A narrow-gauge railway is a railway with a track gauge narrower than the 1,435 mm of standard gauge railways. Most existing narrow-gauge railways are between 600 mm and 1,067 mm, narrow-gauge railways have specialized use in mines and other environments where a very small structure gauge makes a very small loading gauge necessary. Narrow-gauge railways have general applications. Many narrow-gauge street tramways are used, particularly in Europe, where 1,000 mm metre gauge tramways are common, the earliest recorded railway is shown in the De re metallica of 1556, which shows a mine in Bohemia with a railway of about 2 ft gauge. During the 16th century, railways were mainly restricted to hand-pushed narrow-gauge lines in mines throughout Europe, during the 17th century, mine railways were extended to provide transportation above ground. These lines were industrial, connecting mines with nearby transportation points and these railways were usually built to the same narrow gauge as the mine railways from which they developed.
The worlds first steam locomotive on rails, built in 1802 by Richard Trevithick for the Coalbrookdale Company, during the 1820s and 1830s, a number of industrial narrow-gauge railways in the United Kingdom used steam locomotives. In 1842, the first narrow-gauge steam locomotive outside the UK was built for the 1,100 mm gauge Antwerp-Ghent Railway in Belgium, many narrow-gauge railways were built as part of specific industrial enterprises and were primarily industrial railways rather than general carriers. Some common uses for these industrial narrow-gauge railways were mining, construction, quarrying, extensive narrow-gauge networks were constructed in many parts of the world for these purposes. For example, mountain logging operations in the 19th century often used narrow-gauge railways to transport logs from mill sites to market, significant sugarcane railways still operate in Cuba, Java, the Philippines, and Queensland. Narrow-gauge railway equipment remains in use for the construction of tunnels.
Extensive narrow-gauge railway systems served the front-line trenches of both sides in World War I and they were a short-lived military application, and after the end of the war, the surplus equipment from these created a small boom in narrow gauge railway building in Europe. Narrow-gauge railways usually cost less to build because they are lighter in construction, using smaller cars and locomotives, as well as smaller bridges, smaller tunnels. Narrow gauge is often used in mountainous terrain, where the savings in civil engineering work can be substantial. It is used in populated areas where the potential demand is too low for broader gauge railways to be economically viable. This is the case in some of Australia and most of Southern Africa, the use of such railways has almost vanished due to the capabilities of modern trucks. In many countries, narrow gauge railways were built as feeder or branch lines to feed traffic to more important standard gauge lines, the choice was often not between a narrow-gauge railway and a standard gauge one, but between a narrow-gauge railway and none at all.
Some bulk commodities, such as coal and gravel, can be transshipped, but this still incurs time penalties
Los Angeles Railway
The Los Angeles Railway was a system of streetcars that operated in central Los Angeles and the immediate surrounding neighborhoods between 1901 and 1963. Except for two short,2 ft 6 in narrow gauge funicular railways named Angels Flight and Court Flight, the company carried many more passengers than the Pacific Electric Railways Red Cars which served a larger area of Los Angeles. The two companies shared some dual gauge 3 ft 6 in /4 ft 8 1⁄2 in standard gauge track along Hawthorne Boulevard, on Main Street, the system was purchased by railroad and real estate tycoon Henry E. Huntington in 1898 and started operation in 1901. The system was sold in 1945 by Huntingtons estate to National City Lines, National City Lines purchased Key System, which operated streetcars systems in Northern California, the following year. The company was renamed as Los Angeles Transit Lines, many lines were converted to buses in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The last remaining lines were taken over by the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority along with the remains of the Pacific Electric Railway in 1958, the agency removed the remaining five streetcar lines and two trolley bus lines, replacing electric service with diesel buses on March 31,1963.
