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Thread: Merseyrail- Heavy Rail to Light Rail

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Default Merseyrail- Heavy Rail to Light Rail

    Merseyrail heavy rail rolling stock is in need of replacement. One approach is to replace gradually the existing heavy rail rolling stock with cheaper light rail rolling stock, similar to use on the London Docklands Light Railway. This would give more cars to a train, however in off-peak times only a few of these shorter, more economical to run cars need be used.


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    A great advantage is that smaller light rail cars can negotiate tighter curves than longer heavy rail train cars. This entails tighter curves when extending Merseyrail, like out of the Wapping and Waterloo tunnels.

    On certain lines heavy rail dual power trains could remain, such as the proposed Wrexham to Liverpool Line when electrified.

    Below: Docklands Light Railway train:
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    One approach is to replace gradually the existing heavy rail rolling stock with cheaper light rail rolling stock, similar to use on the London Docklands Light Railway. This would give more cars to a train,
    There is no logical explanation how that would 'give more cars to a train'. The number of cars to a train has no corrolation to the design or weight of them.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robt View Post
    There is no logical explanation how that would 'give more cars to a train'. The number of cars to a train has no corrolation to the design or weight of them.
    You missed the point and I was not clear. Shorter Light-Rail cars would give more cars per train if the full platform length is used. Shorter cars means a train can negotiate tighter curves, which means train could come out of the Waterloo Tunnel and be on a tight curve to branch onto the Northern Line. Also to manoeuvre around the docks as in London's Docklands.

    Light-Rail cars also means trains could be much shorter on off-peak times but more frequent - using improved signalling systems of course.
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    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


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    Pablo42 pablo42's Avatar
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    I thought the carriages were on bogies. How do shorter carriages make any difference.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pablo42 View Post
    I thought the carriages were on bogies. How do shorter carriages make any difference.
    The existing long carriages have a minimum curve in which to roll through. Short London Dockland's Light-Railway style of cars are very nibble, negotiating very tight curves around Docklands.

    Liverpool needs more stations in the centre and inner-city around the centre to make it a true metro of frequent trains and people using it to get from district to district. Extending the Network The Wirral Loop was supposed to be used as a means of getting around the city centre. It failed as few use it for that. It would have been better if the old Wirral Line after James St at the now Paradise St junction, was tunnelled into the Waterloo Tunnel. The Link tunnel from Central to Moorfields would cross this at Lime St and large station cut here. Central Stn could have been done away with. The large Lime St station (the existing is under St. George's Hall)), could have had long moving walkways to various exits. One exit at the location of Central, another at Lime St Stn, One at Williamson Square, dale St, etc.

    The Wirral train would have run through the city centre, through Lime St underground, up the Waterloo Tunnel, a station at the Royal Hospital and onto St. Helens, or either way, north or south onto the Outer Loop Line.

    It would have been cheaper than boring the full Wirral Line single track tunnel.

    Below: The Paradise St Junction. Three tunnels Looking north. The old James St to Central Stn tunnel to the left (not used for passengers, only shunting trains) The other two are the Northern Line to Moorfields run in separate tunnels.


    Below the 1970s Wirral Loop and Link Tunnel plan. Alternatives to use either Wapping or Victoria/Waterloo Tunnels plan. The Paradise St Junction can be seen. The Loop line in green, does not run under Lime St Stn.
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    how it once was?


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    So it can only be done with DLR type coaches.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pablo42 View Post
    So it can only be done with DLR type coaches.
    For tight turning curves, yes. Well the curves are far tighter than the existing heavy-rail carriages. Light-rail means cheaper lighter trackbeds and cheaper concrete, longer span bridges over water. The rolling stock is due for renewal and the DofT may have a say in what rolling stock is used - something tells me they may insist on Light-Rail train. It just makes so much sense when Liverpool is expanding and getting a full comprehensive metro system is what is needed.

    The Dpt of Transport say:
    Discussions between Merseytravel and the Department about new rolling stock for Merseyrail are at a very early stage. This is a matter for Merseytravel and Merseyrail but the Department has an interest as we provide the majority of the financial support for the Merseyrail train operating concession. No decisions have yet been made about the type of rolling stock which may be required.





    The new Amsterdam at Liverpool?
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    Deprived of its unique dockland waters Liverpool
    becomes a Venice without canals, just another city, no
    longer of special interest to anyone, least of all the
    tourist. Would we visit a modernised Venice of filled in
    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


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    Great pics WW. There was a guy today on the radio, Roger Phillips show, and he was saying that they aint given up on the tram idea yet. He said they were gonna have another go for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pablo42 View Post
    Great pics WW. There was a guy today on the radio, Roger Phillips show, and he was saying that they aint given up on the tram idea yet. He said they were gonna have another go for it.
    Deluded fools. They have wasted a decade already. If they put in proposals extend Merseyrail into a true metro, most would have been operational by now.

