Suburban Rail Loop (Election promise)

 
  True Believers Chief Commissioner

@potatoinmymouth Because the project is unplanned has relegated MM2 and it could be met in the Short term by expanding the Bus Network.

Sorry I do not share your enthusiasm but the existing network needs to be fixed. Where is the plan on updating metrol for e.g.? What about re-duplicating the Bendigo line. $300 Million to plan for this ad-hoc project. Small worthwhile projects could be undertaken for that sort of money.

Whilst lauding what the ALP has done our network still has major issues. Much of the system is still running life expired stock leading to breakdown and still after 10 years we cannot get the Albury corridor functioning with an acceptable level of reliablity.

Michael
mejhammers1
If it was to relegated and take priority over MM2 why the hell would it appear in the strategic appraisal document. Both projects are happening. Not one is better than the other. They are both just as important as each other.

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  potatoinmymouth Chief Commissioner

@potatoinmymouth Because the project is unplanned has relegated MM2 and it could be met in the Short term by expanding the Bus Network.

Sorry I do not share your enthusiasm but the existing network needs to be fixed. Where is the plan on updating metrol for e.g.? What about re-duplicating the Bendigo line. $300 Million to plan for this ad-hoc project. Small worthwhile projects could be undertaken for that sort of money.

Whilst lauding what the ALP has done our network still has major issues. Much of the system is still running life expired stock leading to breakdown and still after 10 years we cannot get the Albury corridor functioning with an acceptable level of reliablity.

Michael
mejhammers1
Fair enough. I share your concerns that "big shinies" are inherently more attractive to government than ongoing improvement.

Nevertheless I believe the infrastructure backlog in Melbourne is so significant that incremental upgrades will be unable to make any significant impact in a short enough timeframe. Updating Metrol strikes me as the railway equivalent of installing overhead gantries on the Monash - great in an ideal world, but incidental to the core issue of disastrously high peak demand. This project at least goes some way to addressing the underlying cause, rather than merely the symptoms.
  mejhammers1 Chief Commissioner

@TrueBelievers MM2 is more important than this project as it will like MM1 provide extra capacity through the core.

This is Victoria, not London or even NSW. I do not think that either will be built. PT is always used as an electioneering bargaining chip.

Michael
  Rossco T Chief Train Controller

Location: Camberwell, Victoria
@TrueBelievers MM2 is more important than this project as it will like MM1 provide extra capacity through the core.

This is Victoria, not London or even NSW. I do not think that either will be built. PT is always used as an electioneering bargaiing chip.

Michael
mejhammers1

I agree with mejhammers1 and others that there does not seem to have been proper planning done in relation to this Suburban Rail Loop project and that it seems more of an election stunt.  It reminds me a bit of how in the dying days of the Napthine Government they suddenly came up with the 'Melbourne Rail Link' project which was to be a replacement for MM1.

I don't like the way that the route has been presented as a fait accompli with all the station locations already decided.  I would much prefer that there had been a broader transport strategy announced first and that there was a more general direction to investigate an orbital rail corridor as a first step.  However, having said this, I do support the longterm goal to provide an orbital rail corridor for Melbourne.  I just want to see proper planning done first.

As for Infrastructure Victoria, I think this body is a complete waste of space.  I think that the Government's own Transport department (i.e. TfV) should be more than capable of determining the Government's transport priorities.  The 30 year Infrastructure Strategy that IV produced a couple of years ago appears like a poorly thought out grab bag of projects without any coordinated overarching strategy.

Ross
  chomper Junior Train Controller

With the sort of good will this idea has generated and massive public acceptance of an orbital rail line, any government stupid enough to piss on that sentiment doesn't deserve another go.
  tom9876543 Train Controller

True Believers


The proposed route from Glen Waverly to Burwood looks ridiculous.
It is running directly west and parallel to existing line.

It is clear that Burwood should be replaced with Burwood East.
Box Hill should be replaced with Blackburn.
I think this would make the route slightly shorter, and it better serves the outer suburbs.
It also solves problem of steep grade south from Doncaster.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
The proposed route from Glen Waverly to Burwood looks ridiculous.
It is running directly west and parallel to existing line.

