Risdon Branch

 
  derwentparkjunc Chief Train Controller

A new roadway is being installed across this route within 100 metres of the former junction at Derwent Park. It will allow vehicular access into the back boundary of the K&D warehouse property at Derwent Park - a gate is being is installed in the back fence of K&D.
It appears that K&D is extending its activities across the Risdon branch to a new property accessed from Linear Ct (off Sunderland St).
Track in this section of the Risdon branch line was removed a year or two back.
Does this development put the Risdon branch into the permanently closed category (if not already in this status)?

Cheers,
DPJ

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  BP4417 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Launceston, Tasmania
A new roadway is being installed across this route within 100 metres of the former junction at Derwent Park. It will allow vehicular access into the back boundary of the K&D warehouse property at Derwent Park - a gate is being is installed in the back fence of K&D.
It appears that K&D is extending its activities across the Risdon branch to a new property accessed from Linear Ct (off Sunderland St).
Track in this section of the Risdon branch line was removed a year or two back.
Does this development put the Risdon branch into the permanently closed category (if not already in this status)?

Cheers,
DPJ
derwentparkjunc

Two questions? Is Zinc product still railed from Hobart?
Perhaps a Tasrail Official could explain the difference in rail transporting zinc product from the Risdon works and rail transporting concentrates from Melba or coal from Fingal?
Surely if Tasrails goal is to remove heavy loads from the roads thereby improving road quality, safety and environmental conditions to the general populace then zinc from Risdon works ought to be the objective?
  Electric C Junior Train Controller

Location: The Shed - land of junk, smoke and wonder
It is railed from the toll yard at present (believe it is handled five or six times by the time it gets to storage in melb!) it would make sence to pack it in containers at risdon eliminateing a couple of steps! But as for status of the land k believe it still is tasrsils
  Electric C Junior Train Controller

Location: The Shed - land of junk, smoke and wonder
It is railed from the toll yard at present (believe it is handled five or six times by the time it gets to storage in melb!) it would make sence to pack it in containers at risdon eliminateing a couple of steps! But as for status of the land k believe it still is tasrsils
  12CSVT Chief Commissioner

Location: Drowning in accreditation red tape!
When I have previously asked why Nyrstar persists with the inefficient loading of zinc in trucks at Risdon, roading to Hobart, only to be unloaded / reloaded into containers and onto rail, to be hauled almost back past where it came from, whilst the rail line direct into Nyrstars plant sits disused, I was advised that it all is due to the warehousing arrangements at Risdon, where (reportedly), the most recent warehouse was constructed physically across the old rail access (well THAT was clever planning, wasn't it!) and is only set up for bulk loading into trucks (i.e. no room for packing in containers - hence the need for doing that at Mac 5 (and likely soon to shift to Brighton).

So, to facilitate the re-use of the Risdon line, the following would need to occur:
1] The existing warehouse at Risdon demolished or rebuilt to accommodate rail vehicles,
2] Space found at Risdon for packing containers (in other words - a brand new warehouse),
3] Someone willing to facilitate / fund that,
4] Restoration of the Risdon Line and Tasrail being willing to resume long term usage of the Hobart Line as far Derwent Park.

Issues likely preventing the above happening would include;
1] The likelihood that Nyrstar are heavily restricted in capital expenditure and the costs to rebuild warehousing arrangements would not see a return in transport savings in the short time frame neccessary,
2] The disinclination of Toll to forgo their lucrative short haul transport from Risdon to Hobart (soon to shift to Brighton) and pending centralisation of their activities at Brighton,
3] The disinclination of Tasrail to upgrade and continue usage of the Hobart (Derwent Park) / Risdon Lines to gain another 15kms of haulage.

The only things that may precipitate a change would be a Govt funding package to pay for the rebuild of warehousing at Risdon, Toll taking control of the Risdon warehouse (or retaining control if they do already) and funding provided to Tasrail to upgrade and continue maintenance of the Hobart (Derwent Park) / Risdon Lines.

