The odds won’t be in Columbus’ drivers favor when more than double the number of trains begin traveling on the railroad line bisecting Columbus within two years.
Columbus Redevelopment Commission members got their first look at the potential impact on the city when American Structurepoint consultants Monday presented an analysis of how the increasing number of longer trains will affect residents and commuters.
And while commission members questioned a few of the consultant’s conclusions, John Dorenbusch, commission vice president and a member of the committee studying the issue, cautioned that the waits drivers experience now for trains at State Road 46 on the west side of downtown could double by 2018.
The northbound longer, faster and heavier CSX trains are expected to increase the current wait time at the State Road 46 crossing of about 13 minutes now for eastbound traffic to about 20 minutes in 2018 — and grow to 40-minute delays by 2036. Those times reflect what will happen if nothing is done to change the rail crossing configuration, the consultants said, describing the estimates as large and staggering.
The delays take into account increasing traffic projected for State Road 46 and the impact of having 22 longer trains a day passing through Columbus, compared to eight now.
For more on this story, see Wednesday’s Republic.