Rail line made Toronto the “Riviera of Australia”

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 04 Mar 2019 11:02
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Some fair points with a few comments
- $3M for a T&H is a bucket load, another $0.25k or more for a mainline connection plus I assume ongoing costs to keep it is an extra burden that is unlikely affordable in at least the early days. Cheaper to ship rolling stock by road for once a year heavy maintenance. I'd consider it a long-term goal and I'm still not sure its worth the cost as this line is only suited to DMU but I see your point on maybe running the odd special to Newcastle (Interchange).
$3M is a fair cost for a full-on restoration of a line of that length and complexity (level crossing rebuilds) with contractors. There are ways to get the costs down such as turning it into a training project for mainline contractors etc and involving local volunteering groups with some tasks like lineside clearance, station restoration and so on, but it's prudent to not make assumptions like that when there doesn't appear to be visible community support for such a venture at present.

Ongoing costs for a mainline connection would be born by TfNSW. This is the natural outcome as the turnout would be on their track and the interlocking + signalling integrated into their systems. This arrangement is identical to the one that V/Line and the Victorian Goldfields Railway have with their mainline connection.
In today's funding environment, presenting a more ambitious & expensive plan (i.e mainline connection) from the outset that also has a higher return on investment is actually more likely to get funding. Governments actually like announcing and funding bigger projects. It's a topsy-turvy world compared to the private sector. Given the bad press that the Newcastle light rail project has generated it'd be a good little project to take the heat off and perhaps try to renovate the image of the new 'Newcastle Interchange'.

Re: heritage DMUs - The Rail Motor Society is based out of Paterson in the lower Hunter Valley. They have a sizeable fleet of heritage DMUs available to run through services or hire out on a seasonal basis. Let them specialise in restoring and maintaining their DMU fleet and have the Toronto operation just hire them (or others from further away if that makes sense too).
Don't forget that loco hauled push-pull operations could be run as well - but that only makes sense if there's a mainline connection.

LancedDendrite
Without strong community support, I wouldn't bother.

Look at Oberon, strong community support and still not yet opened a 11km section of track, however that project is far more complex with a number of points, shed requirements etc. However a commonality is the need to restore level crossings.

You a probably right, get govt support, reopen the line with mainline connection. Partnership with the RMS, build a secure storage shed at the Toronto end of the branch to avoid points or if need be a small siding at Fassifern, and rotate stock through.

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  gw0071 Deputy Commissioner

Check out Elements of Toronto - a development initiative to create an over 55's residential village by the Toronto Workers Club on land it holds between its premises and the former railway line to Toronto

It's well under construction so the potential to incorporate a railway station on a restored line has most likely passed. Shame really - a captive market and an opportunity to restore heavy rail with a new terminus eliminating what would be one of its most fundamental obstacles - the crossing of Carey Street

I seem to recall that the Workers Club had investigated re-opening the line in the '90's with such a proposal. If so, it is clearly obvious as to why this may have been briefly considered as viable

Probably more effective to incorporate a fleet of twenty-seaters into the budget, especially if government assistance wasn't forthcoming
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Check out Elements of Toronto - a development initiative to create an over 55's residential village by the Toronto Workers Club on land it holds between its premises and the former railway line to Toronto

It's well under construction so the potential to incorporate a railway station on a restored line has most likely passed. Shame really - a captive market and an opportunity to restore heavy rail with a new terminus eliminating what would be one of its most fundamental obstacles - the crossing of Carey Street

I seem to recall that the Workers Club had investigated re-opening the line in the '90's with such a proposal. If so, it is clearly obvious as to why this may have been briefly considered as viable

Probably more effective to incorporate a fleet of twenty-seaters into the budget, especially if government assistance wasn't forthcoming
gw0071
Its 300m from the front door of the workers club to the old station at Bowers Platform which was closed in 1910.