A restoration of the service is anticipated to underscore the overall renaissance occurring in the downtown area of Los Angeles. 2 Line – Rampart area of Echo Park to Montecito Heights, by way of Belmont Avenue, Loma Drive, 3rd Street, Flower Street, 5th Street, Pasadena Avenue, Avenue 26, and Griffin Avenue. 3 Line – Skid Row to Hollywood, by way of 5th Street, 6th Street, private ROW, 3rd Street,7 Line – South Los Angeles to Los Angeles Plaza Historic District, by way of Broadway, Main Street, and Spring Street. 8 Line – Leimert Park to Los Angeles Plaza Historic District, by way of 54th Street, Main Street, and Spring Street. 9 Line – Leimert Park to the Wholesale District, by way of 48th Street, Hoover Street, Grand Avenue, Pico Boulevard, and 2nd Street. 10 Line – Leimert Park to Lincoln Heights, by way of Vernon Avenue, Dalton Avenue, Martin Luther King Boulevard, Pico Boulevard and Lincoln Park Avenue. A Line – Mid City to Echo Park, by way of Adams Boulevard, Kensington Street, Venice Boulevard, Temple Street, Edgeware Road, and Douglas Street.
B Line – Nevin to City Terrace, by way of Ascot Avenue, Hooper Avenue, 12th Street, Main Street, Brooklyn Avenue, Evergreen Avenue, Wabash Avenue, and City Terrace Drive. D Line – Westlake to Skid Row, by way of Bonnie Brae Street, 3rd Street, Alvarado Street, 6th Street, and 5th Street. F Line – Athens to Boyle Heights, by way of Vermont Avenue, Hoover Street, Santa Barbara Avenue, Grand Avenue, Jefferson Boulevard, Main Street, 3rd Street, 4th Place, 4th Street, and Fresno Street. G Line – Nevin to South Park, by way of McKinley Avenue, Jefferson Boulevard, Griffith Avenue, Washington Boulevard, and Main Street. H Line – South Los Angeles to East Hollywood, by way of San Pedro Street, 7th Street, Broadway, 6th Street, Rampart Boulevard, Beverly Boulevard, Heliotrope Drive, and Melrose Avenue
Railway electrification system
A railway electrification system supplies electric power to railway trains and trams without an on-board prime mover or local fuel supply. Electrification has many advantages but requires significant capital expenditure, selection of an electrification system is based on economics of energy supply and capital cost compared to the revenue obtained for freight and passenger traffic. Different systems are used for urban and intercity areas, some electric locomotives can switch to different supply voltages to allow flexibility in operation, Electric railways use electric locomotives to haul passengers or freight in separate cars or electric multiple units, passenger cars with their own motors. Electricity is typically generated in large and relatively efficient generating stations, transmitted to the railway network, some electric railways have their own dedicated generating stations and transmission lines but most purchase power from an electric utility. The railway usually provides its own lines and transformers.
Power is supplied to moving trains with a continuous conductor running along the track usually takes one of two forms. The first is a line or catenary wire suspended from poles or towers along the track or from structure or tunnel ceilings. Locomotives or multiple units pick up power from the wire with pantographs on their roofs that press a conductive strip against it with a spring or air pressure. Examples are described in this article, the second is a third rail mounted at track level and contacted by a sliding pickup shoe. Both overhead wire and third-rail systems usually use the rails as the return conductor. In comparison to the alternative, the diesel engine, electric railways offer substantially better energy efficiency, lower emissions. Electric locomotives are usually quieter, more powerful, and more responsive and they have no local emissions, an important advantage in tunnels and urban areas. Different regions may use different supply voltages and frequencies, complicating through service, the limited clearances available under catenaries may preclude efficient double-stack container service.
Possible lethal electric current due to risk of contact with high-voltage contact wires, overhead wires are safer than third rails, but they are often considered unsightly. These are independent of the system used, so that. The permissible range of voltages allowed for the voltages is as stated in standards BS EN50163. These take into account the number of trains drawing current and their distance from the substation, railways must operate at variable speeds. Until the mid 1980s this was only practical with the brush-type DC motor, since such conversion was not well developed in the late 19th century and early 20th century, most early electrified railways used DC and many still do, particularly rapid transit and trams
Spring Street Financial District
The Spring Street Financial District, referred to as the Wall Street of the West, is a historic district in Downtown Los Angeles. In the first half of the 20th Century, this stretch of Spring Street was the center of Los Angeles, with the important banks. Ten of the buildings in the district have been designated as Historic-Cultural Monuments by the Los Angeles Cultural Heritage Commission, in the 1890s, the citys business center was further north near South Spring and Temple Streets. The street can claim credit as the birthplace of the picture business in Los Angeles. In 1898, Thomas Edison filmed a 60-second film titled South Spring Street Los Angeles California, in the early 1900s, the city center began spreading south, and the citys banks and financial institutions began concentrating along South Spring Street. The first two important buildings to make the south were the Hellman and Continental Buildings, with the Continental Building being considered the citys first skyscraper. In 1911, the Los Angeles Times boasted about the building boom on Spring Street and it is a study which will provide the most comprehensible kind of answer to the query as to why Los Angeles is leading San Francisco, Seattle, St.
