THERE'S no denying Ipswich has copped a raw deal with Queensland Rail's track closures over the past few years - but there was something of a breakthrough yesterday.
Ipswich-born Transport Minister Scott Emerson announced an agreement with the transport authority to publish a long-term plan for maintenance-related track closures, allowing event organisers and attendees to better prepare for the inconvenience. The minister's announcement came in the wake of news that the Ipswich line would be closed on the weekend of August 4 and 5 - clashing with this year's Ipswich 300 race in the V8 Supercars series.
In recent years the Ipswich Show and Ipswich Cup have also been affected by track maintenance work. Mr Emerson said Queensland Rail would now consult with event organisers to ensure they could plan events around track closures.
THE humble work shorts have been saved from extinction with Queensland Rail workers winning their fight to bare their knees.
New uniforms for train crews are believed to be the latest victim of government cost-cutting with workers told they can keep their shorts.
The new look favoured by Queensland Rail featured long pants and long-sleeved shirts to protect workers against skin cancer.
But with a hefty price tag of $500,000, and the opposition of The Courier-Mail readers who feared it could be the end of the "Queensland uniform" of shorts and long socks, the new look is now understood to have been abandoned.
Due to pending trackwork between Muswellbrook and Murrurundi from 17 July, 2012 to 19 September, 2012. Services from Sydney to Armidale / Moree and connecting coach services will depart earlier and be replaced by a road coach service from Muswellbrook. Services from Armidale and Moree will be replaced by a road coach service to Muswellbrook and depart earlier than timetabled. Passengers are advised to confirm all departure times prior to travel by calling 13 22 32.
source countrylink track work site http://www.countrylink.info/service_status/trackwork
GLENVILLE, N.Y. — On sagging train tracks in an industrial park sit four rusting passenger trains, once the cornerstone of an ambitious plan to create a high-speed rail line between New York City and Albany.
But the necessary track improvements never happened. Trains that the state paid $70 million to refurbish did not work. Then the state accused Amtrak of stealing several of them by towing them to Delaware and never bringing them back.
Mayor Brown condemns 'false economy' of building stations in stages as funds permit.
Auckland Mayor Len Brown is warning that delaying an underground rail link would push its cost above $3 billion.
He also vowed yesterday not to allow any repeat of "half-baked transport infrastructure" such as happened when the harbour bridge opened in 1959 with just four traffic lanes. Four clip-on lanes had to be added 10 years later to cope with demand.
"Auckland knows only too well the false economies of under-investment," he said.
The Queensland Government is reviewing whether to close several unused regional railway lines.
Transport Minister Scott Emerson says the 400-kilometre train line running between Mungar near Maryborough, and Taragoola south of Gladstone, will be closed.
It runs through towns including Eidsvold, Biggenden and Monto.
Mr Emerson says there is no point maintaining the track.
"That will save us a million dollars a year of taxpayers' money maintaining a line that hasn't had a train on it since 2008," he said.
A SECOND harbour crossing will be the centrepiece rail project in the state government's draft transport masterplan, to be unveiled within months.
The plan will reassert the importance of another rail crossing for the harbour, which has been long talked about but absent from government policy since 2008.
Several sources have told the Herald a cross-government committee working on Sydney's next train plan has agreed it would not be worth trying to avoid building another harbour crossing by upgrading technology on the existing rail corridor.
There were 108 sightings for this week. This is ten sightings less than last week, making a total of 2576 sightings for this year to date. On day 154 last year we had recorded 2215 sightings. This is 361 sightings up on the same time last year.
An independent panel of transportation and finance experts says the latest business plan for California's proposed high-speed train system is a big improvement from last fall, but still gives cause for concern.
Uncertainty over money to finish the 520-mile system between San Francisco and Los Angeles after initial construction, and lingering doubts over what it will cost to operate the train line are among warnings to legislators by the High-Speed Rail Peer Review Group.
The Western Downs Mayor says he will ask the Queensland Government to hand over land it owns in Wandoan should it decide to close a local rail line.
The Government is reviewing the future of the Miles to Wandoan link that has been used for at least eight years.
A woman is dead after being hit by a train in Echuca this morning.
Police say the woman, who has not been formally identified, was walking along Ogilvie Ave shortly before 10.30am when she was struck by the train.
Witnesses told police the woman was walking on the footpath towards the direction of Bunnings Warehouse and wearing headphones.
A majority of voters no longer support building a $68 billion high-speed passenger rail system connecting California’s population centers, a new poll shows, even as Governor Jerry Brown is pushing the project forward.
While 53 percent of voters approved a bond issue for the project in 2008, a USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll published in today’s edition of the newspaper, found that 59 percent would oppose it if given another chance to vote.
Brown, a 74-year-old Democrat, allocated some of the $9.95 billion of bonds for the system in his budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1, even though a deficit in the spending plan has ballooned to $15.7 billion. He wants voters to increase sales and income taxes or slash 3 weeks off the school year while still spending money on the rail line.
A little less than a mile from the U.S. Capitol, families living on Virginia Avenue SE may soon feel the unwanted effects of the Panama Canal’s expansion 2,000 miles away.
They live near a a 100-year-old rail tunnel that runs beneath Virginia Avenue from Second to 11th streets. CSX Transportation owns the tunnel, but it says the structure is too outdated for modern freight capacity and is a major bottleneck in its rail network.
A Victorian man has lost his victimisation case against a vintage train club that banned him after he blew the whistle on a fellow member.
Alistair Parr, 34, had been volunteering at Steamrail Victoria in 2004 when he encouraged three boys at the club to report criminal allegations against another club member.
PREMIER Barry O’Farrell has announced a daily commuter rail service will run between Bathurst and Sydney starting from October.
Blue Mountains customers stand to benefit as well, with stops planned for Lithgow, Mt Victoria and Katoomba.
The initiative is being made possible thanks to a $7 million upgrade of a diesel Endeavour train.
Premier O'Farrell said the people of Bathurst and surrounding areas have been very clear about how important this service is to them.
Lancaster County communities in the midst of new rail-trail projects might be emboldened by a new survey that shows the existing Conewago Recreation Trail and Lebanon Valley Rail-Trail are valued by area residents and stimulate local economies.
"They're good for the quality of life and they're good for the economy," said Carl Knoch, who helped oversee the user survey and economic analysis for the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. The work was funded by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
The trails attracted an estimated 125,244 people in 2011 and pumped $875,320 into the local economy, according to the study.
The Conewago Recreation Trail is a 5.5-mile multiuse trail built atop a 19th-century railroad that once served the Cornwall Iron Furnace.
The right of way was purchased by Lancaster County from the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1979, and the trail was developed by the county Department of Parks and Recreation. It runs from Route 230, just outside of Elizabethtown, to the Lebanon County line.
They were men of vision, no doubt, the architects and builders of the Smithfield Street Bridge and the railroad line that passes under it at Station Square.
But in the late 1800s they could not have foreseen a day when double-stack freight trains would ply the nation's rails. And so it turns out that the bridge is just a wee bit too low for the taller trains to get by.
That is why a contractor for CSX Transportation is gouging a new rail bed under the historic bridge, to lower the tracks by about 18 inches. The $3 million project is one of 61 planned or under way on the company's extensive mid-Atlantic network to create the needed 21-foot clearances.
PEAK hour commuters are experiencing another evening of transport chaos tonight following the latest wet-weather Metro Trains track fault.
Sydenham, Craigieburn and Upfield line services began skipping the City Loop just after 5pm following a signal fault near Parliament station.
A Metro spokeswoman said services are running direct from Flinders Street.
An application has been submitted for another large coal mine in Queensland's Central Highlands.
Anglo Coal has released the draft terms of reference for an underground coal mine south of Moranbah.
The proposed mine will have a life of more than 30 years and is expected to produce up to 18 million tonnes of coking coal a year.
The trauma of a rail death can last a lifetime for people at the controls.
FOR DECADES, new train drivers were never warned of the horrors they could face on the tracks. Veteran V/Line driver Peter Smith describes it as being ''thrown to the wolves''. Semi-retired after 40 years driving trains on Victoria's metropolitan and regional lines, Smith believes he's become inured to rail accidents.
OVERCROWDING worsened on several of Melbourne's tram routes last year but peak-hour crushes also eased on other routes that had previously suffered chronic load breaches.
Where overcrowding eased, it was put down to a combination of larger trams being shifted to crammed routes, and commuters ditching tram travel.
The figures are contained in the Department of Transport's latest six-monthly tram load standards report, completed in October and published online last week. Passenger numbers were recorded at dozens of tram stops during the morning and afternoon peaks.
The region's rail lobby group is praising the changes made to the terms of reference for a feasibility study into the return of rail services between Casino and Murwillumbah.
Karin Kolbe, from Trains On Our Tracks, says she put her case to the consultants involved last week.
She says she left the meeting feeling positive, after being assured the study would factor in community benefits as well as costs.
ZIG Zag railway will be derailed this month - closing down due to a lack of skilled workers and funds.
The railway, 10km east of Lithgow, in the Blue Mountains, has operated as a tourist attraction for many years now as the home of Thomas the Tank Engine and the Hogwarts Express.
Staff confirmed this morning that the not-for-profit organisation was shutting down on June 17.
"We are definitely closing, that I can confirm,'' a spokeswoman said.
THE green light for a plan to restore trams to Anzac Pde, which was designed specifically for light rail, could come this month.
Plans for a light rail line from Circular Quay to the University of NSW have been on the table since February last year and Coogee Liberal MP Bruce Notley-Smith is confident this month’s feasability study will contain “good news”.
He said the prospect of a line along Anzac Pde was exciting but was less upbeat about a line to La Perouse, a proposal being promoted by Maroubra Labor MP Michael Daley.
Australia's largest rail freight company QR National will cut more than 500 jobs as part of a restructure.
The former Bligh Government sold off the freight arm of Queensland Rail in 2010, assuring workers their jobs would be safe for three years.
