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Article about new train Boston-Cape Cod

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My only question is why only weekends in summer? Why not daily in summer?

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My only question is why only weekends in summer? Why not daily in summer?

 

Either not enough expected demand, lack of equipment availability, and/or lack of track availability.

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Wikipedia article about cessation of The Cape Codder service, which started in 1986:

 

 

Cessation [edit]
Service ceased ten years later. The limited schedule, coupled with the fact that passengers found it difficult to navigate the Cape without an automobile, discouraged potential passengers.[3] Since its demise in 1996, there have been periodic discussions about reinstating passenger rail service from Boston to reduce car traffic to and from the Cape, with officials in Bourne seeking to extend MBTA Commuter Rail service from Middleboro to Buzzards Bay,[4] and eventually to Hyannis.
Edited by DET63

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Of course we will carefully not mention that the whole venture would be impossible in the absence of highly subsidized MBTA :)

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Of course we will carefully not mention that the whole venture would be impossible in the absence of highly subsidized MBTA :)

This wasn't an MBTA initiative. The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority is the source of operational funds for the service. The CCRTA contracted with the MBTA too provide and operate the equipment. I think the MBTA would have included sufficient cost recovery of subsidies in the fixed cost contract. The tracks are owned by the Massachusetts DOT. They provided the capital for track tie renewal and brush cutting. That work was needed for track standards maintenance, anyhow.

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Yes, but if there was no MBTA in place in the first place there would have been no one to contract with at the current prices for CCRTA. So one cannot get away from the availability of the core facilities being used as a result of subsidized infrastructure being in place.

 

This by the way, is no different from a subsidized highways system being in place for a bus service to start up with minimal subsidy. But the claim of minimal subsidy is mostly about incremental subsidy, not total subsidy, in both cases.

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CapeFlyer Train from Boston to Cape Cod is Overnight Success

 

Rail travel in the U.S. is a slow, money-losing also-ran. But a new service that ferries passengers from Boston to Cape Cod has been a success – without huge government subsidies.

 

"Ferry without hugh subsidy"? With all the navigation aids, clearance requirements for bridges over any waterway that can by any stretch of the imagination be considered "Navigatable", dredging, etc. water bourne transportation is probably the most heavily subsidized of all transportaton forms in this country.

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I see that the railcars are painted specially for this train. What will they be used for when this train does not operate?

 

Nice MP locomotive, by the way.

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Railcars? No, looks like just the one or perhaps even a few cars has special stick on wrap, just like other advertizing wraps one sees from time to time. The second car in that train appears to be standard MBTA livery

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Railcars? No, looks like just the one or perhaps even a few cars has special stick on wrap, just like other advertizing wraps one sees from time to time. The second car in that train appears to be standard MBTA livery

 

So, it's like a big decal or transit advertising wrap? Maybe they will peel it off after the inauguration and just run at as a regular MBTA service.

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Just wondering, is this the longest route of an MBTA train? Any others come close?

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Railcars? No, looks like just the one or perhaps even a few cars has special stick on wrap, just like other advertizing wraps one sees from time to time. The second car in that train appears to be standard MBTA livery

 

So, it's like a big decal or transit advertising wrap? Maybe they will peel it off after the inauguration and just run at as a regular MBTA service.

After the inaugural run of the service? It's been running since Memorial Day weekend. Or do you mean after the inaugural year/summer of service?

 

And, it's not a regular MBTA service, it's more of a CCRTA service (or partnership between MBTA and CCRTA).

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I think this might be the first "commuter" service to turn a profit since...the 60s, maybe? Granted, it's an odd stepchild between a commuter train, Amtrak, and an excursion...but it's still impressive to see it running in the black. Hopefully (especially since Cape Cod really isn't a candidate for highway construction if my read on the area is right) the service will get beefed up next year to include more days of service and/or a slightly longer operating period (i.e. May-October)...and in the longer term, get extended further into the Cape area.