    To have two stadia being planned at the same time in one city and rapid-transit rail not a part of it shows how amateurish the city is. Combining the two, kills birds with one stone.
    The new Amsterdam at Liverpool?
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    Deprived of its unique dockland waters Liverpool
    becomes a Venice without canals, just another city, no
    longer of special interest to anyone, least of all the
    tourist. Would we visit a modernised Venice of filled in
    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    I have no experience with the rail industry, which makes me better qualified.
    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    It is a glorified bus service trundling around one area. The Tube does the rapid transit side in and out.

    It could do more if it was designed in from the beginning. To be fair the DLR is not that bad now!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    The DLR is a prime example of how not to do it. I have been on the DLR many times - it is like being on a fairground ride.
    Somebody has changed their tune. Maybe they actually learnt about what they are talking about.

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    Quote Originally Posted by robt View Post
    Somebody has changed their tune. Maybe they actually learnt about what they are talking about.
    I know exactly what I am talking about. The confusion lies with you.

    The DLR has many poor points. It is a segregated metro network using "light-rail" trains. It is not a tram system, which is a sort of bus system running on streets. Merseyrail is a hybrid of metro/commuter-rail, so not directly comparable the DLR. A poor point was the train capacity. Not big enough and too few of them for the volume of people to shift. That has been rectified to a point. Or more likely the Jubilee Line went through Docklands to alleviate the DLR problem. The DLR is great for off-peak times. The tube takes some loadings at peak times. The DLR only runs around Docklands and extends to changing stations at the periphery with London Underground. People do have to change at the periphery any more.

    Their system would be suitable for Liverpool Waters, it lacked in Docklands as a mean of getting into Dockland quickly from outside. Liverpool Waters has water to one side and much smaller than Docklands. Light-rail trains could be in Liverpool Waters and run in all parts of Merseyrail. The light passenger use nature of Merseyrail during off-peak times mean light-rail trains is highly attractive.

    One good thing they have is rolling stock that is loosely applicable to Merseyside extending onto the Wirral and Liverpool Waters and negotiating tight curves exiting from the likes of the Waterloo Tunnel and U turn at Molllington St in Birkenhead. Light-Rail rolling stock would give a much more flexible and cheaper system when expanding. Merseyside of course would have rolling stock to their own requirements and highly unlikely the same as the DLR.
    The new Amsterdam at Liverpool?
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    Deprived of its unique dockland waters Liverpool
    becomes a Venice without canals, just another city, no
    longer of special interest to anyone, least of all the
    tourist. Would we visit a modernised Venice of filled in
    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


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    Yes WW, I've been on the DLR and tend to agree with you. It is a little like a fairground ride, but a good system all in all.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pablo42 View Post
    Yes WW, I've been on the DLR and tend to agree with you. It is a little like a fairground ride, but a good system all in all.
    The DLR is great at getting around Docklands - its prime role. Passengers had to change to the DLR at the peripherals of Docklands from Southern Rail/London Underground - heavy-rail. This was a big problem in shifting people into the office complexes as the DLR could not cope. Now the Jubilee Line runs righ through Docklands and the DLR has been extended to stations where it is easy to change onto Southern Rail/London Underground.

    A version of the trains to Merseyrail's specifications could be used on all of Merseyrail - the DLR trains are from the 1980s, technology moves on. The great thing is that during the day the frequencies can be greater as trains with one or two cars can be used. They are driverless so costs are minimal.

    Heavy-rail is a left over from yesterdays technology. Light-rail trains can go as fast.

    BTW, the first light-rail trains were on the Liverpool Overhead railway.

    Note: trams are not light-light, they are street buses on rails. The US call them streetcars, which is apt.
    The new Amsterdam at Liverpool?
    Save Liverpool Docks and Waterways - Click

    Deprived of its unique dockland waters Liverpool
    becomes a Venice without canals, just another city, no
    longer of special interest to anyone, least of all the
    tourist. Would we visit a modernised Venice of filled in
    canals to view its modern museum describing
    how it once was?


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    Nice bit of homework WW.

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    Cressington Station on Merseyrail, with it`s purple bin,spoiling the rural setting. it already has original metal bin attached to the wall opposite.and
    a plastic one on the platform
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    Great pictures Joe.

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    Nice pics, GD. I'm 10 mins from getting to work at that station.

    That's what train stations should be like, except for the concreted doors and windows of the old waiting areas

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