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  #2061  
Old Posted Jan 5, 2018, 11:47 PM
YYCguys YYCguys is offline
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With the route that has been decided upon, when all stages are constructed, what is the proposed length of time from the north terminus to downtown and from downtown to the south terminus, using low floor technology? Would that change with high floor trains (ie: does one train run faster than the other)?
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  #2062  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 1:28 AM
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Originally Posted by YYCguys View Post
With the route that has been decided upon, when all stages are constructed, what is the proposed length of time from the north terminus to downtown and from downtown to the south terminus, using low floor technology? Would that change with high floor trains (ie: does one train run faster than the other)?
In today’s technology, there is essentially no operating difference between low floor and high floor. They are the same size, run the same speed, and both would have no interior steps at all.

The lower floors could potentially mean that the bored tunnels could be a slightly smaller size, which could save some money. Slightly smaller stations will save a bit of money as well.

If the system is not going to be automated, there is essentially no difference between high floor and low floor other than what I’ve already mentioned.

The question still remains: what should the line look like through North Calgary? For the amount of disruption construction as planned is going to cause, the additional disruption of a cut and cover tunnel shouldn’t be the end of the world. Full cut and cover between 20th Ave and 64th Ave will cost a lot, but the vity’s Plans already have grade separations at major intersections (eg McKnight).

It’s almost certainly worth looking at the cost differences between what is currently planned and complete grade separation that would allow for automation. Costs over 30 years that is.

Though the current plan shouldn’t be slow through north Calgary, either. The line has its own dedicated ROW for the whole route, and likely would have full signal priority, like the other lines outside of downtown do. Traffic lanes will be affected, but outside of rush hour, most of that stretch only has one traffic lane even now.

With the tightness of the right of way, if the line remains at grade, the smaller scale low platforms will help the station areas fit into their areas.
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  #2063  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 1:32 AM
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That the line ended up being too expensive and needs to be staged I think is a blessing in disguise, as it will allow us to look more critically at the surface running on Centre St.
I recall reading a number of posts about this section of the line and some alternatives but was there an agreement about the best option? Would it be a continuation of the tunnel to McKnight?

I'm concerned with how LRTontheGreen reported that going just from 16th Av to 96th will cost nearly $2B with the current track configuration, when and if the City will ever have the funds to build a proper NC line.
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  #2064  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 1:52 AM
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I recall reading a number of posts about this section of the line and some alternatives but was there an agreement about the best option? Would it be a continuation of the tunnel to McKnight?

I'm concerned with how LRTontheGreen reported that going just from 16th Av to 96th will cost nearly $2B with the current track configuration, when and if the City will ever have the funds to build a proper NC line.
$2B sounds way too high unless they're also building storage facilities and including that in the costs.
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  #2065  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 1:55 AM
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$2B sounds way too high unless they're also building storage facilities and including that in the costs.
I've haven't watched the council meeting video to confirm the number but the $2B is from this tweet:

https://twitter.com/LRTontheGreen/st...47162858766336
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  #2066  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 4:16 AM
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Originally Posted by accord1999 View Post
I recall reading a number of posts about this section of the line and some alternatives but was there an agreement about the best option? Would it be a continuation of the tunnel to McKnight?

I'm concerned with how LRTontheGreen reported that going just from 16th Av to 96th will cost nearly $2B with the current track configuration, when and if the City will ever have the funds to build a proper NC line.
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Originally Posted by accord1999 View Post
I've haven't watched the council meeting video to confirm the number but the $2B is from this tweet:

https://twitter.com/LRTontheGreen/st...47162858766336
I find anything that Sean Chu is within 20 feet of is hard to take seriously, but in fairness 5km of tunneling will not be cheap (I think you'd only need to tunnel to 64th, after that there is ROW). But I'd rather we waited to figure out a proper solution to this than cheap out and ruin the whole line.
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  #2067  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 4:59 AM
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Seems to me the delegation went to Seattle, Portland and Vancouver with their minds already made. Something they have to consider (and clearly have not) is that transit ridership in Canada is much higher than the US, so these tramways that work in Portland will not have the necessary capacity for Calgary.

