Mount Barker train would be ‘huge win’ for business, local association says

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 27 Jul 2019 09:23
  RTT_Rules Dr Beeching

Location: Dubai UAE
Seems reasonable, how much would this cost?

You'll need a spare car for the DMU.

Regarding the speed, something I forgot before. Normally a DMU can get a 5 to 15km/h speed benefit over a freighter.

I was reminded of this yesterday driving along the Grest Western Highway following the Blue Mountains line comparing the three speed boards ar each posting.

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  SAR520SMBH Junior Train Controller

Heath,

Coromandel is a pointless station to upgrade as Blackwood is just up the line and a much better option as a stop due to it having more carpark spaces and a bus connection.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

You'd need a minimum fleet of two sets if you're working them that hard and longer turnaround times (maybe have three sets, two of them used per day) to allow for de-tanking the toilets, and to ensure the x-lotto jackpot is large enough to pay for the whole exercise.
  DJPeters Assistant Commissioner

This is how i think a rail service to Mount Barker should be organized and operated.

Organization:

1) Old track is upgraded to a 60 KPH average speed standard from Mount Barker Junction to Mount Barker using standard gauge.
2) Existing turnout points are refurbished at the Mount Barker Junction.
3) Mount Lofty, Aldgate, Balhannah, and Mount Barker stations in this hills are upgraded to a minimal safe standard.
4) Belair, Coromandel, Goodwood, and Parklands terminal stations in the suburbs are upgraded to a minimal safe standard.
5) A 2 car 3000 class set is converted to standard gauge and is fitted with toilets and vending machines.
6) A small stabling and maintenance yard is built in or near the steam-ranger complex.

Operation:

1) 5 return trips are to operate every weekday to cater for both commuters and tourists.
2) 2 return trips are to operate every weekend day to cater for tourists.
3) Inbound Train departs Mount Barker at 7 15 AM, 10 15 AM, 1 15 PM, 4 15 PM and 7 15 PM then arrives Parklands at 8 25 AM, 11 25 AM, 2 25 PM, 5 25 PM, and 8 25 PM.
4) Outbound Train departs Parklands at 8 35 AM, 11 35 AM, 2 35 PM, 5 35 PM and 8 35 PM, then arrives Mount Barker at 9 45 AM, 12 45 PM, 3 45 PM, 6 45 PM, and 9 45 PM.
5) Train is to depart mount barker (for tourists and town commuters), stop at balhannah (for hills commuters), aldgate (for hills commuters), mount lofty (for hills commuters), belair (for bushwalkers), coromandel (for bus connections to flinders uni and Marion), Goodwood (for train and tram connections to the city and glenelg), and arrive at parklands (for richmond road office workers).
6) Connections with steam ranger at Mount barker for onward trips to Strathalbyn, Goolwa, Port Elliot, and Victor harbor are to be developed for the premium traveler market.

What do you think?
Heath
Great thinking Heath but how are you going to get around the fact that the Mt Barker turntable is in the mainline From Mt Barker Junction to Mt Barker itself. You could of course stop the SG short of the turntable though and build a new station that side of it for trains to Adelaide. It would keep Steamranger and Adelaide Metro services separate then but close enough to walk between. That way one does not hinder the other. If you are going to upgrade the link then upgrade it to mainline track standard think of the future just in case off. The railcars used for this could simply return to Adelaide to stable, all that is then required is a station similar to Grange just a platform and shelter.
  Gayspie Assistant Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, SA
The easiest way to deal with the steam ranger turntable is to dual gauge the track through it and implement a TSR of 5 to 10 KPH over the turntable. If heavy steam ranger locos can travel through the turntable then i see no reason why a couple of light DEMU's cant trundle over the turntable too.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Aaron, how available is free parking in Adelaide?
RTT_Rules
Shane, I don't go to the city that often in my car but when I do I get time-limited free parking - it's not that hard to find. There's almost none around the business areas of North Terrace and Rundle Mall but the further away you get from those areas the more it becomes available.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
This is how i think a rail service to Mount Barker should be organized and operated.

