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All of Adelaide's suburban train services will be suspended for two days during the first cricket Test against India in a move the Opposition says will embarrass the state.
The Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure announced last night that no trains would run on Saturday and Sunday, December 8 and 9, to allow construction of a building near the Adelaide railway station.
The Test match starts on Thursday, December 6.
The closure was rescheduled from this weekend, which Minister Stephan Knoll blamed on a "technical issues with testing".
He said there was no choice but to suspend train services during next week's cricket Test and there would be a "minor level of inconvenience" for commuters.
"Undertaking those works on this weekend is the best time to undertake them," he said.
"The weekend after we have Carols by Candlelight, the weekend after that we have one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year and no matter when we undertake these works there's going to be some level of disruption."
Substitute buses will be running over the weekend.
The closure is to allow access to tracks next to where the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute 2 building is being constructed on North Terrace.
It will replace the Rail Operations Control Centre, which is moving to Dry Creek.
Evening trains have also been suspended several times this month for the work.
Opposition and SACA want decision reversedOpposition transport spokesman Tom Koutsantonis said the move to suspend train services during the Test would embarrass the state.
"Can you think of anything dumber?" he said.
"The Premier needs to intervene immediately and instruct the Transport Minister to reverse the decision and choose another weekend to do this work."
South Australian Cricket Association (SACA) chief executive Keith Bradshaw said it was "totally unacceptable".
He will meet with Mr Knoll this afternoon after finding out about the decision yesterday.
"To have it scheduled against the Test match just seems ridiculous in my mind and hopefully something can be done to reschedule it," Mr Bradshaw said.
"Disruptions like this are just not necessary."
Catching the train this morning, one commuter said the decision was "ridiculous".
"Myself and my three sons go to the Test each year and catch the train," he said.
"I suppose we're going to have to drive.
"It's typical of the State Government — poor planning."
Another said it was "really, really silly".
"We're going to have 50,000 people there a day and how are they going to get home?" he said.
Mr Knoll said normally between 70 and 80 per cent of the expected crowd of 50,000 people did not use trains to get to the Adelaide Oval.
Trams will continue to run during the Test, including to the new Festival Plaza stop on King William Road, near Adelaide Oval.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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