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GO Transit: Service thread (including extensions)

Can anyone explain why the Milton train regularly has to stop at signals and let other trains pass? We actually got stopped at 2 signals today instead of the usual 1. Stop, let another train go, and then wait some more. Pretty frustrating being on a train that’s behind schedule and watching other trains pass…
Because it's on a rented CP line and CP gives it's own trains priority.
 
I presume you have seen how crammed the trains are heading to Niagara in the summer?
Your original post suggests that GO doesn't.

The reality is that these trains too are packed long before they get to the outlying stations.
Sometimes they are....sometimes they aren't. GO knows when and where they are.

But there are also limitations to what GO can do. I'm sure that they would like to run far more trains to Niagara Falls in the summer, but aren't able/allowed to.

Dan
 
To be clear, I meant we are letting other GO trains pass. I never see freight trains when I’m on the train.
Where exactly were you stopped? The Milton line is a single-direction service; there is no point where a train on that line would have to wait for other GO trains except when it gets too close to Union. As for why it would have to stop before entering Union Station, there are several reasons: the earlier Milton train may have been delayed, so the platform might not have been available, and/or other trains coming from other lines could have been delayed more significantly and therefore were of higher priority to get into the station perhaps needing to cross over in front of your train hence why yours had to stop to let them through.
 
Where exactly were you stopped? The Milton line is a single-direction service; there is no point where a train on that line would have to wait for other GO trains except when it gets too close to Union. As for why it would have to stop before entering Union Station, there are several reasons: the earlier Milton train may have been delayed, so the platform might not have been available, and/or other trains coming from other lines could have been delayed more significantly and therefore were of higher priority to get into the station perhaps needing to cross over in front of your train hence why yours had to stop to let them through.
Never said it was another Milton train, just another GO train. It’s usually in the vicinity of the underpass and the train that passed us today was on our right/north of us, but I can’t say it always is. Train didn’t pull into Union until 8:55 am (it left Cooksville at 8:15). But it seems majority of the time we get stopped there and normally have another train pass us.
 
Never said it was another Milton train, just another GO train. It’s usually in the vicinity of the underpass and the train that passed us today was on our right/north of us, but I can’t say it always is. Train didn’t pull into Union until 8:55 am (it left Cooksville at 8:15). But it seems majority of the time we get stopped there and normally have another train pass us.
Is another train on the same platform first?

There must be some congestion at Union in peak, with all the construction. I've only taken Milton westbound, but I've certainly been on other trains waiting. Is the waiting on that Milton train worse than other times or lines?
 
Is another train on the same platform first?

There must be some congestion at Union in peak, with all the construction. I've only taken Milton westbound, but I've certainly been on other trains waiting. Is the waiting on that Milton train worse than other times or lines?
We normally get put all the way at platform 21, and I have no idea if any other trains are using that platform in the morning. Seems the worst/furthest platform to be put at when I have to walk north.

And I have no idea how other lines are at peak. The only other line I've taken is Lakeshore and the times I've taken it I never noticed the kind of daily delays we get on the Milton train 2720.
 
Stopped at a signal again today. Here’s a screenshot of where. Front Street and Portland is the closest intersection. At least we didn’t stop as long today.

IMG_2142.png
 
So, here's the scoop....

The reason why you're sitting there could be one of a number of different issues. These are all generalities, but they're the most common and likely ones.

- Your train is early. You have arrived at Union out of sequence, and so you get parked to wait for your turn.
-> They can't just put you on another platform track, maybe because another platform track is not open. Or one is, but would require routing you onto a track that may result in delays to a different train or trains.

- Your train is late. You have arrived at Union out of sequence, and so you get parked until the RTC can find a place & time to slot you in.
-> They can't just put you on another platform track, maybe because another platform track is not open. Or one is, but would require routing you onto a track that may result in delays to a different train or trains.

- The train ahead of you is late. You have arrived at Union on time and in sequence, but the train occupying the platform that you guys are headed to is in the way.
-> They can't just put you on another platform track, maybe because another platform track is not open. Or one is, but would require routing you onto a track that may result in delays to a different train or trains.

- Your train is on time. The train ahead of you is on time. The schedule is so padded that if you are on time you are forced to wait until the train ahead moves along.
-> Honestly, this is the most likely case.

There are certainly other possibilities - the RTC's are worked hard during rush hours, and there's absolutely been cases when trains have been delayed because they missed/forgot about it. Or there could be a work block occupying a track, and so all of the service - both revenue, and non-revenue deadheads - need to operate on one track less, meaning that trains need to get slotted in one-after-another. But these reasons are one-offs, and unlikely to happen on a daily basis. The ones above are more likely to be recurring.

One other thing - given the choice, it is easier for an RTC to further delay a single train than to make a maneuver that would minimize the delays to that single train but result in delays to multiple other trains. They follow a "grid" which tells them what train should be in what place and at what time - and if a train falls out of that sequence, the grid will take precedence.

Dan
 
^ The desire is there. Track capacity to deal with pinch points with CN required, between Bramalea and Georgetown. If you look at the latest Capital Project Group report for the recent Metrolinx Board meeting, they hint at work that will happen on the CN Halton Sub for the Kitchener Line. Expropriation is either ongoing or complete for the Silver Grade Separation at the Credit River, but no news from the Province if the actual infrastructure is funded and moving ahead. The third platform design contract for the Brampton Station has been awarded. It would be for a third track at that location.

Also @sebajun see this post from February 2024.

 

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