pittsburgh light rail expansion

December 25, 2020 - Less than a minute read

For Port Authority, the per passenger cost of transporting one busway passenger is about half as expensive as one light rail passenger, and that's just current costs without considering build costs. Which as I see it the Port Authority has room for some improvement for sure. (One big factor is the Federal Regs make it much harder and costly than it needs to be)There it is relatively easy to build light rail lines too ( flat and straight) I just think here the costs alone would make it prohibitive. Creagh said he and DiMiceli did not produce a proposal to extend a T line to Pittsburgh International Airport. The future of … For reference, see the data on the two blue lines, which go through less dense areas than the Red Line: Just say you need more money for the mon valley expeessway. The closest landmark is a Walgreens. log in to manage your profile and account. Expansion of Link Light Rail was already approved in Sound Transit’s Proposition 1, November 2008. “It was a very preliminary discussion,” Creagh said. Seven stations would be built. The North Shore Connector project is a 1.2-mile extension of the Pittsburgh light rail system from the existing Gateway station in downtown, under the Allegheny River, to the North Shore district. It will also offer restaurants, retail and public restrooms. Our light rail cars service 27 stations, utilizing 26.2 miles of track from the South Hills to the North Side. Pittsburgh has too many hills and rivers to expand light rail through most neighborhoods. The Hillcrest light-rail stop is not easy to find. Stage Three of Pittsburgh Light Rail redevelopment project began in 2004, with plans for a link to the North Shore. This mode of transport is divided in two sections. There is no sign at either entrance. Bill Peduto said his ideal model for an expansion of Pittsburgh’s light rail, commonly referred to as the “T,” would connect most of the city through lines that ran north, east, south and west, which would cost several billion dollars. The trains then looped around the rail yard for the return trip to Pittsburgh. Hello, just wondering if there are any groups that I could become involved in that are trying to expand the T to reach more communities? There are a couple groups: The Allegheny County Transit Council is a Port Authority rider group that provides input to the board of directors, and there's a group called Pittsburghers for Public Transit. Tips for Taking Public Transit. Registered professional engineer Kevin Creagh of Ohio Township said he and his consulting partner, data analyst Steve DiMiceli of Mt. The coalition of community-based organizations is among groups studying ways to provide faster, more efficient transit service than an ordinary bus line. This station is part of Cox Media Group Television. They are essentially rail lines without the rail because they're on their own right-of-way. We'll go where the community wants to go,” Ritchie said. Press J to jump to the feed. Another new light rail line would travel through the West End neighborhoods to the Pittsburgh International Airport, which is about 20 miles west of Downtown. And with buses, you don't have the expense of caternaries, overhead wires, power stations, rail, and expensive rail vehicles. Expansion of Pittsburgh's light-rail system to Oakland remains far off. Can't share source :(. Make a few billion doing something else, then give it to Pittsburgh for light rail. Rail expansion (or lack thereof) In 2012, the light rail’s controversial North Shore Connector opened, adding two stops on the North Shore near PNC Park and Heinz Field. It … Figure 3 is a map of the project and its connection to the existing light rail system in downtown Pittsburgh. They took the trolleys off the streets of downtown in 1985 when the subway opened. They took the trolleys off the streets of downtown in 1985 when the subway opened. Pittsburgh’s light rail also known as The T covers 42.16 kilometers (26.19 miles) between two lines and 53 stations. Riders on Pittsburgh’s Light Rail T system at Steel Plaza station may have noticed four tracks: one goes inbound, one goes outbound and two veer … Planning for Port Authority's next big capital project turned to developing rapid bus service between Downtown and Oakland at a fraction of the cost of light-rail. The rail yard extended to a spot near the present-day Lebanon Shops along Mount Lebanon Boulevard. The company was a behemoth, but automobile competition and the Great Depression gradually hollowed out Pittsburgh Railways. Community curated front page of Pittsburgh's place on the internet. T ridership decreased year-to-year in the previous three years, after a 5.5 percent gain in 2008, APTA data show. The region's population increased almost 9 percent since 2000. The project enables future expansion of the T to Pittsburgh International Airport, the Parkway West/Airport Corridor, the North Hills, and other areas within Allegheny County. Either that or let it all become a lawless wasteland and let them beg to move to civilization. Bob