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American Public Transportation Association

 Technical Tours

APTA's 2011 Rail Conference is scheduled for June 12-15, 2011, at the Boston Marriott Copley Place in Boston, MA.

Please note that space is limited for some of the tours. As noted in the descriptions below, for these tours we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Last updated June 11, 2011.

 

Seashore Trolley Museum, Kennebunkport, ME

Saturday, June 11, 2011 - 8:50 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Founded in 1939, the Seashore Trolley Museum maintains the world’s largest collection of electric railway and other transit vehicles. Its dedicated cadre of volunteers presents a living history of public transportation through its operating, preservation, and educational programs. The APTA Streetcar Subcommittee has organized a one-day technical tour of the museum’s facilities. You're invited to visit displays on the history of mass transportation, explore three exhibition carbarns, and witness the craft of streetcar preservation firsthand in the restoration shop.

On Saturday, June 11, the technical tour departs Boston’s North Station at 8:50 a.m. aboard Amtrak Downeaster Train #691 to Saco, Maine and returns to Boston by 5:25 p.m. via Train #696. Please purchase your round-trip ticket in advance at www.amtrak.com. The museum provides local transport to and from Saco Station with its heritage bus fleet.

QUESTIONS? Contact APTA's Streetcar Subcommittee Vice Chair Tom Hickey at hickey@pbworld.com.

Blue Line Maintenance Facility Orient Heights Carhouse

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(25 person limit; tour also available on Wednesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m.)

Visit our 80,600 square foot Rapid Transit fleet maintenance facility. Built in the early 50’s and upgraded to six car operation beginning in 2001 to present. This facility is the primary location used to maintain the MBTA’s fleet of 94 Siemens subway cars and six work train vehicles. The facility contains inspection pits with fall protection, a wheel truing lathe, two train and truck lifts for heavy maintenance, electrical/electronics test room, a special area for maintaining the self-contained roof top HVAC units, as well as a train wash bay. All running repair and daily servicing of the fleet is done at this facility. This tour is a must for rail maintenance and operations staff.

Meet in the Marriott Copley Place lobby at 2 p.m. where you will depart as a group to begin the tour. Be sure to wear your conference badge and bring your complimentary transit pass.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Operations Control Center

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(15 person limit; tour also available on Wednesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m.)

Tour the MBTA’s state of the art Operations Control Center. The hub for MBTA operations and safety-related communications, the control center is equipped with wall-sized electronic monitors capable of closely tracking the location and movement of hundreds of subway cars and trolleys on all four Rapid Transit Lines (Red, Orange, Blue, and Green) around the clock. Supervisors and dispatchers constantly communicate with train crews and other subway personnel throughout the 63-mile Rapid Transit System that sees more than 2,600 trips a day. The OCC is also staffed by MBTA Transit Police, who monitor images from over 900 closed circuit television cameras in subway stations, platforms, and tunnels.

Meet in the Marriott Copley Place lobby at 2 p.m. where you will depart as a group to begin the tour. Be sure to wear your conference badge and bring your complimentary transit pass.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Commuter Rail Maintenance Facility

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(50 person limit; tour also available on Wednesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m. p.m.)

Visit our 370,000 square foot commuter rail fleet maintenance facility. Built in 1997, this facility is the primary location used to maintain the MBTA’s fleet of over 80 diesel locomotives and 410 push-pull commuter rail coaches. The facility contains support workshops for plumbing and electrical needs, a special fleet projects area, dedicated locations for coach and locomotive maintenance, running repair and daily servicing/fueling tracks, as well as three train wash bays. This tour is a must for rail maintenance and operations staff.

Shuttle buses depart from and return to the Marriott Copley Place's main entrance on Huntington Avenue at the times indicated above.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour days/times of your choice.

Everett Shops Subway Main Repair Facility, Everett, MA

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 9 - 11:30 a.m.

(20 person limit; tour also available on Wednesday, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)

Tour the MBTA’s Subway Main Repair Facility, one of two MBTA “backshops” available to support the needs of all MBTA divisions and departments. The Subway Shop primarily serves the train repair facilities (“carhouses”) of the four MBTA Heavy and Light Rail Subway lines. Get a behind the scenes look at the MBTA’s very own General Motors staffed with 130 trades people, including eight trades ranging from blacksmiths to electricians – responsible for the overhaul and repair of train components; fabricating and manufacturing parts for trains; and repairing train structure and car-body components.

The facility areas include: Machine Shop, Motor Room, Air Section, Blacksmith Area, Truck and Brake Shop, Control Area, Wheel Section, Painting, Shop Services, and Sheet Metal.

Shuttle buses depart from and return to the Marriott Copley Place's main entrance on Huntington Avenue at the times listed above.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Living History: Lowell National Historic Park

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - 1:45 - 6 p.m.

