News

 

Showing stories from April 2009

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state government to spend money on crossings

Posted Wednesday, 1 April, 2009 by steamboy65 in Western Australian Rail News

In todays paper there is an article where the federal governmernt is planning to spend $14 million dollars on new boom gates, warning signs and flashing lights on 62 railway crossings within Western Australia.

Desperate passengers jump from train

Posted Wednesday, 1 April, 2009 by 409 in South Australian Rail News

PASSENGERS frustrated at being stuck on a broken-down train for more than two hours have reportedly forced open the doors and jumped onto the tracks.

Distressed passengers and their relatives have rung The Advertiser, saying the Noarlunga-bound train mysteriously came to a stop between Marino Rocks and Hallet Cove stations at 5.08pm.

Elderly woman struck by train

Posted Friday, 3 April, 2009 by E1109 in Victorian Rail News

AN elderly woman was killed when she was hit by a train at a railway station in Melbourne's southeast.

AAP: Internet-surfing for leisure at work can boost productivity

Posted Friday, 3 April, 2009 by Speed in Railpage Australia News

A day after April Fool's Day, a Melbourne University academic releases a study which suggests that wasting time and bandwith on this website might actually make you a better worker.

Melrose Drive Rail Crossing Make-over

Posted Friday, 3 April, 2009 by peterg in Victorian Rail News

WODONGA Council and railway authorities will close the Melrose Drive railway crossing on Sunday for 10 hours, aiming to deliver a smoother ride to motorists along one of the city’s busiest routes

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 4/4/2009

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 85 sightings for this week. This is seven sighting more than last week, making a total of 1073 sightings for this year to date. On day 94 last year we had recorded 1294 sightings.
We have seen five sighting on the B/G this week, which are three sightings more than last week. We have seen 9140 from Mildura diverted this way three times this week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday with G525(FA)+X49 on each train. We have seen only one PN grain train which turned up in the early hours of Friday morning; it was on the up with BL32(NR) and 20 hoppers. And early Thursday morning we saw a short 5 wagon empty sleeper train with Y145(ELZ)+T378(VR) on the up.

On the S/G we have seen 14 AN class loco sightings. And only three sightings of the XRB slave units on the Patrick’s trains.

Mauritius Railways

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by Breville in International Rail News

I have read with attention your article about Mauritian Railways.
My book in french (Le Dernier Train) is a success story and right now the ARC (Association Rhizome Concept) piloted by a Mauritian (Sebastien Sauvage) is having a travelling exhibit around Mauritius. It's a big feat when we know that the last passenger train stopped on the 31 st March 1956 and that the last 'Goods Train" stopped in 1964.

Ferry crashes into rocks near Taronga Zoo

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by bevans in Other Transport News

Sydney Ferries has apologised for an incident that left more than 200 passengers stranded on rocks in the harbour today.

No one was injured when the Lady Northcott ferry crashed into rocks next to Taronga Zoo wharf about 10.15am.

Sydney Ferries spokesman Scott Maclean said the 366-tonne boat's clutch failed as it was coming into berth.

Qld derailment causes peak hour delays

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

A passenger train has derailed in Brisbane, causing no injuries but creating lengthy delays for morning commuters.

A Translink spokeswoman said the train derailed at Eagle Junction about 6.30am (AEST).

Lessons noted, Connex pitches for second chance

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CONNEX admits it could have done more to cope with Melbourne's record surge in rail patronage and the resulting passenger frustration, but it wants another chance to run the network for at least the next eight years.

As Connex fights to renew its contract before the Government's mid-year decision on who will run Melbourne's rail system, chairman Jonathan Metcalfe conceded that the organisation had made mistakes.

End to driver dispute

Posted Monday, 6 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CONNEX is set to end its bitter feud with train drivers by agreeing to a 15 per cent pay rise for drivers in a deal it says will cut Melbourne's rail cancellations by more than a third.

The proposed agreement promises relief for commuters who have endured months of often needless cancellations caused by in-fighting between Connex and some of its drivers.

HPC 402 to operate at Steamfest

Posted Wednesday, 8 April, 2009 by RailcarForeman in Rail Events

The Rail Motor Society's 400 Class rail car HPC 402 will be at Maitland Steamfest this year.

