Renewed push for Melbourne airport rail link

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 10 May 2016 22:19
  dollarbill85 Locomotive Fireman

The former Napthine government's Network Development Plan showed The Melbourne Airport Rail Link connecting to The Melbourne Metro rail tunnel. When The original Melbourne Metro proposal was dumped and renamed The Melbourne Rail Link, The map showed it feeding into the Cranbourne/Pakenham corridor via North Melbourne, Southern Cross, Flinders Street, Richmond and South Yarra. They stated that the rail link would be built after The Melbourne Rail Link was completed. The favored route is still the Albion East link, and will probably feed into Melbourne Metro, but most likely won't happen until after the completion of Melbourne Metro, slated for 2026.

There are alot of difficulties using the Flemington alignment. There is no extra available capacity on the Craigieburn Line. Two more tracks would be needed, and there is simply no room to fit them in, and no room for extra platforms at North Melbourne, Kensington and Newmarket Stations. This would require costly and time-consuming property acquisitions, the residents and business owners would rightfully object to having their homes and businesses acquired. And there would be quite alot of delays when events occur at Melbourne Showgrounds and Flemington Racecourse respectively.

Melbourne Metro is the best alignment in terms of capacity, because Melbourne Metro will create the capacity required to run services to The Airport.

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  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Okay, does anyone here know how long ago the Airport rail link was first proposed?
Myrtone
Plans for a Railway to Melbourne Airport go back as far as plans for the Airport itself. The original plans had the railway running either alongside, or down the centre of the Tullamarine Freeway. There were also plans to build a railway instead of the Freeway, these plans were dropped in favour of the Tullamarine Freeway option.

Plans for the railway to run alongside or in between the freeway were shelved with the hope of revisiting at a later date, but since then the freeway has been widened (and is in the process of being widened yet again) and the corridor now has no space for a railway so those plans are now no longer a viable option.

Since then there have been regular proposals to build a heavy rail line to Melbourne Airport, but these have never
garnered the required political backing to proceed further. The proposal from the former Napthine government before
the 2014 state election was the first time it had that political backing.

I would think that building it as early as the 1980s, or even as far back as when the Tullamarine jet-port was built would have been a better choice.
Myrtone
Probably, but without the use of a suitable time machine, I don't really see how that matters.


So it seems that the Airport Rail line may be built either in time to coincide with the opening of the Melbourne Metro, or after the Melbourne Metro. Along with the expected Electrification to Melton at around the same time, things are looking up in the Public Transport space in Melbourne.
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
Plans for a Railway to Melbourne Airport go back as far as plans for the Airport itself. The original plans had the railway running either alongside, or down the centre of the Tullamarine Freeway. There were also plans to build a railway instead of the Freeway, these plans were dropped in favour of the Tullamarine Freeway option.
Gman_86
I have heard that and can believe that, but still, is there a source that mentions them. Yes, a railway within or alongside the freeway might have been best.

Plans for the railway to run alongside or in between the freeway were shelved with the hope of revisiting at a later date, but since then the freeway has been widened (and is in the process of being widened yet again) and the corridor now has no space for a railway so those plans are now no longer a viable option.
Gman_86
So they widened the freeway instead of building the railway. Oh no!

Probably, but without the use of a suitable time machine, I don't really see how that matters.
Gman_86
Here's the key. First of all see this. And guess what, I did a bit of searching, and I found, among cities mentioned, that London has had a rail link to Heathrow since 1977, the Chicago O'Hare has been served by rail since 1984, Atlanta airport since 1988.
But the key here is as thus; Before commercial jet planes, most intercity travel was by train. Intercity trains in this country, then as of now, travelled between the centres of cities as all our state capitals have been able to bring surface rail right into the city centres.
Planes only fly between the outskirts of urban areas and don't serve the cores, so there needs to be some land transport to get people between the Airport and the city centre. A high capacity fixed route does best, and this means heavy rail. An airport rail link means less demand for parking at Airports and more space for other things. People thus won't have to rent cars just to go between the Airport and the city centre, nor take a bus or taxi.
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
Also, check out this article. It mentions the idea of a rail link being proposed in 1958, before the Tullamarine jet-port was built. Back then, our main Airport was Essendon, then served by trams.
Apparently the Tullamarine jetport was one of the first international airports proposed with a rail link, yet it is now the last of the top eight busiest airports without one. This is in spite of the intuitive reasoning for such a rail link, as mentioned above. Apparently Reg Ansett was opposed to airport rail, but what was his reasoning against it?
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Apparently Reg Ansett was opposed to airport rail, but what was his reasoning against it?
Myrtone