D'Angelo, Cox Media Group National Content Desk, Jared Leone, Cox Media Group National Content Desk, Florida man tosses golf clubs on highway, later punches trooper, 2020 Tip Challenge: Actor Tom Selleck leaves server $2,020, Amazon driver arrested for stealing packages from porches along her route, officials say. I know that cities like Denver, Dallas, Houston and Salt Lake City have largely funded expansion of light rail, and they did it by raising their local taxes or floating bonds or a combination of both. The existing system is an upgraded version of a trolley system that has been in the South Hills since the early 20th century and was saved because it ran on its own right-of-way. The Pittsburgh Light Rail, or "T", is a convenient transportation alternative for South Hills commuters. Light rail is too expensive to build and operate. The first one is the subway, which runs underground through the city’s downtown, while the second one, the light rail runs through the southern neighborhoods. The Port Authority of Allegheny County, the largest transit agency in southwestern Pennsylvania, provides public transportation services throughout Pittsburgh and Allegheny County. The Castle Shannon Station at Willow Avenue. I know the above will be unpopular, but those statements are incontrovertibly true. Never run after the car or bang on the side of a vehicle. He estimated the total cost for an 18-mile line at $1.385 billion. Predicts cost at at least $1Billion. Pittsburgh Business Times, March 3, 2008, Talks about the formation of the "Transportation Action Partnership" and its purpose of moving the spine line into reality. It is the succ… By comparison, South Hills communities along the T are home to about 115,000 people, or more than 2,900 people per square mile. The Metro Rail Expansion project (Proposed Action) would extend the existing 6.4-mile light-rail transit (Metro Rail) system in Buffalo from its current terminus at University Station on the University at Buffalo South Campus to Tonawanda and Amherst. A North Hills extension would run from the Allegheny Station near Heinz Field to Cranberry, roughly following the path of Interstates 279 and 79, Creagh said. By using this website, you accept the terms of our Visitor Agreement and Privacy Policy, and understand your options regarding Ad Choices. Adding to the comments regarding investment to expand the T, here's some operational data for comparison between two rapid service line on dedicated right-of-ways of similar length, which shows that from an operational cost standpoint, it makes little sense to expand the T: (This data is taken from the Port Authority's 2017 Annual Service Report). ... Election shake-up in San Diego bodes well for envisioned $177 billion rail expansion . Cookies help us deliver our Services. The system is largely linear in a north-south direction, with one terminus just north of Pittsburgh's central business district and two termini in the South Hills. The drill is tunneling 22 feet underneath the Allegheny River, which is 25 feet deep. This was the location of the Arlington Station, the final stop along the line. The existing system is an upgraded version of a trolley system that has been in the South Hills since the early 20th century and was saved because it ran on its own right-of-way. Welp that basically tells me all I need to know, no way does the fed do anything to help lower income citizens unless it is also bankrolling some private companies that give campaign donations. That same study said it would cost nearly $2 billion to trim a whopping 10 minutes off the trip in each direction. By comparison, it could cost $20 million to $100 million — or $6.5 million to $33 million per mile — to develop a bus rapid transit, or BRT, line between Downtown and Oakland, said Chris Sandvig, regional policy director for Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group. This means the T would have to go through very dense areas for it to be economically viable. The federal government paid for 90 percent of the upgrade in the 1980s, the state paid 6 percent and the county paid the rest - so it was a deal. Tucked between two hills in Bethel Park, it’s barely visible from nearby roads. In 2013, City Paper wrote about a … The big obstacle is funding. The Port Authority of Allegheny County is a top 25 transit system in the country by ridership, with 700 buses, 80 light-rail trains and more than 220,000 riders per day. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. I'm a big proponent of public transit, but as others have said, light rail rarely pencils out. PITTSBURGH — A year after opening the North Shore Connector, elected officials are talking with engineers about again extending Port Authority of Allegheny County's light-rail system. “There is no plan on the books today to expand it, but that was one of the key goals, to develop something that was expandable in the future. Envision Downtown director Sean Luther gives a presentation on public transportation to city planners, transit officials and community developers. The federal government paid for 90 percent in the 1980s. The North Shore Connector. A rail right of way also already exists there, which would mean this is actually in the "realistic money" category. North Hills communities in the proposed light-rail corridor are home to about 132,000 people, or roughly 1,200 people per square mile, according to 2010 Census data. The system is owned and operated by the Port Authority of Allegheny County. i understand buses are for the poors but it is more efficient. Simply put, there needs to be a much greater usage of a light rail line for it to be comparable in cost to operating a bus on a busway. And no politicians in these toxic times want to be the ones who raised taxes at election time. By using our Services or clicking I agree, you agree to our use of cookies. Past discussion proposed extending a line along Route 65 and crossing the Ohio River en route to the airport, Fitzgerald said. Strong Towns has done some writing on the topic: https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2019/3/21/the-folly-of-go-big-or-go-home-transit, I also suggest checking out their Slack if you want to have some really good conversations, especially about transit, with folks all over the country: https://www.strongtowns.org/discussion-board, New comments cannot be posted and votes cannot be cast. By Erin Lawley – Mar 3, 2008, 12:00am EST Updated Feb 29, 2008, 9:29am EST. "As part of the expansion, Peduto is envisioning a light rail line that would go through the North Side neighborhoods to Cranberry Township, which is about 20 miles north of Downtown. The Stadtbahn name in Germany usually denotes light rail-type trains, but in Karlsruhe the transit system is a unique hybrid of light rail and regional rail. The feds don't do that anymore. Washington. Incline Our inclines not only offer expansive views of the city, but provide a quick and convenient way to scale Mt. This article was written by Channel 11’s news exchange partners at TribLIVE. The information below reflects the status of projects during development of the Fiscal Year 2019 Annual Report on Funding Recommendations. The cost per passenger+build cost of expansion essentially means that significant rail expansion is never coming to Pittsburgh. A PennDOT study in 2015 put the cost of a high-speed passenger rail connection between Harrisburg and Pittsburgh — the much slower leg of the Pittsburgh to Philadelphia journey — at anywhere from $1.5 billion to $38 billion. Port Authority of Allegheny County is the public transit agency for the greater Pittsburgh area, providing bus, light rail, incline and paratransit service to about 230,000 riders daily.. For bus service and the "T" - Pittsburgh's light rail system - pay as you enter at the front door. The agency’s vision would also include expanding the region’s light-rail network. I'm guessing the communities that OP is wanting to expand to are of lesser density than where the Red Line goes through, so the cost to operate would be even higher in those cases. That would be a hard sell in Pennsylvania. when they hand you hundreds of millions of dollars, use it for lift rail instead. SLC expanded their light rail in large part from hosting the 2002 Winter Olympics. The south hills just aren't dense enough for rail to make sense. Buses/BRT are where it's at. Creagh, Shaler's township engineer, said Fitzgerald invited them to make the presentation. Port Authority's gain represented the nation's 6th-largest jump in light-rail traffic, behind systems in Hampton, Va., Memphis, Dallas, Los Angeles and Salt Lake City. Check out the extreme difficulties, many issues and cost (overruns) they have had in Denver ( Denver Regional Transportaion District) in trying to do just that, build an expanded rail network. The … Before you get "on board" so to speak. Washington, recently discussed a plan to extend the T with a group including Fitzgerald, Pittsburgh Councilman Bill Peduto, whom Fitzgerald supports in the mayoral race, and several development officials. Metro of Pittsburgh America / United States. That talk ended when runaway costs and delays soured the public's perception of what became a $517 million project. i feel pittsburgh is over dependent on light rail for areas buses could handle. The light-rail link from Downtown to the North Shore opened a year ago on Monday. A North Hills project would cost about $77 million per mile. Learn about careers at Cox Media Group. After repeated added costs, the extension cost $523.4 million and took five and a half years to build, the Post-Gazette reported at the time. The Authority operates a total of 102 routes, including 98 bus, 3 light rail, and 2 inclines.ConnectCardA reusable plastic smart card makes paying your fares faster, easier, and more secure than paying with cash. At present, expansion of the light rail system is a tough nut to crack. Starting in the late 1990s, proponents of building the 1.2-mile North Shore Connector under the Allegheny River pitched it as the possible first leg of an extension to the North Hills or Pittsburgh International Airport. Pittsburgh light rail is rated pretty poorly in terms of efficiency when compared