Organization:

...

5) A 2 car 3000 class set is converted to standard gauge and is fitted with toilets and vending machines.
Heath
This would be completely unnecessary for a trip of less than an hour.
Operation: 1) 5 return trips are to operate every weekday to cater for both commuters and tourists. 2) 2 return trips are to operate every weekend day to cater for tourists. 3) Inbound Train departs Mount Barker at 7 15 AM, 10 15 AM, 1 15 PM, 4 15 PM and 7 15 PM then arrives Parklands at 8 25 AM, 11 25 AM, 2 25 PM, 5 25 PM, and 8 25 PM. 4) Outbound Train departs Parklands at 8 35 AM, 11 35 AM, 2 35 PM, 5 35 PM and 8 35 PM, then arrives Mount Barker at 9 45 AM, 12 45 PM, 3 45 PM, 6 45 PM, and 9 45 PM. 5) Train is to depart mount barker (for tourists and town commuters), stop at balhannah (for hills commuters), aldgate (for hills commuters), mount lofty (for hills commuters), belair (for bushwalkers), coromandel (for bus connections to flinders uni and Marion), Goodwood (for train and tram connections to the city and glenelg), and arrive at parklands (for richmond road office workers). 6) Connections with steam ranger at Mount barker for onward trips to Strathalbyn, Goolwa, Port Elliot, and Victor harbor are to be developed for the premium traveler market. What do you think?
Heath
That's such an infrequent timetable it's next to useless for most users. Also Parklands terminal dumps you off in the middle of nowhere, it's one of the reasons why country rail died in SA to begin with. Dual gauge into the city terminal is the only way it could be of any use to anyone.

As Aaron says, unless you live in Mt Barker and work in the city it's not of any use to you - and even then you still haven't addressed the fundamental problem that the train is too slow in comparison to the bus service.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

As Aaron says, unless you live in Mt Barker and work in the city it's not of any use to you…
don_dunstan
This is an area which deserves some study - where are people driving down the freeway in the morning driving to, and are there any flows which present an opportunity for non-city bus routes?

Even if the answer at the end of it is that no new bus routes would be viable, this sort of information is important for a government to know as it can help inform future planning decisions such as how to link the SE Freeway with the North-South Corridor.


The boy wonder won't be interested in this, so we'll probably have to wait until after the next election.

… and even then you still haven't addressed the fundamental problem that the train is too slow in comparison to the bus service.
don_dunstan
The only useful thing to come out of a train service proposal would be highlighting the far better prospects available by focusing on upgrades to Glen Osmond Road to give buses a better run.

A good interim target should be Mount Barker Interchange to the city (Hindmarsh Square stop) in 50 minutes at peak times and 45 minutes off-peak.
  Gayspie Assistant Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, SA
This is how i think a rail service to Mount Barker should be organized and operated.

Organization:

...

5) A 2 car 3000 class set is converted to standard gauge and is fitted with toilets and vending machines.
This would be completely unnecessary for a trip of less than an hour.
don_dunstan
Some people have medical conditions such as diabetes where they can faint if they do not eat enough sugary foods at the right times. Vending machines selling sweet snacks and fizzy drinks would be a big help here.

Some people have medical conditions such as incontinence where they can make a rather smelly, dirty mess of their seat if they do not get to a toilet quick enough. Having easy access to a loo would be a big help here.

Remember we are talking about the elderly, people with disabilities, and parents with small children who will be a key group of society who will most likely make good use of the service if it is provided.

Furthermore, what are we going to do if a low priority DMU gets stuck in a passing loop for an hour while waiting for a high priority freight, and Nancy needs a pee break and Harold needs a sugar hit?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Some people have medical conditions such as diabetes where they can faint if they do not eat enough sugary foods at the right times. Vending machines selling sweet snacks and fizzy drinks would be a big help here.

Some people have medical conditions such as incontinence where they can make a rather smelly, dirty mess of their seat if they do not get to a toilet quick enough. Having easy access to a loo would be a big help here.