Two reasons:

1. In those days the airlines operated their own buses to the airport from the City terminals. If I recall, the Ansett operation was in Franklin Street next to Macs Hotel and I well remember the Flxible Clipper buses of that era departing that terminal.

2. Reg, later Sir Reg, despised and hated the Victorian Railways as there was a lengthy court battle between the Vic Transport Minister and later, PM Bob Menzies and Reg Ansett over his aeroplane operation from Hamilton to Melbourne. His flights were obviously much faster than VR and this was a time when VR was sacrosanct and no competition was permitted.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reg_Ansett

and

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ansett_Pioneer

Mike.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE

Here's the key. First of all see this. And guess what, I did a bit of searching, and I found, among cities mentioned, that London has had a rail link to Heathrow since 1977, the Chicago O'Hare has been served by rail since 1984, Atlanta airport since 1988.
But the key here is as thus; Before commercial jet planes, most intercity travel was by train. Intercity trains in this country, then as of now, travelled between the centres of cities as all our state capitals have been able to bring surface rail right into the city centres.
Planes only fly between the outskirts of urban areas, and don't serve the cores, so there needs to be some land transport to get people between the Airport and the city centre. A high capacity fixed route does best, and this means heavy rail. An airport rail link mean less demand for parking at Airports and more space for other things. People thus won't have to rent cars just to get between the Airport and the city centre, nor take a bus or taxi.
Myrtone
The push for airport rail in Australia kicked off in earnest from the mid 90's as Commuter Rail again demonstrated it was the desired by the population, remember only a few year prior many of the networks were still seeing a reduction or stagnation of patronage, so nothing was ever going to happen then. In 1980, Brisbane didn't have electric trains and Perth's started in 1991.

Then once Sydney got its Airport line, realistically only built because it also worked with solving another problem at the same time, interest started in Brisbane and Melbourne, however while Brisbane's was over optimistic in numbers, its capital cost was reasonably low and interaction into the network very easy (nothing in the way for its viaduct line). Melbourne however came across its first and primary persistent stumbling block, its expensive, very expensive and then Sydney and Brisbane private operators both suffered from passenger short falls and basically went broke or suffered massive right offs. This killed the private sector interest in doing anything for Melbourne.

There was a comment in another post about airports being on the edge of the cities, rubbish, both Brisbane and Sydney airports are very close to the city at 8 and 15km respectively, well within the suburban sprawl, Melbourne is however over 23km from the city and no railway is running close to the airport.

We can analyze the reason why Melbourne doesn't have an airport railway from every angle using what ever anti-rail theory we choose to add, but none of this will move Melbourne Airport closer to the city and reduce the huge capital cost outlay. In 2000 Brisbane's airport line cost $212m, today maybe double this, so say $500m. Brisbane has about 3/4 that of Melbourne in numbers. Now compare that with Melbourne's Airport rail expect cost exceeding $2-3B.
  mejhammers1 Deputy Commissioner


