Showing stories from September 2013

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Sydney's new light rail system will feature futuristic wire-free trams to ensure clutter-free street

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by JimYarin in Tram and Light Rail News

[b]EAT your heart out, Melbourne - Sydney's new light rail system will feature futuristic wire-free trams to ensure that George St stays clutter-free.[/b] Using the latest "zip-charge" technology popular in Europe and Asia, our transport revolution will be free of Melbourne's "visually intrusive wire jungles".

Dandenong fault triggers long rail delays on Cranbourne, Pakenham lines

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Commuters on two train lines in Melbourne's south-east face long delays after an equipment fault at one of the city's busiest train stations. Passengers on the Pakenham and Cranbourne lines face delays of up to half an hour, Metro trains has warned, after a fault with track equipment at Dandenong station. The Cranbourne line branches from the Pakenham line at Dandenong station. Trains in both directions are affected.

Invest in buses instead of rail

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

WHY are we spending so much time and money on high-speed rail when we can’t even get slow speed rail working effectively. Rail commuters seem to spend more time travelling in buses than on the rail system.

Campbell Newman reveals plan for underground rail and bus network to ease traffic woes

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Dubbed the Brisbane Underground, the rail and bus network is in the final stages of planning by the Newman Government as a cut-price alternative to the now defunct Cross River Rail. The tunnel will join the south side of the river with George Street and include underground stations in the city. It is understood the project will be paid for by the State Government and the private sector. Premier Campbell Newman said the Brisbane Underground proposal would cost "billions" of dollars less than Cross River Rail, which had an initial price tag of $8 billion.

Passengers able to tweet or text for a taxi under new scheme

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by bevans in Other Transport News

[b]CABBIES turning up to the wrong address could be a thing of the past under new technology launched today.[/b] Passengers will be able to book a taxi via a tweet in what 13CABS calls a world first. It says the CABSTOP program, to be launched at the Victorian Taxi Association conference, is the quickest and fastest way to book a taxi, with passengers SMSing or tweeting a unique code rather than ringing a phone number and being on hold. 13CABS marketing and client services manager Simon Purssey said the taxi network had been working with Monash City Council for 18 months to put up CABSTOP signs featuring a unique code at prominent places across the municipality, including Chadstone Shopping Centre and Monash University.

Tonsley transport upgrade work uncertain in wake of federal Liberal victory

Posted Tuesday, 10 September, 2013 by bevans in South Australian Rail News

South Australian Transport and Infrastructure Minister Tom Koutsantonis said he had to make a decision within days whether to continue with the Tonsley public transport project in Adelaide's southern suburbs. The Coalition announced last week it would scrap a $32 million federal commitment to the project. The upgrade includes a duplication of the rail line, improvements to two stations and park-and-ride facilities for commuters. Mr Koutsantonis said the work was well advanced.

Light rail plans on track as trams arrive

Posted Wednesday, 11 September, 2013 by bevans in Tram and Light Rail News

The first of 14 trams for the Gold Coast light rail system are being unloaded at the Port of Brisbane. Two of the 43 metre-long carriages that will carry passengers between the Parklands and Broadbeach from next June arrived on a ship from Germany overnight. Spokesman Phil Mumford says it has been an extensive operation to transport the trams to the coast.

Hopes Newcastle grain terminal will ease cost pressures for producers

Posted Wednesday, 11 September, 2013 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

East coast grains producers are issuing warnings there needs to be more investment in transport and processing infrastructure in order to keep the industry buoyant. Hunter producers are hopeful the construction of a new grain terminal in Newcastle due to open at the end of this year is a sign of things to come. Grains analyst Mark Martin says Australian producers are facing real pressure from overseas producers. He points to countries such as Russia and the United States as being a real threat to Australia's market, saying each are able to ship grain at a third of the cost locally.

Fischer sees benefits in rail freight expansion plans

Posted Wednesday, 11 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Former deputy prime minister Tim Fischer says a rail line between Mildura and Menindee would not only be a boost for local industries but for Australia's rail freight capacity. Under the current system, containers cannot be double-stacked on trains between Adelaide and Melbourne because of tunnels along the route.