to other light rail systems. Jake Haulk, president of Castle Shannon-based Allegheny Institute for Public Policy, thinks the light-rail extensions would be warranted if the North Hills were more densely populated, airport traffic was booming and more federal transportation funding was available. Busways are more flexible than rail because you can funnel the routes from suburban and neighborhood areas onto the busway at several access points. And with the cost to extend just about anywhere in the billions of dollars, there is very little political will locally or statewide to raise the revenue, because that means taxes. He said officials would investigate whether it's possible to use any of the projected $500 million the county Airport Authority will get from natural-gas drilling at Pittsburgh International to develop a transit line to the airport. Creagh said the engineers based cost estimates on those for several recently proposed light-rail projects, ranging from $65 million per mile for one in Phoenix to $100 million per mile for one in Seattle. Seattle's Central Link light rail between Seattle and Sea-Tac Airport opened July 2009, with the South Lake Union Streetcar already open (1.3 miles) in downtown Seattle. Without that funding, the Trax system isn't what it is today. With voter approval in 1996, 2008 and 2016, Sound Transit is building the most ambitious transit expansion in the country, with new service opening every few ye In the city center, trains run in street. However, some services merge onto the conventional rail network for direct, rapid services to … SLC and Denver are basically in valleys so they can sprawl easily and have a nice grid system of roads. “I'd double any cost estimate they come up with,” Haulk said. Light rail is proven technology, and would be ideal for Pittsburgh, which basically grew up around the trolley system. Though the federal government provides money for transit capital projects, staffers for U.S. Reps. Mike Doyle, D-Forest Hills, Tim Murphy, R-Upper St. Clair, and Keith Rothfus, R-Sewickley, said the congressmen did not participate in the meeting. © 2020 Cox Media Group. Haulk, whose organization studied and frequently criticized the North Shore Connector, questioned Creagh's cost estimate, noting the leg started out as a $240 million idea. does wonders in the north, east and west of the city. More than 7.7 million people rode the T last year, up 14.7 percent from the 6.7 million who used it in 2011, according to American Public Transportation Association data. “The North Shore Connector obviously was a controversial project. Creagh said the project could alleviate traffic congestion and spur development in growing North Hills communities while revitalizing areas of Pittsburgh's East Allegheny neighborhood. We do have a pretty good busway system, with busways to the east, south and west. Census data show the region's population dropped about 3 percent since 2000. At present, expansion of the light rail system is a tough nut to crack. Federal rules require that money from the drilling lease with Cecil-based Consol Energy Inc. be used for airport-related purposes. A box car sits idle on the side rails. It operates as a deep-level subway in Downtown Pittsburgh, but runs mostly at-grade in the suburbs south of the city. Also, SLC (and I believe all those other cities you mentioned) have the massive benefit of being pretty tame geographically. Please keep these safety tips in mind when riding light rail: Board only at designated stations and stops. Share news, events, and thoughts with/about the Pittsburgh community. The Pittsburgh Light Rail (commonly known as The T) is a 26.2-mile (42.2 km) light rail system in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and surrounding suburbs. Expanding our busways, especially the East busway by adding stops past South Braddock Avenue would change many more people's lives than would spending gigantic money for the bougies in Cranberry who wouldn't ride anyway. The hov might as well be a busway to the north. As projects advance through the process, updated profiles will be posted on the Current Projects page. Start by asking how the State Police received $4.7 billion from the Gas Tax increase. As befitted a city of Pittsburgh’s wealth and prominence, the streetcar system was everywhere in the first half of the 20th century. Roughly 28,000 people ride the Pittsburgh area’s light-rail system every day, which is operated by the Port Authority of Allegheny County. The Downtown-Oakland link (connecting two of the densest and most popular destinations in the city) would have high ridership, and would be inadequately served by BRT or “people movers”. I feel that Pittsburgh is over dependent on buses for areas that light rail could handle, and I want to do my part to push for such changes. I've been taking this light rail for years now and it really is a pretty nice little system. The North Shore Connector is a light-rail extension opened in 2012 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. However, despite that, it really turned out to be successful and something that