Here's the key. First of all see this. And guess what, I did a bit of searching, and I found, among cities mentioned, that London has had a rail link to Heathrow since 1977, the Chicago O'Hare has been served by rail since 1984, Atlanta airport since 1988.
But the key here is as thus; Before commercial jet planes, most intercity travel was by train. Intercity trains in this country, then as of now, travelled between the centres of cities as all our state capitals have been able to bring surface rail right into the city centres.
Planes only fly between the outskirts of urban areas, and don't serve the cores, so there needs to be some land transport to get people between the Airport and the city centre. A high capacity fixed route does best, and this means heavy rail. An airport rail link mean less demand for parking at Airports and more space for other things. People thus won't have to rent cars just to get between the Airport and the city centre, nor take a bus or taxi.The push for airport rail in Australia kicked off in earnest from the mid 90's as Commuter Rail again demonstrated it was the desired by the population, remember only a few year prior many of the networks were still seeing a reduction or stagnation of patronage, so nothing was ever going to happen then. In 1980, Brisbane didn't have electric trains and Perth's started in 1991.

Then once Sydney got its Airport line, realistically only built because it also worked with solving another problem at the same time, interest started in Brisbane and Melbourne, however while Brisbane's was over optimistic in numbers, its capital cost was reasonably low and interaction into the network very easy (nothing in the way for its viaduct line). Melbourne however came across its first and primary persistent stumbling block, its expensive, very expensive and then Sydney and Brisbane private operators both suffered from passenger short falls and basically went broke or suffered massive right offs. This killed the private sector interest in doing anything for Melbourne.

There was a comment in another post about airports being on the edge of the cities, rubbish, both Brisbane and Sydney airports are very close to the city at 8 and 15km respectively, well within the suburban sprawl, Melbourne is however over 23km from the city and no railway is running close to the airport.

We can analyze the reason why Melbourne doesn't have an airport railway from every angle using what ever anti-rail theory we choose to add, but none of this will move Melbourne Airport closer to the city and reduce the huge capital cost outlay. In 2000 Brisbane's airport line cost $212m, today maybe double this, so say $500m. Brisbane has about 3/4 that of Melbourne in numbers. Now compare that with Melbourne's Airport rail expect cost exceeding $2-3B.
RTT_Rules
Melbourne is however over 23km from the city and no railway is running close to the airport.

Not strictly true. The Jacana - Albion Freight Link runs within 6 km of the Airport.

Granted though, unless the Airport link is built re-using the Freight Infrastructure and as an extension of a re-routed Bendigo or Seymour/Shepparton services, it is unlikely to get off the ground.

Michael
  dollarbill85 Locomotive Fireman


Here's the key. First of all see this. And guess what, I did a bit of searching, and I found, among cities mentioned, that London has had a rail link to Heathrow since 1977, the Chicago O'Hare has been served by rail since 1984, Atlanta airport since 1988.
But the key here is as thus; Before commercial jet planes, most intercity travel was by train. Intercity trains in this country, then as of now, travelled between the centres of cities as all our state capitals have been able to bring surface rail right into the city centres.
Planes only fly between the outskirts of urban areas, and don't serve the cores, so there needs to be some land transport to get people between the Airport and the city centre. A high capacity fixed route does best, and this means heavy rail. An airport rail link mean less demand for parking at Airports and more space for other things. People thus won't have to rent cars just to get between the Airport and the city centre, nor take a bus or taxi.The push for airport rail in Australia kicked off in earnest from the mid 90's as Commuter Rail again demonstrated it was the desired by the population, remember only a few year prior many of the networks were still seeing a reduction or stagnation of patronage, so nothing was ever going to happen then. In 1980, Brisbane didn't have electric trains and Perth's started in 1991.

Then once Sydney got its Airport line, realistically only built because it also worked with solving another problem at the same time, interest started in Brisbane and Melbourne, however while Brisbane's was over optimistic in numbers, its capital cost was reasonably low and interaction into the network very easy (nothing in the way for its viaduct line). Melbourne however came across its first and primary persistent stumbling block, its expensive, very expensive and then Sydney and Brisbane private operators both suffered from passenger short falls and basically went broke or suffered massive right offs. This killed the private sector interest in doing anything for Melbourne.

There was a comment in another post about airports being on the edge of the cities, rubbish, both Brisbane and Sydney airports are very close to the city at 8 and 15km respectively, well within the suburban sprawl, Melbourne is however over 23km from the city and no railway is running close to the airport.

