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Author Topic: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?  (Read 2055 times)

ixnay

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #25 on: December 28, 2019, 09:39:48 AM »

[T]he seaport facilities in the [NYC] region are all located west of the Hudson.

I didn't know Brooklyn was in the Garden State...

https://www.panynj.gov/port/en/our-port/container-terminals.html

http://redhookterminals.com/

https://tinyurl.com/seblojp

Although admittedly the Red Hook terminal looks minor compared to Newark and Elizabeth.

ixnay
« Last Edit: December 28, 2019, 11:23:21 PM by ixnay »
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roadman

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2019, 04:54:31 PM »

Quote
And since trucks aren't allowed in tunnels in general

Trucks carrying hazardous materials may be prohibited from most tunnels.  But, provided they don't exceed the maximum clearance, other trucks are generally allowed in highway tunnels - especially if the highway is part of the Interstate system.

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cl94

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2019, 05:27:18 PM »

[T]he seaport facilities in the [NYC] region are all located west of the Hudson.

I didn't know Brooklyn was in the Garden State...

https://www.panynj.gov/port/en/our-port/container-terminals.html

http://redhookterminals.com/

https://tinyurl.com/seblojp

Although admittedly the Red Hook terminal looks minor compared to Newark and Elizabeth.

ixnay

Let's rephrase that: the vast majority of port capacity in the region is on the NJ side and most of the New York capacity is near the Goethals Bridge. Either way, it's a PITA to get stuff from there to the east side of the Hudson.

Quote from: cpzilliacus
I suppose the lack of freight train capacity across the Hudson near New York City might have been due to the New York Central wanting a de-facto monopoly on freight train service to the city and maybe to Long Island too? impressive.

Not really. A lot of it was due to cost. Historically, the means by which freight rail traffic crossed the river was via barges. Some war freight traffic went through Penn Station, but there was quite a robust rail barge operation (that still exists, albeit much smaller). The closest freight crossing was in Poughkeepsie.

I should note that there have been proposals for a cross-harbor freight rail tunnel (or at least a tunnel to Staten Island, which has a bridge to New Jersey) since the 1890s. Most proposals are similar in length to or slightly longer than the UK's Severn Tunnel.
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Duke87

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #28 on: December 30, 2019, 11:02:06 PM »

Quote from: cpzilliacus
I suppose the lack of freight train capacity across the Hudson near New York City might have been due to the New York Central wanting a de-facto monopoly on freight train service to the city and maybe to Long Island too? impressive.

Not really. A lot of it was due to cost. Historically, the means by which freight rail traffic crossed the river was via barges. Some war freight traffic went through Penn Station, but there was quite a robust rail barge operation (that still exists, albeit much smaller). The closest freight crossing was in Poughkeepsie.

I should note that there have been proposals for a cross-harbor freight rail tunnel (or at least a tunnel to Staten Island, which has a bridge to New Jersey) since the 1890s. Most proposals are similar in length to or slightly longer than the UK's Severn Tunnel.

It's also worth noting that in the heyday of railroads, there were seaport facilities all up and down the Hudson River waterfront on the west side of Manhatan - so there was not nearly the need then for freight to cross the river.

With the advent of shipping containers, the need for bigger cranes and more storage space on the docks caused these seaport facilities to shut down out of functional obsolescence, and the newer, bigger seaport facilities were built mostly in New Jersey. But by this point it was the postwar era and railroads were going bankrupt left and right, so the role of getting freight across the river fell upon trucks, which at the time would have been seen as the way of the future.
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PHLBOS

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #29 on: January 02, 2020, 12:10:29 PM »

Quote from: cl94
Congestion pricing on freeways gets into interstate commerce issues if there is no legal free alternative for truckers.

Rhode Island's successful tolling of trucks on I-95 in their state suggests otherwise.  Federal legislation on Interstate tolling also expressly allows tolls on Interstate bridges and tunnels.

I indeed thought of RI, but a key caveat there is that there is nothing preventing trucks from shunpiking along local roads. For I-95, for example, there's no ban on trucks from using parallel RI 5. In NYC, there is no legal alternative for trucks - they're forced to use expressways unless they're making a local delivery. Thus, any and all trucks bound to Long Island are forced to use the expressway network.

