Avon River Bridge at Stratford

 
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Good news.  It'll be opening in early-December:

https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/early-completion-stratfords-new-rail-bridge-over-avon-river
Carnot
I'm not surprised about a December opening, as work progress seems to of been rather rapid lately (only 3 spans to complete)

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  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Good news.  It'll be opening in early-December:

https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/early-completion-stratfords-new-rail-bridge-over-avon-river
I'm not surprised about a December opening, as work progress seems to of been rather rapid lately (only 3 spans to complete)
Nightfire
Pity RPV are not attacking completion of BLU works at Wendouree, Ballan and Bacchus Marsh with the same vigour. The progress on BLU has just been glacial this year.  And as for the idiotic 1 km single track section between the Down end of the duplication and Rowsley Loop just shows what a sad state railway vision and management is in Victoria.   As such now Rowsley Loop is useless, but for a km of extra track and a second shield over a gas main the entire double track section would have been lengthened by 2 kms. Plus would have saved at least one high speed turnout and probably a signal or two.  The additional cost would have been bugger all, in the meantime we continue to blow millions on endless Business Cases that Bill Haydens "drovers dog" could have told good railway managers the obvious.
  Upven Junior Train Controller

Good news.  It'll be opening in early-December:

https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/early-completion-stratfords-new-rail-bridge-over-avon-river
I'm not surprised about a December opening, as work progress seems to of been rather rapid lately (only 3 spans to complete)
Pity RPV are not attacking completion of BLU works at Wendouree, Ballan and Bacchus Marsh with the same vigour. The progress on BLU has just been glacial this year.  And as for the idiotic 1 km single track section between the Down end of the duplication and Rowsley Loop just shows what a sad state railway vision and management is in Victoria.   As such now Rowsley Loop is useless, but for a km of extra track and a second shield over a gas main the entire double track section would have been lengthened by 2 kms. Plus would have saved at least one high speed turnout and probably a signal or two.  The additional cost would have been bugger all, in the meantime we continue to blow millions on endless Business Cases that Bill Haydens "drovers dog" could have told good railway managers the obvious.
kuldalai
Who was the tender awarded to on BLU v Avon? Be interesting to see if there's a historical association with one or the other being ahead of time or behind time.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Good news.  It'll be opening in early-December:

https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/early-completion-stratfords-new-rail-bridge-over-avon-river
I'm not surprised about a December opening, as work progress seems to of been rather rapid lately (only 3 spans to complete)
Pity RPV are not attacking completion of BLU works at Wendouree, Ballan and Bacchus Marsh with the same vigour. The progress on BLU has just been glacial this year.  And as for the idiotic 1 km single track section between the Down end of the duplication and Rowsley Loop just shows what a sad state railway vision and management is in Victoria.   As such now Rowsley Loop is useless, but for a km of extra track and a second shield over a gas main the entire double track section would have been lengthened by 2 kms. Plus would have saved at least one high speed turnout and probably a signal or two.  The additional cost would have been bugger all, in the meantime we continue to blow millions on endless Business Cases that Bill Haydens "drovers dog" could have told good railway managers the obvious.
Who was the tender awarded to on BLU v Avon? Be interesting to see if there's a historical association with one or the other being ahead of time or behind time.
Upven
Would suspect BLU work was let to multiple Contractors, whereas Stratford Bridge was just one contract.  Meanwhile nearly 5 years since RRV was announced contracts still NOT awarded for Bendigo/Echuca package and main Gippsland line works package,. Endless announcements and media releases/spin  saying we are getting on with this and that, when in reality we are nor actually doing much on the ground if anything at all.
  ngarner Deputy Commissioner

Location: Seville
Would suspect BLU work was let to multiple Contractors, whereas Stratford Bridge was just one contract.  Meanwhile nearly 5 years since RRV was announced contracts still NOT awarded for Bendigo/Echuca package and main Gippsland line works package,. Endless announcements and media releases/spin  saying we are getting on with this and that, when in reality we are nor actually doing much on the ground if anything at all.
kuldalai
I have noted that there is a short list of contractors for these two jobs but, as you say, they haven't actually been awarded yet, even though work is supposed to start this year on both

Neil
  kitchgp Chief Commissioner

There's been 70mm of rain in the gauge at Mount Moornapa, 'sort of upstream' of Stratford, in the last 48 hours or so. Hopefully that won't delay things.
  True Believers Chief Commissioner
  gippslander Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland, Vic
It's strange that all the PR spin is about accelerating track speed to 90kph when the only issue is that if the bridge hadn't been replaced, the line beyond Sale would have to been eventually closed because of it's decaying condition.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

It's strange that all the PR spin is about accelerating track speed to 90kph when the only issue is that if the bridge hadn't been replaced, the line beyond Sale would have to been eventually closed because of it's decaying condition.
gippslander
Spin doctors must also live in separate Passenger & Freight silos too .   No mention of freight trains can run again through to Bairnsdale also and exploit several new rail freight opportunities from East Gippsland.
  skitz Chief Commissioner



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnGnFhY5Xzs
True Believers
Sort of amazes to think that in previous times there would have been considered reuse of existing assets for such a bridge.   For example the re-use of spans from Tallangatta at Dartmore.  