We can analyze the reason why Melbourne doesn't have an airport railway from every angle using what ever anti-rail theory we choose to add, but none of this will move Melbourne Airport closer to the city and reduce the huge capital cost outlay. In 2000 Brisbane's airport line cost $212m, today maybe double this, so say $500m. Brisbane has about 3/4 that of Melbourne in numbers. Now compare that with Melbourne's Airport rail expect cost exceeding $2-3B.Melbourne is however over 23km from the city and no railway is running close to the airport.

Not strictly true. The Jacana - Albion Freight Link runs within 6 km of the Airport.

Granted though, unless the Airport link is built re-using the Freight Infrastructure and as an extension of a re-routed Bendigo or Seymour/Shepparton services, it is unlikely to get off the ground.

Michael
mejhammers1
How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

It was proposed that Seymour/Albury services would be re-routed via Jacana. It wouldn't make sense because it's the long way, but it would ease congestion along the Cragieburn Line. Now it has been proposed to re-route Seymour services via Upfield by reopening the connection between Upfield and Roxburgh Park Stations
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?
dollarbill85

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
If upfield to somerton renewal is on the cards why not also electrify jacana to Albion as a backup route for metro traffic ?
  davesvline Chief Commissioner

Location: 1983-1998
I like LancedDendrite map better. Proposal seems like a no brainer.

Regards

ps freight gate,  that idea also has merit, and could add redundancy. Perhaps even cater for express services I'm not sure,  someone with a better understanding of how that line works should comment. Either way,  it's an expense to be justified,  but I've not heard of a case pushing for this before.
  dollarbill85 Locomotive Fireman

How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
LancedDendrite
Interesting Concept. Would have to be in tunnels for the most part though, which would be expensive. It would certainly boost metro capacity on The Sunbury Line.
  dollarbill85 Locomotive Fireman

If upfield to somerton renewal is on the cards why not also electrify jacana to Albion as a backup route for metro traffic ?
freightgate
That could work, and I think there is more room for extra tracks too, and they would need it because I am not sure if the current track layout is the same gauge as metro trains, maybe somebody else on here knows more about it. And if it is going to be electrified I think some stations should be provided at the following places

Sunshine North
Airport West
Gowanbrae
Aberfeldie
Keilor East
Bel Air (Bel Air Avenue Glenroy)

It would be Sunshine-Broadmeadows.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Interesting concept. Would have to be in tunnels for the most part though, which would be expensive. It would certainly boost metro capacity on the Sunbury Line.
dollarbill85
If you click on the lines at various points on the map you will find that I have made indicative notes about what parts of the perway are likely to be elevated, at-grade, in cuttings or in tunnels. For the most part the sections that use existing rail alignments would be at-grade. There's extensive use of elevated rail to cross intersections on the Melbourne-side approach to Melbourne Airport, with a TBM-driven tunnel diving under the airport itself.
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
LancedDendrite
It's a good idea. Only issue is that the Bendigo line might not have enough capacity to serve the airport.
  dollarbill85 Locomotive Fireman

How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
It's a good idea. Only issue is that the Bendigo line might not have enough capacity to serve the airport.
railblogger
I agree. It will generate more passengers which would mean more rolling stock would be required
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
It's a good idea. Only issue is that the Bendigo line might not have enough capacity to serve the airport
railblogger
That's easily fixed by running Melbourne Metro services to Sunbury North via MARL as well, as per PTV's plan. You run 3-6 trains per hour as Melbourne Metro and 3-4 trains per hour as V/Line to Bendigo/Kyneton. That's at least a 10 minute frequency, possibly 6 minutes at the upper end.
Bendigo line rollingstock would need  replacement to be able to use an underground Melbourne Airport station or the station itself would need some pretty heavy duty fume extractors. Either option is feasible.
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
It's a good idea. Only issue is that the Bendigo line might not have enough capacity to serve the airport
That's easily fixed by running Melbourne Metro services to Sunbury North via MARL as well, as per PTV's plan. You run 3-6 trains per hour as Melbourne Metro and 3-4 trains per hour as V/Line to Bendigo/Kyneton. That's at least a 10 minute frequency, possibly 6 minutes at the upper end.
LancedDendrite
I don't see that in PTV's plan.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Well, running Melbourne Metro services to Melbourne Airport is definitely in PTV's 2012 Network Development Plan. The extension of that service to Sunbury North under a Bendigo-Melbourne Airport rail link to meet up with also extended Sunbury Line services is logical.
  Toby Esterhase Station Master

