When was the last time I caught the metro east of Epping? Tuesday. I catch the ECRL two days a week, twice a day, every week. I catch it in and out of the morning and afternoon peaks, because my schedule changes a lot. I have likely caught it hundreds of times more than you have. The ECRL does not currently require more than 10tph and will not require more than 12-15 for the next decade or so, especially if they extend the trains to 8 cars. Past Epping won't require more than 10tph for the next decade at least, even if it connects with Schofields. The real patronage will be between Chatswood and Waterloo. Epping, Chatswood and Sydenham all have crossovers, there's no reason why they can't be used as intermediate termini.
The T4 should not be touched by metro. It would require a great deal of cost to construct extra tracks to Hurstville in order to clear up services on the most well-run line in Sydney. There's no purpose to that. Between signalling upgrades and the new crossovers at Hurstville and Erskineville, the T4 is set capacity-wise for the next 15 years. If capacity really starts to become an issue after that, Cronulla via Kogarah and Waterfall via Banksia trains can replace the Hurstville services. Before you ask, I catch the T4 twice a day, every day for the last decade, once again both in and out of both peaks.
The negative impact of conversion of the T5 isn't "pretty much almost none". Currently, T5 commuters can either go to Parramatta, or to the City. Most people want to go to the City, and will continue wanting to go to the City. Converting the T5 removes that choice, screwing over most commuters who now have to change trains at Parramatta. So no, the impact isn't "pretty much almost none". The average commuter on that line gets shafted.
1) I caught a number of DD services to/from Gosford and in the city last month including 5pm to the airport, likewise in Brisbane both in and out peak on Gold Coast line. What I saw aligns heavily with Transport NSW rider data which shows a 50% reduction compared to pre CV-19 levels, although the Metro was marginally less % loss compared to Sydney Trains NSL and T9. I last caught Sydney trains and Metro in August 201, standing room only out of peak on ECRL.
Moral of the story, what ever you see on the trains today, double it to return to normal, which will take up to a year although there maybe some permant loss of patronage for all PT that due to WFH culture taking a big leap and this then applies to all services and does not under value the original design requirement, but does impact on future project time frames, which I believe will be extended out by up to 5 years beyond Western Metro.
2) The ECRL and later its Metro replacement up until CV-19 collects riders up to Epping from nth main and now NW Metro and dumps half of them in the ECRL stations, so the trains are busier leaving Epping than arriving at Chatswood. This was a key driver for the Metro design and choice for reclaiming the ECRL. Post extension into the city, things will change. How many will leave the Nth Main or change at Chatswood is the great unknown.
3) Metro Train length will not be extended over frequency reduction, much cheaper and customer friendly to run shorter trains more often than longer trains, one of the key arguments for Pro-Metro vs Sydney trains 8 car less frequent operations.
4) 2min timetables on through running lines makes its more difficult to have terminating services on the main, something Sydney Trains has had designed out. However as we have discussed here before Epping has this easily upgradable capability for terminating into a shunt neck then returning.
5) Yes perhaps a 3rd platform should have been added in some locations for terminating in a few locations, but I suppose the ones I see like this in Dubai and Singapore and Vancouver are sitting there, never used, often with rusty rails as the tracks are closed for regular use. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. The current cross overs are more so for emergenny use to terminate all services and return to enable continued operation for the rest of the line when there is a drama.
6) No argument for T4 (sorry I think I said T8 previously).
7) Ok why negative impact of conversion of the T5 isn't "pretty much almost none"
We actually discussed this before as a longterm option to simplify the timetable (with DD), no mention of metro.
Are we considering today or are we talking considering 2035 and beyond when the timeframe of the Metro would be complete? I'm focused on longer term, not proposing this decade.
When we discussed this for DD, the reason being to remove T2 competing with T1 and T3 and that only T5 would run up from Glenfield to Marylands and allow more Liverpool T3 and T1. T3 could be extended to Glenfield to solve (they want to go to the city). But the key part of the argument being the asumption that in 15 years or so, most communters in that area would actually be travelling to Para hub, not the city. ie 20 years ago T5 was non-existant and has grown over the years with growth fo demand and as Para hub grows so will demand. (yes, lots of if's, I suspect the govt's modelling supports these if's).
For those north of Cabramatta to Marylands who want to go to the city, its a few stops, then change, no drama.
Currently there is a train every 20min
If Metro is extended to Liverpool, its every 2 - 6min
Glenfield to city every 3-10min
Services on western corridor + Metro West is every 1min across all services.
T5 Metro would be every few minutes.
The trip "may" actually be faster than catching the current service.
Assume T5 Metro
- Glenfield to City DD
- Liverpool to City Metro
- Cabaramatta to City DD
- Main West Corridor
- West Metro
A few stops to numerous options.
Anyway, it won't happen, the money it would cost to convert the T5 would would build a large a few stations of new to rail metro SW of Paramatta so lets not get too excited.