Underground station layouts

ulrichomega

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The Ruggles platform has always confused me. Why is it so long and why is it not open? I've seen multiple trains embarking/disembarking past the barriers.

Also, do you mean that the NEC platforms for Back Bay are 1750ft long, or that if you measure from their east end to the Worcester line's west end it's 1750 feet? That still feels way too long.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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The Ruggles platform has always confused me. Why is it so long and why is it not open? I've seen multiple trains embarking/disembarking past the barriers.

Also, do you mean that the NEC platforms for Back Bay are 1750ft long, or that if you measure from their east end to the Worcester line's west end it's 1750 feet? That still feels way too long.
Cumulative station length @ BBY. The NEC platforms are NE Regional-spec 1000 footers (12-car). Not sure if the Worcester side is T-spec 800 ft. or AMTK-spec 1000 ft. Looks shorter. It's the offset between the westward-leaning Worcester platforms and the eastward-leaning NEC platforms that gives BBY such linear sprawl.

The Ruggles station project includes a phase rehabbing the closed-off north half of the existing island platform so it's restored from current shortie 450 ft. operable length back to at least 800 ft. if not all the way to the 1000 ft. tip (though no Amtrak trains use it). Hasn't started yet, so don't know where it's sequenced vs. all the other ongoing stuff. Also don't know what the official reason was for the original closure of the north half, but its absolutely dreadful physical condition probably had lots to do with it. Advanced concrete spalling to a degree you shouldn't be seeing on a 33-year old surface. Looks probable that there was a flaw in the original concrete pour that led to very premature disintegration, and budgets + a relative paucity of long trains stopping there simply had them shortening their maint bench to preserving the south-half platform until more money came available. Service increases with Platform #3 coming online will necessitate it, because fewer big-size Providence rushes are going to skip past Ruggles once traffic management is improved. While the rehab is hardly a budget-buster, they're going to need to mill the shit out of the north-half's surface and start completely over with the top layers. Simple top-most resurfacing won't cut it, because spalling that widespread will chew it back to dust in only a few years flat.
 

Tallguy

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I am not sure if this is thread-jacking, but if it is, I apologize. I am really curious as to exactly where in the Ft. Point Channel the Red Line tunnel is. Does anyone have any info?
 

F-Line to Dudley

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I am not sure if this is thread-jacking, but if it is, I apologize. I am really curious as to exactly where in the Ft. Point Channel the Red Line tunnel is. Does anyone have any info?
Google Map view shows it as a thin dashed white line in the middle of the blue water curving off Summer St. and landing back under Dot Ave. by the Big Dig vent stacks That's a fully-accurate plot.

Most other subway tunnels in Boston aren't depicted on Maps view, but for whatever reason that one is.
 

stefal

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Google Map view shows it as a thin dashed white line in the middle of the blue water curving off Summer St. and landing back under Dot Ave. by the Big Dig vent stacks That's a fully-accurate plot.

Most other subway tunnels in Boston aren't depicted on Maps view, but for whatever reason that one is.
Google's still a little off. I'm fairly certain it's a straight shot down the center of the channel, through the Gillette parking lot, and meets up with Dot Ave around W 2nd Street. The curve off Summer Street is weirdly accurate..
 
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The EGE

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Google's still a little off. I'm fairly certain it's a straight shot down the center of the channel, through the GE parking lot, and meets up with Dot Ave around W 2nd Street. The curve off Summer Street is weirdly accurate..
Yep, straight down the center of the channel. See details in the 1913 BTC report.
 

The EGE

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Nope, Ruggles was 100% new construction 1979-87. The site was just Northeastern parking beforehand (and before that, railroad shops/industrial). There never previously was a station at that site - Back Bay and Roxbury Crossing were the nearest.*

*Before Back Bay opened in 1899, there was a minor stop at Camden/Gainsborough.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Nope, Ruggles was 100% new construction 1979-87. The site was just Northeastern parking beforehand (and before that, railroad shops/industrial). There never previously was a station at that site - Back Bay and Roxbury Crossing were the nearest.*

*Before Back Bay opened in 1899, there was a minor stop at Camden/Gainsborough.
"Chickering" was what the station @ Camden/Gainesborough was called. Sited at present-day Mass Ave. OL station on the spot where the rear exit-only iron maiden gates empty onto those cut streets, and was at a grade crossing. Eliminated when the B&P did the mass grade separation project of the SW Corridor in the mid-1890's. All other formerly at-grade stops got post-separation replacements reopening on the same day in 1897, but Chickering was scrubbed entirely in favor of Back Bay.