Sydney Rail concept on show

Posted Wednesday, 11 September, 2013 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

SYDNEY Intermodal Terminal Alliance's (SIMTA) revised freight rail concept plan is now on public exhibition. The plan was released by the NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure last week, and will be on public exhibition until October 21.

Time NOW to move on inland rail project

Posted Thursday, 12 September, 2013 by bevans in Rail News

The enthusiasm for an inland rail link between Melbourne and Brisbane was evident at a special gathering in Moree. Parkes Shire Council General Manager Kent Boyd and Economic and Business Development Manager Anna Wyllie attended the successful Inland Rail stakeholders meeting.

Rail chief pledge on timetable

Posted Friday, 13 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

THE new CEO of V/Line has vowed to start running country trains on time after admitting the operator had let some passengers down. Former Queensland Rail executive Theo Taifalos said V/Line's performance was weighed and measured twice daily and the statistics spoke for themselves. V/Line has failed to meet its target of running 92 per cent of trains on time on most lines for months on end. In his first broad interview since taking the top job in May, Mr Taifalos said that the operator was working hard to improve services by holding noon meetings every day to review the previous 24-hour performances and to prepare for afternoon peak traffic. "One of the things that public transport organisations do is interact with customers and people at the most emotionally-charged parts of their day - at the beginning and at the end of the day," Mr Taifalos said. "At the moment our on-time running has not been good and there's a multitude of factors for that.

Bribery charge shunts Brockman's rail bid

Posted Saturday, 14 September, 2013 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

BROCKMAN Mining's attempt to prove it has the managerial capability to be granted access to Fortescue Metals Group's Pilbara railway has suffered a blow after its Hong Kong-based chief executive, Peter Luk, was charged with bribery offences. Hong Kong's Independent Commission Against Corruption said yesterday that Mr Luk, 42, had been charged with "offering and accepting an advantage" consisting of 1.5 million shares in a Hong Kong-listed company, China Mining Resources Group, in 2008. Mr Luk was executive chairman of CMRG at the time. The market value of the shares was $HK330,000 ($46,000).

India's longest rail bridge grossly underutilised

Posted Saturday, 14 September, 2013 by bevans in International Rail News

Rajesh Agrawal, Thiruvananthapuram Divisional Railway Manager, has expressed serious concern over the gross underutilisation of the rail corridor linking the Vallarpadam transshipment terminal with Edappally. He was interacting with reporters here on Thursday. India’s longest rail bridge (4.62 km) is part of the 8.86-km-long rail corridor. He said now, only one train plied the rail route, exclusively meant for goods container traffic to and from the terminal, every week. This was mostly because goods transporters preferred to transport containers by road. The rail corridor could be put to optimum use only if at least three to five trains plied the route every day, he said.

The Gold Coast trams are here!

Posted Sunday, 15 September, 2013 by GeoffreyHansen in Tram and Light Rail News

THE first Gold Coast tram has been towed along the tracks into the light rail depot after a two hour journey from the Port of Brisbane early this morning.

Defence bid to control section of the Adelaide to Darwin rail line on one in every five days

Posted Sunday, 15 September, 2013 by JimYarin in Northern Territory Rail News

SOUTH Australia's iconic Ghan rail journey is under threat by a Defence Department bid to control a section of the Adelaide to Darwin rail line on one in every five days of the year. The Advertiser can reveal operators of part of the rail line, Genesee and Wyoming, were told they would have to cancel trains in May because Defence needed the Woomera Prohibited Area for military tests.

Majura Solar farm puts brake on high-speed rail: Canberra airport

Posted Monday, 16 September, 2013 by bevans in Rail News

Canberra Airport says a proposed solar farm at Majura is contrary to plans for a major transport corridor, including a high speed train. The airport criticised the proposed solar farm last week saying glare from solar panels under the northern landing approach to runway 17 could cause flash blindness for pilots. Managing director Stephen Byron said the airport had been consulted and had subsequently supported three other solar farms in the territory, but had not been consulted on the Majura development.