As much as I would like to see that happen, I would expect such a Govt funding package (especially under the Liberals) would be extremely unlikely (especially as it isn't likely to be a high priority lobbying issue from Nyrstar) and both Toll & Tasrail would prefer to consolidate zinc stowage and loading at Brighton (unfortunately to the detriment of the Brooker Highway).

The only thing that would potentially turn that on its head would be if Nyrstar finally decided delivery of ore by ship from Burnie / Port Pirie was no longer viable (e.g. ship replacement costs, crewing / fuel costs, etc.) and decided to turn to rail delivery from Burnie (which raises issues of Nyrstar requiring a blend of Rosebery / Broken Hill ore, rather than 100% Rosebery). The major restructure at Risdon to accept ore deliveries by rail would then make zinc dispatch worthwhile for both Nyrstar and Tasrail.

However, my expectation is the likeliest fate for the Risdon Line is to become a branch off the Inter-City Cycleway, like the Cadbury's Line.
  BP4417 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Launceston, Tasmania
When I have previously asked why Nyrstar persists with the inefficient loading of zinc in trucks at Risdon, roading to Hobart, only to be unloaded / reloaded into containers and onto rail, to be hauled almost back past where it came from, whilst the rail line direct into Nyrstars plant sits disused, I was advised that it all is due to the warehousing arrangements at Risdon, where (reportedly), the most recent warehouse was constructed physically across the old rail access (well THAT was clever planning, wasn't it!) and is only set up for bulk loading into trucks (i.e. no room for packing in containers - hence the need for doing that at Mac 5 (and likely soon to shift to Brighton).

So, to facilitate the re-use of the Risdon line, the following would need to occur:
1] The existing warehouse at Risdon demolished or rebuilt to accommodate rail vehicles,
2] Space found at Risdon for packing containers (in other words - a brand new warehouse),
3] Someone willing to facilitate / fund that,
4] Restoration of the Risdon Line and Tasrail being willing to resume long term usage of the Hobart Line as far Derwent Park.

Issues likely preventing the above happening would include;
1] The likelihood that Nyrstar are heavily restricted in capital expenditure and the costs to rebuild warehousing arrangements would not see a return in transport savings in the short time frame neccessary,
2] The disinclination of Toll to forgo their lucrative short haul transport from Risdon to Hobart (soon to shift to Brighton) and pending centralisation of their activities at Brighton,
3] The disinclination of Tasrail to upgrade and continue usage of the Hobart (Derwent Park) / Risdon Lines to gain another 15kms of haulage.

The only things that may precipitate a change would be a Govt funding package to pay for the rebuild of warehousing at Risdon, Toll taking control of the Risdon warehouse (or retaining control if they do already) and funding provided to Tasrail to upgrade and continue maintenance of the Hobart (Derwent Park) / Risdon Lines.

As much as I would like to see that happen, I would expect such a Govt funding package (especially under the Liberals) would be extremely unlikely (especially as it isn't likely to be a high priority lobbying issue from Nyrstar) and both Toll & Tasrail would prefer to consolidate zinc stowage and loading at Brighton (unfortunately to the detriment of the Brooker Highway).

The only thing that would potentially turn that on its head would be if Nyrstar finally decided delivery of ore by ship from Burnie / Port Pirie was no longer viable (e.g. ship replacement costs, crewing / fuel costs, etc.) and decided to turn to rail delivery from Burnie (which raises issues of Nyrstar requiring a blend of Rosebery / Broken Hill ore, rather than 100% Rosebery). The major restructure at Risdon to accept ore deliveries by rail would then make zinc dispatch worthwhile for both Nyrstar and Tasrail.

