Showing stories from April 2014

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NorthWestern Rail Alliance formed to reintroduce passenger services to all towns along the Mildura Rail Line

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by bevans in Press Releases

[color=#222222][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]The NorthWestern Rail Alliance was established on Sunday, 30 March in Donald. The objective of the group is to have passenger services reintroduced to all towns on the Mildura line. [/font][/size][/color] [color=#222222][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]Newly elected president of the group, Christian Mitchell said, “It was a priority for the group to have passenger services reintroduced to all the towns on the Mildura Line and that the group was fed up with the false promises and platitudes of presiding elected politicians who have failed to deliver those promises.”[/font][/size][/color]

West Footscray rail land sale tipped to fund upgrades

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Vacant land adjoining West Footscray railway station could be sold to developers under a state government plan to help pay for station upgrades.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Victorian Premier Denis Napthine last week revealed West Footscray was one of 10 railway station sites across Melbourne identified for selling.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Dr Napthine said the sales would deliver $1 billion in direct investment through a station precinct enhancement program.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“It will create more than 3000 direct project-delivery jobs, a further 5000 indirect jobs through construction and the potential to support more than 800 full-time commercial and retail jobs after project completion,” he said.[/font][/size][/color]

NBNCo to deliver future Ultra Fast Broadband to passenger trains wirelessly

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by djf01 in Press Releases

NBN Chairman Ziggy Switkowski during a media announcement covering new NBN services today. "I am pleased to announce today that NBNCo will be adopting a new technology to deploy ultra high speed broadband even cheaper and even faster to all Australians. Because this technology is wireless based, we have immediately suspended work on all legacy fibre and copper cable networks."

China’s high-speed rail is so popular, it’s hurting the domestic airline industry

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

[color=#404040][size=3][font=PTSerif, Georgia, serif]China Southern Airlines is the latest Chinese airline to [url=][color=#168dd9]post miserable year-end 2013 results[/color][/url]. Net profit dropped 24% to 1.99 billion yuan ($321 million), and operating profit fell 70%. China Southern Airlines joins Air China, where [url=][color=#168dd9]net profit dropped 32%[/color][/url] in 2013, and China Eastern Airlines, where [url=][color=#168dd9]it fell by 25%[/color][/url].[/font][/size][/color] [center][color=#aeadad][size=1][font=AdelleSansWeb, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][size=4]+[/size][/font][/size][/color][/center] [color=#404040][size=3][font=PTSerif, Georgia, serif]High oil prices, as well as increased competition from low-cost carriers and each other, have taken a toll. But, as each airline has recently acknowledged, so has China’s massive and growing high-speed rail system.[/font][/size][/color]

Ryan's Deceptive Platitudes

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by newsbot in Press Releases

Peter Ryan the Minister for Regional Development, lacks any credibility with his response to Jacinta Allan’s criticism of the Napthine Government’s changes to zone 1 and 2 in  Melbourne. The free tram travel must be seen for what it is, a total capitulation on the part of the Napthine Government to effectively  collect fares on the trams in the CBD. The changes to the Zoning of fares for trains and trams will rip out $100 million of the transport budget to pay for the pork barrelling. The $100 million could have easily been used to open the Castlemaine to Maryborough rail line creating the Bendigo to Geelong Regional Rail Link.

Ringwood rail commuters catch a break with 42 car spaces to open 250m away from station

Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]IN a bid to alleviate the significant transport disruptions caused by mass construction in central Ringwood, the State Government has announced a new Ringwood railway station carpark.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder today announced plans for 42 parking spaces to be opened for public use in July.[/font][/size][/color]

Switch flicked on Auckland rail

Posted Wednesday, 2 April, 2014 by bevans in New Zealand Rail News

Auckland's rail lines were electrified today, but a chap from Wellington was given the honours of making the switch. Politicians gathered at Britomart Transport Centre in Auckland to launch the city's new electrified rail line. However, with the control system based in the capital city, a Wellington transport worker named Bryan had his finger on the on switch.