It is clear that Burwood should be replaced with Burwood East.
Box Hill should be replaced with Blackburn.
I think this would make the route slightly shorter, and it better serves the outer suburbs.
It also solves problem of steep grade south from Doncaster.
tom9876543
Re Box Hill you are missing the point of the line - one of it's primary aims is to de-centralise Melbourne by creating a polycentric city with multiple employment clusters like Monash and Sunshine. So instead of the way the city is now with a heap of people employed in the CBD and the rest spread out all over the shop there would be mini CBDs in at least 5 suburban locations.

The SRL project aims to get people to and from those employment clusters as well as to the Airport and to the existing CBD using links to existing lines.

Box Hill is well on the way to being a mini CBD already with hi rise buildings including the ATOs new building with many more skyscrapers on the drawing board for the suburb.

The linky loopy thingy if is it ever actually built needs to go through Box Hill not suburban backwater Blackburn.

BG
  mm42 Chief Train Controller

The issues of grade between Box Hill and Doncaster may not have been thought through by the development team, whose task would have been to prepare a brief good enough for an election policy and no more. Further development of the plan is what the $300m election promise allocation is for.

The approach should be to choose the route then the technology. Montreal's metro, for example, has a ruling grade of 12.5% with its rubber-tyred trains. Montreal also has among the lowest subway construction costs in North America. This is helped by the steep ruling gradient, and the narrow trains so a double track can fit in a single bored tunnel. There are no doubt other features of the Montreal system, and others around the world that could be used in its development. We really need to reduce the cost of tunnelling given the long distance required.

The patronage map omits the Sunshine-Airport airport line. The proposal from Canberra to assist with this no doubt occurred too late in the development process of the suburban rail loop to be included in the patronage map, but it was included in the concept maps.

The Glen Waverly diversion is silly, because it is not a major employer, not much developable space, and already served by a radial line. The patronage map shows the main areas of demand as the Monash Clayton campus, and Latrobe Bundoora. These areas could be developed much more intensively than at present, without nimbies on local councils objecting to unrestrained building height. Each of these areas should be served by at least 2 stations to ensure the developable area is within ~400m walk of a station. At Monash Clayton one would be at the present bus interchange, and perhaps another about 1 km north in a business park that could also develop much more intensively. At Latrobe Bundoora there would need to be a station at the current tram stop for interchange purposes, and another more central to the campus.

Hopefully these issues become better resolved during the development process.
  stooge spark Train Controller


The Glen Waverly diversion is silly, because it is not a major employer, not much developable space, and already served by a radial line. The patronage map shows the main areas of demand as the Monash Clayton campus, and Latrobe Bundoora. These areas could be developed much more intensively than at present, without nimbies on local councils objecting to unrestrained building height. Each of these areas should be served by at least 2 stations to ensure the developable area is within ~400m walk of a station. At Monash Clayton one would be at the present bus interchange, and perhaps another about 1 km north in a business park that could also develop much more intensively. At Latrobe Bundoora there would need to be a station at the current tram stop for interchange purposes, and another more central to the campus.
mm42
The Glen Waverley diversion isn't that silly, considering it's the biggest employment cluster on the line, , it can be more developed through the current redevelopment of The Glen SC
And what do you mean by "already served by a radial line" do you mean a Smartbus?
  True Believers Chief Commissioner

@TrueBelievers MM2 is more important than this project as it will like MM1 provide extra capacity through the core.

This is Victoria, not London or even NSW. I do not think that either will be built. PT is always used as an electioneering bargaining chip.

Michael
mejhammers1
The suburban loop also adds capacity to the current system would encourage people to work outside the CBD, enabling to reduce people heading through the CBD, therefore changing the way people move around. Just as essential as diverting and seperating conflicting paths of the inner train network.

Unlike MM2 the suburban loop is more likely to reduce road demand than a inner city tunnel project due to the change of movement across the rail network. It's future thinking.

Both are important.

You said Victoria (a state) & NSW (a state) then comparing to London (a city). Please stick with comparing apples and apples, the UK has a whole regional network of trains as well. Sydney was able to build tunnels through the suburbs with the northwest metro project. It's built and operational by 2019. London is in the process of committing to cross rail 2 and cross rail is set to open soon.

Now you are saying that because Melbourne isn't polycentric like Sydney or London, means the project will be a flop. But that's why the project is getting built to enable Melbourne become a more polycentric city and this would significantly reduce the distances between work and home by encouraging to work in the economic hubs in the suburbs.