The building boom along South Spring Street continued into the 1920s as the population, South Spring Street remained the citys financial center even after World War II. In the 1960s, many of the banks and financial institutions began moving to the part of the downtown area, along Figueroa Street. By the early 1980s, South Spring Street had become known for transients who sleep in doorways, since the early 1980s, South Spring Street has been the subject of numerous redevelopment projects. In recent years, numerous art galleries have moved into the old financial district, many of the old bank buildings have been converted into upscale lofts. As wealthier residents have moved into the districts lofts, older residents and artists have complained about the increased rents, one artist who had lived in the district for years said, The real problem with downtown lately and his friends half-jokingly agreed is those people. New tenants who demand their bohemian pleasures be liberally sweetened with suburban amenities, landlords who previously recruited artists to help make downtown safe for gentrification, jacked up their rents so only lawyers and screenwriters could afford it.
The strength of the district remains its period architecture, in 1985, noted Los Angeles Times columnist Jack Smith pointed to the Spring Street Financial District as proof that Los Angeles was never the cultural wasteland it was alleged to be. He hailed the districts financial palaces as an architectural achievement which give the street beauty, strength. The Hellman Building, now known as Banco Popular, is an eight-story brick, in 1998, Gilmore Associates announced plans to convert the Hellman Building, the Continental Building, and the San Fernando Building into 230 lofts. The converted buildings consisted of large, open lofts with high ceilings, the conversion was designed by architect Wade Killefer, who noted, What lends these buildings to residential use is lots of windows and high ceilings, offering wonderful light. The combined project became known as the Old Bank District lofts, the Continental Building 408 S. Spring Street – Built in 1902, the Continental Building was originally known as the Braly Building
Light rail, light rail transit or fast tram is urban public transport using rolling stock similar to a tramway, but operating at a higher capacity, and often on an exclusive right-of-way. A few light rail networks tend to have closer to rapid transit or even commuter rail. Other light rail networks are tram-like in nature and partially operate on streets, Light rail systems are found throughout the world, on all inhabited continents. They have been popular in recent years due to their lower capital costs. The term light rail was coined in 1972 by the U. S, Urban Mass Transportation Administration to describe new streetcar transformations that were taking place in Europe and the United States. In Germany the term Stadtbahn was used to describe the concept, and many in UMTA wanted to adopt the direct translation, however, UMTA finally adopted the term light rail instead. Light in this context is used in the sense of intended for light loads and fast movement, the infrastructure investment is usually lighter than would be found for a heavy rail system.
The Transportation Research Board defined light rail in 1977 as a mode of urban transportation utilizing predominantly reserved, electrically propelled rail vehicles operate singly or in trains. LRT provides a range of passenger capabilities and performance characteristics at moderate costs. Light rail is a generic international English phrase for these types of rail systems, the use of the generic term light rail avoids some serious incompatibilities between British and American English. The word trolley is used as a synonym for streetcar in the United States. A further difference arose because, while Britain abandoned all of its trams except Blackpool after World War II, when these cities upgraded to new technology, they called it light rail to differentiate it from their existing streetcars since some continued to operate both the old and new systems. Conventional rail technologies including high-speed, commuter/regional, and metro/subway/elevated urban transit systems are considered heavy rail, people movers and personal rapid transit are even lighter, at least in terms of capacity.
