Category Archives: Fantasy Surface Rail

Cindyville Fictional Transit System – Part 1

Greetings everyone!

In this installment of my fantasy transit systems series, I’m going to present to you another fictional city that I have a transit system for.

A map of the Cindyville rail system. The Blue and Red Lines are elevated rail lines, The Green and Yellow Lines are People Movers, and the Purple Line is a Commuter Rail Line. By HARTride 2012. ~ Click on the image to take a closer look.
A map of the Cindyville rail system. The Blue and Red Lines are elevated rail lines, The Green and Yellow Lines are People Movers, and the Purple Line is a Commuter Rail Line. By HARTride 2012. ~ Click on the image to take a closer look.

This is the fictional city of Cindyville, by which I had a decent bus system set up for (including schedules and route maps) before my old computer crashed. This map is the rail system that complements the bus lines and allows for fast service around the area.

RAIL LINES AND HISTORY OF THE SYSTEM

The blue and red lines are both elevated rail (like the Chicago El). The Blue Line was built first and opened in 1998 between Patsyville Airport and Cindyville Airport. The Red Line quickly followed, and opened in 2004 between Old Town and 22nd Ave S. The segment between 22nd Ave S and 75th Ave N opened in 2012. Both El lines are fully automated and operate similarly to that of the Paris Metro Line 14.

There is also a People Mover system around the Cindyville Airport, the Yellow Line, though it not yet complete to the south. The first link opened between Terminal 1 and the Transportation Center in 1998, along with the Blue Line El. The Terminal 2 station opened in 2003, and the link to Terminal 4 opened in 2008. Terminal 3 is planned, but will not be built anytime soon.

A second People Mover line, the Westside Connector, was actually the city’s first mode of rail transport, opening in 1987 as a demo line. The connector was nearly demolished in 1993 due to low ridership, but was saved after transit advocates were able to convince the city of Cindyville to extend the line to the Central Station and connect it to the then-proposed Blue Line El. The two original stations along the Westside Connector are 22nd Ave S and Riverwalk (which was originally called Lynnhaven Blvd). The third original station was called Mildred Park and was demolished in 1996 to make way for a 5 block extension to the Cindyville Central Station, which opened along with the Blue Line El in 1998. The Central Station serves as downtown Cindyville’s transit hub, serving various bus routes, the Blue Line El, the Westside Connector, and the Eastside Commuter Rail.

Speaking of which, the Eastside Commuter Rail is denoted in Purple and opened in 2004 as a quick and easy way for commuters in the east suburbs to avoid driving on the interstates. The commuter rail line is modeled after the Music City STAR in Nashville, TN.

SERVICE HOURS

Both the Blue and Red Line El’s run local service only, there is no express service at this time, although some stations along the Blue Line (Ridge Rd, Old Town, Central Station, 75th Ave N, and Patsyville Airport) are structured as four-track, three-platform stations to one day facilitate express service if the Blue Line is extended southward.

The Blue Line El operates 24/7, since it is a vital link between airports.

Weekday frequency is as follows:

  • Weekday peak frequency (4am to 9am, 3pm to 7pm) is 2 to 5 minutes.
  • Weekday midday frequency (9am to 3pm) is every 6 to 10 minutes.
  • Weekday evening frequency (7pm to 10pm) is every 15 minutes.
  • Weekday overnight frequency (10pm to 4am, Mon thru Thurs nights) is every 30 minutes.
  • On Friday nights, from 10pm to 2am (Saturday morning), frequency remains every 15 minutes to allow customers to enjoy city nightlife.

Weekend frequency is as follows:

  • Saturday early morning frequency (2am to 6am) is every 30 minutes.
  • Saturday morning frequency (6am to 9am) is every 15 minutes.
  • Saturday midday frequency (9am to 4pm) is every 20 minutes.
  • Saturday late afternoon/evening/late night frequency (4pm to 2am Sunday morning) is every 15 minutes to allow customers to enjoy city nightlife.
  • Sunday early morning frequency (2am to 6am) is every 30 minutes.
  • Sunday daytime/evening frequency (6am to 10pm) is every 20 minutes.
  • Sunday overnight frequency (10pm to 4am Monday morning) is every 30 minutes.

The Red Line El has more limited hours, since it runs along the eastern downtown beltway (freeway). Service is more like 24/5 (running continuously from 4am Monday until 2am Sunday morning). Beginning, November 3, 2013, service hours will improve along the Red Line, as the city of Cindyville has set aside additional funding for the transit system.

Weekday frequency is as follows:

  • Weekday peak frequency (4am to 9am, 3pm to 7pm) is 2 to 5 minutes.
  • Weekday midday frequency (9am to 3pm) is every 6 to 10 minutes.
  • Weekday evening frequency (7pm to 10pm) is every 15 minutes.
  • Weekday overnight frequency (10pm to 4am, Mon thru Thurs nights) is every 30 minutes.
  • On Friday nights, from 10pm to 2am (Saturday morning), frequency remains every 15 minutes to allow customers to enjoy city nightlife.

