Commuter and Transit

Commuter Trains and Rapid Transit is a free online Railroad Discussion Forum and Railroad Photo Gallery for railroaders, railfans, model railroaders and anyone else who is interested in railroads. We cover a wide variety of topics, including freight trains, passenger and commuter railroads, rail news and information, tourist railroads, railway museums and railroad history.

Federal Railroad Administration Announces Rail Inspection Technology Rule to Improve Track Safety

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“This rule will allow railroads to use the latest technology to continually monitor safety, which is a big step forward in strengthening safety and reliability on our nation’s railroads,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

Friday, August 28, 2020

U.S. Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) today submitted to the Federal Register a final rule allowing railroads to use ultrasonic inspection technology, augmented with global positioning system (GPS) technology, to employ continuous rail testing. These updated regulations are expected to improve safety...
FTA Announces $891 Million for 12 Transit Infrastructure Projects Across America
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U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao Announces $891 Million for 12 Transit Infrastructure Projects Across America

Friday, May 29, 2020
WASHINGTON – The Trump Administration today announced a total of $891 million in federal funding will be provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to 12 transit infrastructure projects. The allocations of funding across the country will be used to advance the readiness of projects for a construction grant agreement or a Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA). Funding is provided through FTA’s Capital Investment Grants (CIG) Program.

FTA is allocating $27 million in appropriated Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 CIG funding, $526.5 million in appropriated...
BART releases 15-step plan to welcome back riders as region reopens
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BART releases 15-step plan to welcome back riders as region reopens

BART is working hard to reimagine transit service as the region begins to reopen and riders return. We understand the public is looking to us to provide reassurance that service is as safe as possible and social distancing is followed. To welcome riders back and regain confidence in public transit, BART is taking the following 15 steps while continuing to explore new measures and technologies that could assist in a safe recovery.

Step 1 – Cleaning
BART is using hospital-grade disinfectant in stations and on-board trains. Train poles are wiped down with disinfectant at the end of the line during service hours. Crews use electrostatic foggers on train cars that spray disinfecting mist that coats and clings to surfaces. Station touchpoints are wiped down multiple times each day.

Step 2 – Run Long Trains
BART is...

LA Metro: 45-Day Public Review Set For $400B, 30-Year Transit Plan

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LA Metro: 45-Day Public Review Set For $400B, 30-Year Transit Plan

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Board of Directors has authorized the release of an updated draft of its 2020 Long Range Transportation Plan (2020 LRTP), a $400 billion, 30-year transportation blueprint for the region. There is a 45-day public review period (through July 13, 2020) to gather comments.

The plan, Metro said “lays out a future vision and roadmap for bringing about a more mobile, sustainable and vibrant future for Los Angeles County. Through extensive public outreach during the past 18 months that included 77 community meetings, 28 public workshop meetings and 20,000 survey responses from the public, Metro has distilled the region’s desires into four goals: Better Transit, Less Congestion, Complete Streets and...

Facebook is rethinking its commitment to help fund Dumbarton Rail Corridor study

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Facebook is rethinking its commitment to help fund Dumbarton Rail Corridor study

Facebook may be backing away from funding a study that would bring the Peninsula one step closer to seeing the Dumbarton Rail Corridor revitalized.

Facebook is “reassessing this long-term commitment,” said a statement from Juan Salazar, Facebook’s local policy and community engagement director. Facebook, along with SamTrans, which owns the long-defunct trestle and rail spur, and Plenary Group, an investment group specializing in public-private partnerships, joined forces in August 2018 to begin the long-awaited environmental impact study for the project.

Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority Completes Section 1 of the Purple Line Extension subway

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Soyeon, Elsie Complete Boring Task

Two TBMs (Tunnel Boring Machines) employed by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro)—one named Soyeon, the other, Elsie—have completed many months of work on Section 1 of the $9.3 billion, nine-mile Metro Purple Line Extension subway project by reaching the future Wilshire/Fairfax station near the La Brea Tar Pits in the Miracle Mile.

Tunneling for the first three miles of the four-mile initial section is now complete. Soyeon started at the Wilshire/La Brea station in October 2019 and broke through the eastern side of the planned Wilshire/Fairfax station site about one mile away on May 21. Elsie broke through to Wilshire/Fairfax on April 4.
Seattle Sound Transit Service Revisions and Recovery Fares
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Several Routes, Link light rail, Sounder North & Sounder South Temporary Recovery Fares and Service Revisions

Posted: May 18 - 2:05 p.m. (updated: May 20 - 5:36 p.m.)
Effective June 1, Sound Transit will offer temporarily reduced Recovery Fares in response to the economic impact of COVID-19 as the agency re-introduces fares on Link light rail and Sounder. Service on Link will also increase at the same time, with trains running every 20 minutes during the day until after the afternoon commute. Link will continue to run every 30 minutes during evenings and on weekends.
Link schedules will be posted on our Reduced Service page when finalized.

Temporary Recovery Fares come as the region prepares for the next phases of recovery and the expected gradual return of...

New York MTA Launches Pilot With COVID-19-Killing UVC

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New York MTA Launches Pilot With COVID-19-Killing UVC

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced an ultraviolet (UV) light pilot program proven to kill COVID-19, with the first phase set to launch on subways, buses and other New York City Transit facilities throughout the system early next week.

The MTA pilot will deploy approximately 150 dual-headed mobile devices from Denver-based startup PURO Lighting to test and evaluate the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of UVC technology in a number of settings across New York City Transit including trains, buses, stations and occupational facilities, using strict protocols and procedures to ensure the safety of the employees and customers. After evaluation, the pilot’s second phase will expand to Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North.

SMART poised to take control of North Bay freight hauling, expanding beyond passenger service

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SMART poised to take control of North Bay freight hauling, expanding beyond passenger service

San Francisco, CA - 5/19/20

A multimillion-dollar deal is in place to have SMART take over North Bay freight rail by buying out the region’s lone hauler, a move that would hand SMART unified control of the local track system and make it one of a small group of agencies nationwide that controls both passenger and commercial shipping service.
Under the proposed deal, Northwestern Pacific Railroad Co. would sell its track rights and equipment for $4 million, and the state would kick in almost $4 million more to repay debt owed to the company by a financially troubled state agency that oversees North Coast commercial rail operations.

Orange Line Subway (Boston, MA)

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Boston's Orange Line Subway (MBTA) arriving at the station stop.

Las Vegas Monorail pauses construction

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The Las Vegas Monorail Co. has suspended construction of two monorail stops on the Las Vegas Strip due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a local news report.

All monorail activities related to the company’s Mandalay Bay extension and Sands Avenue Station project, which include construction of a monorail stop at the future MSG Sphere entertainment venue, have been put on hold, a monorail spokesperson told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.

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