The Main South 7-4-2009 (NSW)

Posted Wednesday, 8 April, 2009 by SilverCityComet in Gunzelling Reports

Today, passing Ingleburn I saw a 3 car Perth electric set on a PN job heading south, not to be outdone, G 513 was in Glenlee carrying out point testing, and then 4501 with an MHO and a very old 12 wheeler with end platforms was at Picton where the main and loop diverge !

Connex enlists foreign help to keep rail contract

Posted Wednesday, 8 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CONNEX has joined forces with Singapore's metro rail operator in a bid to retain the lucrative contract to run Melbourne's train system.

In a surprise move revealed after yesterday's deadline for lodging bids, Connex announced that SMRT, which runs Singapore's underground rail network along with buses and taxis, had joined its consortium.

Connex lodges tender to remain rail operator

Posted Wednesday, 8 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The parent company of Melbourne rail operator Connex has lodged a bid to keep the embattled network running from December 2009.

French-based Veolia Transport, along with its partners Bombardier and Singapore-based SMRT, says it has put forward a "compelling" bid to the Victorian Government.

Connex has come under heavy criticism over cancellations and overcrowded trains.

Off the rails once again

Posted Thursday, 9 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

THE PREMIER is fond of declaring his determination to right the wrongs of his predecessors. But when it comes to RailCorp, Nathan Rees is allowing a long-established culture of corruption and incompetence to continue unchecked. The organisation's decision to appoint an insider as probity watchdog means that we can add arrogance to its list of failings.

RailCorp's chief executive, Rob Mason, says the appointment implements a key recommendation of the Independent Commission Against Corruption. We beg to differ. Getting RailCorp to monitor itself is like asking a poacher to keep tabs on wildlife protection. The organisation is sick - sick from within. Root and branch reform is needed and the best place to start is by appointing a fearless, independent administrator or ombudsman to oversee the process of change.

BHP awards $500m rail contract

Posted Thursday, 9 April, 2009 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

BHP BILLITON, which is continuing to expand its global operations as its competitors pull back during the downturn, has awarded a $500 million railway construction contract to Macmahon Holdings and Leighton Contractors.

The miner is proceeding with a $US4.8 billion ($6.8 billion) expansion of its Pilbara iron ore operations, which have recently been in the spotlight over safety issues following a string of five deaths in eight months.

Train driver in brawl with passenger

Posted Thursday, 9 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

CONNEX has removed a train driver from duties after he got into a fight with a passenger at Flinders Street Station on Tuesday afternoon.

The Age understands the passenger was left with facial injuries after he approached the driver to complain about a cancelled train. A rail source, who was present during the incident, said the scuffle had occurred after the passenger abused and pushed the driver.

Sydney's metro train plan 'impossible'

Posted Tuesday, 14 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The $4.8 billion Sydney metro project is under threat after the discovery that changes needed at Central Station have been deemed physically impossible.

Under the plan, train passengers terminating at Central would board metro carriages at a new station beneath the station's western forecourt.

But the plan is being revised six months after Premier Nathan Rees announced the project, Fairfax reports.

Train journey marks Qld's 150th birthday

Posted Tuesday, 14 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

As Queensland celebrated its 150th birthday, 30 students left Brisbane's Roma Street station aboard a steam train to spread goodwill messages across the state.

Premier Anna Bligh waved off the Q150 train in Brisbane on Tuesday as it began its five-month journey around the state to commemorate Queensland's 150th year.

Between April and August the train, backed by energy company Santos and the University of Queensland, will stop at more than 30 communities.

Report reveals four years of train shortages

Posted Tuesday, 14 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A LEAKED Connex business plan shows that the State Government has been told of a chronic shortage of trains on Melbourne's rail system for the past four years.

Connex has reported to the Government that, since 2005, it regularly has not had sufficient trains to meet its plan for coping with morning and afternoon rush hours.

Despite this, the Government will deliver its first new train for Melbourne only in the final month of this year.

Security boost for Qld commuter trains

Posted Tuesday, 14 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Keen to make public transport more attractive to commuters, the Queensland government will install real-time monitoring cameras in train carriages.

Security cameras on commuter trains will be linked live to a central control room, allowing a rapid response by police and security staff.

"Every QR (Queensland Rail) city train will be fitted with a special purpose wireless modem that is streaming live footage from security cameras," said state Minister for Transport Rachel Nolan.

