Ballarat Line Upgrade Project

 
  steve195 Train Controller

How come electrification for metro trains is not being completed to Bacchus Marsh where the major terminus exists and so does a private school which sees students catch V/line trains from the Melbourne line?
MetroFemme
I don't think electrification past Melton is in any official long-term plans.

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  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
How come electrification for metro trains is not being completed to Bacchus Marsh where the major terminus exists and so does a private school which sees students catch V/line trains from the Melbourne line?
MetroFemme
Because Bacchus Marsh is not a suburb of Melbourne.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
There are currently no concrete plans for electrification to Melton, let alone Bacchus Marsh. The works that are currently under way, are to provide duplicated track as far as Melton in preperation for more services on this line. To begin with, these will be diesel services.

Essentially, after the line is duplicated to Melton, it will then be easier for it to be electrified.

To electrify the extra 13km from Melton to Bacchus Marsh would push the cost up significantly. The line from Caroline Springs to Melton is mostly flat, whereas from Melton to Bacchus Marsh it is less so. Actually, Melton to Parwan wouldn't be too bad, but the section from Parwan Loop to Bacchus Marsh would need significant work to add a second track. This would be paramount before the line could be electrified.

The real question is whether their is actually any need for it. Currently most of the short workings on this line run to Bacchus Marsh, purely because that is where the stabling sidings are. There are in fact some services that run only to Melton, then either return to Melbourne or run empty cars to Bacchus Marsh and directly into the yard. Melton has never really had sidings to stable passenger trains, there were goods roads back in the day, but that isn't the same thing.

The reality is though, when short working PM peak services leave Melton, their aren't that many passengers left, The bulk of the patronage on the Bacchus Marsh/ Melton short workings come from Deer Park, Caroline Springs and of course Melton.

When full scale duplication and electrification occurs as far as Melton, there is no reason the Bacchus Marsh passengers couldn't use a bumped up Ballarat service.

Provided good timetabling, Ballarat trains will then not be required to make stops at Rockbank, Caroline Springs, Deer Park or Ardeer, so, all trains stopping at Bacchus Marsh shouldn't be too much of an issue.
  712M Chief Commissioner

I'd be interested to find out the proportion of Bacchus Marsh passengers that choose to stand on a Ballarat VLocity express service rather than get a seat on a slow loco-hauled all stations service. I could imagine a saga not unlike what occurred with Sunbury electrification of passengers not wanting to give up their express V/Line service. Having said that, a few years back most Ballarat peak services didn't stop at Bacchus Marsh leaving passengers with no choice!
  steve195 Train Controller

* Restoration of two way running for passenger services between Warrenheip and Ballarat East.

According to this video, the project includes "duplication of three kilometres of track on the Melbourne side of Warrenheip Junction."
steve195
Further investigation reveals that a 3km section of track EAST of Warrenheip junction will be duplicated.

The upcoming Murray Basin project will require one of the tracks between Warrenheip and Ballarat to be either DG or SG, so it isn't likely to see too many passenger trains.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Yes, it seems that the option chosen is to duplicate existing single track from Warrenheip to Dunnstown, and to leave the line from Warrenheip to Ballarat East as 2 seperate single tracks.

This actually makes sense with the likely upping of Ballarat passenger frequencies, this will keep the line clear for freight paths to and from Geelong, while still allowing a greater frequency of passenger trains to and from Melbourne.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner


*  Restoration of two way running for passenger services between Warrenheip and Ballarat East .According to this video, the project includes "duplication of three kilometres of track on the Melbourne side of Warrenheip Junction."Further investigation reveals that a 3km section of track EAST of Warrenheip junction will be duplicated.

The upcoming Murray Basin project will require one of the tracks between Warrenheip and Ballarat to be either DG or SG, so it isn't likely to see too many passenger trains.
steve195
Well it will . When only one train offering Up or Down it will use the bg North Line, and if there are two broad gauge trains offering then the South Line is likely to take the Up  Melbourne bg trains, and the Down pass on the North bg line .

This is because the bg restriction of 80kmh on dg track will knock Up trains around far less on the Up hill grade to Warrenheip . Also in handling the bg trains this way it potentially simplifies the sg split at Warrenheip towards Geelong .  

With the announced  40 minute Weekday Off Peak frequency for Ballarat then that requires both tracks to be available for bg pass trains again, and thus the restoration of two track running for bg trains up the hill from Ballarat East as part of the $ 500m Ballarat line upgrade project right from the outset .
  steve195 Train Controller

Thanks mate. That sounds like a very good outcome - essentially about 14km of double track into Ballarat.

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