Rail land ready to transform

Posted Wednesday, 2 April, 2014 by bevans in South Australian Rail News

MOUNT Gambier City Council has officially awarded around $1m in new contracts to progress the next phase of works at the disused rail corridor. While the area is a dust bowl following months of earthworks, the high profile inner-city strip is now on the cusp of being transformed into a sweeping green belt. At council's recent full meeting, a number of major tenders were endorsed for a cluster of regional companies.

Byron has most to gain from rail trail

Posted Wednesday, 2 April, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

In reply to Angie Burgler’s letter: if you found yourself bleeding to death, I bet the first thing you’d do is to grasp hard at the wound site, to help save yourself. Yes? Well, one of our collective wounds used to be our old and dilapidated railway line, stretching 134km from Casino to Murwillumbah. The Carr government finally had to grasp at the outflow of taxpayer’s hard cash, as the constantly depleting patronage demonstrated the imminent death of the ever-higher cost service.

Gold Coast warns Sydney that times will be tough for business during light rail construction

Posted Wednesday, 2 April, 2014 by waynes in Tram and Light Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]SYDNEY businesses situated on the light rail route have been warned to expect the worst by their Gold Coast counterparts, who have endured nearly four years of disruptions during construction of their GoldLinQ tram network.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]As work on the Sydney light rail nears commencement, the first stage of GoldLinQ is near completion, with testing of the lines ­already under way. The transit systems are expected to decongest both cities and shorten the time taken for commuters to travel.[/font][/size][/color]

Couple filmed porn on daytime Melbourne train, uploaded video to popular website

Posted Wednesday, 2 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]A COUPLE filmed in a pornographic shoot on a Melbourne train could face police action.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Authorities have slammed the sleazy production, which has appeared to more than 200,000 viewers on a popular porn website.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The video shows a clearly identifiable man and woman engaging in sex acts in broad daylight as they sit in a carriage on the Epping route before getting off at Reservoir Station.[/font][/size][/color]

Metro Trains rolls out new-look website

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#818181][size=4][font=Vollkorn, Georgia, serif]Melbourne’s metropolitan rail provider, Metro Trains, has rolled out a new website featuring mostly cosmetic enhancements.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#818181][size=4][font=Vollkorn, Georgia, serif][url=][color=#3ba0ed]The website[/color][/url], now live, features a number of enhancements including a new information architecture, enhanced line healthboard showing the next five trains on each line, and a revamped metro-styled responsive web design.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#818181][size=4][font=Vollkorn, Georgia, serif]In addition, more prominence has been given on news content, additional services and planned work notifications for each line.[/font][/size][/color]

Toowoomba to Gladstone rail a state priority

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]QUEENSLAND'S Deputy Premier has labelled plans for an inland rail route linking Toowoomba to Gladstone as a priority for the state.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Callide MP Jeff Seeney said he would work with the Federal Government to ensure the missing rail connection would become a vital cog in Queensland's future prosperity.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"In planning the Queensland section of the inland rail, we'll be pursuing the establishment of a rail connection from the Darling Downs to Gladstone as a priority for Queensland's long-term future," he told Queensland Parliament on Wednesday.[/font][/size][/color]

TorchMedia unveils first Sydney Trains campaign for Devondale

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Tahoma, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]TorchMedia have unveiled their first advertising campaign with Sydney Trains, with Devondale the first brand to have billboards on the outside of selected Sydney Trains.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Tahoma, Arial, Verdana, sans-serif]Launching mid-April, the Devondale campaign promotes the brand’s breakfast drink Fast Start with the slogan “Get off the sugar train”.[/font][/size][/color]

Transporting the broken city of Sydney to greatness

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]SYDNEY’S transport congestion is notor-ious. Be it a clogged M5, crowded trains, poor to non-existent public transport in most of western Sydney, and congested traffic at airports, we have it wrong.[/b] [/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]There is a crying need for better transport co-ordination and planning to get it right. Fragmented, divided local councils will do what’s natural — fragmented, divided urban and transport planning. Sydney is falling behind. We need a new focus, like London’s Greater London Authority and the brilliantly organised Transport for London.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]We need something similar for Sydney. To give him his due, Premier Barry O’Farrell’s public transport projects — light rail in the inner city and the north-west rail link — suggest he is keen to avoid the last government’s stop-start project announcements under Morris Iemma, Nathan Rees and Kristina Keneally.[/font][/size][/color]

Australian state government completes roll out of contactless smart payment card on trains network

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

From next week, city commuters will be able to use their contactless smart card to pay their fares on the entire Sydney Trains network, said [url=]Transport for New South Wales[/url]Minister Gladys Berejiklian (pictured).