I've also long thought of something similar to LancedDendrite's plan - but with the addition of a second line from north of the Airport up the (very wide) median of the planned Outer Metropolitan Ring Road to Wallan (perhaps with a big park and ride where the OMRR crosses Mickleham Road).  Thus, Bendigo *and* Seymour Line trains would serve the Airport - say, every 10 minutes?  (2tph express Airport-Kyneton to Bendigo, 2tph all stops to Kyneton and 2tph all stops to Seymour.)  Then, apart from the Gippsland Line, there'd be complete separation between Metro and V/Line services.
  ewokracing Locomotive Fireman

The day that a train arrives at Tullamarine Airport will be the same day that Satan drives to work in a snowplow.

It will never ever happen. Too many people have vested interests to ensure that buses and multi story long term carparks dominate.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
The day that a train arrives at Tullamarine Airport will be the same day that Satan drives to work in a snowplow.

It will never ever happen. Too many people have vested interests to ensure that buses and multi story long term carparks dominate.
ewokracing

Must I again ask for a definition of 'NEVER' ever happen.

That is...in your opinion, that not even your childrens, childrens, childrens, childrens, children ad infinitum will ever see trains operating to Melbourne airport.

Or in your opinion, is NEVER ever...just 20 years or so Question

Mike.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Y'know Mike, that line is getting really tired. Can't you think of a better one?
  Flygon Train Controller

Location: Australia
How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
LancedDendrite
Some friends and I were hastily sketching out some concepts for a Melbourne Airport Link a few months ago. They're pretty hasty, rough, sketches, and certainly not really meant for distribution, but they do follow the general concept of using the Albion Freight Line.

The key difference, though, is having a stop at the Airport West Westfield and then running via the Tullamarine Freeway through to the airport.

These sketches are rough as hell, but they do allow an option of going to the Airport with, in theory, just two tunnels, and having to figure out how to handle overpasses that have concrete pillars inside the median strip.

Again, please note that these are hasty 'back of the napkin' sketches, but they do demonstrate a relatively streamlined concept.

In addition, if there did have to be an extension to Sunbury (something I, admittedly, have a vested interest in), I would recommend a stop near Bulla.
  tom9876543 Train Controller

How would you get to Bendigo via Jacana?

By going via Albion, not Jacana. And using a route similar to this:
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1Cm3SQ71sUUGuWiUpvosbj7xKgG0
LancedDendrite
LancedDendrite, I think the southern route proposed by you is an excellent idea.
May I humbly make a few suggestions for improvement:
1) Would it be possible to build an East Sunbury station, somewhere near the intersection of C325 and C743?. Also, may I suggest North Sunbury station should be built north of Raes Rd (it would then be closer to more residential development).
2) There is a crossing of Shepherds Ln. This seems unnecessary, I would make the rail line cross under C743 south-east of Shepherds Ln - it has to cross C743 somewhere so that is a better place IMHO.
3) Where it crosses Loemans Rd (west of Bulla), the current drawn line is going to need a tunnel to get from 120m altitude to 160m altitude. If the line is moved a bit further south, it can follow the contours of the land at 1/50 and no tunnel is required.
4) All curves on any new track must permit 160km/h - from memory this means the minimum radius should be 1600m. The connection to the existing Albion line should be redesigned so trains could run at 160km/h. Of course, this requires a much longer bridge and is more costly - but when you build something that will last more than 100 years, it needs to be built properly. Also all other curves should be 1600m or greater.

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