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LIGHT rail operator Keolis Downer has had to suspend its light rail services for a week to allow repair crews to fix cracks in four places along the Newcastle system.
The trackwork began at 5am today, Monday, and services are set to resume at 5am next Monday, April 27.
Keolis Downer says the bus services will replace the light rail services along Hunter Street and King Street.
It says bus routes 11 and 13 can also be used to travel in the Newcastle CBD.
Although such outages are ordinarily disruptive, the coronavirus shutdowns will have a far less noticeable impact because of the coronavirus shutdowns, which have seen public transport use plummet in recent weeks.
Transport for NSW says the cracks were detected at four weld points during scheduled maintenance testing undertaken in late January.
Services travelled at slower speeds through the affected areas until this week's work began.
Services were also halted earlier this month after the vacant CBD Hotel in Hunter Street was destroyed by fire on the night of Sunday, April 5.
Transport for NSW said the work was being done under warranty by Downer EDI, which built the light rail system operated by its joint venture with the French transport company Keolis.
Keolis Downer says the repairs involve removing and replacing sections of track and surrounding concrete at Newcastle Interchange, Worth Place, Civic Station and Merewether Street.
Other maintenance activities would be carried out by Downer EDI, including replacing drainage grates along the length of the light rail corridor and adjusting charge bars at each light rail stop.
This article first appeared on www.newcastleherald.com.au
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