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Thu May 26, 2016, 10:39 AM

Virginia: Construction of Roanoke's Amtrak platform expected to start this fall, state says

Cross-posted, because one of the posters is a civil engineer who goes into why the new construction has to be ADA-compliant.

Hat tip, Trainorders: Passenger Trains > Roanoke platform construction to start

Building of Roanoke's Amtrak platform expected to start this fall, state says

Posted: Monday, May 23, 2016 5:15 pm

By Jeff Sturgeon jeff.sturgeon@roanoke.com 981-3251

Crews will build downtown Roanoke’s Amtrak platform starting this fall, one year before the expected start of passenger train service, a state official said.

The $9.9 million platform will parallel the tracks for more than 800 feet near Norfolk Avenue, with 600 feet of the waiting area covered by a canopy, according to current plans.

Officials have said the platform will sit level with the train car’s floor to permit level boarding, a convenience found at no other Virginia Amtrak station.

Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation spokeswoman Bethany Wolfe said Amtrak plans to begin service in the “fall of 2017” between Roanoke and all its Northeast corridor stops.

Date: 05/25/16 15:02
Re: Roanoke platform construction to start
Author: abyler

knotch8 Wrote:
> No, Roanoke shouldn't necessarily get high-level
> platforms. North Carolina's service and its
> future are fairly well tied into the Northeast
> Corridor, but they haven't made the extremely
> expensive investment of full-length high-level
> platforms, just because the NEC does.

They will.

> And it's snarky of you to call not wanting to
> spend $9 million on full-length high-level
> platforms a "Jim Crow for disabled people." That

Well, that is what it is. The behavior is the same behavior we saw after Brown vs. Board of Education in 54, where it took until the Nixon Administration during 68-72 for any serious desegregation to occur. ADA was passed in 1990 - 26 years ago! Amtrak and several other passenger railroads dragged their feet for 20 years pretending to not understand what the law required or claiming compliance was impossible. How many station projects were carried out and how much equipment was bought during that time and tried to dodge the requirements of the law? Dozens, if not hundreds of stations, and hundreds of cars. Some agencies only began to grudgingly comply in the mid 2000's, meaning 15 years of capital programs were wasted building non-compliant infrastructure. If you want to bring up costs, why don't you bring that up?

> opinion is why people decide to build nothing at
> all, instead of being prudent with expenses and
> making accommodations in order to do a
> cost-benefit analysis. The extremely high costs

People's civil rights are not subject to a cost-benefit analysis.

> of engineering projects in the US is why more and
> more things don't get done.

Station construction costs were much lower in the 1990's before the big run up after 2004 in energy and material costs for concrete and steel, and construction labor. People whining about costs now to meet legally required accomodation of all Americans should not have been obstructionists back then, which is what they were given the lawsuits required to get any action on this topic.

Now that there is no more dodging the law, we have to hear about how expensive it is to comply with it. Well tough luck. Treating all Americans fairly is not an impediment to projects being completed. And pretending the wealthiest country on earth can't afford basic decent treatment of its own vulnerable citizens is bullcrap. Lastly, the high costs of projects is often driven by a refusal to provide consistent funding to complete the overall work. If there were a steady stream of projects using standard plans and material, material and construction costs would drop significantly. At least one agency (SEPTA) demonstrated this point by builidng in a span of about 10 years with dedicated in-house crews numerous useful, tasteful, beautiful, and compliant projects with pre-fab uniform material and plans for very reasonable costs (SEPTA's completed projects included the following: Melrose Park, Fort Washington, Ambler, North Wales, Lansdale-9th St., Colmar, Link Belt, Chalfont, New Britain, Del Val College, Olney, Cheltenham, Ryers, Allen Lane, Primos - a number of these included not just platforms but new station buildings)

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Reply Virginia: Construction of Roanoke's Amtrak platform expected to start this fall, state says (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves May 2016 OP
SheilaT May 2016 #1

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Thu May 26, 2016, 10:54 AM

1. It's about time.


I'm not disabled, but I'm short, all of 5'1 1/2", so sometimes things are too high for me to reach. In places like a supermarket that's not a problem, because I'll ask a taller person to assist me, and they always do.

But sometimes in public restrooms the paper towel dispenser will be rather high up. I can always reach them, but I occasional wonder about a Little Person who might be using that facility. In one hotel that I regularly attend a conference in, inside each stall in the ladies' room near the meeting spaces, there's a hook to hang a purse. It is so high up I cannot reach it. One of these years I'm going to have a discussion with management about it.

And those issues are completely trivial, compared to what someone in a wheelchair faces every day.

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