But today QR National told the Stock Exchange the job cuts are necessary to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
It says the move will start in mid-August after consultation with staff and unions.
6.50PM: South Coast services are not to timetable and buses are still supplementing and replacing some trains. Passengers are advised to listen to station announcements and check indicator boards.
6.20PM: Trains are running again between Waterfall and Thirroul after being suspended earlier due to heavy rain. But services are delayed up to 15 minutes due to signal problems at Otford.
5PM: Trains have been suspended between Thirroul and Waterfall after safety monitors were triggered at Stanwell Park this evening.
Bus companies have been contacted to organise a replacement service, however this may take some time and commuters are advised to delay their trips if possible.
The fifth anniversary of the Kerang train crash in northern Victoria was marked with a ceremony at the scene of the accident.
Eleven passengers died and 23 were injured when a B-double truck crashed into the side of a Swan Hill train bound for Melbourne on June 5, 2007.
The second carriage of the train was ripped apart by the impact and the third carriage derailed.
The truck driver was later acquitted of 19 charges and a coronial inquest is continuing.
WORK to separate the freight and commuter rail lines at Goodwood is expected to start next January, with a long-running campaign to build a freight line bypassing Adelaide failing to win government support.
But the Unley Rail Advisory Group says it will continue to push to have freight trains diverted away from the inner suburbs.
The group faces a tough battle, as the State Government last week set aside $110 million in its 2012-13 budget for a joint federal project aimed at increasing SA’s rail freight productivity.
But Unley councillor Rob Sangster, also the chair of the Unley Rail Advisory Group, says the community - sick of freight train noise and traffic disruption - will continue the fight.
The Rail, Tram and Bus union says it is confident no West Australian rail workers will be made redundant by the planned restructure of QR National.
The country's largest rail freight company, which predominantly moves coal and iron ore, yesterday announced more than 500 jobs will be cut from August.
The NSW government must cough up its share and secure the federal funds needed to get on with building the Parramatta to Epping rail link, the opposition says.
Opposition leader John Robertson says Premier Barry O'Farrell is wasting time trying to convince the federal government to reallocate funds earmarked for construction of the Parramatta to Epping Rail Link, to the North West Rail Link.
Mr Robertson says Mr O'Farrell could secure $2.1 billion of federal infrastructure funding if it committed $520 million from state coffers.
That would allow work on the Parramatta to Epping link to begin immediately, he said.
ONKAPARINGA Mayor Lorraine Rosenberg says the State Government should press ahead with the rail extension to Aldinga this year, labelling the latest delay "unacceptable".
Aldinga residents also have condemned the State Budget announcement, saying the train was needed to service the suburb’s increasing population, the Southern Times Messengerreports.
Treasurer Jack Snelling announced last week the government would delay buying land to extend the rail line from Seaford to Aldinga for two years.
LANDHOLDERS could be forced to sell their land for two new rail corridors for the mining industry in a plan which aims to cut down on proposed rail lines through central Queensland.
Eight proponents - including Gina Rinehart's Hancock Coal, Clive Palmer's Waratah Coal and freight rail company QR National - were proposing to build rail lines out of the Bowen Basin and the Galilee Basin, which is set to become the state's next big booming coal region.
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney said if all went ahead, central Queensland would look like "a twisted mess of lines on a map".
Efforts to have all proponents undertake a commercial negotiation to agree on one corridor didn't work, Mr Seeney said.
To end the stalemate, he announced on Wednesday that only two rail corridors will go ahead, one running east-west and the other north-south.
Trainspotters who find the homogenized world of modern locos a bit dull could soon be celebrating the return of steam, if all goes well in a University of Minnesota study.
The university, along with Sustainable Rail International, are to restore a 1930s locomotive – 3463, a 4-6-4 Hudson-type loco built by Baldwin that's spent its retirement at the Kansas Expocenter in Topeka – as a test bed for bio-coal. The locomotive has already been stabilized prior to the trip to Minnesota for restoration.
If all goes well, the university says, it expects to create the "cleanest, most powerful passenger locomotive", costing less to maintain and fuel than current diesel-electric locos.
COMMUTERS from Granville will get a new $14 million transport interchange in the state budget, the government has announced. Premier Barry O’Farrell said the interchange at Granville train station would include 40 additional car spaces, a major hub for bus services, passenger lifts and toilets.
The NSW Government has provided another example of the ACT Government's outrageously expensive estimates for a light rail network, according to the Australasian Railway Association.
The O'Farrell Government has costed its six kilometre, inner-west Sydney light rail expansion at $176 million which works out at $29 million per kilometre, less than half the ACT Government's estimate of $66 million per kilometre.
The ARA says Canberra's $600-800 million estimate price tag for 13km of light rail is overpriced.
Work is underway to fix rail network problems that sparked commuter chaos in Brisbane earlier this year.
The two incidents disrupted 297 train services, including 124 cancellations, and led to the lowest peak on-time running in almost three years.
On February 28, a clamp caused a power surge on the network, and trains could not enter the CBD. The result was gridlock on the city's roads.
COLLISIONS at level crossings, fatalities on the tracks, sick passengers and police emergencies all contributed to a horror May on Melbourne's trains, in which more than 20 per cent of services were disrupted.
The events contributed to a sharp spike last month in the number of trains that were terminated short of their last stop or suddenly diverted from the city loop, upsetting thousands of passengers' trips.
Rail operator Metro ran 730 ''short services'' last month, about 23 a day on average, and unexpectedly bypassed the city loop 275 times, diverting trains direct between Flinders Street Station and Richmond, Jolimont or North Melbourne. It also ran on average about four unplanned express trains a day, skipping stations to make time.
A LOWER cost alternative to the Cross River Rail project is being considered by the State Government.
The $2.5 billion Cleveland solution, revealed by The Courier-Mail in January, was developed by engineering consultants GHD for the Council of Mayors (South East Queensland).
It was immediately dismissed by the previous Labor State Government but new Transport Minister Scott Emerson confirmed it was being considered as part of an expert panel's inquiry into Cross River Rail.
The Cleveland Solution aims to relieve the strain on the Merivale Bridge, due to reach choke point by 2016, by diverting the Cleveland line.
The Cleveland line would instead run along a new rail line from Park Rd to Roma St via a tunnel to a new station at Woolloongabba and then a new bridge beside the Captain Cook. It would then run through a tunnel under Herschel St to a new platform beneath Roma St Station.
THE Regional Rail Link is not exclusively for rural communities, says CHRIS McLENNAN
Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu is under mounting pressure to justify the faith of country voters in his Coalition Government.
Some political commentators today see danger signs similar to 1999 when a bush revolt toppled Jeff Kennett.
A bleak second budget has disappointed many country people, particularly forced job losses either throughDepartment of Primary Industries office closures or TAFE cutbacks.
LANDHOLDERS could be forced to sell their land for two new rail corridors for the mining industry in a plan which aims to cut down on proposed rail lines through central Queensland.
Eight proponents - including Gina Rinehart's Hancock Coal, Clive Palmer's Waratah Coal and freight rail company QR National - were proposing to build rail lines out of the Bowen Basin and the Galilee Basin, which is set to become the state's next big booming coal region.
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney said if all went ahead, central Queensland would look like "a twisted mess of lines on a map".
Efforts to have all proponents undertake a commercial negotiation to agree on one corridor didn't work, Mr Seeney said.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu have turned the first sod on the final stage of the regional rail link at Wyndham Vale in Melbourne's west.
The $5 billion project, jointly funded by the State and Federal Governments, will build a dedicated line for trains from Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong so they will no longer be delayed by metropolitan trains where the lines converge outside Melbourne.
Public Transport Victoria says progress is being made on a major study of the viability of train services between Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo.
The Victorian Government says the feasibility study is important as population growth continues in the state's three biggest country towns.
The chairman of the Mount Isa to Townsville Economic Zone (MITEZ) says competition from rail operator Pacific National has put pressure on QR National to become more efficient.
QR National competes with Pacific National along the north-west rail corridor and has recently announced plans to cut about 500 jobs.
MITEZ's David Glasson says he is confident QR's operational jobs in Hughenden will not be among the cuts.
"Queensland Rail have got a legacy of old working conditions that they've got to contend with and obviously they're having trouble competing with Pacific National on the same playing field," he said.
Parkes Shire Council together with the NSW Local Government and Shires Association will host the “Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail Symposium” on Friday, June 22.
Parkes has been chosen because of its developing status as a national transport hub – the result of its economic strengths and diversity.
“Given the Symposium format and content, Council remains confident of attracting a diverse range of delegates from all parts of the Eastern Seaboard,” Parkes Mayor Ken Keith said.
Cr Keith said the Melbourne to Brisbane inland rail project “wasn’t a new idea”.
He quoted the words of Sir Henry Parkes.
The New South Wales Coroner has found a rail worker killed in the state's central west in 2010 was the victim of flawed safety procedures.
Luke Jenkinson died from head and neck injuries when he was thrown ten metres from his excavator, as it was hit by a train.
The 25-year-old was part of a small work crew doing track maintainence west of Bathurst.
A freight train carrying 6000 tonnes of manganese has derailed in the Northern Territory.
Genesee and Wyoming Australia, the firm which operates frieght services where the derailment happened, said the front wheels of one wagon left the rail about 6pm (CST) on Thursday.
He said no-one was injured in the incident, which occurred about 60km north of Tennant Creek, and none of the manganese onboard spilled out.
The desperate need to solve Brisbane's looming railway crisis could result in an all-out State and Federal Government funding war.
By 2016 the Merivale Bridge, which services trains running south of Brisbane, is expected to reach maximum capacity and strangle the rail network, with knock on effects to freight and commuter services, road infrastructure and bus networks.
Estimates given in a GHD report commissioned by the Council of Mayors (SEQ) suggest failure to invest in transport infrastructure is likely to cost around $3000 million per year in lost productivity.