Bridges are another case which I was not referring to, though we could pull a Rhode Island and say that every bridge along the CBX can be tolled.

Re: RI, there are still active court cases on the topic and the federal courts recently ruled against the state, so that saga may not be over.
It is my understanding that the truck tolls in RI are static; i.e., the same rate regardless of the time of day/night a truck uses said-facility.  In contrast, congestion pricing is variable depending on the time of day/night and/or traffic loads.

That said, truck-only tolls and congestion pricing are not the same thing; unless the latter was built into the former when approved.  Both have distinct, separate issues as well; so comparing the two would be of an apples-to-oranges variety.
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D-Dey65

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #30 on: January 14, 2020, 11:52:05 PM »

It's also worth noting that in the heyday of railroads, there were seaport facilities all up and down the Hudson River waterfront on the west side of Manhatan - so there was not nearly the need then for freight to cross the river.
They even had them along the Harlem and East Rivers.
http://members.trainweb.com/bedt/indloco/floatbridgemasterlist.html#Bronx

http://members.trainweb.com/bedt/indloco/lvbxt.html

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woodpusher

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #31 on: January 15, 2020, 07:35:58 AM »

Today the Cross Bronx is a traffic nightmare. How would you reasonable fix it (If you even can)?

There's a couple of green spaces along it - put in a full service gas station/repair shop right alongside the highway. 

Back when I was in college, a few buddies and I took a road trip from Michigan to NYC.  They told me, "When we get to New York, there's going to be a broken down car on the side of the Cross Bronx Expressway.  Sure enough, there was.
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abqtraveler

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #32 on: January 15, 2020, 09:55:34 AM »

Today the Cross Bronx is a traffic nightmare. How would you reasonable fix it (If you even can)?

There's a couple of green spaces along it - put in a full service gas station/repair shop right alongside the highway. 

Back when I was in college, a few buddies and I took a road trip from Michigan to NYC.  They told me, "When we get to New York, there's going to be a broken down car on the side of the Cross Bronx Expressway.  Sure enough, there was.

Do the "Big Dig" New York-style and place a widened Cross Bronx in tunnels beneath its present alingment, and then convert the exsiting roadway into a landscaped boulevard with some open park space. To help finance construction of the tunnels, I would seek FHWA approval to electronically toll the Cross Bronx Expressway after the tunnels open to traffic.

It worked in Boston, so why can't it work in the Bronx?
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The Ghostbuster

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #33 on: January 16, 2020, 04:11:03 PM »

I know I've said this before, but I doubt we'll see any more "Big-Dig-like" projects or deep-bored tunnels built in the United States. The reasons why I believe this are as follows: Tunnels are expensive; tunnels have proven to be able to bring out just as many NIMBYs as a surface route would (case in point: the now-canceled 710 tunnel in the Los Angeles area); the "Big-Dig" and the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement tunnel ran into numerous problems constructing the tunnels (leaks, substandard materials, inadequate guardrails, faulty lighting and the roof collapse with the Big-Dig; a delay in the drilling of the tunnel due to malfunctions with the drilling machine with the AWV replacement tunnel; tunnel projects taking longer and being more expensive than anticipated (although tunnels are far from the only type of transportation project that can suffer from such problems); obstacles in the way of construction; technological deficiencies in constructing certain tunnels; are just a few of the problems that constructing urban tunnels can face.

Don't get me wrong. I think more "big-dig-like" tunnels should be constructed in the United States, especially in a city as congested as New York City. They've built tunnels in places where a surface route would be impossible overseas, but the United States' history with tunnel building has not been stellar. That is why I believe few new "big-dig-like" tunnels will be constructed anytime soon in the United States, even though I strongly believe more projects like the "big-dig" should be built.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #34 on: January 16, 2020, 06:18:56 PM »

I'd keep it, rebuild it as is providing some various improvements to increase neighborhood connectivity and making the freeway as visually placing as possible, and build a new series of underground tunnels for longer distance and through traffic that is tolled. Trucks need to be allowed in tunnels though.