All other current OL stops on the SW Corridor had RR-era equivalents at one point except for Ruggles.
  • OL Roxbury Crossing = B&P Roxbury
  • OL Jackson Square = B&P Heath St.
  • OL Stony Brook = B&P Boylston St.
  • OL Green St. = B&P Jamaica Plain
Local service to all of those + Forest Hills ended 9/29/1940. The 1897 Forest Hills platform was reactivated in mid-1973, then of course rebuilt with the SW Corridor cut to the modern equivalent. Ruggles was the proverbial "shit sandwich" replacement the neighborhood had to swallow for moving the Orange Line away from the Dudley bus depot, with the hyper-distended Dudley-Ruggles-Rox X'ing around the block bus loopage replacing the clean integrated terminal. Hence, the gigantic busways. The CR platform was to goose its utilization by bringing the Needham Line into the bus transfer from the outer neighborhoods, but of course it's taken them 30 years to figure out a coherent strategy for leveraging the Purple Line mode share in any usable way. Growth of Northeastern around it has made Ruggles come into its own as a high-leverage node in its own right and be a lot less "shit sandwichy", but the bus movements from Dudley Terminal are still really ham-fisted. Melnea Cass rebuild should help a whole lot, but it's always going to be a dissatisfyingly unclean interface compared to the old Orange + single-node bus Dudley Terminal.
 

F-Line to Dudley

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Sullivan, per request. This is a pretty rough outline since I don't have good sources; I may revise it later.

View attachment 4932
Curvature of the CR tracks on the north end around I-93 deck pegs is slightly more pronounced than depicted here, and I think the elevators/walkway trends very slightly closer to the north ends of the platform than the firm centering here...though not by much.

The retaining walls are the most significant architectural feature of this station, as you've got the whole 2-track Yard 21 ROW to the left that frames the would-be future Urban Ring low island platform extended as a +1 elevator/stairs berth off the headhouse...plus the tight and tall retaining wall on the CR northbound side framing the busways and Maffa Way DC substation. I honestly have no clue how they're going to cram that CR platform from the Rail Vision in here. Brutal difficulty level for structural work required. A ton of excavation would be needed under the kiss-and-ride in delicate proximity to the 93 deck pegs, and the OL 3rd track berth isn't claimable because of the Community College viaduct touching down under Cambridge St. and peg arrangement immediately adjacent to the south platform tip blocks any fan-out interface from the CR side. Has to be a total dig-sideways + relocation of the tall east retaining wall, which is going to be pricey and very messy staging. Worth it in the end, IMHO, but I wouldn't hold my breath on this making the first wave of Rail Vision rollout projects. It's going to need quite long gestation in design-build.
 

Riverside

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^ Very cool.

This is I suppose as good a place as any to ask: why did Adams Sq -- with its "northbound-only" layout (which I believe was actually, "northbound-only if coming from the south, and also featuring north-originating terminating trains" -- ever exist in the first place? Why not run the southbound through-running track through Adams Sq to begin with?
 

The EGE

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The original plans called for the northbound tracks under Cornhill (as they were constructed) and the southbound tracks under Brattle slightly to the north, with a tight loop at Scollay for streetcars terminating from the north. (Charlestown streetcars, and "foreign" cars of the Lynn & Boston.) In 1896, the route was changed to instead run the southbound tracks under Hanover (the route still used) in order to provide a larger loop at Scollay. Adams Square station, with its never-used additional loop, was largely incidental to that change according to the report.

The Boston Transit Commission considered a lot of possibilities for the Scollay-Haymarket section. Portals in Scollay Square, lots of weird Adams Square designs, and some wacky-ass layouts at Scollay.
 

vanshnookenraggen

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I've never seen those Scollay-Adams alternatives before, very... strange.

The short answer is that they wanted to keep trolleys that normally terminated in the area able to keep terminating in the area. Kinda like all those bus routes that end at Haymarket.
 

The EGE

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Exactly like the Haymarket buses, and not by coincidence. The 111, 424, 426, 434, and 450 (and the 400-series routes that have been cut to Wonderland) are all descendants of the former "foreign" routes that looped at Scollay. The 92 and 93 are former BERy streetcars routes that also looped there. When the Eastern Mass bustituted its North Shore services in 1935-36, they chose Haymarket Square for their new bus terminal because of its proximity to the new Sumner Tunnel. That terminal was destroyed by the Central Artery in 1953; buses then stopped curbside near the Square. The MBTA took over the Lynn Division routes in 1970, and the modern Haymarket terminal opened with the new Green Line station in 1971.
 

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