The proposal I mentioned above to reopen as a tram/LR was mainly to allow for the reuse of the locations such as Bowers Platform and Fennells Platform which also closed in 1920. These combined with only two operating stations on the 3.7km line, Blackalls Park and Toronto would provide the following stops from NSWrail.net. ie basically a spacing of;
900m to Blackalls Park,
400m to Fennells Paltform (Lake St LX), I suspect this is actually double the distance in reality)
900m to Bowers Platform (Carney St LX, however although looking at map its half this distance from Fennells),
350m to Toronto Station.

With extra stops at
- Wangi Road gap (between Fassifern and Blackalls Park, currently not connected due to railway and cycleway.
- Rose Street, further down from above
- Adam Street half way between Blackalls Park and Fennells Platform
  simstrain Chief Commissioner

If toronto re opens it will not be to heavy rail. It will be a LRV and it will not be connecting to the mains.
  gw0071 Deputy Commissioner

Is that right?

So are you proposing that x1 mode change on a journey between Toronto and the East End of Newcastle may not be enough?

Perhaps you're suggesting that there's a strong yet up to now hidden demand for a hop-on/hop-off rail service between Toronto and Fassi. Just a whole lot of suburbia, trees and unemployment last time I looked

Hypothetical question without notice, is the township of Toronto currently in a marginal seat at any level of government?

To be honest I think that you're more likely to see Puffing Billy in Toronto before any of the abovementioned however, feel free to claim the hypothesis silver medal if you so please. I'll bring up the rear with the heavy rail bronze - gold will go to the infamous 'do nothing' brigade of politics
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Is that right?

So are you proposing that x1 mode change on a journey between Toronto and the East End of Newcastle may not be enough?

Perhaps you're suggesting that there's a strong yet up to now hidden demand for a hop-on/hop-off rail service between Toronto and Fassi. Just a whole lot of suburbia, trees and unemployment last time I looked

Hypothetical question without notice, is the township of Toronto currently in a marginal seat at any level of government?

To be honest I think that you're more likely to see Puffing Billy in Toronto before any of the abovementioned however, feel free to claim the hypothesis silver medal if you so please. I'll bring up the rear with the heavy rail bronze - gold will go to the infamous 'do nothing' brigade of politics
gw0071
1 x hop ride, isn't that what they do now if they catch a bus? is this not what the govt just forced on 2000 commuters a day previously using Civic and Newcastle but now claiming +4000 a day use the new tram that replaced it.

People need to get over this modal change phobia. Changing mode isn't an issue, its the connection time that pi$$es people off. Case in point BRisbane's previous 30min train timetables into the city, which usually meant watching your connecting service depart as you arrive. I think my average connection time was 27min. Likewise arriving at the airport station off the plane, as you walk up watching the train depart knowing the next one is in 30min. These are the reasons I used a car or taxi for short hops.

For Fassifern, the train timetable is basically 2 x per hour from Newcastle, you just need to connect to the train, just like the old DMU service used to do. Doesn't matter if its DMU shuttle, LR or bus. Make people wait and you have lost them.

The corridor is completely unsuited to being reopened as a commuter heavy rail service and the changes of ever occurring is zero. Its not suited to loco haulage if you expect run around to occur as this trackage hasn't existed for a century or so if it ever did so will never see such a service, even as T&H. What ever is to run on the line again if its ever reopened must be self propelled and reversible, ie ?MU of sorts. If we don't think a tram is viable, then a train is certainly not viable. Likely the previously mentioned option by other of T&H using railcars from the society further north,
  gw0071 Deputy Commissioner

Fair points RTT

We still know who's getting gold though
  simstrain Chief Commissioner

There should be more then 2 trains an hour and there should be a return of the local service. Rebuild the lines in some of these areas to 4 tracks and put on local services. Newcastle line needs lots of this to happen.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Before any consideration to reopening old lines, you need to introduce 30min on the existing lines and if this doesn't draw the crowds then spending billions isn't going to do much better.

Current timetable during the day,

All stoppers heading south leave at 35min after the hour, with express leaving 11min prior.
At
- Cardiff 14min apart
- Fassifern (30min by all stopper), 17min apart
- Morriset the two trains are 19min apart
- Wyong 22min
- Gosford 35min apart

The timetable designed to basically have an even 30min gap between express and all stopper by Central.

