Caltrain Electrification Delayed to 2024

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jis

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Why does it seem like all the electrification projects in the US have a heck of a problem getting foundations of the poles done in a timely fashion?

The NEC in NJ project finally failed to dig the foundations for more than half the posts that were originally supposed to be installed, and then finally even of the holes they managed to dig, some apparently not quite vertical to boot, they managed to actually install posts in only about two thirds of them. I worry about the competence of outfits that simply can't even dig straight vertical holes into ground. :D
 

AmtrakBlue

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Why does it seem like all the electrification projects in the US have a heck of a problem getting foundations of the poles done in a timely fashion?

The NEC in NJ project finally failed to dig the foundations for more than half the posts that were originally supposed to be installed, and then finally even of the holes they managed to dig, some apparently not quite vertical to boot, they managed to actually install posts in only about two thirds of them. I worry about the competence of outfits that simply can't even dig straight vertical holes into ground. :D
Most, if not all, the foundations for the new poles in the Newark, DE area are ready and waiting for the poles. :)
 

west point

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Do not forget the delays and various other problem getting New Haven - BOS electrified. Didn't the first electric to BOS have to switch tracks several times ? ( 6-8?))
 

George Harris

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When people scream about the cost of the California High Speed Rail system they to remember that stuff like this is counted as part of the CAHSR cost. As to the huge increase in cost, well this is California. Sorry, but this is reality in California. Part if not most of this is due to agitation by such as the residents of Berkley who don't want this horrible dirty eyesore in their neighborhood, not recognizing that without the railroad there would have been no Berkley in the first place.
 

nullptr

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I'm not sure I totally follow, I don't think either CAHSR or Caltrain go through Berkley? In any case, a 14% increase, while not ideal, is pretty mundane as far as transit capital cost overruns are concerned.
 

jis

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I'm not sure I totally follow, I don't think either CAHSR or Caltrain go through Berkley? In any case, a 14% increase, while not ideal, is pretty mundane as far as transit capital cost overruns are concerned.
Maybe he meant to say Stanford and mistyped. Of course Stanford had very intimate connections with SP for obvious reasons, back in the days.
 

MARC Rider

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If the HSR is just going to follow the existing Caltrain route, why should the NIMBYs care? They already have trains passing by, I would expect that electrified trains will be quieter than diesels, and HSR trains aren't going to be making many stops along the way, potentially disgorging hordes of "undesirable" passengers.

As for Berkeley, there seems to be no problem with the route of the Capitol Corridor passing through. Anyway, the train tracks pass through a part of Berkeley where practically nobody lives, and the principal neighbor of the train tracks is Interstate 80. All the hoity-toity yuppies in Berkeley live a good distance from the tracks, and given the topography of the town, there's no way a rail route is going to pass through. But it might be an interesting exercise to upgrade the Capitol Corridor tracks for higher speeds (if not true HSR) and maybe electrify the corridor. But, of course, they would have to buy the tracks from UP before they could do that.
 

west point

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How much of the HSR costs are for roads and bridges that needed work anyway ? How much does CA Highway department pay ?
 

George Harris

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Oops. Yesterday when I said "Berkley", I meant "Stanford". Yes, I know the school is primarily on the other side of the highway from Caltrain, but that does not mean the academics aren't screaming about everything Caltrain does in the Palo Alto area.

By the way, the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board owns the railroad north of San Jose, not Union Pacific. Southern Pacific sold it to them years ago.
 

allanorn

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Get it while it’s hot: Latest CalTrain Update PowerPoint

Looks like the delay is a combination of COVID (not surprised), poles not making it on time, a couple of parts suppliers for the EMUs going bankrupt, utility work, and signals issues.

The signals issues make it sound like someone wasn’t paying attention to RTD’s plight back in 2016, and it’s getting spicy between CalTrain and Balfour Beatty. If a slide is recommending that CalTrain gets rid of Balfour to work directly with the third-party contractor... well, that escalated quickly. 😬
 

jis

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A lot. The state is hanging everything but the kitchen sink into the HSR costs so that it does not appear in the highway department expenses.
The old Christmas Tree decoration syndrome....

I thought those spectacular Pergolas across UP and BNSF were a nice touch at elevating costs too. But those are minor things compared to some of the other decorations.
 

BCL

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If the HSR is just going to follow the existing Caltrain route, why should the NIMBYs care? They already have trains passing by, I would expect that electrified trains will be quieter than diesels, and HSR trains aren't going to be making many stops along the way, potentially disgorging hordes of "undesirable" passengers.

As for Berkeley, there seems to be no problem with the route of the Capitol Corridor passing through. Anyway, the train tracks pass through a part of Berkeley where practically nobody lives, and the principal neighbor of the train tracks is Interstate 80. All the hoity-toity yuppies in Berkeley live a good distance from the tracks, and given the topography of the town, there's no way a rail route is going to pass through. But it might be an interesting exercise to upgrade the Capitol Corridor tracks for higher speeds (if not true HSR) and maybe electrify the corridor. But, of course, they would have to buy the tracks from UP before they could do that.
Things have changed, especially since housing supply is constrained. A lot of the new housing in Berkeley is upscale apartments and condos near the tracks. Fourth and U Apartments is right next to BKY. There's a lot of housing in Emeryville where there used to be industrial space. There are apartments and condos all over on either side of the train tracks in Emeryville now. And tons of apartments around Jack London Square.
 
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