Once railways were frugal in their use of materials.  Now we see all new.  

One that we see with the change of (loss of) thinking is brand new concrete turnouts in maintenance facilities while the turnouts on the main line are flogged out mechanical jointed timber turnouts with high unreliability.   Demonstrates how the care for the best use of funding is impossible in todays thinking for what is essentially 'our asset' as the tax payer.
  acbeer91 Station Master

I contacted CPB Contractors regarding how the new rail, ballast and sleepers were to be delivered to the site. I was holding out some hope that there may be a rail train coming our way to deliver track.

CPB confirmed that delivery of rail, ballast and sleepers was going to be by road. They did confirm that a tamper and ballast regulator will be putting the finishing touches on the new track once it is installed in early December.
  david harvey Chief Train Controller

Location: Bairnsdale Wharf
Buses will replace trains between Bairnsdale and Sale from Saturday the 28th of November to Sunday the 6th of December 2020 .                Somebody in the Time table department must have realised that hiring buses to run from Bairnsdale to Southern X for the week was going to cost quite a fair amount of money and implemented the  Time table to run from Bairnsdale to Sale for the week as this would be far more cost effective. I suspect that person has been moved on now.    The reason for the track closure is due to the track being abolished onto the old Avon River Bridge and being slewed and connected onto the new Avon River Bridge. With Christmas approaching I am sure that the contractors would won't the job wound up before the Xmas break up so any item that is hired can be returned so it doesn't sit on site un used, for weeks.  The new bridge should be available for traffic prior to the 24th of December2020.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
Buses will replace trains between Bairnsdale and Sale from Saturday the 28th of November to Sunday the 6th of December 2020. Somebody in the Time table department must have realised that hiring buses to run from Bairnsdale to Southern X for the week was going to cost quite a fair amount of money and implemented the  Time table to run from Bairnsdale to Sale for the week as this would be far more cost effective. I suspect that person has been moved on now.    
david harvey
Gold Star from me David! Imagine the horror when his/her boss realised that someone was intending to run trains when an excuse was at hand to call in the coaches!
  david harvey Chief Train Controller

Location: Bairnsdale Wharf
Just caught the substitute coach from Bairnsdale to Sale that replaced the 1245 hrs Up service to Southern Cross. 4 x 51 seat coaches were ordered . 3 ran with one on stand by . The 3 buses  departed Bairnsdale will close to 150 passengers.Then on to the tuncated 6 car Velocity Bairnsale pass that departed Sale at 1339 hours.  The line from Bairnsdale to Sale was booked out account the instillation of the main line on to the new bridge over the Avon River. Hi-Rail trucks and vehicles were observed in the area. No ballast train was observed. One reason why a coach was only ran between  Bairnsdale to Sale may have been was that the safe working between  Bairnsdale to Traralgon is Staff and ticket with Sale being an intermediate staff station so the long section could be broken into two small sections. Perhaps the penny may have dropped that running buses to replace trains isn't an economically sound practice considering the state of the economy. Then again there maybe no more penny's to drop,,,,,
  L1150 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Pakenham Vic.
Just rode the. first down Bairnsdale over the new bridge.
  acbeer91 Station Master



http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nF4X7JksbU8

Here's a video of mine covering the first few days of the bridge opening, available to watch from 7.30 pm East Australian time. No test trains ran over the bridge prior to opening which I think is strange. As far as I know there is a 60 km/h speed limit in place at the moment. Not sure if that's just generally for safety over the new track and due to level crossing upgrades, or if it also helps the drivers learn the new section.
  Jordy33 Station Master

I’ll say it’s 60kph to make sure the ballast is all set, then it will do 90kph.
  L1150 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Pakenham Vic.
Thanks acbeer91. The train I was on had the indigenous mural on the second car of the rear set.
Jordy33, yes the announcement made on the train as we passed over the bridge mentioned the lower speed was to allow the new track to "settle in". Also mentioned were the number of spans, the weight of each span ond other information. The on train staff seemed quite excited about the event.
I hadn't actually planned to be on one of the first trains over the new bridge, A mate and I had planned to do Bairnsdale, using our Seniors free travel passes some time ago and the date we chose as being suitable to both of us was Monday the 7th.Very Happy
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Thanks for posting the video acbeer91, you certainly gave us a look from all directions. 3:15 looks as though there will be some work going on for a while yet, tidying the joint up. 3:30 you can see a walkway on either side of the bridge, will this be for public access or for emergency purposes ?  As is with a lot of these projects, cycling and or walking tracks are included is that the case here ? Well done.

BigShunter.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
All good stuff...considering Jeff Kennett bustituted all services between Sale and Bairnsdale back in 1992.

Mike.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Thanks for posting the video acbeer91, you certainly gave us a look from all directions. 3:15 looks as though there will be some work going on for a while yet, tidying the joint up. 3:30 you can see a walkway on either side of the bridge, will this be for public access or for emergency purposes ?  As is with a lot of these projects, cycling and or walking tracks are included is that the case here ? Well done.

BigShunter.
BigShunter
Emergency walkways (It Is becoming quite common to see them erected on older bridges, for the safety of train crews)

The park that the bridge passes through already has cycling and walking tracks (the BMX track Is to be renewed, as the new bridge abutment effectively consumed It)

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