The MTA revealed its $37 billion plan to save NYC’s crumbling subway system —but there’s one big problem

Yes we need changes badly

Penney Vanderbilt and KC Jones: All About Railroads

Business Insider

New York City’s subway system has become overcrowded and unreliable.
Mario Tama/Getty
  • New York City Transit Authority president Andy Byford unveiled a plan to repair and modernize the New York City subway system on Wednesday.
  • The plan, called “Fast Forward,” would replace an antiquated signal system, redesign the way passengers pay fares, increase the number of subway cars, and install elevators at stations.
  • According to the New York Daily News, the plan would cost $37 billion.
  • It would require stations to close on nights and weekends for up to 2.5 years, though it would not close lines during weekdays while improvements are made.

New York City Transit Authority president Andy Byford unveiled a plan to repair and modernize the New York City subway system on Wednesday.

The plan, called “Fast Forward,” would replace an antiquated signal system, redesign the way passengers pay fares, increase the…

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General Electric’s power unit fights for growth as wind, solar gain

Yes, traditional power is changing FAST.

Penney Vanderbilt and KC Jones: All About Railroads

Reuters

Vistra Energy Corp and Dominion Energy Inc — which serve about 5.5 million electricity customers in more than a dozen US states — both say they are done building combined-cycle natural gas-fired power plants.

Instead, they are building large solar plants, which offer plentiful and inexpensive electricity.

This bearish view of fossil-fuel energy, reflective of a growing acceptance by utilities of renewable power sources, poses a hurdle to John Flannery’s plan to turn around General Electric Co’s US$35 billion-a-year power unit.

With electricity prices trending downward, utilities are increasingly unwilling to risk capital on a new plant unless then can lock in a long-term price, executives said.

“Building new large, combined-cycle gas plants is challenging without the stability of a long-term power contract,” said Timothy Menzie, chief executive officer of InterGen, an international power generation company.

POWER PLAYER

GE faces a further challenge: long-term erosion of the large base…

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Brightline trains begin service to and from Miami

Penney Vanderbilt and KC Jones: All About Railroads

Toledo Blade

Southeast Florida’s unique Brightline passenger-train service began operations to and from Miami last weekend with sold-out trains, but a timetable for starting work on a new phase between West Palm Beach and Orlando has yet to be announced.

“We had more than 8,000 guests in our station and on-board our trains,” Ali Soule, a spokesman for the privately owned and operated passenger line, said Thursday.

Brightline expects extension of service to Miami to substantially boost the usefulness of its trains, which for the first four months of operation ran only between Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.

Related: Could Ohio replicate Florida’s high-speed rail system? 

The extended service has an 80-minute scheduled travel time between Miami and West Palm Beach, including a three-minute stop in Fort Lauderdale, with eight train trips per day in each direction.

Brightline, operating on tracks belonging to the Florida East Coast Railway, is…

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Website ready with full info on Hartford Line

BERLIN – A full buildout of the website for the upcoming CTrail Hartford Line passenger rail service is now live.

Accessible at hartfordline.com, the website provides future riders with information on the service’s launch on June 16.

“Our enhanced Hartford Line website offers quick and easy navigation to trip planning, station information, schedules and fares,” stated state Transportation Commissioner James Redeker in a release. “It also offers wide-ranging information about easy-to-reach destinations from the Hartford Line.”

When service begins, 17 trains will run between New Haven and Hartford, with 12 of them continuing on to Springfield, Mass., up from six trains previously run solely by Amtrak.

Amtrak trains and trains specifically designated for the Hartford Line will travel up to 110 mph. A trip from New Haven to Springfield will take 81 minutes.

Service will be free on June 16 and June 17, with full weekday service starting June 18.

Parking will also be free through Sept. 4, and then $2 daily or $20 monthly, free on weekends and federal holidays. The Berlin station will have parking for 220 vehicles when complete.

The $769.1 million project using federal and state funding built new stations in Wallingford, Meriden and Berlin to go along with New Haven Union Station, New Haven State Street Station, Hartford Union Station, Windsor, Windsor Locks and Springfield Union Station.

Future stations are expected in North Haven, Newington, West Hartford and Enfield.

The entire southbound and a portion of the northbound platform of the Berlin station will be complete when service begins, with the whole northbound platform expected to be done by fall, DOT representative Judd Everhart has said. The rest of the passenger bridge, which houses ticket machines and an elevator, is complete.

The station was supposed to accompany a over-100-year-old train station before that building burned at the end of 2016.

Fire officials called the cause “undetermined” after months of investigation, partially held up by insurance claim battles with the DOT.

Development of a mixed-use residential and retail building is in the works for the land adjacent to the train station.

The Berlin Historical Society has been pushing for a rebuild of the station and use of remaining renovation and insurance funds for the project, but DOT officials have said those funds have been directed toward the renovation and cleanup of the site.

The DOT has said it is willing to cooperate with the historical society and the town on any future ideas for the land.

For more information, visit hartfordline.com or follow Hartford Line on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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