Remember we are talking about the elderly, people with disabilities, and parents with small children who will be a key group of society who will most likely make good use of the service if it is provided.

Furthermore, what are we going to do if a low priority DMU gets stuck in a passing loop for an hour while waiting for a high priority freight, and Nancy needs a pee break and Harold needs a sugar hit?
Heath
One of my best friends is a diabetic and he manages. You forget that many Sydney and Melbourne suburban train trips are almost two hours from end-to-end... (Pakenham-Melbourne, Wollongong-Sydney, etc). It's just plain dumb to think that a train service of less than an hour must by necessity have expensive retention toilets and vending machines as an added cost just because you think that's what people want.

The main point about the termination of the service at Parklands is more salient... who the frig will want to catch that service when it terminates in the middle of nowhere? I'm pretty sure that AN moved the country rail services there because they wanted them to die!

You're consigning a Mount Barker train service to the same fate if you leave it to terminate there.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

People who have poorly managed diabetes and are prone to hypoglycemic episodes usually learn pretty quickly to carry their own supplies of jelly babies etc with them when they are out and about. Relying on a vending machine being available is a risky strategy, what if it is not working or the appropriate stock has run out?

People who have major problems with incontinence also learn strategies so they can manage. A Mount Barker resident in this situation who knows they can't go more than an hour without requiring a toilet would be best off using one of the bus routes which would allow them to get off, use a publicly available toilet and then get back on the next bus - all while still having a faster end-to-end trip than a train could offer. Relying on a train having a toilet available would be a risky strategy, what if it is out of order because the retention tank is full?

The existing T840 and 864F buses both seem to be quite popular for families with children already, and I'm sure that the quite good frequency of service is the main reason for this. If they are delayed at one end of the trip for some reason (e.g. they stay longer at the zoo or whatever) they would have a wait of no more than half an hour for the next bus instead of 3 hours for the next train.

The existing bus services to Mount Barker are of quite good quality and see accordingly strong patronage. They deserve to be enhanced by improving the inner suburban section of the route and having the frequency improved, not downgraded by replacing them with trains which provide an inferior service.

This thread is only going round and round in circles (much like the rail route between Adelaide and Mount Barker Junction with over 100 curves in 50km) and really should be closed or transferred to the armchair operators forum.
  Gayspie Assistant Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, SA
Back on topic, i think this is a case of privatizing the profits (Mount barker businesses reaping the benefits of wallets on rails) and socializing the losses (taxpayers footing the bill for a new hills train service).

Almost reminds me of the case where commercial television stations were asking the government to enhance funding to ABC children's programs (losses) so they could have more time to screen adult genres (profits).
  DJPeters Assistant Commissioner

This is how i think a rail service to Mount Barker should be organized and operated.

Organization:

...

5) A 2 car 3000 class set is converted to standard gauge and is fitted with toilets and vending machines.
This would be completely unnecessary for a trip of less than an hour.
Some people have medical conditions such as diabetes where they can faint if they do not eat enough sugary foods at the right times. Vending machines selling sweet snacks and fizzy drinks would be a big help here.

Some people have medical conditions such as incontinence where they can make a rather smelly, dirty mess of their seat if they do not get to a toilet quick enough. Having easy access to a loo would be a big help here.

Remember we are talking about the elderly, people with disabilities, and parents with small children who will be a key group of society who will most likely make good use of the service if it is provided.

Furthermore, what are we going to do if a low priority DMU gets stuck in a passing loop for an hour while waiting for a high priority freight, and Nancy needs a pee break and Harold needs a sugar hit?
Heath


Heath if that is so then really all metro trains should have a toilet and vending machines on them but that only opens them up to being damaged etc by hoons or what ever and as has been said most people with diabetes or a condition that makes it awkward to travel have their problems not under full control but take steps to avoid things like you pointed out happening. I have a medical problem I have a stoma and a colostomy bag that cuts back a lot of things I can do but I can still travel to places by bus, train or tram, on a long trip I just have to prepare before hand and not eat or drink too much to keep any problems at bay so that these type of incidents do not happen. Most people with things like this learn at a hospital etc what to do and what not to do etc about their disability. I have had a section of my large bowel removed because of tumours in my bowel, but I am not going to let it slow me down to any great extent.