Mobile phone drop-outs in city tunnels now a thing of the past

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Illawarra-Eastern Suburbs rail line passengers will no longer fear drop-outs in city tunnels while making calls or connecting to the internet on their phones, tablets or laptops.[/font][/size][/color]

Could Olympic Park be the answer to western Sydney’s traffic congestion?

Posted Thursday, 3 April, 2014 by newsbot in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]Express trains from Olympic Park to the city, more car parking and easier access to the site are all part of a plan to ease congestion on western Sydney roads by creating a park-and-ride facility at Sydney Olympic Park.[/b] [/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]According to Sydney Alliance transport spokesman Professor Kurt Iveson, the plan would give commuters of Western Sydney better access to the city sooner rather than later.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The Sydney Alliance is asking the State Government to consider a proposal to turn Olympic Park into a park-and-ride location to ease congestion on Parramatta Rd.[/font][/size][/color]

NSW rail line flooded after wild weather

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

Flooding has stopped trains on the NSW south coast rail line after wild storms lashed the state. Buses are replacing trains between Wollongong and Port Kembla, the Transport Management Centre (TMC) said on Friday.

V/Line conductor accused of Sunbury bias

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]V/LINE has reminded its conductors it has no right to refuse Sunbury passengers from boarding its trains after a woman was prevented from getting on a service.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Jenny Sharpe, who was with two wheelchair travellers, was shocked when a V/Line conductor stopping her from getting on a train at Sunbury.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]He told her the train only dropped off passengers at that station, and did not pick-up.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Previously, Sunbury commuters caught V/Line’s Bendigo-service train, but can now catch both it and Metro trains.[/font][/size][/color]

Signal fault causes long delays on five Melbourne train lines

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

COMMUTERS in Melbourne’s western suburbs faced hour-long waits this morning after a signal fault near North Melbourne station triggered delays on five lines.

Calls for rail upgrade steam ahead

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]THE Newstead Rail Revival Alliance is stepping up its push to restore the rail link between Bendigo, Castlemaine, Maryborough, Ballarat and Geelong.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The group will hold a 'Walk the Line' rally at the old Newstead Railway Station at noon this Sunday, after it submitted a petition to S[font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]tate Parliament last month in its quest to "turn the tables for neglected country residents".[/font][/font][/size][/color]

Storm-hit Dawlish railway line to reopen

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=arial, sans-serif][color=#666666][size=3]The storm-damaged Dawlish railway line will reopen on 4 April, reconnecting train services to Cornwall and much of Devon in time for the Easter holidays.[/size][/color][/font][/size][/color]

Call for proposed Melbourne-Brisbane rail corridor to link up with Gladstone

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]A newly-elected Queensland LNP Senator says he questions the viability of a proposed railway line linking Melbourne to Brisbane.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Senator-elect Matt Canavan says it would make more sense to link the inland corridor to Gladstone in central Queensland.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]He says the Brisbane link will cost too much.[/font][/size]

Land near rail link to be home to thousands

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b][i]THE South West Rail Link will open next year and new housing estates around it are being swamped with inquiries, writes Jennifer Veerhuis[/i][/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]It wasn’t much more than cow paddocks, market gardens and a defence site 20 years ago but land near Sydney’s two newest train stations is being rapidly developed for new housing.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]It was announced last year that the long-awaited South West Rail Link was one year ahead of schedule and would open in 2015, although exactly when trains will start running to the new stations of Edmondson Park and Leppington has not been announced.[/font][/size][/color]

