be extended to LV , the FEDs want to declare it a High Speed Corridor , and then the line would go to Kutztown & Harrisburg and West. But as a far as i heard thats 10-15 years away , The Philpsburg ext is less then 6 years away. Theres also rumors that ABE will get a Light Rail,which would go into Philpsburg and Serve as a Connection to RVL. I know alot super commuters that moved to LV that benefit form one of these planned lines. And in the Rail community alot ppl are saying its only a matter of time before one of these projects happens.

~Corey
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