RAIL line closures will hit Brisbane's commuters this weekend, with huge sections of the grid shut down for maintenance.
In a weekend packed with events such as the Lifeline Bookfest, the Stradbroke Day races at Eagle Farm and a Wallabies match at Suncorp Stadium, those to the north of the city will have to catch a bus rather than a train.
The Sunshine Coast and Shorncliffe lines have been closed for maintenance, station works and other infrastructure upgrades. Train services will recommence for the first service on Monday.
Buses are replacing trains between the Bowen Hills and Gympie North stations, and between the Bowen Hills and Shorncliffe stations, although trains will run to Eagle Junction.
HOUSTON, June 8 (Reuters) - Phillips 66 plans to buy as many as 2,000 railroad tank cars to ship oil from shale fields to refineries, yet another sign that the shale boom is reshaping the U.S. energy industry.
Phillips Chairman and CEO Greg Garland discussed the plan, targeted for "the next year or two," at the Citi Global Energy Conference this week, according to a transcript of his presentation.
Oil companies in fast-growing U.S. shale fields such as the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Niobrara and Permian have turned to rail, trucks and barges to haul crude because pipeline development has not kept up.
There were 129 sightings for this week. This is 21 sightings more than last week, making a total of 2705 sightings for this year to date. On day 161 last year we had recorded 2345 sightings. This is 360 sightings up on the same time last year.
THE third derailment on the Adelaide to Darwin railway in just 19 months has reignited demands for an inquiry into the integrity of the track amid plans to increase the amount of uranium the line carries through central Australia.
The Greens and environmental groups yesterday called for a government inquiry into the line after a freight train carrying 6000 tonnes of Om Minerals' manganese from the Bootu Creek mine derailed near Tennant Creek on Thursday.
COALMINING plans for Oaklands could be shelved if mining giant Whitehaven Coal takes over Coalworks Ltd.
Whitehaven is offering $1 for Coalworks’ shares.
If its bid for control succeeds, Coalworks will be delisted and Whitehaven will develop its Vickery South project in the Gunnedah Basin and the Ferndale project in the Hunter Valley.
Work has begun on two new lifts and a new main station building as part of a $14million overhaul of Cardiff railway station.
Charlestown MP Andrew Cornwell welcomed the start of work on a program that had been many years in the planning.
Significant changes are also under way between Hamilton and Newcastle stations, with old tracks being removed and new computerised signalling equipment being installed.
CityRail acting chief operating officer Tony Eid said buses would replace trains between Newcastle and Broadmeadow until Friday.
YEARS of poor maintenance from government underfunding has left Australian trains at risk of derailment, a railway engineer has warned.
The engineer, who requested anonymity fearing penalties from government agencies and rail companies, said there was a lack of control over maintenance, leaving safety to fall below standard. He said the Adelaide-to-Darwin rail and Sydney-to-Melbourne rail were examples where poor maintenance increased the risk of derailment.
However, Genesee and Wyoming managing director Bert Easthope said the Adelaide-to-Darwin line had been regularly maintained, and the stretch north of Alice Springs was the newest in Australia, built in 2004.
PERSONAL correspondence from Queensland Premier Campbell Newman shows he had "misgivings" about the Gold Coast's light rail project but it was beyond the point of no return.
In a handwritten note to a light rail opponent, Mr Newman shared frank thoughts on scrapping the $1 billion project.
"To cancel it now would see the State Government pay out large sums of money for nothing," he wrote.
"I certainly had my own misgivings about the project but we passed the point of stopping this a long time ago."
It is the first time Mr Newman has revealed his views on the project so publicly.
The NSW Liberals and Nationals 2012-13 Budget includes a massive $13.2 billion investment in
public transport and roads, with a major focus on building new transport infrastructure where it is
This Budget puts a priority on progressing major transport infrastructure initiatives that will
improve the day to day experience of customers, such as the North West Rail Link and South
West Rail Link, extension of light rail and introduction of electronic ticketing, Minister for
Transport Gladys Berejiklian said.
This Budget shows we are getting on with the job we said we would do and building for the
future of this State.
The former Labor Government failed to do the hard work that allows projects to be delivered
we are a disciplined Government focused on delivering the improvements the people of NSW
Early construction work will start on the North West Rail Link later this year with $360 million to
fund the preparation of major construction sites, property acquisition and the second
Environmental Impact Statement.
CANBERRA Airport has pledged to build a $140 million high speed rail facility adjacent to the new airport terminal if the federal and NSW governments go ahead with the multi-billion dollar project.
The airport, which has long been an advocate of a high speed rail link between Sydney and Canberra, will today unveil plans for the facility amid the ongoing stalemate over where to build Sydney's second airport.
Canberra Airport Managing Director Stephen Byron said previous reports had shown that with high speed rail passengers could travel from Canberra to Sydney in 57 minutes.
"Passengers will be able to transfer from arriving aircraft to their train in under five minutes without baggage and be in Sydney in less than an hour,'' Mr Byron said.
He said Canberra Airport was today presenting plans for "a superb, multi-modal, transport facility to underline the high speed rail's integration into Canberra Airport, in accordance with (NSW) Premier O'Farrell's vision''.
Victoria's $5 billion regional train connection has been declared full steam ahead, with the state and federal governments unveiling a $47 million contract for its final construction phase.
The regional rail link's sixth stage, the Deer Park-West Werribee junction, will have an overpass built over existing tracks and allow for the separation of tracks between the Werribee and Geelong lines west of Melbourne.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard was on hand on Friday to turn the first sod at the project's construction site in Wyndham Vale, in her electorate of Lalor.
AMBULANCE Victoria is investigating a claim a paramedic drove around lowered boom gates at a Melbourne railway crossing notorious for frustrating emergency workers with long delays.
The paramedic was seen by a witness driving through the crossing at Clayton train station on Saturday afternoon.
Ambulance Victoria does not allow crews to drive through crossings when boom gates are down and the organisation's general manager of regional services, Tony Walker, yesterday confirmed attempts to identify the crew were under way.
A group of central Queensland landholders say they will meet Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney tomorrow about plans for a dual rail corridor to service the developing Galilee Basin.
Shontae Moran from 'Double D' near Clermont says the property will be cut into four parts by the two corridors which were defined by the State Government last week.
THE prospect of nearly 100 rail-related job cuts in Hughenden could have a devastating effect on the entire community, warns Flinders Shire Mayor Greg Jones.
The jobs are in jeopardy due to a Queensland Rail (QR) National restructure, and Councillor Jones said the losses would be a huge blow to the region.
"We are trying to build up country Queensland, not rip it down and Queensland Rail National is one of the major employers in Hughenden,'' he said.
"A loss of jobs, will mean a loss of families in town and this will affect the business structure.
"There will be a cut in small business, a cut in government services, including hospital and police and with Hughenden the only location of a P-12 school between Charters Towers and Cloncurry, the education system will be affected and teaching staff will be lost from the community.''
ATLAS Iron has added Gina Rinehart's Roy Hill joint venture project to the list of Pilbara players it is in talks with to secure a long-term infrastructure solution for its aggressive expansion plans.
Atlas chairman David Flanagan, commenting on reports that he had begun private talks with Mrs Rinehart over a possible port-access-for-rail swap, said while he did not comment on commercial conversations, the company had been in dialogue with Hancock Prospecting for years because of neighbouring tenements.
"We have been working alongside those guys (Hancock) with tenements that have been interacting now for three years and that relationship has gone really well," he said.
"There is a dialogue that is there, we are looking to establish a haulage agreement . . . of course we are talking to them."
Atlas had announced in April it had partnered with QR National to conduct a feasibility study for the construction of a 600km multi-user railway to transport ore from the east and southeast Pilbara to Port Hedland.
The NSW government has escalated its war with the Commonwealth by failing to match its funding commitment to duplicate the Pacific Highway by 2016, and by increasing funding for the contentious North West Rail Link.
Canberra pledged to provide $3.9 billion over four years in the May budget to upgrade the deadly stretch of highway in northern NSW, on the proviso NSW match its commitment.
But Treasurer Mike Baird has instead pledged a much smaller $1.5 billion over the same period, insisting that NSW commit to 20 per cent of building costs.
AUSTRALIANS really can bet on anything, with an online betting company now offering odds on whether Melbourne's trains will meet their service targets this month, inflaming concerns of politicians and experts worried about the continued creep of betting into daily life.
Sportsbet.com.au yesterday opened betting markets on whether Metro Trains would meet June performance standards. Metro trains said its 4100 staff members were banned from betting on it and has asked Sportsbet.com.au staff to ''seek to ensure that anyone proposing to place a bet on Melbourne's train performance isn't a member of Metro train staff in any capacity whatsoever''.
Construction is due to begin on the new $22 million Butler train station as part of the 7.5km extension of the Joondalup rail line. Works will start on the Park 'n Ride station soon and are expected to be completed in time for services to begin on the Butler rail extension in late 2014. WA Construction company Cooper and Oxley was awarded the contract to build the new station following a tender and selection process.
An Upper Hunter community organisation says the limited number of trains running from Scone to Sydney makes it almost impossible for residents to make day trips to the city for medical treatment.
The Scone Neighbourhood Centre has made a submission to the State Government's Inquiry into Inter-Regional Public Transport.
The Centre is calling for an earlier daily Countrylink service to Sydney from Scone or more Cityrail services.
The Loxton Waikerie Council says it has reached an agreement with the South Australian Government to buy part of the former rail yard site at Loxton for recreational use.
Transport Minister Patrick Conlon told the council it had to pay market value for Lot 100, Bookpurnong Road, to avoid setting a precedent.
A proposed central Queensland rail line by mining company Adani is a fatal mistake, farmers warn.
The state government last week announced two rail corridors will go ahead in the Bowen and Galilee coal and gas basins, one running east-west and the other north-south.