PT is used as an electioneering chip, yeah that's good the public is pushing the government to build PT project not road projects. That's purely why they happen during the election. Yes planning is slack and economic judgment for many projects are poor. I agree a multi-modal PT plan should happen before all these major project get committed with little justification. But this project has potential. And the PT record with this Labor government is they really do commit to election promises, even contraversial ones such as killing off the east west link project. So it's likely to happen and let the project progress, it has a huge potential unlocking the way we travel, smartbuses are there but are awfully slow, so bring this project along.

MM2 is probably gonna open up much quicker than the orbital loop, so makes sense to start that project first. I was always hoping for MM2 is start between 2022-2025 and finish in the 2030s. That's what was envisioned by the PTV train plan.
  John.Z Chief Train Controller

Both projects are equally important.

Metro 2 will unlock capcity for Mernda which desperately needs more trains (and quicker trip into the city)
Suburban rail will allow trips around the city to be taken without coming into the city, filling empty trains in the outer suburbs (big win)

An additional suggestion to unlock train capacity in Mernda would be to close the Upfield line north of gowrie, and instead extend it to the west side of Epping

Makes the northern section of the Upfield line way more useful (and patronised), as well as providing a 2nd path into the city for the North (and not duplicating the craigieburn line through industrial estate)
  True Believers Chief Commissioner

Both projects are equally important.

Metro 2 will unlock capcity for Mernda which desperately needs more trains (and quicker trip into the city)
Suburban rail will allow trips around the city to be taken without coming into the city, filling empty trains in the outer suburbs (big win)

An additional suggestion to unlock train capacity in Mernda would be to close the Upfield line north of gowrie, and instead extend it to the west side of Epping

Makes the northern section of the Upfield line way more useful (and patronised), as well as providing a 2nd path into the city for the North (and not duplicating the craigieburn line through industrial estate)
John.Z
I think it's better to keep it connected with the future Wallan line and make a branch out to Wollert.

  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Would you elect to have the branch with an UP junction or a down junction or both with a triangle which could make more sense?
  John E Station Master

John Z - The Upfield station would be orphaned in your proposal.

IF the Metro 2 goes ahead, a Wollert extension should definitely go into the Clifton Hill group.
  ianb26 Station Master

Both projects are equally important.

Metro 2 will unlock capcity for Mernda which desperately needs more trains (and quicker trip into the city)
Suburban rail will allow trips around the city to be taken without coming into the city, filling empty trains in the outer suburbs (big win)

An additional suggestion to unlock train capacity in Mernda would be to close the Upfield line north of gowrie, and instead extend it to the west side of Epping

Makes the northern section of the Upfield line way more useful (and patronised), as well as providing a 2nd path into the city for the North (and not duplicating the craigieburn line through industrial estate)
I think it's better to keep it connected with the future Wallan line and make a branch out to Wollert.

True Believers
That sounds familiar to the Hornsby line in Sydney, Central to Hornsby via western direction and Central to Hornsby via North Shore.
  pberrett Chief Commissioner

Location: Melbourne, West Island
Here is my proposal for a considerably more cost-effective cross-town Outer Circle that would achieve most of the same objectives.  

Outer circle 2 (may be used with attribution)

Stations

1. Footscray interchange
2. Newmarket interchange
3, Flemington interchange
4, Rushall interchange
5. Fairfield interchange
6. Kew
7. East Camberwell interchange
8. Riversdale/Willison (new combined station)
9. Hartwell
10. Burwood
11. Ashburton
12. Alamein
13. East Malvern interchange (with walkway to East Malvern and Jordanville stations)
14. Chadstone
15. Hughesdale interchange
16. Ormond station interchange (with underground walkway and travelators to Ormond station)
17. Elsternwick interchange

Description and construction.

The Outer Circle would commence with new underground platforms and an underground railway departing Footscray station. Travelling underground it would emerge near the Maribyrnong River and cross using a new rail bridge. Diving underground again at Riverside Park cut and construction would see the line travel under Princes Highway and Racecourse Road arriving at a new Underground interchange at Newmarket.



Continuing under Racecourse Road the rail link would proceed underground to Flemington Bridge station with underground platforms. The line would then emerge to the surface on the right hand side of the existing Upfield line before spurring right under Sydney Road following the course of the old inner circle line. Past Sydney Road the line would be underground with cut and cover construction. The line would emerge to the surface with additional platforms at Rushall station before Skyrail to pass over Merri Creek and then next to the Hurstbridge line but underground (cut and cover).



