Transport Minister refuses to rule out privatising Adelaide trains and trams

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 15 May 2019 14:29
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
This is why people should have stuck with Labour. Yes they where having funding issues. but they solve it one way or another WITHOUT selling of our assets.

I can assume what went wrong with our public transport system, but I thought everything was going well. Patronage was up and rising. It's why they have kept spending money to keep improving it.

Privatising the rail networks won't work. Our bus network is f**ked because "Adelaide Metro" set up timetables that are almost impossible to keep. People complain to Adelaide Metro who respond with "will pass on the information to the service provider" YOU are the service provider. Don't push the blame to the companies operating your service.

If you truly want to improve the network, expand it. Create regional rail. All though this won't be profitable it will create more jobs and better connect our state. Extend the O-bahn to the airport via a tunnel and Interchange under the CBD
mawsonboii

Correction
1) The Railway is NOT being sold or privatised, its been handed over to external management, same as the buses.

2) Govt need to learn to live within their means and social promised need to be funded, not borrowed.

3) The investment in PT is not exclusive to govt operation.

4) If Adelaide Metro, a govt entity set up the timetables and its a failure, then why do you place so much faith in the govt department to be better than private?

5) Regional Rail is dead is SA, too few people too far apart, its why people stopped using it the first time.

Building a tunnel under the city for the O-bahn at something like $500M or better so a few people can get to the airport by bus?

I would have thought rather than creating jobs at taxpayers expense for people to move empty buses and trains to where people don't want to go, the better option would be to build a tunnel from Adelaide station down through the city connecting to the southern line. However SA cannot afford this $1B project and the rest of the network needs to be sparked first.

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  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
This is why people should have stuck with Labour. Yes they where having funding issues. but they solve it one way or another WITHOUT selling of our assets.
mawsonboii
Are you incompetent or do you just enjoy being laughed at?

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-10-18/price-revealed-for-forest-harvests-deal/4320360 - exactly how many tears did you shed over this? - I shed exactly none, even though it was Labor selling a resource.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-08-10/lands-titles-privatisation-highlights-value-of-big-data/8794912 - exactly how many tears did you shed over this? - This one was a TRAVESTY of proportion you could not even begin to comprehend.

https://premier.sa.gov.au/news/auditor-general-critical-of-labors-secret-deal-in-controversial-16bn-lands-titles-office-sell - Yay!

And if you think Labor selling the SA LTO was some sort of aberration:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-27/victoria-privatises-its-land-titles-and-registry-office/10169056

People complain to Adelaide Metro who respond with "will pass on the information to the service provider" YOU are the service provider. Don't push the blame to the companies operating your service.
mawsonboii
Adelaide Metro operate precisely ZERO PT services. So yes, to turn the complaint over to the people who actually do operate the services is entirely reasonable and well advised.
  DJPeters Assistant Commissioner

One question needs to be asked though what will happen if no company tenders to run it at all, what then if they let it run down to any extent in the lead up to the privatisation then if no one wants the job of running it then the trains and trams in Adelaide will be even further down the maintenance and finance ladder than they are now.

Adelaide being a small city compared to others no company might want to take it on if the government here is going to scrape the cream off, of the top of it. The company want to make some profit and if they cannot then they will not tender in the first place.
  Lockspike Deputy Commissioner

One question needs to be asked though what will happen if no company tenders to run it at all, what then if they let it run down to any extent in the lead up to the privatisation then if no one wants the job of running it then the trains and trams in Adelaide will be even further down the maintenance and finance ladder than they are now.

Adelaide being a small city compared to others no company might want to take it on if the government here is going to scrape the cream off, of the top of it. The company want to make some profit and if they cannot then they will not tender in the first place.
DJPeters
Only rent seekers will apply
  potatoinmymouth Chief Commissioner

Someone will tender to run it, you can be sure of that.

The Metro Trains consortium will be very well placed having invaluable actual experience of a similar franchise arrangement in Melbourne, and operations across multiple states already with Metro Trains Sydney. I’d also expect Keolis Downer or one of their corporate relatives to have a crack, again drawing on Melbourne experiences.

If the SA government expect to eventually desubsidise the service, they’re mad, but I don’t think they’d be that silly. It didn’t happen in Melbourne and it won’t happen here.

The payment concept is not really that hard to grasp and a few people in this thread need to wrap their heads around it. Government pays operator an essentially fixed sum per annum, in return for meeting agreed service levels, service performance, asset maintenance standards, and so on. Government collects revenue from ticket sales and uses this to make the franchise payment in combination with other sources of funding as necessary. Whatever the operator manages to not spend while meeting their contractual obligations is their profit margin.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
My money would be on Keolis. I would be quite surprised if it wasn’t taken up by them.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
David, you’re crazy.
  ANR Assistant Commissioner

Will the trackless trams be driverless?