The decision ended a stalemate between eight proponents the government had asked to agree on one corridor out of the area, which is set to stage the next resources boom.
But a group of farmers say the state government's failure to include them in the final rail corridor negotiations is a mistake.
Tricia Dennis, whose husband's family have lived in the region for 120 years, says the Adani Group's proposed east-west line runs through a massive flood plain linked to the Belyando River and Mistake Creek.
THE NSW government is forging ahead with the construction of a controversial multi-billion-dollar rail project in NSW, despite an impasse with the federal government over how to fund it. In yesterday's budget, the NSW government pledged $3.3 billion over four years for the construction of the North West Rail Link.
Traralgon™s rare railway roundhouse, built in 1902, has received a major facelift courtesy of VicTrack™s Heritage Program, Russell Northe, Member for Morwell, said today.
The roundhouse, which is historically important as evidence of Traralgon™s status as a railway depot, has had a new roof, gutters and downpipes installed. Fire-damaged sections of the building have also been replaced, the machinery room has been cleaned up and the weeds around the building have been cleared, Mr Northe said.
VicTrack, custodial owner of Victoria™s rail land and property, commissioned Direct Property Services to carry out the $113,000 project.
The Traralgon Roundhouse is a very rare example of a surviving combination of an engine shed and turntable. The engine shed component is unusual in being a curved engine shed most were rectangular, said Mr Northe.
MOST of Melbourne's six new suburbs will have to rely on the busy V/Line train network or public transport upgrades that are years from completion, which critics say will worsen congestion and commuting times.
Planning Minister Matthew Guy yesterday announced the development of six new suburbs - Diggers Rest near Sunbury, Lockerbie near Greenvale, Lockerbie North, Manor Lakes in Wyndham, Merrifield West in the city of Hume and Rockbank North near Melton.
Mr Guy also revealed the city's urban growth boundary would grow by almost 6000 hectares, with former farm and green wedge land opened up for development at Wallan, Point Cook, east of Pakenham and in Melton.
More people will choose to drive to Sydney rather than fly because of growing delays at Sydney Airport, according to the Canberra Airport.
Unveiling plans for a $140 million high-speed rail terminal at the airport, managing director Stephen Byron said 25 years ago people flew from Canberra to Sydney in half an hour. These days they were doing well if they completed the journey in an hour.
''The reality is there are going to be more and more delays and in our view, more people will choose to drive. We have only 20 per cent of the market now with our million passengers. There are five million people trips between Canberra and Sydney today and we have only 20 per cent in the air and it is because it takes too long and is too unreliable.''
The State Government is budgeting about $140 million for a new Belmont Park train station to ferry up to 40,000 people an hour away from the planned 60,000-seat major stadium at Burswood. Tender documents reveal the station will be slightly east of the Belmont Park stop and feature four 150m platforms and six sections of track.
The Perth-bound "main line" will have to be moved closer to the Burswood golf course boundary and the Armadale-bound "main line" closer to the Graham Farmer Freeway.
The Mount Alexander Shire says it is taking immediate action to seize an opportunity for a railway museum at Castlemaine.
The former deputy prime minister, Tim Fischer, raised the idea last month and the council has planned further talks with the Victorian Government.
The Mayor of Mount Gambier hopes remediation of the city's railway lands can begin next financial year.
The city council has received a $1 million South Australian Government grant for stage one of the redevelopment.
The Bland Shire Council has begun investigating whether two rail lines near Ungarie contributed to flooding in March.
Local residents recently raised concerns about the Ungarie and Lake Cargelligo lines acting like a dam, and funnelling water into the village area during times of high rainfall.
The Mayor Neil Pokoney says concerns have also been raised about where water flows during floods and whether the nearby Humbug Creek needs to be cleaned out as well.
MORE commuters would have to change trains to get to the city centre under a planned overhaul of Sydney's train system that will attempt to make trains run more frequently and reliably.
The overhaul would mean commuters from a clutch of stations in Sydney's west and north-west would lose direct services to the city, but they would be promised better and more regular services on the express line when they change trains.
The principles behind the planned redesign, which remain controversial inside the transport bureaucracy, are expected to be laid out in the coming weeks.
Geelong’s port would play a key role in State Government’s push to join the multi-billion-dollar boom. The report recommended that State Government identify infrastructure to support mining exploration, including transport links.
New trains being built in Ballarat are on track to be delivered months ahead of schedule, helping build capacity on the metropolitan rail network. Visiting Alstom’s Ballarat Maintenance Centre with Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder, Premier Ted Baillieu announces the new X’Trapolis trains currently under construction are expected to be delivered before the end of this year.
THE Rapid Transit System has been listed as a major liability to the state's finances, with the $1.2 billion project likely to become the loss-making Clem7 of the Gold Coast.
The Costello Report handed down yesterday singled out the Gold Coast Rapid Transit System as a major obstacle to getting the Government's debt under control and revealed the tram system would never make a profit.
Although construction is already under way, the less-than-enthusiastic attitude of the LNP to the Bligh Government-initiated project has fuelled speculation the first stage of the track to Broadbeach will be the only stage ever built.
City officials and residents think a change in federal laws could be only resolution. City officials and residents think a change in federal laws could be the only way to get the rail cars moved.
There were 110 sightings for this week. This is 19 sightings less than last week, making a total of 2815 sightings for this year to date. On day 168 last year we had recorded 2458 sightings. This is 357 sightings up on the same time last year.
Mumbai: Six commuters were injured, of which three were serious, after a collision between a Churchgate bound local and Virar train near Andheri on Friday night. Western Railway said Christina Paul (40), Salim Khan and Rakul Islam (both 21 year old) suffered serious injuries. Three others . Arvind Dubey (48), Sameer malik (16) and forty-five old woman Manimaya- escaped with minor injuries.
UIJEONGBU, South Korea (AFP) - With sleek railcars sliding along elevated tracks, South Korea's newest light railway is a smooth ride, and the hope is that it can avoid the fiscal train wreck facing similar projects.
But passenger estimates for the rubber-wheeled, driverless light rail transit (LRT) system, which will open to the public in Uijeongbu city north of Seoul on July 1, have already been scaled back.
And government researchers say the 11.1-kilometre (6.9 mile) stretch of line, which was built under a public-private partnership deal, will cost taxpayers 10 billion won ($8.6 million) a year for the next decade on top of the vast sums already spent.
AN AUSTRALIAN-funded rail project in Cambodia has been marred by poor construction, botched surveys leading to the evictions of families, infighting between contractors, delays and cost overruns, a leaked official report shows.
It also reveals that workers on the project endure unsafe working conditions without proper accommodation, clean water or hygienic toilets.
The disruption is exposed in a report by the international consortium funding the $143 million project - Australia's international aid agency AusAID and the Asian Development Bank.
In a first in the country, the Rs 15,000-crore Ahmedabad-Gandhinagar Metro Rail project is likely to have a dedicated 20 MW wind power generation plant to run its trains and meet power requirements at its stations and other utilities.
The Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for the project, Metro Link Express for Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad (MEGA) Company Limited, recently invited expressions of interest from companies that are in wind power generation to set up and run the dedicated wind farm for the Metro project.
Sources said this would be the first Metro rail project in the country to run on “green power” for which carbon credits would also be claimed.
Repairs to a western Queensland rail bridge, which enables transport of livestock and gypsum, are expected to be complete by the middle of next month
The Darr River rail bridge on the Longreach-Winton line has been closed north of Longreach since flooding in February damaged the bridge.
Winton mayor Butch Lenton says the line is essential for industry in the region, and the repairs are needed as soon as possible.
Opposition to a second Sydney airport at Wilton will help a fresh push for a high-speed train, Canberra Airport's managing director Stephen Byron says.
Even though major airlines and the federal government want a second airport near Sydney and have ruled out Canberra, the airport and NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell believe four decades of political indecision will continue to stop the project from proceeding.
Instead, Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport's capacity constraints are creating a more compelling case for a high-speed rail link to Canberra, says Mr Byron, who committed to a $140 million terminal at Canberra airport last week.
TOOWOOMBA Regional Council Mayor Paul Antonio believes the current rail corridor that winds through the city has reached its use-by date.
Cr Antonio said it was time for council, in conjunction with the private sector, to start exploring the possibility of relocating the rail corridor away from the CBD area.
"Toowoomba has reached a stage where we have to consider the appropriateness of the rail line that runs through our city.
"We need to look at the alternatives and start planning for the future.
REASI (J&K): The world's highest rail bridge being constructed over Chenab river in Jammu & Kashmir's Reasi district will be ready by December, 2015.
Coming up at Kauri, it will be 359 metres (1,180 feet) above the riverbed — five times the height of Qutub Minar and 35 metres taller than Eiffel Tower.
"It will be completed in 42 months from now," said Rajesh Tiwari, director of Konkan Railways, the agency which is implementing the project.
A CURIOUS paradox has recently emerged regarding Melbourne's trains. More of them are running on time more often, yet more people are being delayed as the train they hope to catch skips their stop so Metro can keep to its new timetable. Metro, Melbourne's metropolitan rail operator, insists it is altering trains that are scheduled to stop at all stations into express or short services just four times a day on average. That means the odds are one-in-600 that someone's journey will be disrupted so that Metro can keep the wider public moving on time.
TENSIONS are mounting for Brimbank residents who fear the Regional Rail Link will turn their neighbourhood into a noisy and polluted corridor.
More than 100 residents are expected at a public meeting next Monday to discuss the $5 billion project.
The final works contract was signed on June 8, marking the official start of construction.
The first stage includes two new tracks between Moonee Ponds Creek and Sunshine, upgrade works on the rail bridge over Kororoit Creek, a new rail-over-road separation at Robinsons Road in Deer Park, and improvements at Sunshine station.
The project will allow regional and metropolitan trains to be separated by early 2016.
But Sunshine West resident Larissa Steward says she's concerned that more than 20 trains will operate during peak hours.