Trains start using new Caboolture to Beerburrum tracks

Posted Tuesday, 14 April, 2009 by bevans in Press Releases

Passenger and freight trains will this morning start using the new tracks
between Caboolture and Beerburrum.

The final construction works and testing of the new track, overhead and
signalling systems were successfully completed over Easter from 10–13 April.

Transport Minister Rachel Nolan said the completion of the work representeda major milestone for the Government’s $298 million Caboolture to Beerburrum Track Duplication Project.

Faulty brakes slow down trains

Posted Wednesday, 15 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

ALMOST one in five of the city's trains do not meet their emergency braking requirements, and as a result are being driven at slower speeds than they are capable of, a leaked Government report shows.

An October 2008 report by engineers Interfleet Technology for the Department of Transport found that the city's 29 Alstom X'Trapolis trains had faulty emergency brakes, and must be driven at a top speed of 90 km/h.

Tilt train closure 'to affect tourism'

Posted Wednesday, 15 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Tourism groups say it is vital the tilt train service gets back on track as quickly as possible.

The high-speed train was shut down by Queensland Rail after two tilt train drivers died when they hit a semi-trailer on a level crossing near Cardwell in the state's north.

Council fights to stop rail chimney demolition

Posted Wednesday, 15 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Bendigo council says it is trying to stop the demolition of a former industrial chimney on heritage grounds.

The state rail authority, VicTrack, wants to demolish the chimney at the city's old railway yards.

Oakajee Port and Rail opens Geraldton office

Posted Wednesday, 15 April, 2009 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

Oakajee Port and Rail (OPR) is ramping up its presence in mid-west Western Australia with the opening of its Geraldton-based office.

Belgrave line rail commuters face delays

Posted Wednesday, 15 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The wild weather caused chaos on Melbourne's rail network this morning, with delays on all lines after lightning struck power lines at Upper Ferntree Gully this morning.

All lines except for the Belgrave service have now returned to normal.

The lightning strike has shut down inbound and outbound lines from Bayswater to Belgrave, with buses replacing trains in both directions until later this afternoon.

Obama's plans for rail in the USA

Posted Friday, 17 April, 2009 by Oldfart in International Rail News

US President Barack Obama has announced details of a new rail strategy for the United States, including plans to build high-speed passenger rail lines in at least 10 regions across the country.

Urban sprawl is killing us, but there's another way

Posted Friday, 17 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

AS THE days grow cooler, many of us are breathing a sigh of relief that the past summer has finally come to an end. As well as the unprecedented and tragic bushfire season, severe summer conditions induced a string of urban disasters that, due to poor planning, were waiting to happen: public transport failures, traffic nightmares and water shortages.

Rail line closed after ute flips

Posted Friday, 17 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The main railway line between Sydney and Melbourne has reopened after a ute crashed across the tracks this morning in southern New South Wales.

Cairns Tilt Train service cancelled indefinitely

Posted Friday, 17 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Queensland Rail is refusing to say when Tilt Train services between Brisbane and the far north will resume.

Services were cancelled indefinitely late yesterday.

Planning moves ahead for Gippsland Logistics Precinct

Posted Friday, 17 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Latrobe City Council is moving to the next stage of its proposed development of the Gippsland Logistics Precinct in Morwell.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 11/4/2009

Posted Sunday, 19 April, 2009 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 71 sightings for this week, which included the Good Friday holiday. This is 14 sighting less than last week, making a total of 1144 sightings for this year to date. On day 101 last year we had recorded 1399 sightings.
We have seen seven sighting on the B/G this week, which are two sightings more than last week. We have seen 9141 to Mildura diverted this way once this week, on Monday with G525+Xxx and 54 wagons, and on Wednesday we saw 9140 from Mildura with X49+G525 and 23 wagons. And we have seen five PN grain trains. On Monday and Wednesday we saw XR558(PN)+XR552(FA) on the up then on the down. And early Wednesday morning we saw an up grain with X44?+BL32(NR).

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 18/4/2009

Posted Sunday, 19 April, 2009 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 76 sightings for this week, which included the Easter Monday holiday. This is five sighting more than last week, making a total of 1220 sightings for this year to date. On day 108 last year we had recorded 1504 sightings.
We have seen seven sighting on the B/G this week, which is the same number of sightings as last week. We have seen 9140 from Mildura twice this week, on Wednesday and Friday with G525(FA)+X39(FA). And we have seen five PN grain trains, a down train was seen on Wednesday with XR557?(PN)+BL32?(NR). And on Thursday & Saturday we saw XR558(PN)+XR552(FA) on the up and then on the down.