Now about the train to Mt Barker you cannot run a train across a turntable even at low speed with passengers in it as it would be too large a risk to take. A bolt breaks or something the turntable is able to move under the railcars and you have a disaster almost. Next is the current train line takes far to long as well, a bus or car would have you there in half the time a train would take or maybe even less, yes I have been to Mt Barker by bus and it was not that much of an inconvenience to me at the time.
The other thing is being dumped at Keswick Terminal how do you get to the city proper from there, there is no longer any BG track connected to there and  metro busses do not go into or out of there either. So you are stuck there to find your own way out. Taxis will usually only be there when a GSR service goes in or out of there. It is a fair trek to the nearest railway station or bus stop and more so for those as you stated above or seniors etc on wet or stinking hot days.

The best in my mind would be to build an entirely new line like what was done for Noarlunga Centre and Seaford. But that would require a lot of tunnelling, bridgework etc which would make the new line very expensive to start with. But what people have to realise is that if you want to live in a place like Mt Barker then you have to sacrifice some things like PT in places like that. There are other sacrifices you have to make as well if you want to live there. Otherwise in a few years Victor Harbor will be a suburb of Adelaide rather than a quaint country destination.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Back on topic
Heath
What, don't want to engage on the topic you started?

Chicken.

i think this is a case of privatizing the profits ... and socializing the losses (taxpayers footing the bill for a new hills train service).
Heath
I agree.

The idea of the government spending an 8 digit sum on a crap train service should be shut down immediately, but they should not stand in the way if a private sector investor wants to foot the bill for it.

Amazing that you're in favour of spending 8 digits on a gunzel wa-nk but not for spending under a million dollars on helping provide a replacement for a soccer pitch torn up by a government project. You should have a long hard look at yourself.

(Mount barker businesses reaping the benefits of wallets on rails)
Heath
You really don't have a clue, do you?

Before going any further, name for us just five businesses in Mount Barker which are worth travelling to from the city and which would generate real amounts of inbound traffic. Just a handful, I'm not demanding a long list.

Mount Barker businesses would have a greater benefit from improving local bus services to Mt Barker which would serve more stops in those businesses' catchment areas than a train would. Maybe you've never been there (give it a shot, it's less than an hour to get there on a T840) and haven't noticed that they have most things there already, people living there don't need to take a journey all the way to Adelaide to get milk and bread.
  Gayspie Assistant Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, SA
I have been there a few times. No need to sink the boots in guys.

If anyone bothers to READ up thread i stated that Goodwood will be a connection point between the Mount Barker shuttle plus trains and trams to the city and glenelg respectively.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
I have been there a few times. No need to sink the boots in guys.

If anyone bothers to READ up thread i stated that Goodwood will be a connection point between the Mount Barker shuttle plus trains and trams to the city and glenelg respectively.
Heath
There's still no interchange between the tram and Goodwood station despite the fact that the tram line goes right over the top of it - you have to walk about 700m to get to Goodwood Road which is where the nearest tram station from Goodwood railway station.

So you're proposing to terminate Mt Barker trains at Goodwood? Give it up, Heath - if we're going to have an armchair conversation about restoring rail services in SA why not think about a DMU service to Virginia or the Barrosa instead. Mt Barker has multiple problems with it - not the least of which is the fact that compared to the road journey it's simply too slow.
  rwatts Junior Train Controller

Location: Adelaide SA
Heath - if we're going to have an armchair conversation about restoring rail services in SA why not think about a DMU service to Virginia or the Barrosa instead. Mt Barker has multiple problems with it - not the least of which is the fact that compared to the road journey it's simply too slow.
don_dunstan
A recent RAA survey I participated in included questions about extending Adelaide Metro services to Mt Barker, Roseworthy and the Barossa Valley.  I pointed out the problems with extending to Mt Barker but I did think it interesting the others were mentioned.

