Technical Reports

Northeast Corridor High Speed Rail Passenger Service Improvement Study: Task 3 - Track & Structures Upgrading Standards Development

  • 01
  • Sep
  • 1975
AUTHOR: R. P. Howell, R. A. Kendall, G. M. Magee, M. C. Holowaty, K. J. Holness, R. Lukoff, T. Ferrara
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: FRA-ONECD-75-3
SUBJECT: High-Speed Passenger Rail, Tracks & Structures
KEYWORDS: Level of Service, Concrete Tie, Wood Tie, Ballasted Track, Ballastless Track, Bridges, Track Modulus, Life Cycle
ABSTRACT: Track and structure characteristics and problem areas to be encountered in upgrading the Corridor are discussed. Standards considerations and applicability are outlined along with the maintenance history of the Corridor. Track system options for application to 150 MPH High Speed Rail (HSR) service are discussed and performance records examined. Concrete ties, fastener systems and ballastless track (concrete slab) are considered with wood tie track in a structural and cost effective investigation. Factors of type and frequency level of HSR train service and potential joint usage with freight movements are projected for these analyses. With this information, design parameters such as lateral and vertical track stability are investigated and established. On basis of structural integrity, selected track system candidates are costed over a 50 year life cycle of construction and maintenance. All projected maintenance items are described in detail with cycle rationale delineated. As a result, ballastless track is rejected and both concrete and wood tie ballasted track system with 132# rail are recommended for applications to designated segments of the HSR System. Recommended standards for roadway section, subgrade, drainage, horizontal and vertical alignment, track structure components, turnouts and track geometry parameters are described. Bridge and tunnel standards are also designated. Maintenance organization, demonstration and system implementation programs are identified.
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