Weekend frequency is as follows:

  • Saturday early morning frequency (2am to 6am) is every 30 minutes.
  • Saturday daytime frequency (6am to 6pm) is every 20 minutes.
  • Saturday evening/late night frequency (6pm to 2am Sunday morning) is every 15 minutes to allow customers to enjoy city nightlife.
  • Service stops at 2am Sunday morning, and then resumes at 7am.
  • Sunday frequency is every 20 minutes all day (7am until end of service at 10pm).

Holiday service for both the Red and Blue Lines follow the same schedule/frequency as Sunday service.

This map placard would be seen inside Red and Blue Line trains. By HARTride 2012.
This map placard would be seen inside Red and Blue Line trains. By HARTride 2012.

The Westside Connector and Airport People Movers have varying hours, but frequent departures.

For the Westside Connector APM:

  • Service operates 24/7, including holidays.
  • Trains depart every 90 seconds on weekdays (from 4am Monday to 2am Saturday) and every 2 minutes during weekends and holidays.

For the Cindyville Airport APM:

  • Service operates 24/7, including holidays.
  • Trains depart every 90 seconds between 4am and 10pm, 7 days a week, including holidays.
  • Frequency decreases to every 2 minutes during the overnight (10pm to 4am).

The Eastside Commuter Rail operates Monday through Friday from 4:45am until 9am and from 3:15pm to 9pm. Service frequency varies between every 45 minutes to every hour. There is also additional late-night service on Friday nights (9pm until 12-midnight) to allow customers to enjoy city nightlife.

For those wishing to enjoy nightlife until 2am Saturday morning, and also on Saturday night, a supplemental motorcoach shuttle bus service (Cindyville RailOWL Shuttle) operates along the Eastside Commuter Rail corridor on Saturday mornings, departing the Cindyville Central Station at 12:15am, 12:45am, 1:15am, 1:45am, and 2:15am. Saturday night shuttles depart the Sanderson Station (serving all commuter rail stops) for inbound service every 15 minutes between 6pm and 10pm. Outbound service shuttles depart the Cindyville Central Station every 15 minutes between 9pm and 2:15am.

ROLLING STOCK

The Red Line El uses the CVX-1996 rubber-tyred automated railcars, which are based off the MP 89CA trains from the Paris Metro Line 14. These trains originally were distributed amongst the Blue and Red Lines, but operate solely on the Red Line since it was extended from 22nd Ave S to 75th Ave N in 2012. Trains run in 6-car configurations.

The Blue Line uses the CVX-2006 rubber-tyred automated railcars, which are based off the MP 05 trains from the Paris Metro Line 1. These trains have been in service along the Blue Line since 2011. Trains run in 10-car configurations.

Both the Westside Connector and Cindyville Airport APMs utilize Bombardier Innovia APM 100 cars in 3-car configurations.

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Fantasy Metro/Subway for Norfolk, VA – Part 3

In my third installment of my fantasy subway for the Hampton Roads, VA area, I focus on Line 3. Line 3 connects the two busy military hubs of Naval Station Norfolk and Naval Air Station Oceana via the Lynnhaven area and Norfolk International Airport. This particular line has 18 stations and is one of a few that have express service. To view the Google map of this route, click here.

Because Line 3 has express service, it is one of the few subway lines that follow a four track configuration (similar to some of the lines of the New York City subway) for most of its route (I’ll go through the exceptions in a later posting). Most stations encompass two island platforms, with the outer tracks facilitating local service and the inner tracks facilitating express service. Stations that are “skipped” during express service have barrier walls facing the express tracks. The line is also completely underground and connections are available to subway lines 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, and 7.

The rolling stock used for Line 3 is similar to that of the MP 89 from the Paris Metro, as Line 3 is one of the few rubber-tyred subway lines in the system. The other rubber-tyred lines in the fantasy Norfolk system include Lines 1, 4, 6, 7, 7A, and 10. The other lines utilize traditional steel wheel trains similar to those used on the New York City Subway. I will go over the rolling stock of the fantasy Norfolk system in a later posting.

Like my Line 7A map, I’ve listed all of the Line 3 stations on my Google Map.

Tampa Bay Fantasy Rail System – Part 2

As I mentioned in my last posting, I will be going over the Red Line of my fantasy light rail system for Tampa Bay. This is one of the key lines to this fantasy rail system, as it links the community of Wesley Chapel to the USF area, downtown Tampa, and MacDill Air Force Base. This fantasy corridor mostly utilizes existing CSX rail lines, while the northernmost and southernmost portions are along roadway medians. To view a route map that I’ve created via Google Maps, click here.