 

Of course, that might beget its own problem...if the service is getting jammed full on a limited schedule, the weekend trains might actually get swamped as a consequence. Then again, if the numbers are right, the service might actually be profitable enough to justify adding a few cars to an equipment order down the line.

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Just wondering, is this the longest route of an MBTA train? Any others come close?

 

I'm interested too, what's the world's longest commuter rail ine? As in a freuqent rush-hour service to serve commuters, with much less service in the middle of the day.

 

Railcars? No, looks like just the one or perhaps even a few cars has special stick on wrap, just like other advertizing wraps one sees from time to time. The second car in that train appears to be standard MBTA livery

 

So, it's like a big decal or transit advertising wrap? Maybe they will peel it off after the inauguration and just run at as a regular MBTA service.

After the inaugural run of the service? It's been running since Memorial Day weekend. Or do you mean after the inaugural year/summer of service?

 

And, it's not a regular MBTA service, it's more of a CCRTA service (or partnership between MBTA and CCRTA).

 

Eh, never mind.

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I think this might be the first "commuter" service to turn a profit since...the 60s, maybe? Granted, it's an odd stepchild between a commuter train, Amtrak, and an excursion...but it's still impressive to see it running in the black. Hopefully (especially since Cape Cod really isn't a candidate for highway construction if my read on the area is right) the service will get beefed up next year to include more days of service and/or a slightly longer operating period (i.e. May-October)...and in the longer term, get extended further into the Cape area.

 

Of course, that might beget its own problem...if the service is getting jammed full on a limited schedule, the weekend trains might actually get swamped as a consequence. Then again, if the numbers are right, the service might actually be profitable enough to justify adding a few cars to an equipment order down the line.

Nitpicking. Amtrak is not involved with this service. The MBTA was contracted by the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority(buses) too run this at a fixed cost. The ticket revenue goes to the CCRTA who states it is currently ahead of proportional costs . The extension from the end of MBTA territory at Middleborough to Hyannis, on Cape Cod, has carried 100 to 300 passengers a trip. I live close enough too monitor the passenger counts as reported on the radio. The train can seat an estimated 750 passengers. Hyannis at mid-Cape Cod is the end of the line, probably forever. The former rail bed beyond Hyannis is now the popular Cape Cod(recreational) Trail and utilities companies' right of way.

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*ahem*

It has elements of all three types of service:
-It has certain operational elements in line with a commuter operation.

-From what I can tell, it has OBS akin to Amtrak (or some chartered excursions)

-It has scheduling somewhere between an excursion operation and "normal" Amtrak operation (note that on most routes with substantially different weekend service, that different service is a reshuffling of frequencies and/or involves adding stops to pick up slack from a commuter line not operating).

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And a big plus is unlike Amtrak it is unreserved! This attracts spontaneous travel, and I believe, unlike Amtrak no yield management which also encourages spontaneous travel.

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Just wondering, is this the longest route of an MBTA train? Any others come close?

 

I'm interested too, what's the world's longest commuter rail ine? As in a freuqent rush-hour service to serve commuters, with much less service in the middle of the day.

.

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If you mean non-Amtrak, as arguably the NEC has a few long distance commuters over portions, as well as other routes, such as the Keystone, I would say in the US, that 'honor' might go to the LIRR's Montauk line, at about 120 miles.....

Somehow, I posted incorrectly, and can't figure out how to add my comments to S H's separately....

Edited by railiner

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Does it stop in Sandwich?
Stops only at Middleborough, Buzzards Bay and Hyannis TC. So it appears not, since Sandwich is between Buzzards Bay and Hyannis.

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I doubt it can be expanded much further onto the Cape. As said beyond Hyannis, the former rail bed is unusable as a railroad, and the easternmost portion of the Cape (to Provincetown) has a 2 lane road and very little extra room available.

Edited by the_traveler
Spelling

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