Comment 116279

By mdrejhon (registered) - website | Posted January 30, 2016 at 15:20:41 in reply to Comment 115742

It does vary some, due to freight considerations.

But, I've definitely seen several Niagara trains take less than an hour, on gotracker.ca (all GO trains are GPS tracked and you can watch them moving in real time...)

Here's railfanning proof, by multiple watchers:

This train was almost half an hour late in departing, at ~18:15. By 18:57, it was already entering West Harbour only 42 minutes later (see screenshot), creeping slowly for five minutes to finally stop at 19:02. imgur

And:

Imgur

Approximate values, of course. The max rail speed limit along Lakeshore West is 90mph/145kph, which I have definitely observed on my GPS speedometer app on my iPhone. So, express GO trains can go that fast, if the railroad is clear and the train is late...

Railfanning observations: thread, thread, thread

That GO train took only 30 minutes from Union to Burlington. Without breaking the railroad speed limits. Whee!

There is an absurd amount of padding in train schedules to accomodate ability to catch up when late, as well as freight and Welland Canal delays, so 65 minutes may actually be more common, but they go faster than that from time to time...

Also, there are some stations on the GO network that only adds 2 minutes extra to the GO train timetable (that's the Danforth station being added to the Stoufville line last year). West Harbour is an efficient stop due to the low rail speed limit due to the lake curve and freight yard, and should be an insignificant impact on a 2-hour trip. Also, I've seen GO trains regularly enter a station platform at over 70kph (according to my GPS speedometer) and stop by the end of the platform (300 meters); the darn weighty trains are really fast at braking. The Niagara trains are shorter/lighter, so they accelerate faster (more than 1kph/second) and they don't need to accelerate much in the West Harbour area due to the rail speed limit through Hamilton anyway... So West Harbour GO is a relatively efficient (schedule-wise) of a stop.

Also, there is already right now, ongoing construction pictured on UrbanToronto to expand the Hamilton Junction near Cootes Paradise with a new rail bridge being built in 2016. So this will dramatically reduce conflict between freight trains and GO trains, so they may even be able to make the schedule more aggressive than it is today, in order to compete with GO bus times to justify the upcoming all-day GO service that replaces a lot of Hamilton 16 Expresses...

Comment edited by mdrejhon on 2016-01-30 15:42:16

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