ONE of England's most talented young cricketers has been found dead on a railway line.
It is believed that Tom Maynard, 23, had run away from police who wanted to question him about his "erratic" driving early yesterday morning.
It is thought that he may have been electrocuted as he crossed the tracks near Wimbledon Park Station in South London and was then hit by a London Underground train at 5.10am.
Last night his girlfriend, Carly Baker, paid tribute to her "special man" on Twitter. Tributes also poured in from cricket fans and players.
Miss Baker, an underwear model from Wimbledon, near where the batsman died, said: "You're the most special man I have ever met. You made me the happiest girl. I love you always X.
She added: "We will always be together. I love you Tom X.
A recent report from RBC Dominion Securities, however, offers some more colour, noting that the volume of carloads carrying oil are up 36 per cent to date in 2012 over the year prior. Plus, six of the seven major North American carriers have seen double-digit growth.
Of these carriers, analyst Walter Spracklin noted that Canadian Pacific has seen the biggest growth, with carload volumes up 90 per cent over 2011 – though it started with a smaller base than most of its peers. The lone outlier was CSX Corp., which has barely seen its shipments of oil budge, up just 2 per cent this year.
Wellington Railway Station turned 75 today.
Passengers were greeted with band music and an early morning tea of cake and muffins to mark the occasion between 7am and 8.30am.
When the Wellington Railway Station opened in 1937, it was New Zealand's largest building and one of the first seismic proofed structures in the country.
It is now New Zealand's busiest railway station, with more than 40,000 people passing through on a weekday.
In the building's first year, 7,600 people passed through the station daily.
The building was designed by W. Gray Young from Wellington architectua; firm Gray Young, Morton & Young. The firm had recently finished designing several signficant Victoria University buildings including the Stout Building (1930) and Weir House (1930).
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney says it is too late to negotiate a single rail corridor to service the developing Galilee Basin in central western Queensland.
A dual corridor plan was announced by the State Government earlier this month and Mr Seeney met affected landholders in Brisbane on Friday.
The group says it wants the State Government to reconsider its decision and look again at a plan for a single corridor.
It is the end of an era for a railway line in western Queensland that was first opened more than a century ago.
The Winton to Hughenden rail line opened in 1899 but it closed in 2008 when it become uneconomical due to declining freight movement on the track.
The 212 kilometres of track pulled up amounts to about 8,500 tonnes.
About 320,000 sleepers have been removed, along with 1.3 million dog spikes and about 200,000 sleepers have been recycled.
IT's the rip-off train line that is set to cost NSW taxpayers almost $200,000 a metre.
The 11.4km-long South West Rail Link will cost a whopping $2.1 billion - far more than comparable projects around the country.
The line was originally slated to open this year and cost just $688 million, but is now scheduled to see its first train in financial year 2017 - and cost three times as much.
In Adelaide, a new rail line half the length, with two new stations and a stabling yard, will cost just $300 million.
It is a similar story in Queensland, where the 12.4km Moreton Bay Rail Link - which includes six new stations - is budgeted at just $1.15 billion.
THE state government has declared the problems with the Zig Zag Railway are "insurmountable" after a safety audit identified a plethora of issues with the Blue Mountains tourist attraction.
The Independent Transport Safety Regulator ordered management to close the railway earlier this month after pinpointing 150 "deficiencies" with the service.
Today's announcement Brisbane City Council will go ahead with two new rail overpasses is straight from the LNP's 2012 Brisbane City Council election campaign.
It is likely to be a shining light in what is expected be a tough budget for ratepayers.
Cr Quirk has acknowledged Brisbane ratepayers will see a rates increase of close to five per cent, almost three times last year's rates increase of 1.79 per cent.
The Rail, Tram and Bus Union is worried that QR National plans to cut operations in south-western Queensland.
The rail freight company wants to shed 500 jobs state-wide and is looking at shutting its Charleville operational support depot as a way of cutting jobs.
The union's Shayne Kummerfeld says QR National will not reveal its intentions.
Brierty is set to begin a $39 million rail construction project for Fortescue Metals, according to statement made to the Australian Securities Exchange today.
Brierty this morning announced it had received notice of award to construct rail formation for six sidings - stretches of railroad used to store rolling stock or enable trains on the same line to pass - on Fortescue’s Cloudbreak Mainline.
Brierty Managing Director Peter McBain says the contract reflected the performance of Brierty’s construction teams working on Fortescues T155 project.
The latest proposed route of Perth's first light rail system has been released on a Federal Government website, showing a line that begins on the border of Balga and Mirrabooka and runs along Alexander Drive and Fitzgerald Street to the city.
It proposes another line through the city along Murray Street - not Hay Street as first proposed or Wellington Street as suggested by some planners - and extending from the Causeway in East Victoria Park to the University of WA.
The light rail project has been described by Transport Minister Troy Buswell as "transformational" and about $8 million has been set aside for its planning. He has indicated the first stage, from Balga to the city, should be completed before 2020.
The State Government has confirmed the latest route plans are "basically correct" and based on the current status of the project planning.
A WHITE elephant, a tram to nowhere, dangerous and a waste of money.
No, these are not comments about the soon-to-be delivered $1 billion Gold Coast light rail project, but criticisms levelled at the Adelaide tram system before its $130 million extensions were built.
Now the trams are at capacity and residents are demanding more.
South Australian Transport Minister Patrick Conlon yesterday said the light rail project had dramatically changed the city's landscape.
DARWIN's Lord Mayor has put a $17 million-per-kilometre light rail back on the agenda.
Katrina Fong Lim tweeted "getting more and more convinced about the value of lightrail" from a national local government assembly in Canberra yesterday.
"There are so many benefits to the community that a light rail can bring," Ms Fong Lim told the ABC yesterday.
Sunshine Coast rail commuters are facing lengthy delays this morning due to a track fault.
Normal train services on the Caboolture and Sunshine Coast rail lines resumed about 8am after services were suspended due to an earlier track fault at Morayfield.
However, Translink has warned commuters of residual delays of up to 50 minutes for some services.
A new Gulgong-based freight service could be the key to reopening Mudgee’s rail line.
WesFreight, started by Mudgee man Michael Hayes, is about to start transporting rail cargo from Newcastle to the central west, with hopes that a rail freight service can be established from Gulgong, through Mudgee, to Sydney’s Port Botany.
For the last four years, Mr Hayes has been a train driver with rail operator El Zorro, which runs from Newcastle to western NSW three times a week.
In discussion with El Zorro management, Mr Hayes proposed that his own company, WesFreight, deliver cargo from Newcastle by adding an extra wagon to the end of El Zorro’s trains.
He has an in-principal agreement to use the Dubbo Abattoir’s large rail terminal to deliver 500 tonnes of product every week for his first customer.
A second company wants to transport an equal amount to the Mudgee region, and Mr Hayes is negotiating to lease a site on the rail line in Gulgong to accept and distribute deliveries to the local area.
He said his second client was ready to start working with WesFreight “as soon as we can say, ‘Let’s go!’”
In light of the current debate over damage to roads by industrial traffic, Mr Hayes said even his small initial service would have a positive impact by removing up to 20 return truck movements every week from the Golden Highway.
Brisbane’s crucial Cross-River Rail project will not go ahead if the federal government fails to provide the majority of funding, a minister has warned while unveiling a cut-price version of previous plans.
Queensland Transport Minister Scott Emerson today also flagged interim measures to deal with inner-city capacity problems looming in 2016, including rearranging train seats to ensure more people have to stand up.
“I don’t say it’s going to be popular for passengers to have to stand for longer and I’m sorry about that but the reality is this is what we have inherited from the previous government,” he said of the imminent capacity bottleneck over the city’s Merivale Bridge, the only CBD rail river crossing.
More than 100 delegates from all parts of the eastern seaboard have registered for the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail Symposium in Parkes this Friday.
The symposium which will be attended by the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Anthony Albanese is being hosted by Parkes Shire Council and the NSW Local Government and the
Mayor of Parkes, Ken Keith said it was a most significant gathering.
"The interest in this nationally significant project is most evident by the number and calibre of speakers and delegates attending,’ he said.
“There is definitely strong support throughout the community for this vital infrastructure and the symposium is an ideal platform to heighten the importance of interest in this project.”
The North West Rail Link will be a single-deck service that runs every five minutes with commuters to the CBD having to change at Chatswood.
With the New South Wales Government next week set to call for tenders for the tunnelling contracts, Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian has outlined how the line will fit in with her 20-year plan for the rail network.
Ms Berejiklian says she has had to revise her vision.
Sydney will get a single-decker metro-style train system and a new harbour tunnel in an effort to speed up commuter journeys and ease pressure on the city's public transport system.
But the state government admits it has no idea how much the new tunnel will cost and says the work may take 20 years.
The family of a man, killed at an Upper Hunter railway level crossing, is calling for gates to be installed at the site before someone else is seriously injured or killed.
50-year-old Wayne Smith died when an unladen QR National train ploughed into his ute at the Glennies Creek crossing near Singleton last month.
Mr Smith's sister, Donna McCann, says the family has written to the Australian Rail Track Corporation, as well as the local State and Federal members, urging there be significant safety upgrades.
"When you actually see the sight, it could happen to anybody," she said.
It was supposed to be the showpiece of New York City’s new subway system.
Stained glass windows, skylights and brass chandeliers adorned its curved walls and arched ceilings.
But City Hall station was unexpectedly closed to the public a mere 41 years after it opened its doors in 1904.
WEST Australian Premier Colin Barnett has admitted the $5.9 billion Oakajee port and rail project could be delayed for years but he remained "moderately optimistic" the troubled development would proceed on his watch.
His comments come after fresh delays in talks between China and Japan aimed at saving the planned project, which would unlock Western Australia's emerging Mid-West iron ore province.
China's $US400bn ($393bn) sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corp, was due to report by March on whether it would invest directly in Oakajee and whether it would retain its Mid-West mining interests.