Richard.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
I have been there a few times. No need to sink the boots in guys.

If anyone bothers to READ up thread i stated that Goodwood will be a connection point between the Mount Barker shuttle plus trains and trams to the city and glenelg respectively.
There's still no interchange between the tram and Goodwood station despite the fact that the tram line goes right over the top of it - you have to walk about 700m to get to Goodwood Road which is where the nearest tram station from Goodwood railway station.
don_dunstan
Is there any reason why a tram stop station hasn't been established above or near Goodwood Railway Station.

Or Is It a bit like the O Bahn line - Airport bus service not making a clear connection with the tram service In the middle of the City.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Is there any reason why a tram stop station hasn't been established above or near Goodwood Railway Station.

Or Is It a bit like the O Bahn line - Airport bus service not making a clear connection with the tram service In the middle of the City.
Nightfire
If you're local you have no problem interchanging between to the airport bus and other services - but yeah. As with Melbourne I'm guessing the taxi industry is against having a clear option for visitors to use public transport.

The Weatherill government was proposing a tram station at the top of the tram overpass so that an interchange between the trains and trams could happen but as with everything else that Weatherill proposed the Marshall government has now binned it.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Heath - if we're going to have an armchair conversation about restoring rail services in SA why not think about a DMU service to Virginia or the Barrosa instead. Mt Barker has multiple problems with it - not the least of which is the fact that compared to the road journey it's simply too slow.
A recent RAA survey I participated in included questions about extending Adelaide Metro services to Mt Barker, Roseworthy and the Barossa Valley.  I pointed out the problems with extending to Mt Barker but I did think it interesting the others were mentioned.

Richard.
rwatts
The areas around Gawler and the un-used railway lines are a huge potential area for low to medium urbanisation or urban fringe development. A DMU service to either Kapunda or Hamley Bridge would be relatively inexpensive and could encourage commuter belt low density in an area where its suited to it, light industry, market garden farming etc etc.

A much better idea than a Mt Barker train in my opinion.
  Gayspie Assistant Commissioner

Location: Adelaide, SA
On the other end of the spectrum, would it be a wise idea to cut the belair line back to black-wood ?
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

If you're local you have no problem interchanging between to the airport bus and other services - but yeah. As with Melbourne I'm guessing the taxi industry is against having a clear option for visitors to use public transport.
don_dunstan
It's very close already, closer than some bus stops are at a number of suburban bus-train interchanges.

If it's a genuine problem, the J1X could be rerouted so it no longer carries on to turn around at Hindmarsh Square but instead turns left at King William St and left at North Tce to serve the stop across the street from Adelaide station.

But if I was going from somewhere out on the tram line to Adelaide Airport, my method of choice would be to use the J7/J8 and change at Morphett Road to allow me to do the journey without battling into the CBD and out again.

The Weatherill government was proposing a tram station at the top of the tram overpass so that an interchange between the trains and trams could happen but as with everything else that Weatherill proposed the Marshall government has now binned it.
don_dunstan
I think you're a little confused there.

The project there is still live (but on hold a resolution to the dispute between the owner of the house on the corner and DPTI) but is only for a bridge carrying the Mike Turtur Bikeway and pedestrian access to/from the station, not for a new tram stop.

There was a consultation early in the Rann years on shifting the Forestville stop (currently about 350m south-west of Goodwood RS) closer so it would only be about 200m from the railway station at the foot of the bridge approach ramp, but there was little interest and the idea was abandoned.

On the other end of the spectrum, would it be a wise idea to cut the belair line back to black-wood ?
Heath
No.
  mawsonboii Locomotive Driver

This is how i think a rail service to Mount Barker should be organized and operated.

Organization:

...

5) A 2 car 3000 class set is converted to standard gauge and is fitted with toilets and vending machines.
This would be completely unnecessary for a trip of less than an hour.
Some people have medical conditions such as diabetes where they can faint if they do not eat enough sugary foods at the right times. Vending machines selling sweet snacks and fizzy drinks would be a big help here.