Ottawa did the same thing, with the mayor and a few councilors visiting a few cities to compare systems and again, they already knew what they wanted to do here, so it wasn't much more than a series of free trip on the tax payers dime.

Based on the video, it seems they only considered Vancouver's Canada Line, not the whole Skytrain System. Seems like their methodology was pretty flawed.

I agree that elevated guideways can be an eyesore if not done correctly (Vancouver's hit or miss, mostly wide structures with huge pillars, while the Sunalta section in Calgary is as good as it gets with a narrower guideway and slim pillars).

The way I see it though, if you're going to build light rail on the street, having to stop at red lights and letting people cross the tracks, might as well build BRT. Pretty much the same capacity, but for much cheaper and offers more flexibility in case of an accident along the corridor.

I think Ottawa is doing it right (and that's a rare thing). We are using low floor lrt for maximum flexibility*. It allows us to build at grade where possible, but still fully grade separated. The system is built to rapid transit standards, with platforms at 90 meters surface, 120 underground, expandable to 150 meters, capacity ranging from 18,000 to a full build out of 24,000. The system is automated, but with a driver in case of emergency (one day, it could be fully automated like Vancouver).

One problem with a low floor system is that it makes it easier for people to walk on the rail right of way, either to cross the street, cross the station or maybe even accidentally stepping down form the curb/platform. Ottawa mitigated this two ways; 1. all stations have a barrier between the two tracks and 2. Tracks are not embedded in the concrete, but set on top of the bed, which makes for a 2-3 foot drop to the rail bed, so not as intimidating or dangerous as rapid transit, but high enough to deter people from stepping down on the tracks.

*Full disclosure, they chose low floor lrt in order to run the trains on the Ottawa River Parkway (now the John A. Macdonald Parkway). This is currently the bus route (temporary solution 35 years in), about 3 kilometers with no stations, bypassing some of the densest areas in Ottawa. With the new train line, 2 stations would have been added, but they would have been a long, cold hike away from development. Luckily, logic prevailed in the form of the National Capital Commission, a Federal Government body that owns the Parkway, forcing the City to come up with a different route. The City had a long, multi year debate similar to Calgary's with Centre Street (Carling Avenue vs. Richmond Road, surface, elevated or underground). Ottawa came up with what I was rooting for since years before, the Richmond Underground where the two stations could actually be integrated with the community. This link shows roughly what we're ending up with (a few modifications have been done since). The Sir John A. Parkway is the winding road on the north end of the diagram.
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  #2068  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 6:45 AM
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
I find anything that Sean Chu is within 20 feet of is hard to take seriously, but in fairness 5km of tunneling will not be cheap (I think you'd only need to tunnel to 64th, after that there is ROW). But I'd rather we waited to figure out a proper solution to this than cheap out and ruin the whole line.
To be fair to Chu, that was him asking the question and the City Admin answering with $1.97B. A CBC reporter also tweeted the same number, plus added a value $390 million to go to North Pointe (which seems expensive for only about 2.5 km of track in a LRT-ready area plus station). Though, the City Admin hasn't exactly been accurate in its cost estimates.