There need to be improvements to other facilities and systems as well. Given NYC's traffic problem improving one freeway won't solve anything. Unfortunately a massive infrastructure bill is needed to make this a remote possibility. Even with infrastructure reform that could theoretically make building infrastructure cheaper by removing regulatory red tape road blocks I suspect improving the NE traffic situation will take over half a trillion dollars.
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RobbieL2415

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #35 on: January 20, 2020, 11:58:02 PM »

A tunnel as far north as the GWB would be an engineering miracle, considering you have the Palisade hills in the way.

My fictional take:

- Send I-95 down a beefed-up Cross County Pkwy.
- Build new I-95 capped just north of downtown Yonkers.
- Build new Hudson crossing.
- Connect said crossing either to an upgraded Palisades Pkwy. or new western bypass.
- I-95 rejoins in Fort Lee.
- I-80 takes over former I-95 to the new split.

Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels
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froggie

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #36 on: January 22, 2020, 02:40:53 PM »

Quote from: RobbieL2415
Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels

Not just Penn Station.  Most of the corridor south of West 125th is in tunnel except for a few blocks in the 30s.  I would also hazard a bet that there are legal/pollution reasons why the 3rd rail is required south of Poughkeepsie.
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Hwy 61 Revisited

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #37 on: January 22, 2020, 02:49:09 PM »

- I-80 takes over former I-95 to the new split.

Maybe extend 80 along the Cross-Bronx/Throgs Neck the Grand Central Parkway/NY 24/NY 25? I do think Interstate 80 should go through a city larger than Reno. Or maybe designate the section between 495 and the GCP as an extension of NY 25 (or renumber it to NY 80, I don't care).
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RobbieL2415

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #38 on: January 22, 2020, 03:51:55 PM »

Quote from: RobbieL2415
Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels

Not just Penn Station.  Most of the corridor south of West 125th is in tunnel except for a few blocks in the 30s.  I would also hazard a bet that there are legal/pollution reasons why the 3rd rail is required south of Poughkeepsie.
IIRC the engines for the Lake Shore Limited and Montrealer are dual-mode.

Doesn't really matter if there's a 3rd rail, the diesel engines just won't make contact with it.
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The Ghostbuster

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #39 on: January 22, 2020, 06:21:03 PM »

There are a million ways to fix the CBE, at least fictionally. In reality, there probably isn't any way to fix the CBE, without destroying the Bronx. That's probably an exaggeration, but I think any proposal to improve the CBE would be seen that way by locals.
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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #40 on: January 22, 2020, 07:16:00 PM »

There are a million ways to fix the CBE, at least fictionally. In reality, there probably isn't any way to fix the CBE, without destroying the Bronx. That's probably an exaggeration, but I think any proposal to improve the CBE would be seen that way by locals.

Make it a boulevard? A slower highway is going to deter traffic from entering, thus reducing emissions, improving the Bronxites' overall health. 95 could be routed along 287, 80 could continue into New York, and the Turnpike north of the 95/440 interchange could be named a spur of the highway, such as 395.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #41 on: January 22, 2020, 07:38:07 PM »

Today the Cross Bronx is a traffic nightmare. How would you reasonable fix it (If you even can)?

New York City loves to hammer drivers with hefty tolls on many of its bridge and tunnel crossings, both intra-New York (MTA Bridge and Tunnel) and between New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ).

So just make the Cross-Bronx part of the New England Thruway, and charge tolls high enough to improve its traffic flows.
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Rothman

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #42 on: January 22, 2020, 09:21:34 PM »

Improving traffic flows through ensuring only the rich drive on roads is pretty lousy.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #43 on: January 22, 2020, 09:28:33 PM »

Improving traffic flows through ensuring only the rich drive on roads is pretty lousy.
It is also ironically supported by the RE/T groups who make arguments that transit should exist to serve the poor.
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Rothman

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #44 on: January 22, 2020, 09:31:46 PM »

Improving traffic flows through ensuring only the rich drive on roads is pretty lousy.
It is also ironically supported by the RE/T groups who make arguments that transit should exist to serve the poor.
...or that the poor should be relegated to transit?
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #45 on: January 22, 2020, 10:24:21 PM »

Improving traffic flows through ensuring only the rich drive on roads is pretty lousy.
It is also ironically supported by the RE/T groups who make arguments that transit should exist to serve the poor.
...or that the poor should be relegated to transit?
Well yeah that is more or less my point. They claim to support transit advocating for the poor but turn around and advocate for ideas that would price them out of their car and give them less options.