Maybe the uber flying taxis will extend from Melbourne to Adelaide. Could this be the technology that the Premier was thinking about?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
David, you’re crazy.
Aaron
In one respect he's right, it's a small network. But on the other hand - FREE MONEY, come and get it, someone!
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
It’s not quite free money Don, you know that, if it were you and Mr Peters would tender to run it - you’d be crazy not to.

There is some risk, and the return to the operator is likely in the range of less than 5%.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
It’s not quite free money Don, you know that, if it were you and Mr Peters would tender to run it - you’d be crazy not to.

There is some risk, and the return to the operator is likely in the range of less than 5%.
Aaron
Aaron, by the time Kelois, National Express, Veolia (whoever) have been running it for three years and have been found to be incompetent they would have already creamed off tens of millions. The exact same thing happened in Victoria with the circus that became Connex; let's just change provider to some Hong Kong-based company and the public will think something is happening.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
‘Tens of millions’ after three years Don? Wow! How much do you think they’ll PAY to get the contract in the first place? Your ‘free money’ is a loss making exercise all of a sudden.
  mawsonboii Locomotive Fireman

This is why people should have stuck with Labour. Yes they where having funding issues. but they solve it one way or another WITHOUT selling of our assets.

I can assume what went wrong with our public transport system, but I thought everything was going well. Patronage was up and rising. It's why they have kept spending money to keep improving it.

Privatising the rail networks won't work. Our bus network is f**ked because "Adelaide Metro" set up timetables that are almost impossible to keep. People complain to Adelaide Metro who respond with "will pass on the information to the service provider" YOU are the service provider. Don't push the blame to the companies operating your service.

If you truly want to improve the network, expand it. Create regional rail. All though this won't be profitable it will create more jobs and better connect our state. Extend the O-bahn to the airport via a tunnel and Interchange under the CBD

Correction
1) The Railway is NOT being sold or privatised, its been handed over to external management, same as the buses.

2) Govt need to learn to live within their means and social promised need to be funded, not borrowed.

3) The investment in PT is not exclusive to govt operation.

4) If Adelaide Metro, a govt entity set up the timetables and its a failure, then why do you place so much faith in the govt department to be better than private?

5) Regional Rail is dead is SA, too few people too far apart, its why people stopped using it the first time.

Building a tunnel under the city for the O-bahn at something like $500M or better so a few people can get to the airport by bus?

I would have thought rather than creating jobs at taxpayers expense for people to move empty buses and trains to where people don't want to go, the better option would be to build a tunnel from Adelaide station down through the city connecting to the southern line. However SA cannot afford this $1B project and the rest of the network needs to be sparked first.
RTT_Rules
O-bahn tunnel would be cheaper than rail and busses can the run to Glenelg, Marion etc from the Airport.
(you'd be amazed how many people drive to the airport or get dropped off/picked up because of a lack of services to the airport)

Oh I have no faith in a privatised system working, No one will want to spend money running trains and trams when they get nothing back from it. the Government doesn't want to pay for our trains to run.
  DJPeters Assistant Commissioner

David, you’re crazy.
Aaron
Nope just a realist and stranger things have happened. But like I said Adelaide is seen by most as just a large country town and not much more.
  nswtrains Chief Commissioner

This is why people should have stuck with Labour. Yes they where having funding issues. but they solve it one way or another WITHOUT selling of our assets.

I can assume what went wrong with our public transport system, but I thought everything was going well. Patronage was up and rising. It's why they have kept spending money to keep improving it.

Privatising the rail networks won't work. Our bus network is f**ked because "Adelaide Metro" set up timetables that are almost impossible to keep. People complain to Adelaide Metro who respond with "will pass on the information to the service provider" YOU are the service provider. Don't push the blame to the companies operating your service.

If you truly want to improve the network, expand it. Create regional rail. All though this won't be profitable it will create more jobs and better connect our state. Extend the O-bahn to the airport via a tunnel and Interchange under the CBD

Correction
1) The Railway is NOT being sold or privatised, its been handed over to external management, same as the buses.

2) Govt need to learn to live within their means and social promised need to be funded, not borrowed.

3) The investment in PT is not exclusive to govt operation.

4) If Adelaide Metro, a govt entity set up the timetables and its a failure, then why do you place so much faith in the govt department to be better than private?

5) Regional Rail is dead is SA, too few people too far apart, its why people stopped using it the first time.

Building a tunnel under the city for the O-bahn at something like $500M or better so a few people can get to the airport by bus?

