Doing my part for the NMRA

The Globe and Mail – Canada’s national newspaper – ran a story last week about a problem with the renovation at Toronto Union Station.

You can read the full article on the Globe’s website, but the gist of it is that clearance under the old train shed roof is too low to accommodate planned electrification of the area’s commuter train services. And the agency responsible for the renovation didn’t factor that into the plans – with the usual consequences of cost overruns, delays, yadda-yadda-yadda…

That sounds like bad layout design to me.

I realized this was a golden opportunity to give the hobby a shout-out, so I wrote a letter to the editor – published in today’s edition of the Globe:

 photo Letter-GM-2016-01-29_zpssa8q5x2m.jpg

Just doing my part…


14 thoughts on “Doing my part for the NMRA

  1. In between uses just imagine the tourist interest as well. Nothing like getting the family’s photo snapped in front of the 1:1 standards gauge while on vacation in Toronto.

    So, here’s the question. If you make an NMRA gauge for 1:1 what happens when none of the prototype’s wheels meet the standard since, I have this suspicion, they’ve been using their own finescale standard quite extensively (P1?)

  2. But the NMRA Standards Gauge does not account for the placement of overhead wire for electric operation. It is only for clearances for equipment.

  3. Too funny, Trevor.

    There were probably a bunch of design engineers in a room somewhere saying: “It should work”, after the initial designs were completed.

      • I suspect they have thought of it, and dismissed it for safety reasons. Remember these are ground-level platforms and all of the equipment that uses the train shed is designed for such (although VIA’s LRC cars are also designed for high level platforms because they go into central station in Montreal). So, third rail would be very exposed: it would be easy for the public to step on it when crossing tracks – which they’re not supposed to do, but which they do anyway. (That’s a whole other problem.)

  4. “But the NMRA Standards Gauge does not account for the placement of overhead wire for electric operation. It is only for clearances for equipment.”

    No problem, just add a wee space above for a wire. How much room can that take?



  5. The whole idea of electrification is complete BS anyways. Just another way for a corrupt government to send more tax payers money to their buddies.


  6. Now what to do? Drop the pans at Bathurst and tow the trains in with diesels or try and run them all into platform 23/24

  7. Or, use something less than 25kV in the shed at Union, and use some sort of electronic control gear on the engines. Also, use a rigid overhead, rather than a flexible overhead. Problems solved…it may be expensive in some ways, but it may be cheaper in others.

    Apparently, this is the reason why the UK had 6.25 kV in some areas…

    More than one way to skin a cat,

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