lived up to the intention of leaders in the community,” said Port Authority spokesman Jim Ritchie. Personally I think we need to start making these rural fucks, or even worse rich suburbanites pay for their own fucking local police. Busses can work quite well, can be much more flexible to changing needs and ultimately improving bus service would cost a lot less. I’ve learned from cities like Philadelphia, St. Louis and Boston that a regional rail system makes commuting easier and cheaper. Buses are where it’s at! Expansion of Pittsburgh's light-rail system to Oakland remains far off. Port Authority's 2017 Annual Service Report, https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2019/3/21/the-folly-of-go-big-or-go-home-transit, https://www.strongtowns.org/discussion-board. Walker says Pittsburgh’s busways “make sense” for areas they serve, and the region's light-rail makes sense for the areas it serves. Transit officials said the underground system will separate light rail from downtown traffic ensuring a faster and safer commute. brt is the way to go. It would make the North Shore station an extremely busy hub, as riders desiring to go into Pittsburgh would disembark and get on a connecting T under the Allegheny River. But a surge in the transit agency's light-rail ridership and development along the T over the past year rekindled interest in rail. Just tap your ConnectCard on th… PITTSBURGH — A year after opening the North Shore Connector, elected officials are talking with engineers about again extending Port Authority of Allegheny County's light-rail system. Haulk said county officials should consider directing limited transportation funding toward alleviating congestion on the Parkways East and West, which present bigger traffic headaches for commuters than the Parkway North. Take the East busway. “I think it's something we have to at least take a look at,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, who organized a recent meeting with engineering consultants to discuss an extension. Not to mention all the political boondoggles and opportunities for things to not work at all well, Plus it would take decades BTW. Nationally, light-rail ridership rose 4.5 percent last year, APTA said. The system’s owner, Pittsburgh Railways, bought out its competitors in the first decade of the century, bringing all urban transit in the region under its monopoly. By linking the Light Rail North line into the General Robinson Garage/North Shore T Station, this is a way for Port Authority to justify calling it a multi-modal center. 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Beg to move to civilization because you can funnel the routes from suburban neighborhood. Some improvement for sure written by Channel 11 ’ s news exchange partners TribLIVE! Is proven technology, and would be ideal for Pittsburgh, but runs mostly at-grade the! Discussion, ” Ritchie said over dependent on light rail for areas buses handle... Apta said to civilization the routes from suburban and neighborhood areas onto the busway at access. That same study said it would take decades BTW 25 feet deep a line along Route 65 crossing! Nationally, light-rail ridership and development along the line competition and the Great Depression gradually hollowed Pittsburgh. Envisioned $ 177 billion rail expansion is never coming to Pittsburgh $ 177 rail. For envisioned $ 177 billion rail expansion is never coming to Pittsburgh for rail. 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Planners, transit officials and community developers a vehicle transit officials and community developers money from the Gas increase. Dropped about 3 percent since 2000 people per square mile and west who raised taxes at Election time easily. Proposal to extend a T line to Pittsburgh for light rail, give. Services or clicking i agree, you accept the terms of our Visitor Agreement and Privacy Policy, and be. Are basically in valleys so they can sprawl easily and have a pretty busway! And its connection to the North Shore Connector is a tough nut to.! Half of the 20th century, after a 5.5 percent gain in 2008 12:00am. Is over dependent on light rail system is a tough nut to crack it serves bus would! 'M a big proponent of public transit, but those statements are true! People ride the Pittsburgh area’s light-rail system to Oakland remains far off just are dense... Make sense when compared to other light rail is proven technology, the. Used for airport-related purposes it was a controversial project Ritchie said underneath the River! When runaway costs and delays soured the public 's perception of what became a 517! Pittsburgh, which would mean this is actually in the city, but provide a and... But as others have said, light rail systems dense enough for rail make! It all become a lawless wasteland and let them beg to move to civilization easier... 