However, my expectation is the likeliest fate for the Risdon Line is to become a branch off the Inter-City Cycleway, like the Cadbury's Line.
12CSVT

Steve, According to 2012 figures Nystar's Risdon output was 272000 tonnes, or 745 tonnes a day about 21-22, 35 tonne capacity containers per day. With the right logistics i.e. side loading containers they would never have to leave the wagons which could easily be loaded from any flat surface. Perhaps a suitable site could be the area south from where the rail line passes under Derwent Park Road. Its certainly a nice cushy earner for Toll.
  JimYarin Chief Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, South Australia
perhaps toll is the problem.  why would a decision to build over the line be made to the tasmania government or would this decision have been made when pn had the network?
  chriswoo Junior Train Controller

Location: HOBART, TASMANIA
Good Luck getting any Cap-Ex at Nyrstar at the moment, Rumours are about, that the GM was just removed and Cap-ex is very very very tight..
  Electric C Junior Train Controller

Location: The Shed - land of junk, smoke and wonder
Good Luck getting any Cap-Ex at Nyrstar at the moment, Rumours are about, that the GM was just removed and Cap-ex is very very very tight..
chriswoo

What? haha de code for us plebs? (GM is an engine company far as i know =P)
  lkernan Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
What? haha de code for us plebs? (GM is an engine company far as i know =P)
Electric C



Cap-Ex:    Capital Expenditure.
GM:         General Manager
  derwentparkjunc Chief Train Controller

Thank you for feedback/comments.
It is highly unlikely that the branch will be used again for rail purposes - as clearly outlined in other posts. The economics would need to be such that Risdon port was no longer used for receiving raw materials and that only
Burnie port be used. Hence all ins and outs for the Zinc Works be shuttled from Burnie.
Even with this scenario it would be likely that interchange be made at Brighton Hub rather than bring rail traffic on site to the Risdon plant.
Still, it's always galling to see rail corridors being blocked off from potential future traffic - freight and passenger.

Cheers,
DPJ
  BP4417 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Launceston, Tasmania
I guess the point I tried to make was that carting freight from its source to a destination is no different than from any rail location in the State. Risdon is no different. Neglect of the infrastructure should not be used as an excuse to allow road transport to dictate terms.
I worry that Brighton might become a white elephant. Freight generated by road transport south of Brighton may simply bye-pass the Transport hub particularly when the midlands highway is duplicated. Look back into history at Launceston and the rail freight that used to be generated from there and look at the capacity rail freighted now. There is no comparison.
If a road transport friendly Liberal Government is elected in March then you can expect Government support for Tasrail to shrink, I expect Tasrail will have to closely cut the cloth to suit its operations and that might mean some pain. That may mean stockpiling the best of removed steel sleepers and rail for future use because the Liberals won't be sympathetic. Pages Transport whose head was a former Liberal Party president has always advocated the closure of Tasmania's Railways and will do so in the future.
  12CSVT Chief Commissioner

Location: Drowning in accreditation red tape!
perhaps toll is the problem. why would a decision to build over the line be made to the tasmania government or would this decision have been made when pn had the network?
JimYarin

Building (the warehouse) over the line was nothing to do with Toll, PN or the Tas. Govt. In was within Nyrstar's (then Pasminco's) property and purely an initiative of Nyrstar (Pasminco), after the end of acid & superphosphate traffic.
  theesp Train Controller

The Hub was supposed to stop excessive truck traffic into the city area right? If Toll is trucking the zinc ingots to the Hub for loading into containers then onto rail this has just added a new regular shuttle of heavy freight trucks on the section of Brooker Highway from Derwent Park to the Brighton Hub. Lets just see how well the left hand lane on the Highway copes over time.......

Zinc containers are restricted to about 26 Tonne +/- each container due to axle loading
  12CSVT Chief Commissioner

Location: Drowning in accreditation red tape!
Now, if Toll were appropriately charged for the highway damage their trucks caused (instead of being subsidised by the long suffering motorist and light truck operators) and passed the cost on, I wonder how that would effect the economics of using the zinc trucks? I dare say the Risdon Branch would start to look a lot more like an economic proposition then!
  Electric C Junior Train Controller

Location: The Shed - land of junk, smoke and wonder
To right, along with the north east line! (The roads are terrible thanks to log trucks)

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