I would have thought rather than creating jobs at taxpayers expense for people to move empty buses and trains to where people don't want to go, the better option would be to build a tunnel from Adelaide station down through the city connecting to the southern line. However SA cannot afford this $1B project and the rest of the network needs to be sparked first.
RTT_Rules
In the land of free enterprise, the USA, I am not aware of one urban system that is run privately. New York City Council had to take over the subways to keep them going. I think that tells you that public transport is best run by government. Your little toy railway in Dubai (I see the facist who rules the place wife and kids has escaped to London out of fear) is not comparable to other systems.
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
In the land of free enterprise, the USA, I am not aware of one urban system that is run privately. New York City Council had to take over the subways to keep them going. I think that tells you that public transport is best run by government. Your little toy railway in Dubai (I see the facist who rules the place wife and kids has escaped to London out of fear) is not comparable to other systems.
nswtrains
In the land of they think they are actually free, but actually not things are done a bit differently aren't they.

I'm not about to audit the entire USA public transport but I won't disagree. Meanwhile the Japanese systems are mostly private owned and operated with what sort of on time running performance?????

I think SA's chief political commentator posted the details on a typical US approach a while back. But basically if I understand correctly they don't have department heads as such but rather CEO who doesn't report to a Minister but rather a board or committee with a number of vested parties including the members of the govt and often public meetings. Don't perform, fired! I think you will also find the taxpayers have a greater say on the funding arrangements.

As far as Dubai goes, run by Serco if I recall. You calling it a little toy railway?
- Moves half the total Adelaide population per day
- Moves more on Saturday than Adelaide Metro does on a year of Sunday's.
- yet 2/3 the number of stations and roughly half the trackage
- Cheaper to use but closer to breaking even

As far as the boss is concerned, yeah well, 10 years with one of the hottest women in the world isn't doing too badly. Fear for ones safety in one of the safest countries in the world while being a sister of Monach well funded by the US, UN and EU is always an interesting concept.

Back to Adelaide
- Adelaide trains are not being sold,
- All capital funding still funded by the Govt
- Fares controlled by the Govt
- Timetables stipulated by the Govt
- Operational Subsidy provided by the Govt
- The bus network was previously contracted out by the Govt, so the precedent of how it will go is set.

So what is it about simply contracting out the day to day operation that you are actually afraid of?
- Maybe it yields results?
- Potential job losses by those not required?
- One less thing for the ALP to critise the LNP on as everyone knows the future ALP govt will never take it back.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
O-bahn tunnel would be cheaper than rail and busses can the run to Glenelg, Marion etc from the Airport.
(you'd be amazed how many people drive to the airport or get dropped off/picked up because of a lack of services to the airport)
mawsonboii
You'd be amazed at how impractical it is to take your 23-30kg of checked luggage plus your carry on luggage on the bus. You might also be amazed to learn that the bus also drops you at a remarkably greater distance from where you want to be than a car/taxi/Uber dropping you off, or a car parking. You will also be amazed to learn that whilst I don't have to commute by air all that often, when I do, it's already inconvenient enough for me to have waste a couple of hours checking and waiting for my flight, that if faced with the inconvenience of needing to wait for PT and double my home-airport travel time using PT I would resign rather than do the travel.

When you are a bit more grown up you won't find any of those things all that amazing at all.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
David, you’re crazy.
Nope just a realist and stranger things have happened. But like I said Adelaide is seen by most as just a large country town and not much more.
DJPeters
I don't think realist is a word I would use in reference to yourself.

Strange things don't generally happen, many things happen, but that they're invariably not that strange.

That said, many strange things don't happen, for example a response to the final question in this post, maybe that's not such a strange thing after all.

There will of course be a tender, and you are not a realist if you think otherwise.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
‘Tens of millions’ after three years Don? Wow! How much do you think they’ll PAY to get the contract in the first place? Your ‘free money’ is a loss making exercise all of a sudden.
Aaron
Any profit they cream off with their management experience (which is all that's being bought in) IS free money, Aaron.

And whoever tenders will not being doing it for a song, Aaron, we both know that.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
So what is it about simply contracting out the day to day operation that you are actually afraid of?
- Maybe it yields results?
- Potential job losses by those not required?
- One less thing for the ALP to critise the LNP on as everyone knows the future ALP govt will never take it back.
RTT_Rules
When I was living in Melbourne I happened to know a bloke who took a package in the Met privatisations in the mid-nineties. They begged him to go back in the early 2000's because of the complete mess that the Kennett model caused and he did so relucantly because he really didn't want to go back and work with all their antiquated equipment (that hadn't changed at all so he told me).

All that the Met privatisation did in reality was create a revolving door of staff who got bought back in after taking packages because THEY were the ones who really knew about running a tram and train system. He once told me that in his opinion privatisation had cost the VIC government a fortune and and that it had been set up to fail but the key thing was that the government had lost primary accountability when the services failed.