It is understood delays on the Oakajee decision in China stem partly from behind-the-scenes machinations in China's ruling Communist Party, which will hold its five-yearly congress in October.
That will result in a once-in-a-decade leadership change, when Xi Jinping replaces Hu Jintao as secretary-general, triggering a cascade of leadership changes at every senior level of the party and government, including ministries and important state-owned enterprises.
Rail passengers resorted to taking their clothes off to wade through a flooded underpass and dashing across train tracks when heavy rain cut access at a busy railway station in Melbourne's east this morning.
One person was seen taking off his pants and shoes to walk through the flooded underpass at Blackburn Railway Station during this morning's peak, while others took their shoes off and hoisted up their clothing to reach the central platform.
That came as failing on other parts of the network left some commuters stranded while others waited for delayed services, with 24 cancellations during the morning peak.
A MULTI-million dollar cost blow-out has been revealed in the controversial Gold Coast light rail project.
Preparatory roadworks are also expected to be at least nine months behind schedule.
Gold Coast Rapid Transit recently announced it had spent $187 million on construction in preparation for the light rail so far, but a Bulletin investigation revealed the State Government had only initially awarded $101 million in contracts.
But GCRT project manager Anna Carroll defended the discrepancy, saying the initial contracts did not include survey works, urban design and underground service upgrades which were part of separate contracts awarded later.
THE NSW Coalition government has scrapped plans for a traditional heavy rail service to outer northwest Sydney, instead investing in a privately run metro-style service that will deposit commuters on Sydney's north shore.
Once services commence in 2019-20, commuters from the expanding northwest will terminate in Chatswood, where they will switch to a beefed up version of the existing rail service into the CBD, until a dedicated rail tunnel is drilled under Sydney Harbour.
When that occurs, there will be metro-style services -- with single-deck, unscheduled trains arriving every five minutes -- across much of the Sydney network, from Rouse Hill in the outer northwest to Hurstville and Cabramatta in the south and southwest.
But delivering a 20-year vision for Sydney rail service yesterday, NSW Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian refused to speculate on when the new harbour tunnel would be built or its cost.
The Lockhart Shire Council believes road and rail culverts along with a build up of debris in local creeks may have added to the extensive flooding in the shire in the last two years.
The Mayor Peter Yates say the council is now seeking meetings with the Australian Rail Track Corporation, the Roads and Maritime Service and the Murray and Murrumbidgee Catchment Management Authorities.
Councillor Yates says the shire is not sure what flood mitigation works could be carried out.
But he believes if the agencies can be shown what problems arise in times of heavy rainfall, they could be remedied.
ETCHED into the landscape, the path of the future Butler rail extension will be ready for track to be laid later this year.
Major earthworks along the rail line have prepared the path for tracks, removing almost one million cubic metres of dirt, with changing topography affecting the layout of the 7.5km extension from Clarkson Train Station.
The Public Transport Authority’s (PTA) infrastructure services director for major projects, Andrew Cartledge, said the tracks would follow the existing single line to the Nowergup Rail Depot, before diverging around that facility.
The two tracks would reconverge north of the depot, before travelling through a cutting, which contractors RJ Vincent dug through limestone for up to 10 hours a day over several months.
Australia must urgently fund a national rail engineering research institute, or risk losing high-tech skills needed to design and build national light rail projects worth more than $60 billion, a new report says.
It also warns Australia could lose its world leadership role in developing long distance heavy-haul freight systems and automated ''driverless'' trains unless support for new rail research is significantly ramped up.
''People are often surprised to learn Australia's rail supply industry is a very large one, employing more than 15,000 skilled people. It is one of our strongest manufacturing sectors,'' Cooperative Research Centre for Rail Innovation chief executive David George said.
The Federal Infrastructure Minister believes redevelopment of Hobart's waterfront rail yards has the potential to do for Hobart what the Opera House did for Sydney.
Anthony Albanese has outlined a $50 million funding package to clean up the 8.4 hectare site.
Transport operations at Macquarie Point will move to a new site at Brighton later this year.
COMMUTERS forced to change off the North West Rail Link at Chatswood to get to the city face squeezing onto trains already full, on RailCorp's own measure.
Previous plans for a train line to the north-west had warned about possible interchange chaos, and had proposed allowing commuters to change at multiple stations on the lower north shore.
The most recent RailCorp figures underline the difficulty of fitting thousands of more commuters onto trains on the north shore line. A March report shows that at St Leonards, two stops south of Chatswood, trains arriving between 8am and 9am are already on average well over 100 per cent full, meaning no seats are available.
After encountering criticism from environmental groups, Gov. Jerry Brown signaled Wednesday that he plans to withdraw his controversial proposal to protect the California bullet train project from injunctions sought by environmental lawsuits.
Brown’s staff told key environmental groups that he would no longer include modifications to the California Environmental Quality Act in a package of legislation this month asking for $6 billion to start construction of the high-speed rail project.
The Broken Hill to Parkes rail network upgrade is close to completion with the laying of all 3.4 million Australian-made concrete sleepers due within weeks.
A major component of one of the country’s most extensive interstate freight rail upgrade, the 691 kilometre line is expected to increase the network’s capacity and reliability by allowing for bigger trains at faster speeds especially during the hotter summer months.
Other improvements being undertaken as part of the upgrade include new turnouts, safer level crossings, improved drainage, and upgraded bridges and culverts.
The $253 million east west rail corridor project, which began on in January 2011 has been touted as a vital piece of infrastructure connecting capital cities across the continent.
Federal Hunter MP Joel Fitzgibbon says he will lobby ministers at both levels of Government to ensure safety is improved at a rail crossing where a man was killed last month.
50-year-old Wayne Smith died when an empty coal train hit his ute at the Glennies Creek crossing, near Singleton.
His family has written to the Australian Rail Track Corporation, as well as local State and Federal MPs, asking for gates to be installed at the crossing.
The Federal Government will be asked to fast-track construction of the inland rail line through the Central West to help meet rising demand for freight.
The Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese is among the speakers at a meeting in Parkes to discuss the multi-billion dollar Melbourne to Brisbane rail project.
Preparatory work to buy land and assess the proposed corridor is expected to take about two years.
TRAIN stations and old rail yards across Victoria are being targeted for high density residential and retail developments with at least 10 sites identified for major overhauls.
This week, Planning Minister Matthew Guy made planning changes for Richmond Station and rail land off Footscray Road called E-Gate, to put it in the same planning category as the central business district.
New documents provided to The Saturday Age show rail sites in Windsor, Prahran, Ringwood, Jolimont and Mildura have also been identified for intense development.
Vline are providing replacement train services to Morwell then coaches to Leongatha and Yarram due to flooding in the South Gippsland roads.
CityRail advises that some trains are being delayed on the Newcastle & Central Coast Line in both directions due to two private freight train's with mechanical problems earlier. Delays can be expected.
There were 123 sightings for this week. This is 13 sightings more than last week, making a total of 2938 sightings for this year to date. On day 175 last year we had recorded 2584 sightings. This is 354 sightings up on the same time last year.
Labor has pledged to build a new train station at Atwell in Perth's south to service commuters using the Mandurah line, if it wins government at the next election.
Leader Mark McGowan says the station would be located inside the Kwinana Freeway, near the Gibbs and Russell Road exits and would relieve pressure on the Cockburn Central Station.
It would also include a new park and ride facility that would initially cater for 900 cars.
Police on Queensland's Sunshine Coast say they have taken samples of a substance from rail lines at a popular tourist attraction.
They are asking for public assistance as they continue to investigate a possible train tampering incident at the Big Pineapple over the weekend.
The relaunch of the sugarcane train was stopped in its tracks on Saturday after a safety inspection found oil had been smeared on the tracks at their steepest point.
General manager Brendan Weatherill says it could have been a disaster.
Sydney's monorail has just a year of life left.
Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian has announced it will cease stop operating next June, making way for the removal of the infrastructure to accommodate the new convention centre at Darling Harbour.
"The monorail will cease operations on Sunday, June 30, 2013 and will be removed after that date," Ms Berejiklian said in a statement.
A NSW government push to have $2.1 billion earmarked for a Sydney rail link transferred to the Pacific Highway has the backing of federal Nationals Leader Warren Truss.
Mr Truss said the proposal would be considered if the coalition won the next federal election.
NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell earlier this month called on the federal government to divert money earmarked for the Epping to Parramatta rail link to the Pacific Highway upgrade, with a federal-state funding spat putting the 2016 completion deadline in jeopardy.
NSW has complained of being left more than $2 billion short to finish converting the highway to dual carriageway, saying Canberra's insistence of a 50-50 funding agreement breached the original agreement for a 20-80 split.
Rail transport absorbs two-thirds of the freight traffic crossing the Alps every year. Despite the government’s efforts, its market share is not increasing, nor is likely to in the foreseeable future.
Swiss voters accepted the Alpine Initiative in 1994, sending a clear signal as to what future policy on transportation was to be. The resulting article 84 of the constitution stipulated that “transalpine traffic involving transportation of goods through Switzerland is to take place by railway”.
The billionaire businessman Lindsay Fox has called on the Tasmanian Government to invest in transport infrastructure or risk soaring unemployment.
The transport industry veteran told a business forum in Hobart, using multiple ports to export to the mainland was expensive and inefficient.
Mr Fox said he believed Bell Bay in the state's north should handle all freight and be linked to the south by rail.
TRAIN operator Metro has been accused of trying to improve its image by recruiting more female drivers.
The railway has run newspaper ads and sought permission from VCAT to woo women.
While females account for just 4 per cent of the 800 drivers, they comprised more than 30 per cent of new applicants in the latest recruiting intake.
The push to hire more women comes amid tensions between Metro and veteran drivers over work practices.
While praising the abilities of female drivers, the Rail, Tram and Bus Union's Marc Marotta said he believed there was an ulterior motive behind the recruitment drive.
