Author Topic: Muncie traffic woes  (Read 736 times)


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Muncie traffic woes
« on: October 04, 2019, 10:53:59 AM »
This appeared in my inbox this morning.  Complaints about a crossing on the NS Frankfort line in Muncie.

Muncie mayor complains about ongoing issue of stopped trains

Corey Ohlenkamp, Reporter/Photographer, (Muncie) Star Press
Thursday, October 3, 2019 7:25 PM

MUNCIE Public outrage about stopped trains blocking traffic in Muncie escalated this summer.

Wednesday, it was city officials' turn to vent, even though they admit solutions are difficult, at best.

The problem came up at the Muncie's board of works meeting Wednesday morning, with Mayor Dennis Tyler saying efforts to work on a solution likely won't go anywhere without state or federal help.

The issue was at the forefront following another incident Monday when emergency responders were having to navigate around a stopped train on Tillotson Avenue to respond to emergencies.

Social media posts and conversations with residents indicate this can be a semi-regular occurrence, especially on Tillotson. The crossing [at 400 S. Tillotson Ave] near McDonald's and Clancy's Car Wash has been a frequent spot cited by officials and residents as a problem because of the heavy vehicle traffic in that area.

In a rare move, Tyler addressed the board of works about the trains because they had been mentioned in a discussion about the city's ambulance service.

Tyler reference an Indiana Supreme Court case in 2018, where the court struck down a state law that allowed municipalities to fine railroads when stopped trains blocked a street for longer than 10 minutes.
Copyright 2019 The Star Press


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Re: Muncie traffic woes
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2019, 02:38:51 PM »
Its been bad on facebook groups.
Block swapping at Vernon with the reestablished branch traffic and no more Muncie Elkhart turn.

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Re: Muncie traffic woes
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2019, 10:40:01 AM »
I always thought that if the Frankfort District was signaled out to Nebo Rd./CR 600W and the Yard Limits eliminated, then eastbound trains wouldn't have to hit the curve east of Kilgore at restricted speed.  The eastbound signal at Vernon could display a clear instead of just an approach, and those trains could get to CP230 at 30 MPH instead of 10 MPH.  A signal further out (Nebo/600W) could display an advanced approach as well as clear.    At least the eastbound trains could get through NW Muncie more quickly than they do now and eliminate a lot of the traffic backups.  The last I heard, the curve from the Frankfort District to the New Castle district had a limit of 15 MPH, is that correct? 

As for westbound trains, I'm assuming those trains move slow because they're still technically in Yard Limits. If the Yard Limits were removed west of CP230, then couldn't westbound move at track speed instead of restricted speed? 

Instead of constantly complaining, the city administration should be working with NS, INDOT, and the FRA to secure funding to mitigate the issues that are causing the trains on the Frankfort District to block city streets. When the Frankfort District was a mainline, I don't remember all of these traffic issues happening, so make it a mainline again between CP230 out to CR 600W. 

Wish list items:  Move Vernon siding further west and make it a CTC siding and/or upgrade Muncie South yard to handle the switching currently done at Vernon. 
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Re: Muncie traffic woes
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2019, 07:27:31 PM »
There is talk among management to bring the 368/369 back which would eliminate set offs/pick ups at Vernon.  The congestion in Muncie on that side of town is giving NS a real black eye and the higher ups are feeling some heat.

 I do hope it happens and that would mean the 142/177 would run via Fort Wayne again
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