https://twitter.com/CBCScott/status/864246865944088576

Add in a tunnel for the narrow part of Centre St and we're looking at $3B for a good NC line with a reasonable terminus, plus the cost to reach the populated communities for the deep SE. My concern is with such a cost, and given how long it took the city to assemble the original funding and other infrastructure needs is that the NC line won't be built for another generation.
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  #2069  
Old Posted Jan 6, 2018, 10:59 PM
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I agree. Druh might be thinking of the urban fabric, but she's not thinking of the big picture and as usual only cares about one small part of the city. The whole green line end to end would be far better served by the existing train cars. The low floor thing is just an artsy fartsy fad.
Since when are Mods supposed to push their politics on other members?
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  #2070  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 12:19 AM
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Since when are Mods supposed to push their politics on other members?
Snowflake alert in aisle 3
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  #2071  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 2:49 AM
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Since when are Mods supposed to push their politics on other members?
There is no reason why mods can’t be in the discussion with their own opinions and no reason why they need to be like the rest of the sheep who follow Farrell or one of the other flakes in council.
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  #2072  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 4:15 AM
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There is no reason why mods can’t be in the discussion with their own opinions and no reason why they need to be like the rest of the sheep who follow Farrell or one of the other flakes in council.
Well said. And it's not like mods haven't always been involved in discussions.
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  #2073  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 4:59 AM
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Originally Posted by accord1999 View Post
To be fair to Chu, that was him asking the question and the City Admin answering with $1.97B. A CBC reporter also tweeted the same number, plus added a value $390 million to go to North Pointe (which seems expensive for only about 2.5 km of track in a LRT-ready area plus station). Though, the City Admin hasn't exactly been accurate in its cost estimates.

https://twitter.com/CBCScott/status/864246865944088576

Add in a tunnel for the narrow part of Centre St and we're looking at $3B for a good NC line with a reasonable terminus, plus the cost to reach the populated communities for the deep SE. My concern is with such a cost, and given how long it took the city to assemble the original funding and other infrastructure needs is that the NC line won't be built for another generation.
I think tunneling would only have to go to 64th. After that there is a wider ROW, probably for this purpose, except inexplicably just before Beddington Trail where they have not left any room. And then it's plain sailing further north.
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  #2074  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 5:05 AM
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Originally Posted by J.OT13 View Post
Seems to me the delegation went to Seattle, Portland and Vancouver with their minds already made. Something they have to consider (and clearly have not) is that transit ridership in Canada is much higher than the US, so these tramways that work in Portland will not have the necessary capacity for Calgary.

Ottawa did the same thing, with the mayor and a few councilors visiting a few cities to compare systems and again, they already knew what they wanted to do here, so it wasn't much more than a series of free trip on the tax payers dime.

Based on the video, it seems they only considered Vancouver's Canada Line, not the whole Skytrain System. Seems like their methodology was pretty flawed.

I agree that elevated guideways can be an eyesore if not done correctly (Vancouver's hit or miss, mostly wide structures with huge pillars, while the Sunalta section in Calgary is as good as it gets with a narrower guideway and slim pillars).

The way I see it though, if you're going to build light rail on the street, having to stop at red lights and letting people cross the tracks, might as well build BRT. Pretty much the same capacity, but for much cheaper and offers more flexibility in case of an accident along the corridor.

I think Ottawa is doing it right (and that's a rare thing). We are using low floor lrt for maximum flexibility*. It allows us to build at grade where possible, but still fully grade separated. The system is built to rapid transit standards, with platforms at 90 meters surface, 120 underground, expandable to 150 meters, capacity ranging from 18,000 to a full build out of 24,000. The system is automated, but with a driver in case of emergency (one day, it could be fully automated like Vancouver).

One problem with a low floor system is that it makes it easier for people to walk on the rail right of way, either to cross the street, cross the station or maybe even accidentally stepping down form the curb/platform. Ottawa mitigated this two ways; 1. all stations have a barrier between the two tracks and 2. Tracks are not embedded in the concrete, but set on top of the bed, which makes for a 2-3 foot drop to the rail bed, so not as intimidating or dangerous as rapid transit, but high enough to deter people from stepping down on the tracks.

*Full disclosure, they chose low floor lrt in order to run the trains on the Ottawa River Parkway (now the John A. Macdonald Parkway). This is currently the bus route (temporary solution 35 years in), about 3 kilometers with no stations, bypassing some of the densest areas in Ottawa. With the new train line, 2 stations would have been added, but they would have been a long, cold hike away from development. Luckily, logic prevailed in the form of the National Capital Commission, a Federal Government body that owns the Parkway, forcing the City to come up with a different route. The City had a long, multi year debate similar to Calgary's with Centre Street (Carling Avenue vs. Richmond Road, surface, elevated or underground). Ottawa came up with what I was rooting for since years before, the Richmond Underground where the two stations could actually be integrated with the community. This link shows roughly what we're ending up with (a few modifications have been done since). The Sir John A. Parkway is the winding road on the north end of the diagram.
Ottawa has similarly chosen low floor some what arbitrarily. Granted it does give more flexibility in the future, but there does not seem to be any plans to have street running in Ottawa, so the point of low floor is...? The Confederation Line is completely grade separated, so all low floor does is reduce the in car space, and as you say it encourages people to walk on the tracks.

