Railway Grade Separations 1.Introduction Qualifications/experience to undertake bridge planning for railway grade separations: Must have good working knowledge of geometric design of roadway facilities. Must have good working knowledge of the TAC and AT’s guidelines.
Railway Grade Separations Must have good working knowledge of bridge planning with regard to undertaking life cycle costs, bridge assessments, written reports, among other things. Must have a good working knowledge of the different structure types and must be able to work out preliminary structure cost estimates.
Railway Grade Separations Must be able to communicate with the Agency, Transport Canada and the Railway companies both verbally and in written form. Must be aware of the environmental requirements that are associated with a grade separation approval.
Railway Grade Separations Must have a good working knowledge of assembling Design Data drawings and structure outline drawings.
Railway Grade Separations Under the Canadian Transportation Act (CTA), which came into effect on July 1, 1996, the Railway and Road Authorities are expected to reach an agreement between themselves on crossing matters. If a mutually acceptable agreement is not possible or if either party needs to have the matter resolved in no more than 120 days, an application may be made to the Agency.
Railway Grade Separations 2.Project Initiation and Preliminary Assessment Road Authority identifies project and places it on their current program Project is classified as being associated with either road construction or spot improvement
Railway Grade Separations All previous files, reports, approvals, agreements, Board Orders, etc. are reviewed to determine the background of the crossing. Previous Orders, Decisions and Agreements can be obtained from the Agency in Ottawa. The cross-product between vehicles and trains is also determined at this stage.
Railway Grade Separations The feasibility of constructing a grade separation vs. an at-grade crossing is assessed and a decision made on the best course of action for the site. A site inspection is encouraged during the preliminary assessment stage.
Railway Grade Separations The Railway is contacted to determine their requirements in writing. –Clearance box, number of tracks required, ditch section, track superelevation if on curve, etc. Determine what constitutes the Basic Grade Separation. –Review the proposed structure types selected for the site to determine their acceptability.
Railway Grade Separations Upon receiving the Railway’s input, various structure alternatives are produced. Life cycle costing is undertaken where applicable. In summary, a complete functional planning study is undertaken to establish the alignment, over vs. under, standards, preliminary costs, life cycle costs, and recommendations.
Railway Grade Separations A report is produced that summarizes all the findings. The bridge planner is involved in carrying out the analysis and producing the final report.
Railway Grade Separations 3.Preliminary Engineering and Preparation of Design Data (DD) Drawings Survey and geotechnical information, environmental studies, historical impact overview, etc. are gathered.
Railway Grade Separations A determination is made as to who is senior at the crossing, i.e. who has responsibility at the crossing with respect to cost apportionment. A position is developed for the crossing with respect to the clearance box and cost apportionment.
Railway Grade Separations The Railways are again contacted at this stage to determine if the previous information that they supplied is still current. It is desirable at this stage to select the best grade separation option for the crossing. It may be necessary to discuss the different options with the Railway, if required.
Railway Grade Separations When a final recommended grade separation alternative has been selected, DD drawings are produced. The DD drawings are in accordance with Alberta Transportation’s Engineering Consultant Guidelines for Highway and Bridge projects.
Railway Grade Separations At this stage, a structure outline drawing is also produced that indicates the type of structure.
Railway Grade Separations 4.Negotiation of an Agreement with the Railway Upon Completion of the Design Data and structure outline drawings, negotiations are commenced with the Railway to produce an agreement to carry out the work. The agreement, when completed, is forwarded to the Agency for their files and records. The agreement becomes an Order of the Agency.
Railway Grade Separations In the event that an agreement cannot be reached with the Railway due to issues with dispute, an application is submitted to the Agency requesting them to arbitrate the issues.
Railway Grade Separations The Agency issues a Decision with regard to the issues in dispute which enables the Road Authority and the Railway to complete their agreement allowing construction to proceed.
Railway Grade Separations 5.Submission of the “Notice of Works” Upon completion of the Design Data (DD) drawings, a “Notice of Works” is also forwarded to the landowners, located in the four adjacent quadrants of the project.
Railway Grade Separations A copy of the “Notice of Works” is also forwarded to Transport Canada, the Railway, and the Agency for their comments. Transport Canada is involved if there is a safety issue arising from the Notice. In this case, approval must be received from Transport Canada before construction of the project commences.
Railway Grade Separations 6.Preparation of a CTA Submission CTA’s application procedure Preparation of the environmental assessment Cost apportionment guidelines
Railway Grade Separations Determination of the basic grade separation and future facilities Determination of the grade separation costs Determination of maintenance responsibility
Railway Grade Separations 7.Approval of Detail Structure Drawings In the case of an overhead bridge, the Road Authority must provide the Railway with a set of detailed structure drawings for their review. Similarly, if a subway is involved the Railway must submit a set of their detailed structure drawings to the Road Authority for their review.
Railway Grade Separations The Agency should receive a copy of the correspondence that this review has taken place. The Agency does not review the drawings for detail or content and no longer approves the drawings.
Railway Grade Separations 8.Summary It is essential that the proper procedures are followed at the at-grade stage, for example transfer of seniority, in order to establish the responsibilities of each party involved. These responsibilities are carried forth for many years and are normally a factor in establishing cost apportionment for future upgrades including construction of grade separations, if required.
Railway Grade Separations An Interprovincial committee, the Railways, and the Federal Government negotiated for almost 20 years to develop a new guideline that addressed the cost apportionment issues associated with grade separations. It is, therefore, important for Road Authorities to maintain a certain amount of control in the area of cost apportionment of grade separations.
Railway Grade Separations This will ensure that the present guidelines are not abandoned by precedent setting cases and ensure that the public interest is protected.