In reality, a corridor like this is very much possible, being that it would mostly run along existing freight rail lines. The southern terminus is near the main gate of MacDill AFB, where it would easily be able to pick up military personnel working at the base. The route would then run along the median of Dale Mabry Hwy until it reaches the CSX freight rail line that runs alongside the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway. There would be a stop at Gandy Blvd before the Red Line transfers onto the freight rail line.

From there, the line would travel towards downtown Tampa, making stops at Bay to Bay Blvd (Palma Ceia Station), Hyde Park/Swann Ave, and Kennedy Blvd (to serve the University of Tampa). Once in downtown, the Red Line would connect to the Navy Line loop, which acts at the eastern terminus of the Navy Line LRT. There would be two stations in downtown Tampa: one at Ashley Dr, and one at Nebraska Ave (by Tampa’s Union Station).

Next, the Red Line would enter Ybor City, making a stop in the heart of the historic district near the TECOline Streetcar Line and 6th Ave. The line would then switch over to the freight rail line that runs northward towards Florida Ave and I-275.  There would be subsequent stops at Columbus Dr, MLK Blvd, Hillsborough Ave, Sligh Ave, and Busch Blvd.

Any light rail link into the USF area is vital, which is why I’ve made the Red Line utilize the freight rail line that lies just south of Fowler Ave. The line would then shift northward once reaching Bruce B. Downs Blvd; making 2 stops by the USF Tampa Campus. The next couple of stops include Bearss Ave and Cypress Preserve Dr (Tampa Palms Station).

The final, and northernmost section of the Red Line crosses underneath I-75, running through the median of Bruce B. Downs Blvd, and enters into New Tampa and Wesley Chapel. The final stops here include Cross Creek Blvd, a provisional station at County Line Rd, State Rd 56 (next to Wiregrass), and State Rd 54. At State Rd 54, there would be a commuter rail link that would allow connection from eastern Pasco County into Pinellas County.

Although the stations that I mentioned above would serve most of the population centers surrounding the line, things could change. Originally, I had more stations put in on the map, but then realized that there were just too many to be able to run efficient service in real life. After all, that’s why we have local bus service, to provide feeder service to the rail stops. As for express service…yes, this line does operate express service by which a few stations are skipped during the height of rush hour. For instance; express service between downtown Tampa and MacDill would involve the Kennedy Blvd station being skipped. Express service between downtown and Wesley Chapel would involve the Columbus Dr, Hillsborough Ave, Sligh Ave, and Bearss Ave stations being skipped. The skipped stations would have a provision of a third track to allow express trains to easily bypass these stations.

In my next post, I will go over Line 3 of the Norfolk, VA fantasy subway. Please feel free to comment if you have anything to share!

 

Warmest Regards,

HARTride 2012

Tampa Bay Fantasy Rail System – Part 1

Hi everyone,

As I mentioned earlier this month, I will be posting some things about a fantasy rail system that I started working on for the Tampa area during the course of 2010.

At the time that I began working on this fantasy system, Hillsborough Area Regional Transit was promoting a one cent sales tax increase for Hillsborough County to help fund road construction and transit improvements. The plan was very ambitious and included several light rail and bus rapid transit lines. However, the plan left many questions to be answered, thus confusing a lot of voters. On top of that, the economy was still in a very bad state and many anti-tax conservatives were lumping the sales tax hike with President Obama’s high speed rail plan. All of the massive confusion led to a massive defeat of the sales tax. After the defeat of the sales tax referendum, Governor Rick Scott pulled the plug on Florida’s high speed rail plan. With much of Tampa’s transit ambitions dashed, I halted all work on my fantasy rail system until a later time.

Fast forward to 2013: Pinellas County is gearing up for their own transit expansion plan and the chatter about rail has restarted, being led this time by the grassroots efforts of Connect Tampa Bay. Therefore, I have decided to go ahead and restart my fantasy rail system project for the Tampa area.

To read more about this project, click “Continue Reading”.

Continue reading Tampa Bay Fantasy Rail System – Part 1

Tampa LRT – Red Line


Every two weeks or so, I will unveil a component of my vision for the Tampa area LRT.

To start things off, here’s the Red Line, which would connect South Tampa to Wesley Chapel via Downtown Tampa.

The main stops along this route include:

  • Marion Transit Center (Downtown Tampa) – Orange, Navy, & Green Lines
  • University Area Transit Center – Pink, Purple, & Olive Lines
  • University Mall – Purple Line

Speaking of the Olive Line, this is an additional route not included in my original system map. The Olive Line is basically a short route that connects the UATC to Busch Gardens. Trains would run every 20 minutes begining a 40 minutes before the park opens, until 40 minutes after the park closes. Adventure Island would also be served by this hypothetical line.

Also note here, that Britton Plaza, University Mall, Tampa Palms, New Tampa, & Wesley Chapel stations are all equipped with Park-n-Ride lots.