If you run a 15min all stopper service, the express will be on the back of the all stopper by Cardiff, so you need a passing loop from the station south. Fortunately there is an existing yard of loops just south of Cardif station that could be used to lay over the all stopper while the express passes. North bound is mostly works the same. You would get a clockwork 30min timetable, but it would only be off by a few minutes to make use of this yard.


Limiting the 30min timetable to Fassifern would likely make sense and limit the issues for freight, you have an existing max 6 car length 3rd platform and suitable cross over that can be used with an obvious upgrade such as turn old, stub siding and O/H if using sparks. Morriset requires terminating on the main and by Morriset the express and all existing stopper are getting more evenly spaced anyway so really benefits just Dora Creek and Awaba.

Regards
Shane
  Ethan1395 Junior Train Controller

Location: An OSCar H Set
There should be more then 2 trains an hour and there should be a return of the local service. Rebuild the lines in some of these areas to 4 tracks and put on local services. Newcastle line needs lots of this to happen.
simstrain
Before any consideration to reopening old lines, you need to introduce 30min on the existing lines and if this doesn't draw the crowds then spending billions isn't going to do much better.

Current timetable during the day,

All stoppers heading south leave at 35min after the hour, with express leaving 11min prior.
At
- Cardiff 14min apart
- Fassifern (30min by all stopper), 17min apart
- Morriset the two trains are 19min apart
- Wyong 22min
- Gosford 35min apart

The timetable designed to basically have an even 30min gap between express and all stopper by Central.

If you run a 15min all stopper service, the express will be on the back of the all stopper by Cardiff, so you need a passing loop from the station south. Fortunately there is an existing yard of loops just south of Cardif station that could be used to lay over the all stopper while the express passes. North bound is mostly works the same. You would get a clockwork 30min timetable, but it would only be off by a few minutes to make use of this yard.


Limiting the 30min timetable to Fassifern would likely make sense and limit the issues for freight, you have an existing max 6 car length 3rd platform and suitable cross over that can be used with an obvious upgrade such as turn old, stub siding and O/H if using sparks. Morriset requires terminating on the main and by Morriset the express and all existing stopper are getting more evenly spaced anyway so really benefits just Dora Creek and Awaba.

Regards
Shane
RTT_Rules

15 minute service frequencies are necessary between Newcastle and Fassifern (and Toronto), 30 minute frequencies will most likely not be enough to entice people out of their cars. Remember that Newcastle has a strong car culture and layout of things there is designed around cars - not humans.

4 tracks between Fassifern and Woodville Junction will most likely be necessary, although passing loops may be sufficient.

But remember, it's not just frequency that is an issue, it's also stations, either the lack thereof or inaccessibility.

Many new stations along the existing line will need to be constructed and others upgraded to really make a worthwhile suburban service, stations need to be at:

-Newcastle Intg
-Hamilton (install pedestrian traffic light crossings on Beaumont Street to allow safe crossing of the road when entering or leaving the station)
-Broadmeadow (maybe install exits to the Lambton Road bridge for a light rail stop)
-Adamstown (traffic lights at Glebe/Park road and level crossing removal)
-Kotara (with skybridge to Homemaker's Centre and Westfield)
-Blackbutt (old Kotara station with security and access to Park Avenue, and pedestrian access to the nearby Blackbutt reserve
-Garden Suburb
-Cardiff Heights
-Cardiff (mabye moved closer to the commercial area)
-Glendale
-Argenton
-Boolaroo (renamed Cockle Creek, pedestrian traffic light crossing across Lake Road to Bunnings and replace the nearby large multi lane roundabout with traffic lights so pedestrians can safely access the new housing development.
-Teralba
-Booragul
-Fassifern (with improved pedestrian access)
-------------------------------------------------
-Blackhalls Park (with level crossings removed and local roads bridging over the creeks to access Cary St)
-Toronto (with ferry interchange for ferries to Belmont, and rail overpass/road underpass bridging Cary St)

No point having a suburban rail service when the line passes the places where people want to go (or live) without a station, or if the stations are inaccessible for pedestrians
  gw0071 Deputy Commissioner

Impressive speculation

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