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It seems pretty pointless to be debating whether mainline freight service should be electrified when we still have decades worth of construction to do on passenger electrification that clearly has a stronger business case.

We don't even have plans to electrify the Ottawa Trillium Line or Airport line, which are both short high-frequency services with close stop spacing. If we want the governments to push electrification, surely they should start with these lines that they already own before they start messing around with private freight companies.
 
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Electrifying rail would allow for more trips and reduced operating costs
It would not allow for more trips. I work for CN and I can tell you that with 100% certainty. But go ahead, and prove me wrong. Why would electrifying the freight line allow for more trips? Do you understand Precision Schedule Railroading?
 
mystery solved: the reason GO Bowmanville is out of scope for electrification is a Metrolinx failure to adopt a sufficiently steely glare when negotiating with CP.

I mean, I hope this is right because if Metrolinx actually adopt this obvious approach, we get also better/electric GO Milton, plus GO Bolton and GO Midtown.


1700268749378.png
 
mystery solved: the reason GO Bowmanville is out of scope for electrification is a Metrolinx failure to adopt a sufficiently steely glare when negotiating with CP.

I mean, I hope this is right because if Metrolinx actually adopt this obvious approach, we get also better/electric GO Milton, plus GO Bolton and GO Midtown.


View attachment 521035

Their Figure 14:

1700318410981.png


I wonder if CN will insist on a fence between their tracks and the subway tracks, similar to what we see between the subway tracks near Kipling and CPKC.

Their Figure 15 is from Waterloo:

1700317764504.png

I've heard that CN and CPKC's issue with electrification and their tracks isn't so much about wires above freight trains, it's the requirement that crews who work on these tracks need special training and this adds costs and time. It's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison for the Waterloo example because that's a small branchline and not a mainline which is what the CPKC mainline is. They want to ensure that there is no disurption or added complication to their key mainline.

For the Waterloo example given, the tracks don't appear to be owned by CN. Wouldn't it be safe to assume that Waterloo is responsible for the maintaince and the crews?

1700318373883.png


I'm not saying I fully agree with these arguments CPKC making rather just that it's not as easy as suggesting a more aggressive attitude will solve this. cc @smallspy @crs1026
 
I've heard that CN and CPKC's issue with electrification and their tracks isn't so much about wires above freight trains, it's the requirement that crews who work on these tracks need special training and this adds costs and time. It's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison for the Waterloo example because that's a small branchline and not a mainline which is what the CPKC mainline is. They want to ensure that there is no disurption or added complication to their key mainline.

For the Waterloo example given, the tracks don't appear to be owned by CN. Wouldn't it be safe to assume that Waterloo is responsible for the maintaince and the crews?

The Region of Waterloo owns the Waterloo Spur. CN performs maintenance under contract to ROW. CN has trackage rights for freight, and staffs and operates the roadswitcher that runs to Elmira. I believe Keolis and not CN does the maintenance in the LRT zone (I may be wrong on that one)

CN's use of the line is limited to nighttime hours when the LRT is not operating. There is a strict curfew such that CN has to have its train return through the LRT zone and back to Kitchener before the LRT opens. CN serves a couple of customers directly, but one major customer is switched by Waterloo Central Railway because that switching is too time consuming for the roadswitcher to complete before it has to head back to Kitchener. CN is simply hook-and-haul for that customer. CN crews for that one train require special training for the Keolis zone. The point being - CN's ability to operate is significantly constrained, luckily they only need to operate one train a few days a week.

I'm not saying I fully agree with these arguments CPKC making rather just that it's not as easy as suggesting a more aggressive attitude will solve this. cc @smallspy @crs1026

Exactly. There are incentives and disincentives for the host railways that are meaningful. Forcing an unwilling railway into this kind of complex proposition will have consequences - for every action there is a reaction. One has to find a solution that gives maximum incentive and mitigates the disincentives. Only when that is done can one maybe add some pressure.

There are very significant differences in the operating format between the Waterloo Spur and what GO would need on the mainlines. Voltage being one of the items. I don't pretend to understand the railways' exact concerns, but in aggregate it is indeed a headache they just don't need. The fact that it is done in Waterloo does not necessarily set precedent for the main lines.

- Paul
 
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Their Figure 14:

View attachment 521119

I wonder if CN will insist on a fence between their tracks and the subway tracks, similar to what we see between the subway tracks near Kipling and CPKC.

Their Figure 15 is from Waterloo:

View attachment 521115
I've heard that CN and CPKC's issue with electrification and their tracks isn't so much about wires above freight trains, it's the requirement that crews who work on these tracks need special training and this adds costs and time. It's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison for the Waterloo example because that's a small branchline and not a mainline which is what the CPKC mainline is. They want to ensure that there is no disurption or added complication to their key mainline.

For the Waterloo example given, the tracks don't appear to be owned by CN. Wouldn't it be safe to assume that Waterloo is responsible for the maintaince and the crews?

