Wow, your joking. SG to Shepparton. The demise of the 5 foot 3 seems to be happening, even though it may not. Why can't we keep our own track that's in our state, like the old Albury line. Why don't they make it fully dual gauge, like they should for the Melbourne - Adelaide mainline, from beyond Ararat. This made the Victor Harbor railway isolated. I just don't get how we don't get to keep our own gauge of railway track. If this keeps continuing, just make the all the 5 foot 3 tracks into SG, even though I hope i never happens.
Because the entire BG Victorian network is essentially isolated. Standard Gauge is the standard (funny name for a gauge, right?
) almost everywhere else in Australia. To make the freight network competitive and even viable, most lines will, unfortunately for a whole host of reasons, need to be gauge converted. Perhaps that's the only way PN will be enticed back to Victoria, as much as PN have zero interest in running trains in Victoria.
DG is not a viable option, due to the SG 80km/h limit on DG lines. Let alone the extremely expensive points and other track work, from both a construction and maintenance point of view... And of course the other reasons mentioned earlier.
As bad as it would be from a preservation viewpoint, it is going to happen, eventually.