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Shared-Track: A Handbook of Examples and Applications 55 Antioch, CA) wanted to operate noncompliant vehicles to allow for interoperability with existing systems. Promoters in two cities (Raleigh-Durham, NC and Portland, OR) desired a trolley-style service that they claimed would provide better service to the downtown areas. Madison ruled out using noncompliant vehicles at the Draft EIS stage, but the business case for commingling is so compelling that the question has been reopened at the Final EIS stage. Austin is planning for noncompliant vehicles in anticipation of a future expansion option that involves street-running. The decisions made by the five agencies to proceed with compliant vehicles generally degraded the transit service quality and efficiency for their systems as initially designed and/or increased the cost of development. The foremost reason for commingling (or sharing track) is interoperability in areas that could not otherwise justify, or do not have, space for separate alignments for two different vehicle types. A compliant vehicle capable of in-street operations that could negotiate the constrained geom- etry of a street-car network has yet to be designed. None of the U.S. systems surveyed replaced an existing conventional passenger rail service with a light rail vehicle to reduce costs or improve service. In the case of foreign shared-track operations, the focus has been on improving service quality by avoiding a transfer at the railroad/transit boundaries. Business Case Template The hypothetical business case presented identifies basic principles and traces a process for developing a transportation concept using light passenger rail cars in a concurrent operation with an existing freight operation. Using steps outlined here, planners can create a template to commence a project. The following example shows the application of the template and uses realistic values and quantities derived from databases or actual operations (a more detailed analy- sis is provided in the Task 10 Report, "Hypothetical Case Study"). Preparatory steps for a demonstration project were outlined in Chapter 2 (and detailed in the report for Task 11). With some emendations they serve as an introduction to a business case tool kit, and have the merit of being familiar ground to most transportation practitioners. The project is the locally preferred alternative under federal and state planning regulations. The sponsor agency has the technical competence and know-how to implement a shared-track project. The selected corridor will generate sufficient ridership and economic benefits to deliver the cost-effectiveness goals. The project delivery team has the required discipline to manage potential issues, especially reg- ulatory and safety issues, and contain costs. The proposal has wide public support, particularly from riders, abutters, local government, and the freight operator. These five points listed acknowledge the unique environment or localness within which each agency exists. Evolution of any project will reflect the special needs and requirements of each undertaking and will undoubtedly require variations in following the recommendations con- tained in this section. A second imperative is to understand the significance the FRA plays in its regulatory capacity since it will be the final judge of whether a particular shared-track operation is safe to operate. Therefore, one of the more significant determinations to be made is the risk and safety analysis. Appendix 9: Shared-Track Configuration and Operational Alternatives, provides much of the following information in a tabular format that includes many of the qualitative considerations for each of the most likely alternatives.