At Fairfield there would be additional platforms for the new line which would then proceed underground, turn and follow the course of the old Outer circle line, reusing the old railway bridge to get across the Yarra River. This would require the construction of a new road bridge across the Yarra and having the railway travel under the freeway. Then, travelling at ground level the railway would travel along the old Outer Circle easement with a new station at Kew.



Cut and cover construction would be used along the old Outer Circle easement from there to East Camberwell where new underground platforms would be built (north/south). The line would pass under the Belgrave/Lilydale line and continue as the Alamein line does now using the existing stations along the line. Riversdale and Willison would be combined into a new single station.



After Alamein the line would proceed underground with cut and cover used along Poath and Chadstone Roads with a new underground station near Chadstone with an underground walkway linking to the Shopping Centre.




Continuing south the line would arrive at Hughesdale station with new underground platforms. The line would then continue underground south along Poath Road before curving right to follow the alignment of the old Rosstown railway but underground.



The line would then emerge and finish at new platforms at Elsternwick station.
This new line would provide cross-town access to all Melbourne's railway lines at a considerably reduced cost as much of the route uses existing or disused rail alighments. It also would provide access to Chadstone Shopping Centre.

cheers Peter
  True Believers Chief Commissioner

Here is my proposal for a considerably more cost-effective cross-town Outer Circle that would achieve most of the same objectives.  

Outer circle 2 (may be used with attribution)

Stations

1. Footscray interchange
2. Newmarket interchange
3, Flemington interchange
4, Rushall interchange
5. Fairfield interchange
6. Kew
7. East Camberwell interchange
8. Riversdale/Willison (new combined station)
9. Hartwell
10. Burwood
11. Ashburton
12. Alamein
13. East Malvern interchange (with walkway to East Malvern and Jordanville stations)
14. Chadstone
15. Hughesdale interchange
16. Ormond station interchange (with underground walkway and travelators to Ormond station)
17. Elsternwick interchange
pberrett
I wouldn't call that an outer circle proposal. I would call it the INNER circle proposal. Which uses the old circle lines, but doesn't serve as many universities, economic hubs & major centres. Since Melbourne is already well served by trams in the inner portion, I think a inner circle train line, would be less benefitial than the official one by the government which better serves the middle/outer suburbs, where buses running at poor frequencies and the roads are more congested as well as connecting the areas that have higher job demand such as the Monash precinct and the Airport precinct.
  ianb26 Station Master


At Fairfield there would be additional platforms for the new line which would then proceed underground, turn and follow the course of the old Outer circle line, reusing the old railway bridge to get across the Yarra River.

cheers Peter
pberrett
The old railway bridge is part of the Chandler Highway. THE GOVERNMENT WON'T BUILD A NEW BRIDGE AS THEY HAVE JUST ADDED A MULTI LANE BRIDGE TO DUPLICATE THE OLD BRIDGE.
  justarider Chief Train Controller

Location: Stuck on VR and hoping for better.
Here is my proposal for a considerably more cost-effective cross-town Outer Circle that would achieve most of the same objectives.  

Outer circle 2 (may be used with attribution)

Stations

1. Footscray interchange
..
14. Chadstone
..
17. Elsternwick interchange
I wouldn't call that an outer circle proposal. I would call it the INNER circle proposal. ...
True Believers
where would I start to criticize.  Too much effort.
All this track, and only one destination of any sizable importance.
Some of those stations don't even rate a frequent stop now.

nice graphics though. A for effort.

cheers
John
  potatoinmymouth Chief Commissioner

Yes, lovely graphics, and what the government report would have looked like had the inner loop option been chosen. But it was not: it was discarded for the reasons mentioned above.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Clayton
Monash University
Glen Waverley
Burwood (Deakin University)
Box Hill
Doncaster
Bundoora (LaTrobe University)
Melbourne Airport
Sunshine

I don't understand why people can't see the benefits in directly linking all of these major activity centres with a direct heavy railway line. If this line existed now it would be among Melbourne's busiest lines, in 30 years time it will be crammed full with people.

Yes there will be some big challenges, the grades near Doncaster and Box Hill, the high cost and the lengthy build time etc, but these can all be overcome. Other cities have overcome greater challenges, I see no reason why this couldn't be built and be a huge success. On the other hand, if it isn't built, I shudder to think how congested Melbourne will be.