Govt pushes on with Everleigh rail yard demolition

Posted Monday, 20 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The New South Wales Government is proceeding with a plan to demolish several buildings at the Everleigh rail yards in inner-Sydney, some of which are more than 100 years old.

Free transport proposal nipped in the bud

Posted Monday, 20 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

A NSW Labor backbencher's radical proposal to make public transport free in Sydney has been quickly nipped in the bud.

Blacktown MP Paul Gibson says the Government needs to think outside the square to reduce Sydney's growing traffic congestion.

Free buses floated to get cars off streets

Posted Tuesday, 21 April, 2009 by E1109 in Northern Territory Rail News

PUBLIC transport could be free for all Territorians under a plan being considered by the NT Government.

Transport Minister Gerry McCarthy said he would consider calls for the Government to make public transport free.

US back on track but Victoria still derailed

Posted Tuesday, 21 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

PRESIDENT Barack Obama calculates the cost of US road and air congestion at $US80 billion ($A110 billion) a year.

So he has announced 10 new fast-rail projects to connect the four corners of the continent, from Boston to San Diego and beyond.

The initial budget for the new rail projects will be $US13 billion, including $US5 billion to renovate the existing inter-city routes.

Takeover rumours drive Asciano

Posted Tuesday, 21 April, 2009 by bevans in Rail News

ASCIANO Group securities surged 33 per cent yesterday on speculation that the board of the debt-stricken transport infrastructure company will today consider takeover proposals and bids for its ports and rail assets.

More than eight months after Asciano rejected a non-binding $4.40 takeover proposal from Texas Pacific Group and Global Infrastructure Partners, the company's advisers, RBS and Carnegie Wylie, are expected to hand over a list of bids today.

Tilt train closure 'not affecting tourism yet'

Posted Wednesday, 22 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

The head of Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) says the closure of tilt train services between Brisbane and Cairns is not yet impacting on tourism.

Queensland Rail (QR) says its tilt trains will remain out of action until concerns raised by the Rail Safety Regulator are resolved.

Coal trains collide near Rockhampton

Posted Wednesday, 22 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Queensland Rail (QR) is investigating a collision between two coal trains west of Rockhampton in the state's central region.

The crash happened at Grantleigh just before 1am AEST.

Connex not to blame for rail network issues: Opposition

Posted Wednesday, 22 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Victorian Opposition says Connex should not be punished for a lack of investment in Melbourne's train network.

The Opposition says a leaked business plan shows Connex thinks that problems with the system are out of its control and the company's reputation is being tarnished.

Port urged to rethink rail loading

Posted Wednesday, 22 April, 2009 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

Mount Gibson Iron is negotiating with the Geraldton Port Authority over the upgrade of a rail loading facility.

The previous Western Australian government spent $49 million building a dedicated iron ore loading berth at the port in an effort to double the port's export capacity.

Pressure grows as Melbourne rockets to 4 million

Posted Friday, 24 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

MELBOURNE'S population is growing on a scale not seen in Australia before, swelling by almost 150,000 people in two years — mostly on the city fringe.

Bureau of Statistics figures show the city is on track to have 4 million people by the end of this year, after its population growth increased to an annual rate of 2 per cent.

The bureau estimates that Melbourne's population grew by 74,713 in the year to last June and, on revised figures, by 74,791 the year before that.

This means the population is growing by more than 200 people a day, or almost 1500 a week.

Personal space flies out the single-carriage window

Posted Friday, 24 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

INCREASINGLY front-of-mind of late has been the question: "Exactly how many people can you conceivably cram into a single train carriage?" The answer, of course, depends on how you define the term "people".

If by "people" you mean those ordinary everyday tax-paying folk who really just want to get to and from work without having their vertebrae compacted while trying to squeeze on board a peak-hour train service, then the answer is: we're not sure yet.

If by "people" you mean those carbon-based life forms presently charged with operating what is loosely referred to as Melbourne's public transport system, then some might suggest you are being way too generous with your definition.

