Get Full Essay Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues. The proposed system enclosed within this report will run from Hamilton International Airport to Hamilton Harbour.
Light Rail Now Project can be contacted at: Publication Team This news feature provides an ongoing Weblog of particularly significant developments in public transportation and rail transit. US Federal Railroad Administration takes aim One of the more ominous of these developments involves the Federal Railroad Administration's FRA oversight of light rail transit LRT lines and other light railways that travel outside the urban core or use existing freight rail track.
In a policy initiative that has emerged most recently with respect to Capital Metro's light railway project in Austin, Texas, the FRA is threatening to put such restrictive requirements on these lines under certain conditions that local entities will be discouraged from attempting to implement them.
The FRA is now implicitly asserting jurisdiction and full railroad regulations not only over lines that share railway trackage with "heavy" railroad operations, but over virtually all lines that extend beyond city boundaries and which have not already involved Federal Transit Administration FTA oversight.
The FRA now seems to be insisting that, in most cases, these are not light railways, but must be considered "commuter railroads", and therefore must comform with FRA's full requirements for "heavy" railroad operations.
In recent years, FTA policies have made it increasingly difficult for local areas to receive funding for new rail transit projects, so transit agencies have increasingly sought other sources of funds to finance these projects.
Light rail lines that receive funding from the FTA fall under that agency's jurisdiction, so the FRA typically does not contest for oversight in those cases.
However, since a number of recent projects have begun to eschew FTA funding, relying instead on local funding resources, the FRA is now starting to assert that they must comply with FRA requirements that FTA-funded projects do not have to follow.
To many transit planners and project proponents, it seems unreasonable and inequitable to penalize, in effect, locally-funded projects merely because they did not pursue federal grant funding.
This issue is very important because, by requiring "heavy" facilities, rolling stock, and operating practices, these FRA requirements could make it cost-prohibitive to implement many new rail transit services.
Indeed, the numerous interurban trolley systems that used to run in many locations throughout the country might not have been able to operate under these requirements. The FRA rules currently do not recognize light rail, so rail power cars in any of the rail systems that come under their jurisdiction are considered by FRA to be "locomotives.
Although a transit agency can seek a waiver of the FRA jurisdiction and oversight, in Austin, Capital Metro's request for such a waiver for its Capital MetroRail project has recently been denied, and it appears that, in practice, the FRA will henceforth make it very difficult for similar projects to receive a waiver approval.
CapMetro asked the FRA to grant a waiver for operation of "light" non-compliant diesel multiple unit DMU railcars over its mile light railway demonstration project between the city of Austin population aboutand the town of Leander population 18, on rail track shared with Austin and Western Railroad shortline freight trains whose operation would be restricted to late-night hours, temporally separated from transit operations as well as the Austin Steam Train Association tourist line whose operation would be moved beyond the portion of route used for transit.
Rickey Green, Capital Metro] CapMetro insists that the rail line from its inception has been designed to be a "rail fixed guideway system," as defined by FTA policies, and therefore would qualify for treatment as a light railway, with state safety oversight provided by the Texas Department of Transportation TxDOT.
Increasingly, the picture is emerging of a prevalent view within the FRA that many states lack the technical knowledge or judgment to oversee rail safety concerns.
Although waivers have been issued by FRA for new LRT or DMU-powered light railway starts over the past several decades, the current staff apparently think that some of those waivers were ill-advised.
According to FRA's newly emergent interpretation of its bailiwick, the agency's jurisdictional claim is asserted not because affected rail lines are shared with freight or because of the type of rolling stock selected, but rather on the basis of other factors — such as whether rail services extend beyond a city's boundaries especially if these use a separated alignment, which might include a shared or abandoned rail line.
Another factor is the pattern of traffic and scheduled operations: A light railway that tends to be predominantly focused on peak-period trips is more likely to be "fingered" by the FRA as "commuter rail" — i. FRA exercises jurisdiction over all commuter operations.
Congress apparently intended that FRA do so when it enacted the Federal Railroad Safety Act ofand made that intention very clear in the and amendments to that act. FRA has attempted to follow that mandate consistently.
A commuter system's connection to other railroads is not relevant under the rail safety statutes. In fact, FRA considers commuter railroads to be part of the general railroad system regardless of such connections. FRA is likely to consider an operation to be a commuter railroad if: But such a definition is extremely broad in its sweep.
Indeed, many of today's existing light rail lines could be redefined, under FRA parlance, as heavy "commuter railroads" because they link a suburb or ex-urban area with a central city and their primary function is serving commute-type trips, including lines in San Diego, Portland, Sacramento, San Jose, St.
If the FRA decides that a line is a "commuter railroad" that does not fall under FTA's jurisdiction, the rolling stock, infrastructure and operations must comply with FRA requirements.
In Austin, this could mean some major increases in operating requirements and costs plus an overhaul of all of the Stadler GTW light railway DMUs to meet FRA's "heavy" railroad safety and operational standards.
The capital cost of converting a light railway into a "commuter railroad" could amount to tens of millions of dollars added on to the project.Our Firm. Firm Profile; Leadership. Principals. Jeffrey L. Fisher, AIA; James W. Lewis, AIA, LEED AP; Mark R.
Wilson, AIA, LEED AP; Roger P. Jackson, AIA, LEED AP. West Valley Central Station Decker Lake Station Redwood Junction Station River Trail Station Central Pointe Station Ballpark Station South Station Courthouse Station Gallivan Plaza Station City Center Station Temple Square Station Arena Station North Temple Bridge/Guadalupe Jackson/Euclid Station Fairpark Station Power Station W North Temple Station Airport Station.
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METRORail is the mile ( km) light rail system in Houston, Texas (USA). As of , the METRORail has an average weekday ridership of 56, and total annual ridership of 18,, After Dallas' DART Light Rail, METRORail ranks as the second most-traveled light rail system in the Southern United States and the 12th most-traveled light rail system in the United States.