There is only one obstacle that may prove to hard to overcome, the will of the people.
  tom9876543 Train Controller

The proposed route from Glen Waverly to Burwood looks ridiculous.
It is running directly west and parallel to existing line.

It is clear that Burwood should be replaced with Burwood East.
Box Hill should be replaced with Blackburn.
I think this would make the route slightly shorter, and it better serves the outer suburbs.
It also solves problem of steep grade south from Doncaster.
Re Box Hill you are missing the point of the line - one of it's primary aims is to de-centralise Melbourne by creating a polycentric city with multiple employment clusters like Monash and Sunshine. So instead of the way the city is now with a heap of people employed in the CBD and the rest spread out all over the shop there would be mini CBDs in at least 5 suburban locations.

The SRL project aims to get people to and from those employment clusters as well as to the Airport and to the existing CBD using links to existing lines.

Box Hill is well on the way to being a mini CBD already with hi rise buildings including the ATOs new building with many more skyscrapers on the drawing board for the suburb.

The linky loopy thingy if is it ever actually built needs to go through Box Hill not suburban backwater Blackburn.

BG
BrentonGolding

Hi BG,

I disagree with you.
Why would you encourage real estate development at a location that is already highly developed (Box Hill)?

If the new loop stops at Blackburn, it will cause significant real estate development to occur at Blackburn.
There will be both residential and commercial development.
Blackburn will become a mini CBD, as well as Box Hill.
That is more sustainable and a better long term option for Melbourne.

Burwood should be replaced with Burwood East.
The tram takes 4 minutes to travel between the two locations, so Uni students can endure the extra 5 - 10 min travel time.
IMHO, it is better to encourage real estate development around Burwood East.
  Lockie91 Train Controller

Completely disagree. Box Hill is already a Major Activity Centre as mentioned before. It already has high jobs concentration around TAFE and Health industries. On top of a few thousand apartments in the construction pipeline.

Blackburn has nothing...

The idea of the SRL is to link employment clusters that people already travel to. Not to create new ones and not service the established ones.
  tom9876543 Train Controller

Completely disagree. Box Hill is already a Major Activity Centre as mentioned before. It already has high jobs concentration around TAFE and Health industries. On top of a few thousand apartments in the construction pipeline.

Blackburn has nothing...

The idea of the SRL is to link employment clusters that people already travel to. Not to create new ones and not service the established ones.
Lockie91

Train takes 4 minutes to travel between Box Hill and Blackburn.
Someone travelling from Clayton to Box Hill is going to see significant time savings, even if they have to change trains at Blackburn.

Blackburn has positives:
- building another "mini CBD" is much better for the long term sustainability of Melbourne
- reduces travel times for all people starting journey east of Blackburn - Nunawading, Ringwood etc
- I think the length of the route will actually be a bit shorter, so there are cost savings as well
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Why would you encourage real estate development at a location that is already highly developed (Box Hill)?
tom9876543
Nobody needs to encourage it, it is already occurring naturally.

If the new loop stops at Blackburn, it will cause significant real estate development to occur at Blackburn. There will be both residential and commercial development. Blackburn will become a mini CBD, as well as Box Hill.
tom9876543
You can't guarantee that. The reality is people are flocking to Box Hill. That is where the property market is booming. That is why developers have already built 1 40+ story building there and are planning several more. The demand is already there for Box Hill, not Blackburn, not Nunawading, Box Hill.

Box Hill has good employment prospects, great schools, an ever expanding hospital, sure Blackburn isn't far away, but Box Hill is right there.

Burwood should be replaced with Burwood East. The tram takes 4 minutes to travel between the two locations, so Uni students can endure the extra 5 - 10 min travel time. IMHO, it is better to encourage real estate development around Burwood East.
tom9876543
I can see the value in Burwood East, especially somewhere like the intersection of Springvale Rd and Burwood Hwy. But that doesn't mean the tunnel shouldn't also serve Deakin Uni. If that makes for a sharp turn and a slight deviation its worth it if it serves more people. As that little girl in the 'Old El Paso Taco Kit' ad says: "Why can't we have both?"

Uni students can endure the extra 5 - 10 min travel time.
tom9876543
Or maybe they will just continue to drive there instead. We are trying to entice people out of private transport with an efficient public transport system that takes them from A to B, not from A to B and then a 2km tram ride to C.

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