View attachment 521118

I'm not saying I fully agree with these arguments CPKC making rather just that it's not as easy as suggesting a more aggressive attitude will solve this. cc @smallspy @crs1026
As far as I know, there are no double stack car using Waterloo line with ION line. CN only moves at night after ION shuts down. Have heard CN working north of the ION line during the day.
 
Also significant that the Waterloo Spur ops actually de energize the overhead while CN is active.

We really do need to find a way to make the Class 1s live with electrification but there’s going to be more to it than getting aggressive in negotiations.
It seem to work well on the NEC corridor and a good example that it can be use else where like the GTA. Don't recall seeing double stacks in the corridor, but the new tunnels are being built for them as the ones being rebuilt.
 
As far as I know, there are no double stack car using Waterloo line with ION line. CN only moves at night after ION shuts down. Have heard CN working north of the ION line during the day.
If GM will need autorack movements, presumably that increases the degree of difficulty even further
 
If GM will need autorack movements, presumably that increases the degree of difficulty even further
As far as I know, autoracks are not required on ION line. They are required off the Kitchener line that has no overhead. If they are require on ION lines, the OS needs to be raise. Autoracks have the same issue as double stacks.

The other fear that RR's have with the OS, is having the OS line break and fall on to the one or more tracks forcing all train movements to be halted until the line is remove and reinstalled.
 
Also significant that the Waterloo Spur ops actually de energize the overhead while CN is active.

We really do need to find a way to make the Class 1s live with electrification but there’s going to be more to it than getting aggressive in negotiations.
My mental image of what this looks like is a mutual corridor upgrade where the freights stand to benefit to such a degree, at least in an initial project, that they can’t say no. Something to the effect of “well build the missing link for both of you (CN & CP), but it’s gonna be electrified for GO use. Take it or leave it”. I find the class 1s aversion to electrification to make sense from their own POV; it’s their tracks, and they don’t want or need to mess with wires. It needs to be more than negligible in the beginning. Maybe this takes the form of a unified agreement or a new agency/reformed Mx to smooth all track in the region out.
 
My mental image of what this looks like is a mutual corridor upgrade where the freights stand to benefit to such a degree, at least in an initial project, that they can’t say no. Something to the effect of “well build the missing link for both of you (CN & CP), but it’s gonna be electrified for GO use. Take it or leave it”. I find the class 1s aversion to electrification to make sense from their own POV; it’s their tracks, and they don’t want or need to mess with wires. It needs to be more than negligible in the beginning. Maybe this takes the form of a unified agreement or a new agency/reformed Mx to smooth all track in the region out.
To the extent that electrification redirects freight out of area, it increases the impact of diesel freight service to the areas it is relocated to. This is a very different situation to Lac Megantic for example - there are lots of people living in Brampton, Vaughan, Richmond Hill and Markham - ridings that are very much in play between government parties - who can easily state a case that CP running along CN York is an increase in activity far beyond what can be reasonably expected. In any case, the Missing Link, built or unbuilt, does not impact CP’s plans to serve GM and their other customers on the Oshawa-Bowmanville section of the Belleville Sub
 
As far as I know, there are no double stack car using Waterloo line with ION line. CN only moves at night after ION shuts down. Have heard CN working north of the ION line during the day.

There are high-wide detectors at both ends of the LRT that ensure nothing oversize goes up the line.

Don't know what the exact clearance is, but I do know that they have triggered for foreign-road locomotives with certain appliances up top, So it's fairly restrictive.

CN track patrols and maintenance crews do work on the line during the day, but Waterloo Central has exclusive use of the line from about 06:00 to 22:30. The only CN daytime movements north of Waterloo that I am aware of were trains that broke down, or were unable to get back before the curfew and had to tie down until the following evening.

- Paul
 
My mental image of what this looks like is a mutual corridor upgrade where the freights stand to benefit to such a degree, at least in an initial project, that they can’t say no. Something to the effect of “well build the missing link for both of you (CN & CP), but it’s gonna be electrified for GO use. Take it or leave it”. I find the class 1s aversion to electrification to make sense from their own POV; it’s their tracks, and they don’t want or need to mess with wires. It needs to be more than negligible in the beginning. Maybe this takes the form of a unified agreement or a new agency/reformed Mx to smooth all track in the region out.
Honestly, I think there's going to have to be some element of legislative compulsion, and some kind of subsidy for joint operation areas.
 
The only CN daytime movements north of Waterloo that I am aware of were trains that broke down, or were unable to get back before the curfew and had to tie down until the following evening.

I recall reading on the Waterloo Region Connected forums where a freight went through earlier in the evening, with ION service halted for about 15 minutes or so while the relevant section was de-energized. This was back when ION's radio was rebroadcast on the internet by cykf dot net, somebody overheard it and reported it on WRC. Unfortunately their search function's too primitive for me to find and link to that post now.

In any case, it was a very rare (one-off?) event which disrupted the ION service, so a total non-starter as a model for Lakeshore east.
 

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