Is the Confederation Line going to be automated? It should be.
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  #2075  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 5:25 AM
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Ottawa has similarly chosen low floor some what arbitrarily. Granted it does give more flexibility in the future, but there does not seem to be any plans to have street running in Ottawa, so the point of low floor is...? The Confederation Line is completely grade separated, so all low floor does is reduce the in car space, and as you say it encourages people to walk on the tracks.

Is the Confederation Line going to be automated? It should be.
for future phases, maybe once you reach the farthest suburbs, you don't need a fully grade separated right of way. The stations could be less ''big'' and less costly.
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  #2076  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 5:49 AM
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
I think tunneling would only have to go to 64th. After that there is a wider ROW, probably for this purpose, except inexplicably just before Beddington Trail where they have not left any room. And then it's plain sailing further north.
I never really thought about that part of Centre St. They just going to run up the gut there and through the bus trap or what? I remember back in the day when they closed that part off for through traffic, added a bit of time to our drive from Airdrie to Co-op for groceries.
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  #2077  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 6:37 AM
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Ottawa has similarly chosen low floor some what arbitrarily. Granted it does give more flexibility in the future, but there does not seem to be any plans to have street running in Ottawa, so the point of low floor is...? The Confederation Line is completely grade separated, so all low floor does is reduce the in car space, and as you say it encourages people to walk on the tracks.

Is the Confederation Line going to be automated? It should be.

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Originally Posted by GreaterMontréal View Post
for future phases, maybe once you reach the farthest suburbs, you don't need a fully grade separated right of way. The stations could be less ''big'' and less costly.
The City has publicized the route plans for Kanata and Stittville (the final stretch, which will be to the west) and the line is once again fully grade separated thanks to elevated and below ground section so it will be fully grade separated from end to end.

The Confederation Line is automated however, a driver will still be needed (at least for now) in order to press a button every few seconds (sort of like a dead man switch) and react to any sort of unforeseen circumstance.

Yes, low floor means less space for standing room, but more seats, and since the line is essentially an overbuilt commuter rail to get suburbanites to downtown, it makes sense. That said, capacity is still more than enough for decades to come.

Since the Confederation Line tracks are installed over the track bed, it means their will be a two or three foot drop between the platform and track level, so no one will be walking over. Plus, barriers will be placed between tracks at every station.

Why low floor then; although the original reasoning, running at grade with mixed traffic in certain areas, will never materialize, I still feel that it offers cheaper alternatives in terms of infrastructure and flexibility (lower height required in tunnels and under overpasses, for example) than heavy rail and high floor lrt.
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  #2078  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 8:38 AM
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I think tunneling would only have to go to 64th. After that there is a wider ROW, probably for this purpose, except inexplicably just before Beddington Trail where they have not left any room. And then it's plain sailing further north.
Sorry if I was unclear, I meant that section below 64th when I said the narrow section. But now that you mention it, the part between Beddington Drive and Trail is as narrow or worse than anything on lower Centre St. The alignment document doesn't go into details about about the track there, so I guess no more street parking on that section?
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  #2079  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 8:44 AM
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I never really thought about that part of Centre St. They just going to run up the gut there and through the bus trap or what?

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  #2080  
Old Posted Jan 7, 2018, 9:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Rollerstud98 View Post
I never really thought about that part of Centre St. They just going to run up the gut there and through the bus trap or what? I remember back in the day when they closed that part off for through traffic, added a bit of time to our drive from Airdrie to Co-op for groceries.
That stupid bus trap always bugs me.
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