You'll never guess that Moscow's metro handles more riders than New York's or any other U.S. subway by looking at the impeccable, museum-like conditions of its underground stations.
Moscow's subway system is the second largest in the world (after Tokyo's). It was the first underground railway in the former Soviet Union, opened in 1935. It is 187 miles (301.2 km) long and has 182 stations.
And if that's not enough to make you jealous of Moscow's magnificent metro system, check out their fare rates: a one way fare on the Moscow metro costs 26 rubles, or $0.86 USD. And a 30-day unlimited card costs 1,480 rubles, or $48.82 USD.
(And New Yorkers will be paying $2.50 a ride and $104 a month after a hike due on Dec. 30, 2010.)
Train services on the Sandringham line have been suspended this morning after a maintenance train derailed last night.
Metro says the train was laying ballast when it came off the tracks near Windsor station at about 11pm. Workers were not able to get the train back onto the tracks until 5am.
In a message posted on Twitter about 6am Metro said buses would replace all morning services between Sandringham and South Yarra. Shuttle buses will operate between Sandringham and Elsternwick and normal buses will transport passengers from Elsternwick to South Yarra.
This morning, someone will take the 20 millionth trip on the Mandurah rail line this financial year.
It will come just a few days after someone took the 60 millionth trip on a train somewhere on Perth's rail network. And two days before someone takes the 80 millionth trip on a Perth bus.
The public transport stars have aligned to allow these three mile- stones to be reached within a few days of each other - and all are an indicator of the incredible take-up of public transport in Perth over the past eight years.
"It brings a tear to my eye," said Curtin University's Professor of Sustainability Peter Newman, who has been a passionate advocate of public transport since he became a vocal opponent of the 1980 decision to close the Fremantle train line.
A parliamentary committee has urged the State Government to re-examine its decision to close 700 kilometres of rail line used for transporting grain in the Wheatbelt.
The Government has decided it is no longer cost effective to continue operating a three tier rail network any more, opting for road haulage instead.
A report tabled in the Legislative Council recommended the Government keep the rail lines open until the end of 2014 to allow grain processing group, CBH to analyse the value of the system.
The opposition spokesman for transport, Ken Travers, says closing the rail lines will put more pressure on road networks in the Wheatbelt and in the Perth metropolitan area.
QR National has awarded Abigoup the infrastructure contracts for the massive Wiggins Island Rail project in Queensland, but market concern over the future of Xstrata's Wandoan coal mine may put the coal terminal at risk.
Worth around $76 million, the contract will see Abigroup carry out civil works for the 13 kilometre balloon loop near Gladstone, where coal trains will be unloaded at the coal export terminal.
KNOX councillors have questioned the economic impact of the proposed Rowville Rail.
At last week's strategic planning committee meeting, an economic impact study on the Rowville Rail, commissioned by the council and done by SGS Economics and Planning, was presented to councillors.
It looked at the economic and employment impacts of the proposed rail line on Knox, the southeast region, wider Melbourne and the state.
The report said that by 2046 it was estimated that Knox was likely to host an extra 1000 households and 700 more employees as a result of the operation of the proposed line.
Two freight trains collided head-on and exploded into flames on Sunday in Oklahoma, sending billowing black smoke into the air and leaving three Union Pacific employees missing and possibly dead, authorities said.
There was no explanation yet on why the two trains were traveling toward one another on the same track about a mile east of the panhandle town of Goodwell, in an unpopulated area near the Texas state line.
BLACKTOWN Council has declared it sees no merit in connecting the North West Rail Link to Riverstone.
The council has responded to the State Government's North West Rail Options plan, which seeks to set aside a corridor of land for a future extension of the still-to-be built North West Rail Limk.
So certain is the council that the government is ultimately planning to set aside a land corridor from Cudgegong Rd to connect with the Richmond Line near Schofields station and then on to Marsden Park, it wrote in its papers at last week's meeting that the Riverstone option was only created "purely to legitimise an exhibition of 'options"'.
"It was an unforgettable day.
"We got on a coach in Skagway and travelled up 3000 feet to the Canadian Yukon and then back down to Skagway aboard vintage carriages of the historic White Pass & Yukon rail line.
"There were other options, such as doing the train in both directions, but we thought we would see more with the bus trip as well. It was raining when we arrived in Skagway - they tell you it rains 368 days a year there! - but when we got up into the mountains there was no rain and the country was beautiful in its starkness. It's very rocky and wild countryside and we were struck by the beauty of it.
The Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Anthony Albanese believes Parkes is perfectly placed for the continued development of an inland rail system.
Addressing the Inland Rail Symposium at the Parkes Services and Citizens Club on Friday, Mr Albanese stressed that any holistic improvement of the rail system must include intermodal terminals.
“Your Parkes National Logistics Hub is an excellent example of the right infrastructure in the right place, with room to expand,” he said.
“I'd like to commend Parkes Shire Council for its vision - you're maximising your geographic advantages for the benefit of not just your town, but the nation as a whole
Last week Melbourne commuters were forced to strip off, wade through water and even climb fences in order to catch a train - and things were hardly any easier this morning.
It was a disastrous start for train operator Metro, with three separate problems causing major hiccups for thousands of commuters on three lines for the duration of the morning peak. Services resumed on one of the affected lines, Sandringham, at about 11am.
Passengers on several trains on the Cranbourne-Pakenham lines had to be evacuated from carriages this morning when overhead wire problems near Caulfield station resulted in the electricity supply being shut down, forcing all services to stop just after 8am.
Australia's red centre may be vast and empty, but Lucy Rickard finds she can't take her eyes off it.
It's the experience of a lifetime for many, riding the Ghan all the way from the balmy top end to the cooler South Australian capital, taking in the breathtaking scenery as it changes from the distinct red dirt to the green hills of Adelaide.
It's an iconic Australian journey - and it's about to begin. Little do I know that aside from seeing crocodiles in the wild, riding camels and taking part in a special Anzac Day celebration in the Northern Territory, I'm about to eat and drink my way from one end of this great country to another, taking in as much of the distinctive Territory sights as I can along the way.
Private sector has been urged to venture into expanding railway networks in order to improve the country’s railway capacity and efficiency.
According to a statement by the Transport Minister Harrison Mwakyembe during the opening of the ongoing East and Central Africa Roads and Rail Infrastructure Summit, the minister said it was time for the government to connect and exploit private sector potential in railway investments.
He explained that the private sector can own locomotives and rolling stock for own account usage under special arrangements, they can also be involved in a variety of ‘railway network expansion projects’ by utilizing financing schemes like the Build Operate and Transfer (BOT).
The debate over the state's dilapidated grain rail network has been reignited, with a parliamentary committee recommending against closing it just yet.
Nearly 2,000 farmers in the Wheatbelt and Great Southern use Tier 3 rail lines, which link to the central rail network, to move their grain to port.
Last July, the State Government announced it would no longer fund the maintenance of those lines, citing a report which found transporting grain via rail rather than road to be more expensive by $78 million.
OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Partial human remains were recovered on Monday from the wreckage of two freight trains that collided head-on in a fiery Sunday crash in Oklahoma, officials said.
Three Union Pacific crew members were killed when the trains collided near Goodwell in the Oklahoma panhandle, setting off a blaze that engulfed three locomotives and about 10 rail-cars.
The only known survivor of the crash, a conductor, escaped injury by leaping from the train when he saw a crash was imminent.
THE Friends of the GreenWay group has called for an inquiry into claims the light rail extension and GreenWay could be provided for much less.
Friends of the GreenWay convener Jud Agius said the group had long suspected the price of the extension and the GreenWay may have been inflated.
The transport advocacy group EcoTransit Sydney claims costings on the light rail extension are massively overblown.
RESIDENTS are outraged the state government has backflipped on its promise to deliver a direct train service to the city.
But Transport Minister Gladys Berejikilian has tried to soften the blow saying the North West Rail Link will be the first in Sydney to deliver "world class rail technology" on the network.
The link will now be a single-deck network, meaning trains will terminate at Chatswood because they can't travel into the city on Sydney's existing double deck network.
There will be no timetable with a new train running every five minutes during peak hour.
A day after train lines were disrupted across Melbourne, the Government has announced its next stage of investment to fix Victoria's rail network.
Premier Ted Baillieu and Transport Minister Terry Mulder have announced a $12 million maintenance blitz to upgrade rail infrastructure on the Glen Waverley line.
Mr Baillieu said the Glen Waverley line upgrade was the next stage of a series of major works to fix the rail network and improve public transport reliability for Victorian commuters.
VICTORIA'S railways landowner has plans to sell or lease many of its more rundown parcels of land.
VicTrack is one of the state's biggest landowners, with more than 1600 leases on its books and a portfolio of assets valued at about $17 billion. A recent review of the land it owns along rail corridors has identified several sites it considers ripe for redevelopment.
Yesterday it announced its intention to develop Jewell station in Brunswick, with a mix of apartments and small businesses, and is hoping to win over locals to its plans.
MORE high-speed trains will link the inner west with the city and western suburbs and Redfern station will be part of a second Sydney Harbour crossing in a major overhaul of the rail system.
The state government's 20-year rail strategy includes planning for a second harbour crossing and a 60 per cent increase in rail services into the CBD.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The remains of three Union Pacific crew members killed when two trains crashed in a fiery head-on collision in the Oklahoma Panhandle have been recovered, the state’s medical examiner’s office said Tuesday.
The “very badly burned” remains have been sent to the medical examiner’s office in Oklahoma City, spokeswoman Amy Elliott said.
The Union Pacific trains slammed into each other just east of Goodwell on Sunday morning, triggering a diesel-fueled fireball that appeared to weld the locomotives together. Of the four rail workers on the trains at that time, one conductor managed to jump free before the crash. He suffered only cuts and bruises. The others perished.
