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Five Ways To Improve The Oakville Subdivision Route

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by shredder550, Jul 16, 2020.

  1. shredder550

    shredder550 Member

    Mar 21, 2020
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    While perhaps not the worst, it's no secret that the Oakville Subdivision route for TSW2020 is subpar to the community. Its reviews are currently sitting about 58% positive on Steam as of writing this, and I believe even Matt ended up addressing it to some degree in a recent Q&A livestream. If the TSW team ever wants to revisit the Oakville Subdivision for TSW2 and realize the potential that was missing from the first attempt, below are five ways in which I think it can be improved as someone who knows the area.

    1. Extend to the Brampton Intermodal Terminal
    I think what's currently limiting the potential of this route is its length. Obviously 24 miles is plenty for switching, which often involves frequent stops and slow speeds, but part of what people (myself included) dislike is that in real life switching is just one of the many things that can be seen on this stretch of track. It's one of the busiest - if not the absolute busiest - in Canada. A lot of mainline freight action operates on a portion of the in-game route from Burlington to Hamilton, but that is much too short a distance for it to be worthwhile for players. This is why I think the natural course of action here is to extend the route in one way or another.

    Approximately 65 route miles from Burlington lies CN's Brampton Intermodal Terminal. Many high-priority intermodal container trains arrive and depart this terminal each day. Additionally, extending the route this far will allow players to represent the many other trains that travel this line on their way to or from CN's MacMillan Yard, another 15 miles or so to the east. Doing so would also include part of GO Transit's Kitchener Line from Bramalea to Georgetown, also used by VIA Rail regional trains and at a distance of about 20 miles. There's also a fair amount of switching in the Brampton area just before the intermodal terminal that the existing stock that comes with the route will come in handy on.

    2. Extend to Brantford
    About 30 route miles west from Bayview Junction lies the small city of Brantford, Ontario. While perhaps not a major terminal or even a divisional point, it features a small yard and a large historic station still used by VIA Rail. Extending the route in this direction would also add a particularly scenic section near Dundas, Ontario about five miles west of Bayview where the Dundas Subdivision straddles the Niagara Escarpment. While perhaps not a very long extension, this would help to reduce some of the gripes people have with the route in its current state. It could justify the addition of mainline freight locomotives which we would be able to drive over a distance of 45 miles instead of 7. The same would be the case for VIA Rail regional services, which also use that portion of the line.

    3. Extend to St. Catharines
    About 43 route miles east of where the current route ends in Hamilton lies the city of St. Catharines, Ontario. Adding this stretch of the CN Grimsby Subdivision could also justify the addition of mainline freight locomotives. Additionally, this route is regularly travelled by the jointly-operated Amtrak/VIA Rail Maple Leaf service from New York City to Toronto. This train always uses Amtrak equipment even when north of the border, and stops not only at St. Catharines but also a few stations that are already represented in the current route.

    4. Extend to Toronto
    31 route miles east of Oakville is Toronto Union Station, the busiest passenger rail terminal in Canada. Extending the route in this direction would make it more focused on aforementioned GO Transit, VIA Rail and Amtrak services. It would add an additional six stations including Union Station, as well as the massive rail maintenance facilities in Mimico. There, the southern half of a former CN freight yard was converted into the VIA Rail Toronto Maintenance Facility while the northern half is the GO Transit Willowbrook Yard Maintenance Facility. I think that even without mainline freight equipment, this could certainly liven the route up a bit with more services and variety. At the very least it would make it a bit more similar to the Peninsula Corridor route which has more positive reviews.

    5. Add AI-Only Equipment
    I feel this option would probably not be seen as a way of fully improving the route, but it could go a ways to make it seems a bit more like the real thing. By adding CN, VIA, GO and Amtrak locomotives and rolling stock for AI use only, it could make for some AI-controlled services that would be entertaining to watch and could provide a challenge to squeeze in between with our low-priority switching moves. Again, I'll reiterate that this is option is probably the least likely to see positive results from the community out of all the ones listed here.

    Ultimately whether the route is developed further at all, let alone the course of action, is going to be up to Dovetail. I hope this helps if they ever do decide to revisit Oakville Subdivision.
    • Like Like x 6
  2. Deimenried

    Deimenried Member

    Jul 14, 2020
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    The lack of AI services on what is supposed to be a busy arterial route for both freight and passenger services was disappointing.
  3. jedi247

    jedi247 Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2018
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    I'd like a CN ET44AC, SD75I, SD50, SD60, and/or ES44AC.
  4. Plastic Pal

    Plastic Pal Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2020
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    I do not have OSD.... so I am just responding to your comment here.... just to say that this is possibly a route that has a huge amount of potential to really come alive, with the Scenario Planner in TSW2.

    It might not be authentic.... but you could get the Baby Bullet in there, as AI.... or as a stopping service. So this route could well be completely transformed by TSW2.

    And who knows.... maybe they have re-instated the tracks in the harbour area....? (That is unlikely.... but you never know.... maybe it just needed TSW2 to make it work properly....).

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