That's why it went from M>Train/Connex to Connex then Metro and eventually probably someone else; they have someone convenient to blame when things go wrong. And also they're prepared to pay for it to have arms' length so they don't have to deal directly with the RBTU. Win/win for the VIC government but the fact that they don't generally do this in the United States should tell us that a publicly managed board as the Met was is the most efficient and cost-effective model.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
O-bahn tunnel would be cheaper than rail and busses can the run to Glenelg, Marion etc from the Airport.
(you'd be amazed how many people drive to the airport or get dropped off/picked up because of a lack of services to the airport)
You'd be amazed at how impractical it is to take your 23-30kg of checked luggage plus your carry on luggage on the bus. You might also be amazed to learn that the bus also drops you at a remarkably greater distance from where you want to be than a car/taxi/Uber dropping you off, or a car parking. You will also be amazed to learn that whilst I don't have to commute by air all that often, when I do, it's already inconvenient enough for me to have waste a couple of hours checking and waiting for my flight, that if faced with the inconvenience of needing to wait for PT and double my home-airport travel time using PT I would resign rather than do the travel.

When you are a bit more grown up you won't find any of those things all that amazing at all.
Aaron
JetBus really isn't that bad, it runs very frequently during the day and for me it means only two buses or about 40 minutes till home which is comparable to driving. It's a thousand times better than the rather-difficult-to-use 901 Met bus in Melbourne.

Agree with you about baggage though, AdMet buses are not generally set up for people with that amount of luggage and it's truly horrible when you coincide with the peak times...
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
O-bahn tunnel would be cheaper than rail and busses can the run to Glenelg, Marion etc from the Airport.
(you'd be amazed how many people drive to the airport or get dropped off/picked up because of a lack of services to the airport)

Oh I have no faith in a privatised system working, No one will want to spend money running trains and trams when they get nothing back from it. the Government doesn't want to pay for our trains to run.
mawsonboii
Mawsoonboli, DJpeters and Allan and anyone else who thinks the above is correct need to have a think.

THE RAILWAY ASSET IS NOT BEING PRIVATISED, NOTHING IS BEING SOLD - Got that!

The govt is contracting out the management and its day to day operation. Should the govt redraw funding do you know how many trains would run immediately after the cutoff date. ZERO. The operator would run the trains to the end of the service at the time and then terminate and return to depo immediately. The operators doesn't even get to keep the farebox.

If the govt didn't want to pay to run the trains then doing what they are doing IS THE LAST THING THEY WOULD DO! Why because a third party is now involved that could easily leak to the public or go public as needed if they felt they were being screwed by the govt who is actually paying for each train.

Train tunnels are likely cheaper, no exhaust fumes to deal with and you only need a 5-6m or so diameter bore and you can build the tunnel only a few cm larger than the train. No need breakdown lanes etc.

How many people would catch the O-bahn to the airport, SWFA? Extend the tram to the airport by all means to service the route on the way, but don't waste money building a bus tunnel at a cost $300-500M through a city that takes 5-8min to cross out of peak for a few people an hour to benefit from.  

How many people drive to the airport in one form or another is probably 90% of the 8mpa users.
How many people do you think do the same to Sydney with its 40mpa users. 8mpa use the train, probably same use other buses, leaves +20mpa use a car in some way. Adelaide has a long way to go to catch up.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
Train tunnels don’t need break down lanes, but decent length ones still need ventilation, even for electric trains. - A tunnel fire is quite a scary engineering issue, likewise, train tunnels still require escape/evacuation routes.

Size for size train tunnels are likely not much/any cheaper than vehicle tunnels. The hole costs the same, the ‘road’ is likely similar, a train tunnel escape/evacuation route is likely needing to be bigger based on the likely number of trapped passengers. They might save a bit on lighting and lane marking, but I wouldn’t expect greatly different prices based on that.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

It would not be allowable to build a new rail tunnel like the narrow ones in the Adelaide Hills, certainly not for a passenger railway.

The Melbourne Metro tunnels being built at the moment will have a diameter of about 7.5 metres, in order to accomodate the evacuation/maintenance walkways, electrical equipment, signalling equipment, safety equipment and lighting.

The two running tunnels of the Channel Tunnel have diameters of over 8.5 metres, because they need to accomodate a much larger loading gauge than the restrictive loading gauge used in Melbourne.

A new road tunnel with two lanes and a shoulder on one side (e.g. one carriageway of a road like the North-South Motorway) would need to be much wider than one of these single track rail tunnels, and so the total cost would probably be quite similar given all the additional equipment which needs to be installed for a rail tunnel.


If an O-Bahn tunnel was built using a pair of single track bored tunnels (like you would do for a rail tunnel) then the configuration would be fairly similar to that of a modern rail tunnel.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Gladys inherited a bad situation in NSW, and turned it around without privatising or outsourcing.
ANR
Two counters to this point - Busses in the Inner West and the Northwest (and probably future) metros.  Both franchise operations.  not to mention the other bus contracts around the city that are franchised.

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