Newcastle CBD report to be released 'in due time'

Posted Friday, 24 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Hunter MP Jodi McKay has defended the New South Wales Government's decision to withhold a report on the future of Newcastle's inner-city.

The Government last year commissioned the Hunter Development Corporation to investigate ways to rejuvenate Newcastle over the next 20 years.

'Rail to Trail' plans on track

Posted Friday, 24 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Plans are afoot to turn the Casino-to-Murwillumbah rail corridor into a tourist trail.

A meeting was held earlier this week to launch the Rail-to-Trail organisation.

Free transport for veterans

Posted Friday, 24 April, 2009 by bevans in South Australian Rail News

Free public transport will be available to veterans, military people and family representatives for Anzac Day tomorrow.

The South Australian Government says it offers the free transport every Anzac Day as a gesture of respect.

WAFF supports grain freight upgrade push

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by grace in Western Australian Rail News

The Western Australian Farmers Federation has backed calls for the WA and federal governments to invest in upgrading the state's grain freight transport network.

WestNet Rail and Co-operative Bulk Handling have launched a new campaign to encourage the two governments to join them in investing $400 million to improve rail lines.

Council maintains push for mine planning guide

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by grace in Queensland Rail News

The Toowoomba Regional Council will renew its push for the Queensland Government to develop a state-wide plan to guide mining developments when it meets ministers next week.

Community Cabinet is being held in Highfields on Sunday and in Gatton on Monday.

Mayor Peter Taylor says it is a great opportunity to raise issues such as the Toowoomba bypass, the cost of the Wivenhoe to Cressbrook pipeline, the condition of the Warrego Highway and development of the Charlton Wellcamp area with a state rail network.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 25/4/2009

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 85 sightings for this week. This is nine sighting more than last week, making a total of 1305 sightings for this year to date. On day 115 last year we had recorded 1593 sightings.
We have seen eleven sighting on the B/G this week, which are four sightings more than last week. We have seen 9140 from Mildura three times this week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, with G525(FA)+X39(FA) twice and XR553(FA)+X49(FA) on Friday. And we have seen five PN grain trains; a down train was seen on Monday night with BL32. Early Wednesday BL32 came in on the up and returned on the down late the same evening. On Thursday XR554(FA)+XR557(PN) came in on the up and returned on the down at lunch time.

States, territories agree to $26b infrastructure funding plans

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by bevans in Rail News

The Federal Government says it is making significant progress on major infrastructure projects that will stimulate economic activity.

Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese says the states and territories have agreed to funding plans for 120 road projects and 26 rail projects.

Rail network has room for improvement: minister

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Victoria's Transport Minister has conceded Melbourne's train system needs improving, amid revelations customer satisfaction has plunged.

A leaked business plan shows Connex believes problems with the system are out of its control and the company's reputation is being tarnished.

Railway revamp 'to boost tourism'

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Tourism in Wallerawang is expected to be boosted by the opening of the newly restored railway station.

The New South Wales Minister for Tourism, Jodi McKay, will be in the village near Lithgow today to praise the efforts of locals involved in the $300,000 refurbishment.

Minister can't say how much will be saved if rail line closes

Posted Monday, 27 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Minister for Transport David Campbell says until a final decision on the future of the Greenethorpe/Koorawatha/Cowra rail lines is made, he will not give a monetary figure indicating how much money will be saved if the lines are suspended.

Minister Campbell was asked how much the three lines were costing the government to operate and leave open.

He declined to comment, instead saying he was awaiting the verdict from two major reports about the lines, due within weeks.

Off-peak trains plan put on hold

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A CONNEX plan to increase off-peak services on overcrowded train lines has been delayed at least two months because the Government doubts the operator can deliver the changes.

In a business plan handed to the Government in October, Connex said it would add a small number of off-peak services next month. But the changes have been delayed, probably until July, because the Department of Transport wants to be certain Connex can deliver the extra services without mass cancellations or a big jump in late trains.

Extra services were added last November, but the additional trains were swamped by a surge in cancellations, leaving passengers worse off.

Riding the rails with quips and riffs, heroes and villains

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

MELBOURNE'S public transport system is fraught with drama, and like all good drama, it has heroes and villains — a cast of characters from singing tram drivers to stony-faced ticket inspectors who can provoke powerful emotions.