(40 person limit; please sign up on site at the host information desk)

Lowell National Historical Park was established in 1978 to preserve the American Industrial Revolution in Lowell in a unique fashion. The park offers visitors an in-depth look into the textile industry that was the heart of the city. The National Park Service transports visitors around the park with heritage streetcars built by the Gomaco Trolley Company -- the first authentic replica streetcars built in the United States. Tour participants will visit the streetcar shops and facilities as well as hear the plans to extend the streetcar beyond the boundaries of the park to serve the Lowell central business district.

The tour departs from and returns to the lobby of the Marriott Copley Place.

QUESTIONS? Contact PB's Tom Hickey at hickey@pbworld.com.

Operations Control Center

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(15 person limit; tour also available on Tuesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m.)

Tour the MBTA’s state of the art Operations Control Center. The hub for MBTA operations and safety-related communications, the control center is equipped with wall-sized electronic monitors capable of closely tracking the location and movement of hundreds of subway cars and trolleys on all four Rapid Transit Lines (Red, Orange, Blue, and Green) around the clock. Supervisors and dispatchers constantly communicate with train crews and other subway personnel throughout the 63-mile Rapid Transit System that sees more than 2,600 trips a day. The OCC is also staffed by MBTA Transit Police, who monitor images from over 900 closed circuit television cameras in subway stations, platforms, and tunnels.

Meet in the Marriott Copley Place lobby at 2 p.m. where you will depart as a group to begin the tour. Be sure to wear your conference badge and bring your complimentary transit pass.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Everett Shops Subway Main Repair Facility, Everett, MA

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 9 - 11:30 a.m.

(20 person limit; tour also available on Tuesday, 9 - 11:30 a.m.)

Tour the MBTA’s Subway Main Repair Facility, one of two MBTA “backshops” available to support the needs of all MBTA divisions and departments. The Subway Shop primarily serves the train repair facilities (“carhouses”) of the four MBTA Heavy and Light Rail Subway lines. Get a behind the scenes look at the MBTA’s very own General Motors staffed with 130 trades people, including eight trades ranging from blacksmiths to electricians – responsible for the overhaul and repair of train components; fabricating and manufacturing parts for trains; and repairing train structure and car-body components.

The facility areas include: Machine Shop, Motor Room, Air Section, Blacksmith Area, Truck and Brake Shop, Control Area, Wheel Section, Painting, Shop Services, and Sheet Metal.

Shuttle buses depart from and return to the Marriott Copley Place's main entrance on Huntington Avenue at the times listed above.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Commuter Rail Maintenance Facility

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(50 person limit; tour also available on Tuesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m.)

Visit our 370,000 square foot commuter rail fleet maintenance facility. Built in 1997, this facility is the primary location used to maintain the MBTA’s fleet of over 80 diesel locomotives and 410 push-pull commuter rail coaches. The facility contains support workshops for plumbing and electrical needs, a special fleet projects area, dedicated locations for coach and locomotive maintenance, running repair and daily servicing/fueling tracks, as well as three train wash bays. This tour is a must for rail maintenance and operations staff.

Shuttle buses depart from and return to the Marriott Copley Place's main entrance on Huntington Avenue at the times indicated above.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour days/times of your choice.

Blue Line Maintenance Facility Orient Heights Carhouse

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 1:30 - 4 p.m.

(25 person limit; tour also available on Tuesday, 1:30 - 4 p.m.)

Visit our 80,600 square foot Rapid Transit fleet maintenance facility. Built in the early 50’s and upgraded to six car operation beginning in 2001 to present. This facility is the primary location used to maintain the MBTA’s fleet of 94 Siemens subway cars and six work train vehicles. The facility contains inspection pits with fall protection, a wheel truing lathe, two train and truck lifts for heavy maintenance, electrical/electronics test room, a special area for maintaining the self-contained roof top HVAC units, as well as a train wash bay. All running repair and daily servicing of the fleet is done at this facility. This tour is a must for rail maintenance and operations staff.

Meet in the Marriott Copley Place lobby at 2 p.m. where you will depart as a group to begin the tour. Be sure to wear your conference badge and bring your complimentary transit pass.

Please note that each tour is limited in the number of persons that can participate. While advance registration is not necessary; we recommend that you sign up early on site at the host information desk for the tour day/times of your choice.

Self-Guided Tour: A Multimodal Tour of "Beantown"

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 1:30 - 5 p.m.

(80 person limit; please sign up on site and pick up a detailed tour itinerary at the host information desk)

High-speed rail, commuter rail, rail rapid transit, light rail, and streetcars. Is there a more diverse railway city than Boston? Experience the full range of “T” rail services from a passenger’s perspective in another signature multimodal tour conducted by PB’s Tom Hickey, immediate past chair of APTA's Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee. Take a 3½-hour loop through transit and history, starting and finishing in the lobby of the Marriott Copley Place. Join us for an incomparable multimodal experience!

QUESTIONS? Contact PB's Tom Hickey at hickey@pbworld.com.
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