What of the Mt Isa to Tennant Creek railway

 
  awsgc24 Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney

You are right talking about the gauge. There are different gauges – it is one of the great failures in the Federation of Australia. The gauge in the Territory is different to Queensland, that is, the width of the rail line, for those who do not understand gauges.  
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Strictly speaking, the gauge muddle is a pre-federation stuff-up.

Also, the federal government has no constitutional power to fix this stuffup, unless the state(s) involved agree, which they have often bloody-mindedly refused, for selfish reasons. For example the direct and reasonably graded Port Augusta-Hay standard gauge linkup line in the 1920s was vetoed by SA and VIC for fear of being bypassed.

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  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE

You are right talking about the gauge. There are different gauges – it is one of the great failures in the Federation of Australia. The gauge in the Territory is different to Queensland, that is, the width of the rail line, for those who do not understand gauges.  

Strictly speaking, the gauge muddle is a pre-federation stuff-up.

Also, the federal government has no constitutional power to fix this stuffup, unless the state(s) involved agree, which they have often bloody-mindedly refused, for selfish reasons. For example the direct and reasonably graded Port Augusta-Hay standard gauge linkup line in the 1920s was vetoed by SA and VIC for fear of being bypassed.
awsgc24
Technically speaking the NT only had NG track until 1980 in the south and NG until closure in the north, the feds then converted the south to SG and later extended to Darwin, so the feds cause the gauge conflict between NT and Qld.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

And a narrow gauge link between Brisbane and Darwin had been planned prior to World War One, with the Queensland section being approved for construction by the Queensland Parliament. A different twist in history and this wouldn't be a gauge discussion.
  awsgc24 Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney


The Mt Isa to he distance?Darwin line will never fly because so much other work has to be done to make it viable.
RTT_Rules

There are two current Gauge Change Train systems that would help overcoming the Break Of Gauge between Townsville-Mt Isa-Tennant Creek-Darwin.
One in Switerland.
One between Baku and Istanbul: https://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11385127.htm
  62440 Chief Commissioner



The Mt Isa to he distance?Darwin line will never fly because so much other work has to be done to make it viable.
RTT_Rules

There are two current Gauge Change Train systems that would help overcoming the Break Of Gauge between Townsville-Mt Isa-Tennant Creek-Darwin.
One in Switerland.
One between Baku and Istanbul: https://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11385127.htm
"awsgc24"


There is another that springs to mind in Jenbach, Austria where SG wagons ran on 760 mm gauge transfer bogies with effectively a rolling track. This is technically feasible and would be designed for an acceptable speed.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
And its reports time!!!

https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Strategic_Options_Paper_Part_1.pdf
https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Strategic_Options_Paper_Part_2.pdf

And a technical report here

https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Technical_Assessment_Program_Summary_report.pdf

In short, more volumes required to make it viable.  They say that NT and Qld have started looking for these volumes in any case...

Capital cost estimates:
- SG Tennant Creek to Mt Isa - $2.7bn
- SG TC to MI plus DG MI to Cloncurry - $3.39bn
- SG TC to Townsville - $6.6bn
- DG TC to Townsville - $6.5bn

Other options were provided but NG only from TC to MI was not part of any option.

Also the maps provided are interesting.  The line would go through areas without much in the way of known mining potential, but to the north and sounth there look to be other more promising fields.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
And its reports time!!!

https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Strategic_Options_Paper_Part_1.pdf
https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Strategic_Options_Paper_Part_2.pdf

And a technical report here

https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/rail/publications/files/Technical_Assessment_Program_Summary_report.pdf

In short, more volumes required to make it viable.  They say that NT and Qld have started looking for these volumes in any case...

Capital cost estimates:
- SG Tennant Creek to Mt Isa - $2.7bn
- SG TC to MI plus DG MI to Cloncurry - $3.39bn
- SG TC to Townsville - $6.6bn
- DG TC to Townsville - $6.5bn

Other options were provided but NG only from TC to MI was not part of any option.

Also the maps provided are interesting.  The line would go through areas without much in the way of known mining potential, but to the north and sounth there look to be other more promising fields.
james.au
Interesting

NG MI to TC is pointless, but extending MI to Cloncurry as DG, assume direct would be valuable, thats assuming it simply didn't kill off traffic on the MI line.

Regardless, $2.7B to just go SG MI to TC. So how about this as a plan
- Take $2.7B from the govt
- Give back $1.3B to the govt for other projects
- Build the 120km missing link between MI and Cloncurry ($500-600M), single straight track, no passing loops, should be cheap.
- Spend the rest on upgrading the rest of the MI line to enable faster, longer and heavier trains.
- If a mine with viable tonnages was to start, then extend from what ever end is closest as needed.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways


Regardless, $2.7B to just go SG MI to TC. So how about this as a plan
- Take $2.7B from the govt
- Give back $1.3B to the govt for other projects
- Build the 120km missing link between MI and Cloncurry ($500-600M), single straight track, no passing loops, should be cheap.
- Spend the rest on upgrading the rest of the MI line to enable faster, longer and heavier trains.
- If a mine with viable tonnages was to start, then extend from what ever end is closest as needed.
RTT_Rules

Not certain how cheap a new line between Mt Isa and Cloncurry would be. The highway winds up and down and around lots of curves; it's not obvious to me how it could be done cheaply.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE

Regardless, $2.7B to just go SG MI to TC. So how about this as a plan
- Take $2.7B from the govt
- Give back $1.3B to the govt for other projects
- Build the 120km missing link between MI and Cloncurry ($500-600M), single straight track, no passing loops, should be cheap.
- Spend the rest on upgrading the rest of the MI line to enable faster, longer and heavier trains.
- If a mine with viable tonnages was to start, then extend from what ever end is closest as needed.
Not certain how cheap a new line between Mt Isa and Cloncurry would be. The highway winds up and down and around lots of curves; it's not obvious to me how it could be done cheaply.
duttonbay
Probably true, I was thinking $5M/km, maybe its $10m/km
  Jack Le Lievre Chief Train Controller

Location: Moolap Station, Vic
I thought that this could be of interest, but I wasn't 100% where to put it and thought that here was as good as anywhere.

Secret Plans For A New Port Outside Darwin

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-23/navy-port-us-darwin-glyde-point-gunn-marines-gunn-military/11222606


So, with the expectation that Glyde Point will be a multi-use development will this mean that there will be a rail link to it? I think we might already know the answer to this, but...
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
I thought that this could be of interest, but I wasn't 100% where to put it and thought that here was as good as anywhere.

Secret Plans For A New Port Outside Darwin

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-23/navy-port-us-darwin-glyde-point-gunn-marines-gunn-military/11222606


So, with the expectation that Glyde Point will be a multi-use development will this mean that there will be a rail link to it? I think we might already know the answer to this, but...
Jack Le Lievre
I wonder if a cheaper option would have been to buy out the Chinese from the present port contract, thus removing one of the main problems with the present port. The engineers reading this would want facts and figures for water depth, both wharves and channel access, including present depth and possible dredging options, at both sites, before they ponder what size ships would service the area.

Problem is a new port does not mean new customers, unless the new port operators can prove it is cheaper / easier to use their new port instead of what ever port (Darwin or Townsville etc) the potential customers already use.

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