The charge of about NZ$1.8 billion ($1.4 billion) will be incurred in the year ending June 30, English said in an e-mailed statement released in Wellington. The government last month forecast a deficit of NZ$10.64 billion and will finalize the figures in coming months, he said.
THERE'S a young kangaroo with an amputated foot that hangs around Russell Tipper's bush property on the outskirts of Perth.
Plucked from its dead mother's pouch moments after a traffic accident, the kangaroo has spent the past two years being fed muesli and bottled milk by the new chief executive of Brockman Resources.
''It's like having a cat; she doesn't come like a dog and do what you ask her to do, she just does her own thing like a cat,'' said Tipper.
LAST week the parliamentary committee recommended that the Barnett government re-examine its decision to close tier three rail lines in the Wheatbelt and to keep them open at least until the end of 2014.
The standing committee on environment and public affairs tabled a report in the Legislative Council with two recommendations.
The first was that the committee recommends that the government keep the central Wheatbelt tier three rail lines open until the end of 2014 to enable CBH Group to demonstrate the business case for the retention of these lines.
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Experts speculated Tuesday that a fiery head-on collision of two trains in the Oklahoma Panhandle was likely the result of human error, though federal investigators are still piecing together evidence and haven't determined a cause.
Three crew members were killed when the Union Pacific trains slammed into each other Sunday morning just east of Goodwell, about 300 miles northwest of Oklahoma City. The crash triggered a diesel-fueled fireball that appeared to weld the locomotives together.
The "very badly burned" remains of the victims have been sent to the medical examiner's office in Oklahoma City, agency spokeswoman Amy Elliott said Tuesday. The only other rail worker on the trains at the time of the crash managed to jump free before the collision and suffered only cuts and bruises.
THE NSW government will overhaul the way safety and design standards are monitored on Sydney's rail system to make it easier for private industry to work on train projects.
In a bid to avoid the type of design disputes that bedevilled projects like the Waratah trains public-private partnership, the government is stripping RailCorp of its role in approving and monitoring standards on the city's rail assets.
Instead, it is setting up a new body inside the central department, Transport for NSW, to set terms for what can be built on the railways.
Milling company Sucrogen says it is hopeful of restarting crushing at the Plane Creek Mill later today.
Spokesman John Pratt says rain at the end of last week and over the weekend has restricted harvesting in the Sarina area, with the mill stopping operations on Sunday.
He says the weather impacts have not been as bad for the Proserpine milling district.
"Proserpine's fared somewhat better," he said.
Access to bus services and the Dandenong Railway Station will be improved following $700,000 in funding announced by Minister for Planning Matthew Guy.
“Access to this important transport hub is vital for it to operate effectively and efficiently and will ensure that the Central Activities Area is well connected,” Mr Guy said.
The Victorian Coalition Government’s ongoing commitment to the state’s Central Activities Areas ensures that councils are able to create an active, attractive and liveable environment for the community,” Mr Guy said.
The New South Wales Government has announced it will make $600,000 available to fix an Upper Hunter crossing that has been inaccessible for more than a year.
The Broads Crossing near Aberdeen was closed in April last year when three spans partially collapsed, after it was flooded with water.
The closure has left locals with no other choice but to take a longer route when trying to cross the Hunter River and has seen fewer people visiting Glenbawn Dam.
Roads Minister Duncan Gay says it is an important project.
"To be able to replace this bridge with a higher level option was a priority," he said.
It is likely the Liberal Party will echo a Labor promise to build a new train station in Perth's southern suburbs.
The Opposition leader Mark McGowan yesterday announced his party would build a $45 million train station at Atwell if it wins the next state election.
In a statement to the ABC, the Premier says he told local residents last week it was very likely his Government will build a new train station at Aubin Grove.
The Liberal Member for Jandakot, Joe Francis, says he expects the public will hear more about that soon.
The Glen Waverley station precinct will become an attractive destination for commuters, residents, shoppers and diners with the completion of works, following the launch of construction today at the landmark $70 million IKON project site.
Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder launched the construction stage of works with project partners VicTrack and Consolidated Properties Group and government representatives at the construction site on Kingsway.
“This ground-breaking IKON Glen Waverley project will revitalise the activity centre and station area and set the standard for other similar projects across metropolitan Melbourne,” Mr Mulder said.
“The IKON project also delivers transport benefits that will enhance the Glen Waverley station precinct and will make it safer, more secure, more accessible and more appealing.
The Liberal Member for the Agricultural Region, Brian Ellis, says the Western Australian Government should be allocating funding to rail, not roads.
Last week, the Upper House recommended the Government keep a network of rail lines in the wheatbelt open until 2014 to allow grain transport group CBH to analyse the value of the network.
Mr Ellis says the Government continues to allocate money to the maintenance of roads while ignoring the damaged three-tier railway system, which is used to cart grain to port.
The Australian Government should invest more funds and start building the Melbourne to Brisbane Rail Line, according to the Local Government and Shires Associations of NSW (LGSA).
Local Government Association of NSW president Keith Rhoades said restoring existing rail infrastructure and investing in new projects like the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail corridor will improve the economic sustainability of regional NSW and reduce the adverse affects on local road networks by freight vehicles."The Inland Rail Line could also stimulate other rail traffic on nearby rail lines, many of which are under the threat of closure," Mr Rhoades said.
FRONTLINE railway staff numbers could be reduced at several train stations on the suburban network as Queensland Rail reviews its operations.
Ipswich, Richlands and Varsity Lakes train stations are the first to be targeted in the move which the State Government says "is not a budget measure" and "purely operational".
The move could mean reduced opening hours at some locations.
While the Queensland Rail Tram and Bus Union is opposed to any staff reduction, the prospect has also sparked anger among commuter advocates who fear an increase in criminal behaviour, fare evasion, loss of toilet facilities and risk to public safety if stations are not manned.
Queensland Rail, Tram and Bus Union Secretary Owen Doogan said staff cuts would also equal passenger drops and increased congestion.
"The Premier has been talking about congestion since before he became Lord Mayor, if he's serious about that it's important to encourage people to use the railway and one of the most important issues is security and comfort of the passengers and their own safety.
At least some people who live or work in the path of Springfield’s proposed consolidated rail line along 10th Street say they'll willingly get out of the way, as long as they get enough money to move.
“This is a blessing and a curse,” said Ben Kruger, owner of Beaver Creek Woodworks, 1020 N. 10th Street. “I wouldn’t be able to sell this building to anyone when I can’t work anymore so, in a way, (being displaced is) a blessing – but only as long as the railroad doesn’t lowball me.”
Kruger’s business and about 150 other residential and commercial buildings could be demolished in order to reroute local passenger and freight rail traffic to the 10th Street corridor, according to a draft environmental impact statement released Tuesday.
Long-suffering rail passengers on northern and western lines still have some years to wait before there will be big improvements to services. Laura Little spoke to some of them who endure crowded, unreliable travel.
A teenager who was struck by a train and killed in Melbourne’s south last night may have been wearing headphones which prevented him from hearing the train approaching from behind, police say.
The boy, who is believed to be in his late teens but is yet to be formally identified, was hit by a Frankston-bound train near Seaford railway station about 11.45pm. He died at the scene.
The train driver told police that the teenager was walking alongside the tracks and did not look back as the train approached.
The west coast main line was closed after a landslip at Tebay in Cumbria and flooding at Oxenholme in the Lake District, while on the east cost a landslip meant services between Berwick-on-Tweed and Durham were cancelled.
Newcastle station was temporarily closed to flooding while CrossCountry services between Darlington and Scotland were called off, with East Coast Trains announcing tickets for yesterday would be valid today.
National Rail Enquiries announced on its Twitter feed: "Flooding and landslips are causing heavy delays on routes between Northern England and Scotland, with very limited travel options".
There were 48 flood alerts across the Midlands, North East and North West last night, while seven more severe flood warnings were in place near Midlands waterways.
It came as a pensioner was swept to his death by flood water after heavy storms and downpours sparked flash floods across central and northern England.
The Auditor-General is cautioning Aucklanders about the $2.86 billion inner-city rail loop, saying it will need to be reviewed if the Government does not support it.
In a rare move, the Auditor-General has included a statement in Mayor Len Brown's first 10-year budget about the risk associated with the rail project.
"The main risks to the city rail loop project are that central Government will not agree to provide direct funding to enable the council to access alternative funding sources," the statement says.
The Victorian Government has opened a competition to redesign Flinders Street railway station.
A $1 million prize for the new design was announced in the lead up to the last election.
Registration has opened and the winner will be announced in 2013.
Major Projects Minister Denis Napthine says the plan should preserve the station's heritage features and make the most of surrounding areas.
"We are calling for the most creative and innovative ideas to re-imagine this iconic building and the entire precinct around it," he said.
Some of these designs may challenge us and I think we will need to have an open mind to fully appreciate the opportunities the competition presents," Dr Napthine said.
The carbon tax has been blamed for planned increases to Perth train, bus and ferry fares that exceed the inflation rate.
The fare increases, which will take effect from Sunday, generally range from 3.6 to 5.6 per cent. It means a two-zone adult ticket will rise from $3.80 to $4.
TRUGANINA, in the City of Wyndham in Melbourne's west, is emerging as a prime industrial area due to new infrastructure and a growing population, according to a new analysis.
The new Regional Rail Link to the region will be a key catalyst, the Jones Lang LaSalle analysis has found, building on the west's long established advantages: proximity to the Port of Melbourne and huge industrial land parcels.
The Regional Rail Link is a major rail line running from West Werribee through Deer Park and suburbs including Sunshine and Footscray to Southern Cross Station.
THE man who made the trains run on time during the Sydney Olympics has warned of major risks if the O'Farrell government continues to pursue plans to force more rail passengers to change trains to get to the city.
But RailCorp's former general manager of planning and timetable development, Dick Day, has ultimately backed the government's revised proposal for the North West Rail Link, provided it is eventually connected to another harbour crossing.