Recently, I was on a tram at 6.30am with an Early Bird ticket (which allows free transport before 7am), when a ticket inspector approached. She took one look at my Metcard and proceeded to inform me that unlike every other ticket in the public transport system, these tickets were only valid on trains. I was stunned. I offered to validate a brand-new, 10 x 2, hourly ticket, but she refused and instead confiscated it! The proceeds from this article will go towards paying the fine.

Tilt train stays put while review continues

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Queensland Rail (QR) says it is waiting for information from the industry's safety regulator before resuming the Brisbane to Cairns tilt train service.

Rail trail plans on track: Kelly

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The Member for Eden Monaro, Mike Kelly, says the wheels are turning on plans for the Riverina Highlands Rail Trail.

Dr Kelly says the Federal Government is keeping a promise by spending $220,000 for stage one of the trail between Tumbarumba and Rosewood.

He says he understands the New South Wales Government is taking steps to amend legislation so the rail corridor is closed and can be used for the trail between Tumbarumba and Wagga.

$13m rail trail boost for bushfire communities

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Federal Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese says the Government is doing what it can to help bushfire-affected communities recover.

Mr Albanese today announced just over $13 million for a rail trail through the Murrindindi, Mitchell and Mansfield shires that were hard bit by the Black Saturday fires.

No revival of northern NSW rail service: report

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The final report of a cross-border transport task force appears to have put paid to any revival of the Casino to Murwillumbah rail service.

The service was replaced by buses about five years ago.

Triple 0 Waterfall call - What was said

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

Operator: Where are we going to?

Redshaw: South Coast, between Illawarra and Helensburgh, I think.

Operator: Yeah, but where, what's the suburb called?

Redshaw: There's no suburb, it's on a train line, the train's derailed.

CBD Metro cost jumps $1.3b in six months

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

THE estimated cost of the controversial CBD Metro has increased to $5.3 billion, the Herald has confirmed, a rise of more than 30 per cent since it was announced last October.

Senior government and metro sources confirmed the figure to the Herald. Government sources said $500 million had recently been added to cover the risk of cost blowouts as well as construction and contract risks.

The Premier, Nathan Rees, was accused of policy on the run and drawing up the project "on the back on an envelope" when he announced the metro on October 25. He was not able to put a cost on the proposed line from Central Station to Rozelle at the press conference at which it was announced.

Kevin Rudd spreads $800m in Community Infrastructure Program

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Rail News

A TOURIST trail in bushfire zones, a giant Meals on Wheels kitchen and a Ballarat democracy centre will get a slice of Rudd's latest cash splash.
Millions have been thrown at community projects across the country as part of the Rudd Government’s response to the global downturn.

Funding for the projects comes from the Government’s $800 million Community Infrastructure Program, touted as “the largest one-off investment in Australia's history”.

Mixed reaction to $32bn road and rail plan

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Rail News

THE $32 billion investment in road and rail the Rudd Government announced on Sunday is mostly existing funding dressed up as new spending and will not solve key infrastructure bottlenecks, say the Opposition and industry.

Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese defended the announcement yesterday, saying the Government had reached a critical milestone, with the states agreeing to deliver the largest federal roads and rail investment in the nation's history.

Maintenance problems behind major train delays - Terry Mulder

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

SEVERE delays plaguing trains over several hours today were caused by the State's failure to replace creaking infrastructure, the Opposition claims.
A points failure about 8am at the crucial East Richmond junction caused “several hours” of delays on four rail routes, with the problem worsened when the points failed again at 8.15am, Opposition transport spokesman Terry Mulder said.

'It's too hard to fix this mess', says Connex

Posted Tuesday, 28 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

THE Premier has dismissed as "nonsense" claims Connex lacks the proper funding to run the train system effectively.

The comments come after the rail operator admitted it can't fix the train system's woes.

100 rail jobs under threat

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by grace in New South Wales Rail News

At least 100 railway station jobs may be axed in New South Wales as part of a review of rail resources.

RailCorp is reviewing staff numbers at each train station on its network, and the ABC has been told that 71 frontline jobs are in doubt at Central Station and 23 at Blacktown, among cuts across the network.

NSW public transport 'needs more staff'

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

More staff are needed to ensure commuters and workers themselves remain safe amid rising crime rates on NSW public transport, a union says.

The Rail Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) says NSW Police figures show there was a record 1,863 assaults and robberies on public transport across the state in 2007-08.