Their logic is incredibly flawed.
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cl94

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #46 on: January 22, 2020, 10:30:05 PM »

I mean, the endgame for many of the transit advocates is to ban private automobiles entirely. Of course, that will never happen, so they will settle for "private vehicles for the rich, rugged transit for the poor" (to paraphrase MLK).
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Duke87

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #47 on: January 23, 2020, 02:02:36 AM »

Quote from: RobbieL2415
Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels

Not just Penn Station.  Most of the corridor south of West 125th is in tunnel except for a few blocks in the 30s.  I would also hazard a bet that there are legal/pollution reasons why the 3rd rail is required south of Poughkeepsie.

South of Croton-Harmon. The Hudson Line is not electrified north of there.


Meanwhile there's no reason why you'd need to ventilate for diesel locomotives for the sake of freight - those trains can be pulled by electric (or dual-mode) locomotives. Keep in mind that diesel locomotives themselves are just electric locomotives with onboard diesel-fueled generators.

Really more the issue is that those tunnels are already used to capacity much of the time for passenger rail service, so there just isn't spare space to move freight through there. I do believe, in fact, that the Pennsylvania Railroad once upon a time did run some freight through those tunnels. It physically can be done, except the capacity isn't there for it.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #48 on: January 24, 2020, 05:26:33 PM »

Quote from: RobbieL2415
Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels

Not just Penn Station.  Most of the corridor south of West 125th is in tunnel except for a few blocks in the 30s.  I would also hazard a bet that there are legal/pollution reasons why the 3rd rail is required south of Poughkeepsie.

South of Croton-Harmon. The Hudson Line is not electrified north of there.


Meanwhile there's no reason why you'd need to ventilate for diesel locomotives for the sake of freight - those trains can be pulled by electric (or dual-mode) locomotives. Keep in mind that diesel locomotives themselves are just electric locomotives with onboard diesel-fueled generators.

Really more the issue is that those tunnels are already used to capacity much of the time for passenger rail service, so there just isn't spare space to move freight through there. I do believe, in fact, that the Pennsylvania Railroad once upon a time did run some freight through those tunnels. It physically can be done, except the capacity isn't there for it.

The PRR (and later Penn Central and then Conrail) also ran freight trains that were pulled by the electric GG-1 locomotives on what we now know as the Northeast Corridor, except that the electrification ran all the way across D.C. and into Potomac Yard in Arlington County, Virginia (it has now been removed, though remnants remain).  The practice of freights pulled by GG-1 units ended sometime in the 1970's.
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RobbieL2415

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Re: How would you fix the Cross Bronx Expressway?
« Reply #49 on: January 27, 2020, 05:10:35 AM »

Quote from: RobbieL2415
Idea for better movement of freight:
-Ventilate Penn Station so diesel engines can operate.  Amtrak sells limited rights to CSX for select freight routes to come down the Empire Connector and cross via the mid-Hudson tunnels

Not just Penn Station.  Most of the corridor south of West 125th is in tunnel except for a few blocks in the 30s.  I would also hazard a bet that there are legal/pollution reasons why the 3rd rail is required south of Poughkeepsie.

South of Croton-Harmon. The Hudson Line is not electrified north of there.


Meanwhile there's no reason why you'd need to ventilate for diesel locomotives for the sake of freight - those trains can be pulled by electric (or dual-mode) locomotives. Keep in mind that diesel locomotives themselves are just electric locomotives with onboard diesel-fueled generators.

Really more the issue is that those tunnels are already used to capacity much of the time for passenger rail service, so there just isn't spare space to move freight through there. I do believe, in fact, that the Pennsylvania Railroad once upon a time did run some freight through those tunnels. It physically can be done, except the capacity isn't there for it.
Then let's build those illusive new Hudson tunnels they're talking about.
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