Some people have medical conditions such as incontinence where they can make a rather smelly, dirty mess of their seat if they do not get to a toilet quick enough. Having easy access to a loo would be a big help here.

Remember we are talking about the elderly, people with disabilities, and parents with small children who will be a key group of society who will most likely make good use of the service if it is provided.

Furthermore, what are we going to do if a low priority DMU gets stuck in a passing loop for an hour while waiting for a high priority freight, and Nancy needs a pee break and Harold needs a sugar hit?


Heath if that is so then really all metro trains should have a toilet and vending machines on them but that only opens them up to being damaged etc by hoons or what ever and as has been said most people with diabetes or a condition that makes it awkward to travel have their problems not under full control but take steps to avoid things like you pointed out happening. I have a medical problem I have a stoma and a colostomy bag that cuts back a lot of things I can do but I can still travel to places by bus, train or tram, on a long trip I just have to prepare before hand and not eat or drink too much to keep any problems at bay so that these type of incidents do not happen. Most people with things like this learn at a hospital etc what to do and what not to do etc about their disability. I have had a section of my large bowel removed because of tumours in my bowel, but I am not going to let it slow me down to any great extent.


Now about the train to Mt Barker you cannot run a train across a turntable even at low speed with passengers in it as it would be too large a risk to take. A bolt breaks or something the turntable is able to move under the railcars and you have a disaster almost. Next is the current train line takes far to long as well, a bus or car would have you there in half the time a train would take or maybe even less, yes I have been to Mt Barker by bus and it was not that much of an inconvenience to me at the time.
The other thing is being dumped at Keswick Terminal how do you get to the city proper from there, there is no longer any BG track connected to there and  metro busses do not go into or out of there either. So you are stuck there to find your own way out. Taxis will usually only be there when a GSR service goes in or out of there. It is a fair trek to the nearest railway station or bus stop and more so for those as you stated above or seniors etc on wet or stinking hot days.

The best in my mind would be to build an entirely new line like what was done for Noarlunga Centre and Seaford. But that would require a lot of tunnelling, bridgework etc which would make the new line very expensive to start with. But what people have to realise is that if you want to live in a place like Mt Barker then you have to sacrifice some things like PT in places like that. There are other sacrifices you have to make as well if you want to live there. Otherwise in a few years Victor Harbor will be a suburb of Adelaide rather than a quaint country destination.
DJPeters
the 2000 class trains had toilets, which where closed off to the public... I think we can all assume why.


I support regional rail, as long as it is needed. A train to Mt Barker while it would probably be used a lot, A long journey time may be what stops people from using it.

it takes 50 minutes from Adelaide to Seaford. it takes 59 minutes from Gawler Central to the city (weekend time table, stopping all stops)

If a journey from Mt Barker to the city takes longer than an hour I can't see people using it. Especially if bus journeys are faster.

They need to be able to justify the cost, upgrading or building the train line and stations. Imagine spending $500 million dollars on the line and no one uses it.
  nm39 Chief Commissioner

Location: By a road taking pictures
Is there any reason why a tram stop station hasn't been established above or near Goodwood Railway Station.

Or Is It a bit like the O Bahn line - Airport bus service not making a clear connection with the tram service In the middle of the City.
Nightfire
The whole Adelaide Metro Railway needs a lot of money spent to get the platforms at all stations up to standard and DDA compliant. There is not a lot of money left over to do other piecemeal projects that have never raised enough interest in the almost 90 years since the tramway was put there. And don't get fooled by claims from DPTI that all stations are DDA compliant already, because they aren't.
  SAR523 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Chicago, IL
Putting aside all the other issues, I’m confused about the interest in running the train to Mt Barker on the current alignment.

It’s been some 20 years since I’ve been in the area, but I’m assuming the general geographic arrangement where Mt Barker station is about as convenient to anything as Keswick is hasn’t changed? At least there is symmetry.

I’d have though it would make more sense to just widen Junction Rd and build a whopping big car park near enough to where Mt Barker Junction is today, with the  service terminating there?

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