Monorail is a technology that has been more successful in specialized services than in a commuter transit role. Due to varying definitions, it is hard to distinguish between what is called light rail, and other forms of urban and commuter rail, a system described as light rail in one city may be considered to be a streetcar or tram system in another. Conversely, some lines that are called light rail are in very similar to rapid transit, in recent years. Some light rail systems, such as Sprinter, bear little similarity to urban rail, in the United States, light rail has become a catch-all term to describe a wide variety of passenger rail systems. There is a significant difference in cost between these different classes of light rail transit, tram-like systems are often less expensive than metro-like systems by a factor of two or more
In rail transport, track gauge is the spacing of the rails on a railway track and is measured between the inner faces of the load-bearing rails. All vehicles on a network must have running gear that is compatible with the track gauge, as the dominant parameter determining interoperability, it is still frequently used as a descriptor of a route or network. There is a distinction between the gauge and actual gauge at some locality, due to divergence of track components from the nominal. Railway engineers use a device, like a caliper, to measure the actual gauge, the nominal track gauge is the distance between the inner faces of the rails. In current practice, it is specified at a distance below the rail head as the inner faces of the rail head are not necessarily vertical. In some cases in the earliest days of railways, the company saw itself as an infrastructure provider only. Colloquially the wagons might be referred to as four-foot gauge wagons and this nominal value does not equate to the flange spacing, as some freedom is allowed for.
An infrastructure manager might specify new or replacement track components at a variation from the nominal gauge for pragmatic reasons. Track is defined in old Imperial units or in universally accepted metric units or SI units, Imperial units were established in United Kingdom by The Weights and Measures Act of 1824. In addition, there are constraints, such as the load-carrying capacity of axles. Narrow gauge railways usually cost less to build because they are lighter in construction, using smaller cars and locomotives, as well as smaller bridges, smaller tunnels. Narrow gauge is often used in mountainous terrain, where the savings in civil engineering work can be substantial. Broader gauge railways are generally expensive to build and require wider curves. There is no single perfect gauge, because different environments and economic considerations come into play, a narrow gauge is superior if ones main considerations are economy and tight curvature. For direct, unimpeded routes with high traffic, a broad gauge may be preferable, the Standard, and 46 gauges are designed to strike a reasonable balance between these factors.
In addition to the general trade-off, another important factor is standardization, once a standard has been chosen, and equipment and training calibrated to that standard, conversion becomes difficult and expensive. This makes it easier to adopt an existing standard than to invent a new one and this is true of many technologies, including railroad gauges. The reduced cost, greater efficiency, and greater economic opportunity offered by the use of a common standard explains why a number of gauges predominate worldwide
An overhead line or overhead wire is used to transmit electrical energy to trams, trolleybuses, or trains. Overhead line is designed on the principle of one or more overhead wires situated over rail tracks, the feeder stations are usually fed from a high-voltage electrical grid. Electric trains that collect their current from overhead lines use a device such as a pantograph and it presses against the underside of the lowest overhead wire, the contact wire. Current collectors are electrically conductive and allow current to flow through to the train or tram, non-electric locomotives may pass along these tracks without affecting the overhead line, although there may be difficulties with overhead clearance. Alternative electrical power transmission schemes for trains include third rail, ground-level power supply and this article does not cover regenerative braking, where the traction motors act as generators to retard movement and return power to the overhead. To achieve good high-speed current collection, it is necessary to keep the wire geometry within defined limits.
This is usually achieved by supporting the wire from a second wire known as the messenger wire or catenary. This wire approximates the path of a wire strung between two points, a catenary curve, thus the use of catenary to describe this wire or sometimes the whole system. This wire is attached to the wire at regular intervals by vertical wires known as droppers or drop wires. It is supported regularly at structures, by a pulley, the whole system is subjected to a mechanical tension. As the contact wire makes contact with the pantograph, the insert on top of the pantograph is worn down. The straight wire between supports will cause the wire to cross over the whole surface of the pantograph as the train travels around the curve, causing uniform wear. On straight track, the wire is zigzagged slightly to the left. The movement of the wire across the head of the pantograph is called the sweep. The zigzagging of the line is not required for trolley poles. Depot areas tend to have only a wire and are known as simple equipment or trolley wire.
When overhead line systems were first conceived, good current collection was only at low speeds. Compound equipment - uses a second wire, known as the auxiliary