RTBU secretary Nick Lewocki has used the International Transport Federation's World Safety Day to urge the NSW government to devise new public transport safety measures.

Canberra puts up $13m for rail trail

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A TOURISM trail through some of Victoria's bushfire-affected communities will get $13.2 million from the Federal Government's $800 million community infrastructure program designed to help stimulate the economy.

The Goulburn River High Country Rail Trail — a trail for walkers, cyclists and horse riders, following the abandoned Mansfield railway line from Trawool east to Mansfield — will cost $14.2 million and cover more than 134 kilometres.

The federal money will help repair and build bridges, road crossings, car parking, rest stops and amenities.

Explosives train on fire

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Fire crews have put out a blaze on a train carrying explosives on Queensland's Fraser Coast.

The engine caught on fire at Tiaro near Maryborough just after 3:30am AEST.

The fire was extinguished a few hours later after Queensland Rail officials shut down the overhead power.

SE Qld infrastructure funds to focus on transport

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

The chairman of Infrastructure Australia says initial projects under the Building Australia Fund will focus on transport.

The first round is expected to be announced as part of next month's Federal Budget.

Transport and government representatives gathered in Brisbane today for the South-East Queensland Infrastructure Forum.

Greens attack cross-border transport report

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The Greens say the New South Wales Government's cross-border transport report is a sham and an insult to people on the north coast.

The report found that restoring the train service between Casino to Murwillumbah was not viable and that no further work was needed on potential rail links between northern NSW and south-east Queensland.

Developers donate $1m to political parties (Newcastle Herald)

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

THE Hunter's three largest developers have between them donated almost $1 million to political parties since 2004.

Donor declarations from July 2004 to December 2008 show seven separate Buildev companies gave $462,697 to the NSW Labor and Liberal parties.

Australian Electoral Commission figures for Hunter Land show the company has given $389,700 over the same period.

Govt pushes on with Eveleigh rail yard demolition

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The New South Wales Government is proceeding with a plan to demolish several buildings at the Eveleigh rail yards in inner-Sydney, some of which are more than 100 years old.

The Government has called for tenders for the demolition of the Carriage Shop Extension and four of the Stores Buildings at the rail yards.

Complaints against ticket inspectors double

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

COMPLAINTS against ticket inspectors on Melbourne's stretched public transport network have doubled in just 12 months.

More than 180 angry commuters lodged a formal complaint with the Public Transport Ombudsman from July to December last year compared with 85 complaints for the same period in 2007.

Sydney metro plan 'in trouble'

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The absence of the NSW government's CBD metro plans from a list of major rail projects to be funded by the federal government is evidence there is little confidence in the project, the state opposition says.

The $4.8 billion CBD metro project recently came under fire after Fairfax media reported changes needed at Central Station for it to go ahead were impossible.

Premier Nathan Rees denied the claim.

$140 MILLION SPRINGVALE ROAD GRADE SEPARATION PROJECT ON THE WAY

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2009 by bevans in Press Releases

Road safety is set to get a major boost in Nunawading with the removal of the busy Springvale Road level crossing and a new grade separation to be completed by 2010.

Victorian Premier John Brumby today announced $60 million from the 2009/2010 state budget, to be released next week, while Federal MP for Deakin Mike Symon confirmed the Rudd Government’s $80 million commitment.

High-rise plan to halt the sprawl

Posted Thursday, 30 April, 2009 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

MELBOURNE could house an extra million people within existing boundaries by accelerating multi-level development on main tram and bus routes, according to an ambitious plan before the State Government.

A draft report, obtained by The Age, proposes a radical rethink of the urban planning system in a bid to overcome persistent obstacles to higher-density housing development.

The report says just 10 per cent of the existing urban area could be used to accommodate projected growth in Melbourne's population from about 4 million to 5 million by 2030.

Sydney railway crime hotspots targeted

Posted Thursday, 30 April, 2009 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

More than 2,000 people have been arrested on Sydney's rail network under a joint NSW Police - RailCorp crackdown on crime.

One of the people arrested was singled out by a drug sniffer dog at Lidcombe Station in Sydney's west and police then found the man was carrying a loaded .22 calibre pistol.

The incident was caught by a security camera and the footage shows the man running away and then being tackled to the ground by transit security guards and NSW Police.

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