Greens flag rail building in Cowper as important as highway

Posted Monday, 16 September, 2013 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

TRANSPORT infrastructure will not fall off the radar as an issue in the Cowper electorate despite the installation of a new Federal Government. While Labor's Alfredo Navarro has signalled pressure will be maintained on The Nationals to fulfil promises on the Pacific Highway duplication, The Greens have reminded supporters they'll continue to lobby for progress on rail development. Pre-election Budget cuts of $4.9 billion to public transport funding announced by Federal Coalition treasurer Joe Hockey on September 5 has angered both parties opposed to the move. And Greens candidate Carol Vernon is urging the importance of rail not be forgotten in the midst of highway lobbying.

Asbestos fears over Pilbara rail plan

Posted Monday, 16 September, 2013 by bevans in Western Australian Rail News

A Pilbara council has raised health concerns about Rio Tinto's plan to build a rail line near the asbestos-contaminated former town of Wittenoom. Rio has submitted environmental documents for a 167km line that would avoid the former townsite, abandoned by all but three residents, but go through the wider Wittenoom asbestos management area. Wittenoom is declared unfit for habitation because of its deadly blue asbestos, mined in Wittenoom Gorge until the late 1960s.

Man killed by train may have had perception skewed through camera

Posted Monday, 16 September, 2013 by 9034 in New Zealand Rail News

A Greymouth train buff killed when he was struck by steam train may have thought the engine was further up the tracks because his perception had been skewed through his camera, a friend says.

Train stations, tree-lined boulevards mooted for Fishermans Bend

Posted Tuesday, 17 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

An extension of the Collins Street tram and two underground train stations could be built at Fishermans Bend as part of a renewal project that will virtually double the size of the CBD. Premier Denis Napthine released the draft vision for Fishermans Bend on Monday, describing it as one of the "most exciting" urban renewal projects in the world. He said over the next 50 years, there would be 80,000 people living in Fishermans Bend and 40,000 new jobs in the area.

NSW Interstate Passenger Service to make way for local Brisbane CityTrain Services

Posted Tuesday, 17 September, 2013 by LegendsofSteam in New South Wales Rail News

More train paths will be opened up for Gold Coast commuters following an agreement between Queensland and New South Wales governments to change the timetable of the interstate passenger train.

Clive Palmer pushes Galilee Basin project despite rail battle

Posted Tuesday, 17 September, 2013 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

[left][color=#444444][size=4][font=Georgia,'Times New Roman',Times,serif]Queensland billionaire Clive Palmer hopes to receive federal government approval by the end of September for an $8 billion mine, rail and port project in the state’s Galilee Basin – despite doubts about his ability to access a rival rail ­network.[/font][/size][/color][/left] [left][color=#444444][size=4][font=Georgia,'Times New Roman',Times,serif]The Queensland Coordinator-General gave conditional approval in August to the rail and mine components of Mr Palmer’s Waratah coal project, which also needs federal approval.[/font][/size][/color][/left] [left][color=#444444][size=4][font=Georgia,'Times New Roman',Times,serif]The coal group hopes to get the federal government “over the line” this month as well, according to Waratah Coal managing director Nui Harris. He said the Coalition may accelerate the process given its promise to prioritise the construction of large-scale projects.[/font][/size][/color][/left]

Council considers need for Maiden Gully rail station

Posted Wednesday, 18 September, 2013 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Bendigo council will look into whether a new railway station is needed in one of the city's growing suburbs. The council voted last night to endorse a precinct structure plan for the suburb of Maiden Gully, on Bendigo's south-western fringe. The area is expected to become home to more than 10,000 people by 2030.

CCTV footage of rail crossing near-miss should serve as warning, minister says

Posted Wednesday, 18 September, 2013 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Footage of a man narrowly escaping death after darting in front of an express train in Brisbane is a reminder of the dangers of ignoring signs and signals at railway crossings, Queensland's Transport Minister says. Scott Emerson says the 20-year-old man is lucky to be alive after he pushed through closed pedestrian gates at Cannon Hill station last month and crossed the tracks in front of a train travelling about 60 kilometres per hour. The CCTV footage posted by Queensland Rail on YouTube shows the man apparently being knocked to the ground by the rush of wind from the passing train.

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