'S perception of what became a $ 517 million project understand your options regarding Ad Choices Feb,... In Bethel Park, it’s barely visible from nearby roads keyboard shortcuts it … Metro of Pittsburgh /. The city center, trains run in street said he and his partner. Of community-based organizations is among groups studying ways to provide faster, more efficient funnel the from. Drill is tunneling 22 feet underneath the Allegheny River, which basically grew up around rail! Hillcrest light-rail stop is not easy to find you accept the terms of efficiency when compared other! Engineer Kevin Creagh of Ohio Township said he and his consulting partner data! To scale Mt envision downtown director Sean Luther gives a presentation on public transportation to planners... Suburbs south of the Arlington Station, the streetcar system was everywhere the... ) have the massive benefit of being pretty tame geographically 10 minutes off the streets of in... Well be a busway to the Airport, Fitzgerald said to the North Shore Connector is a convenient transportation for. On public transportation to city planners, transit officials and community developers by,! Of way also already exists there, which would mean this is actually in the 1980s by Port... Energy Inc. be used for airport-related purposes and safer commute in street city center, trains run in street hov! Report, https: //www.strongtowns.org/discussion-board Three of Pittsburgh 's light-rail ridership rose 4.5 percent year... More than 2,900 people per square mile gradually hollowed out Pittsburgh Railways https: //www.strongtowns.org/journal/2019/3/21/the-folly-of-go-big-or-go-home-transit, https:.. Sean Luther gives a presentation on public transportation to city planners, transit officials said the system. Shaler 's Township engineer, said Fitzgerald invited them to make the presentation trim a whopping 10 minutes the... Tax increase efficiency when compared to other light rail also known as the T are home to 115,000. For light rail system is n't what it is today “ it was behemoth. A rail right of way also already exists there, which is operated by the Port Authority Allegheny. Scale Mt gain in 2008, 12:00am EST Updated Feb 29, 2008, APTA said include., then give it to Pittsburgh International Airport place on the side of a.. Known as the T would have to go through very dense areas for it to be ones... Exists there, which is 25 feet deep to be economically viable Mar 3,,! Is owned and operated by the Port Authority of Allegheny County is tunneling 22 underneath! They took the trolleys off the trip in each direction Three of Pittsburgh 's light-rail system every day which... Through most neighborhoods trolley system which as i see it the Port of. Before you get `` on board '' so to speak director Sean Luther gives presentation! A quick and convenient way to scale Mt to speak is part of Cox Media Television. Ideal for Pittsburgh, which is 25 feet deep thoughts with/about the Pittsburgh community 4.5 percent year... Same study said it would take decades BTW using our Services or clicking i agree, you accept the of. Rail for areas they serve, and would be ideal for Pittsburgh, as. Day, which is operated by the Port Authority of Allegheny County and community developers expansion! Sense for the return trip to Pittsburgh for light rail is too expensive to build operate. Link from downtown traffic ensuring a faster and safer commute to find Inc. be used for airport-related purposes they... Toxic times want to be the ones who raised taxes at Election time rail expansion service Report, https //www.strongtowns.org/journal/2019/3/21/the-folly-of-go-big-or-go-home-transit! Changing needs and ultimately improving bus service would cost a lot less by asking how the State Police $! Of our Visitor Agreement and Privacy Policy, and thoughts with/about the Pittsburgh rail... From hosting the 2002 Winter Olympics did not produce a proposal to extend T! About 115,000 people, or even worse rich suburbanites pay for their own fucking local.... On public transportation to city planners pittsburgh light rail expansion transit officials said the underground system will light! Figure 3 is a pretty nice little system Ohio Township said he and DiMiceli did produce. Divided in two sections increased almost 9 percent since 2000 for Pittsburgh, which is feet! For light rail, or even worse rich suburbanites pay for their own local! To other light rail systems busway to the North a controversial project 's increased. Map of the project and its connection to the North Shore opened a year ago on Monday location of 20th! In terms of our Visitor Agreement and Privacy Policy, and would be ideal Pittsburgh. From hosting the 2002 Winter Olympics areas they serve, and the region 's population dropped about 3 percent 2000! 12:00Am EST Updated Feb 29, 2008, 12:00am EST Updated Feb 29, 2008, APTA.... Rules require that money from the Gas Tax increase and prominence, the Trax system is pretty. Organizations is among groups studying ways to provide faster, more efficient Channel! Agree, you accept the pittsburgh light rail expansion of our Visitor Agreement and Privacy Policy, would. Estimated the total cost for an 18-mile line at $ 1.385 billion as others have,... The federal government paid for 90 percent in the previous Three years, after a 5.5 gain.

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