Federal funding for CSX A Line between Palatka and Deland + other projects

Discussion in 'Amtrak Rail Discussion' started by jis, Jun 13, 2019 at 6:36 PM.

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  1. Jun 13, 2019 at 6:36 PM #1

    jis

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    According to the funding documentation from FRA, Amtrak is getting funded $3.85 million to rehabilitate the CSX A Line between Palatka and Deland in Florida, and CSX will transfer ownership of that segment to Amtrak.
    The entire list of Federal DOT funded projects can be found at https://railroads.dot.gov/newsroom/...nces-more-326-million-grants-support-railroad

    Other Amtrak relevant projects funded are:

     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2019 at 7:19 PM
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  2. Jun 13, 2019 at 9:33 PM #2

    NSC1109

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    Great to hear that Amtrak is picking up another piece of infrastructure. However, I’ve looked at the section that is to be transferred and it’s...kinda landlocked. For those who don’t know, this section extends from south of Jacksonville to north of Orlando. On either side is CSX controlled territory. It doesn’t seem like owning that one stretch of track will really change much for the Silver Service, bud I’m not well-versed in the nuances of Florida ops.
     
  3. Jun 13, 2019 at 9:59 PM #3

    cocojacoby

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    So now we probably will never see Amtrak service along the FEC where it should be very successful.
     
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  4. Jun 13, 2019 at 10:40 PM #4

    Eric S

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    There was also a grant for signal improvements around Milwaukee station, in addition to another grant announced earlier to add a second platform at Milwaukee Airport station. So although there has been a holdup and lack of support for projects in IL, WI has been pretty successful in getting funding for various projects that must be undertaken before additional CHI-MKE trains can be added. Now we just need to figure out a way to sidestep the NIMBY challenges in IL. (I suspect it will not be cheap, though.)
     
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  5. Jun 13, 2019 at 10:52 PM #5

    jis

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    South of Deland is SunRail (CFRC) through Orlando upto Poinciana. CSX transferred that segment to CFRC a while back. It is dispatched by SunRail out of their Debary base facility just north of Sanford and also maintained by them.

    Incidentally, Palatka is the first stop of the Silver Service south of Jacksonville. Deland is the next stop, and that is in SunRail territory. The one following Deland is Winter Park.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019 at 12:05 AM
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  6. Jun 13, 2019 at 11:26 PM #6

    NSC1109

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    My apologies. I was going off of this map:
    https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewe...&ll=29.514249762255606,-81.81168049999997&z=7
     
  7. Jun 14, 2019 at 12:50 AM #7

    jis

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    Things have been changing fast in Florida with CSX trying to dispose off as much property as it can as fast as it can. If money was immediately available I believe CSX would have handed over JAX - Palatka to Amtrak or a state agency too. I believe that is inevitable sooner or later since CSX has moved its own traffic to move via Ocala progressively since it handed over the Orlando segment to CFRC. They have also been sniffing around a bit for any takers of the Auburndale - Mangonia segment which also carries the Silver service.
     
  8. Jun 14, 2019 at 1:05 AM #8

    NSC1109

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    Sounds like Florida could eventually be a good state for Amtrak to expand if they can pick up more ROW from CSX.
     
  9. Jun 14, 2019 at 2:17 AM #9

    crescent-zephyr

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    The Orlando to Tampa line is a decent amount of 79 mph running through orange groves. A Jacksonville - Orlando - Tampa corridor really should be a thing. Of course at this rate, Brightline will beat them to it.
     
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  10. Jun 14, 2019 at 3:07 AM #10

    JustOnce

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    Nothing says Virgin/Brightline and Amtrak can't collaborate or that V/B can't become a Thruway partner.
     
  11. Jun 14, 2019 at 2:55 PM #11

    neroden

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    So, I went through the CRISI grants. The interesting one is to rehabilitate the line from Palatka to DeLamd, and get this, CSX will give the line to Amtrak.
     
  12. Jun 14, 2019 at 2:57 PM #12

    neroden

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    South of DeLand is SunRail territory. I wish Amtrak would acquire the gap from SunRail territory to TriRail territory which is still CSX though.
     
  13. Jun 14, 2019 at 3:01 PM #13

    jis

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    Anything can happen in the future. But at least for the foreseeable future there are no plans for collaborating in any way. There are no shared stations planned (not even one in Tampa so far) and VT USA holds exclusive operating rights on all of FECR trackage, and jointly owns the dispatching company with FECR. Virgin's proposed station in Jacksonville is at what is now the Convention Center, and Amtrak may or may not move there and add the necessity for a backup move (I think they should move, but then they should have moved to MIC at Miami Airport too). VT USA's only collaboration visible is with TriRail and SunRail so far.

    Also, this discussion belongs to the Virgin/Brightline thread and not this one, since this has nothing to do with federal funding of A-Line transfer to Amtrak.

    Getting back to the A Line, I am surprised that they just not go all the way and transfer the remaining segment between JAX and Palatka to Amtrak too. Must be the amount of limited funding available immediately. If that is the case, it will happen inevitably in the near future.

    CSX has been looking to transfer the Auburndale to Mangonia portion to someone for an acceptable price too. So far no takers though. That will only leave the short segment between Poinciana and Auburndale in their hands, of the route of the Meteor. They have also been looking to get rid of all their properties around Miami, and there has been talk of TriRail picking up some of it, but inconclusive so far due to budgetary reasons.

    West of Poinciana to Tampa, it is hard to tell what CSX's intentions may be. Apparently they have a pretty good business going at the Port of Tampa, unlike Port of Miami, where they have pretty much ceded the field to FECR for all intents and purposes.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019 at 3:14 PM
  14. Jun 14, 2019 at 3:05 PM #14

    jis

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    Please redact. The original post has served its purpose and is now redundant.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2019 at 10:24 PM
  15. Jun 14, 2019 at 5:40 PM #15

    pennyk

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  16. Jun 14, 2019 at 6:29 PM #16

    west point

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    JAX <> Palatka Too much CSX freight traffic especially around Palatka. As well NS has some kind of track rights negotiated on the "A" line to Palatka that allowed SOU to abandon its tracks .
    Poinciana <> Auburndale not quite sure. There is several freight customers just south if Poinciana that CSX serves and CSX has to get clearance from Sun Rail 's dispatcher to access a switch that is facing point switch just a few feet west of the end of Sun rail's track. ( faces Sun Rail )
     
  17. Jun 14, 2019 at 7:12 PM #17

    KnightRail

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    I wonder which Amtrak dispatching office will control this Florida segment. Chicago controls NOL so maybe them?
     
  18. Jun 14, 2019 at 7:59 PM #18

    jis

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    Does Amtrak still manage dispatching for TriRail? Or has TriRail taken it in house now? If they still do TriRail maybe they can just add this to the same desk.

    Trackage rights are no problem. They can always be transferred with the track. CSX serves a power plant somewhere there I think with Coal, but the plant is working on converting to natural gas. So we'll see.
     

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