Councils plead for more rail line maintenance

Posted Friday, 4 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Five Victorian councils have met the state's Transport Minister to discuss the need for better maintenance of the Mildura to Melbourne rail line.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]There have been several freight train derailments on the line, most recently at Emu, between Maryborough and St Arnaud.[/font][/size]

Bail granted to man charged over car left on rail tracks

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]BAIL has been granted to a man who allegedly left a car on railway tracks facing an oncoming train, which resulted in more than $26,000 damage.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Nathan Luke Cecil Slade has to live at a Yeppoon address and report to police every Monday and Friday because his criminal history includes numerous failure to appear offences, Magistrate Mark Morrow said.[/font][/size][/color]

Australia urged to have renewable high speed rail line by 2030

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

A renewable energy powered high speed rail service linking the east-coast Australian cities of Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane would cut the nation’s regional transport emissions by almost 30 per cent, while providing a profitable and popular service, a new report has found. The report – a collaborative effort from climate change think tank Beyond Zero Emissions (BZE), the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) and the Uniiversity of Melbourne’s Energy Research Institute – explores the potential for high speed rail in Australia. Two years in the making – and due for release next week – the report’s recommends the development of a high speed rail network along the lines of the recent government study; connecting 12 major regional towns, and the cities of Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Newcastle, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.

Opening of Blayney Demondrille rail tender welcomed

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by newsbot in New South Wales Rail News

MEMBER for Burrinjuck Katrina Hodgkinson has welcomed the release of a Transport for NSW tender to operate and maintain the rail lines between Blayney and Demondrille and Koorawatha to Greenethorpe as an important next step to restoring rail services in this area.

Airport rail construction to start in May

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Airport operator PT Angkasa Pura II said on Thursday the construction of a railway network connecting Soekarno-Hatta International Airport and Jakarta city center will begin in May this year.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Indra Cahya, the head of the project management unit with Angkasa Pura II, confirmed the construction schedule, saying the state-owned railway company PT KAI would start placing materials around the M-1 Gate, an alternative access route to th airport.[/font][/size][/color]

Truck slams into Flinders Street rail bridge causing delays

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Melbourne has been hit by public transport woes as a truck accident and maintenance works cause significant disruptions. A truck slammed into a bridge near Crown Casino, early Saturday afternoon at the corner of Flinders and Spencer streets. The vehicle appears to have become wedge under the bridge, with the truck balanced on its left set of wheels.

Geoff Shaw slams free trams as socialism

Posted Saturday, 5 April, 2014 by bevans in Tram and Light Rail News

Balance of power independent Geoff Shaw has hit out at a government plan for free inner city tram travel, declaring: ''I am not one for socialism''. Instead Mr Shaw told Parliament this week he was in favour of a user pays system, arguing the change would exacerbate the problem of crowded trams. ''I am just highlighting my concern about socialism,'' Mr Shaw said. ''I catch trams. Around the city they are already pretty full. I do not know how we can encourage more people to use trams now that they are free. A user pays system is probably more what I am after.''

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 5/4/2014.

Posted Sunday, 6 April, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 123 sightings for this week; this is seven sightings more than last week making a total of 1652 sightings for this year to date On day 95 last year we had recorded 1598 sightings. This is 54 sightings more that at the same time last year.

GrainCorp seeks $100m in federal funds for rail upgrade

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by bevans in Rail News

[b]GRAINCORP chairman Don Taylor believes $100 million in federal government spending on rail infrastructure could make a significant improvement to the network and lift grower returns.[/b] The east coast grains handling, malting and oils business has asked the government for funds to urgently upgrade the main routes on the network and believes there is “a strong eco­nomic case’’. Federal or state funds could help to replace $200m Archer Daniels Midland promised to kick into a co-investment fund for upgrading rail services in a last-ditch effort to win support for its $3.2 billion takeover bid for GrainCorp. The company has ­repeatedly criticised a lack of ­investment in rail lines that has allowed them to fall into disrepair or restricted the speed and capacity of trains.

Asciano repairs the rifts

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Asciano

WITH Asciano’s chequered financial history and its reputation for employing a tough waterfront workforce in the face of industrial disputes, it came as no surprise to the company’s head of human resources that staff had little trust in management three years ago. The company had gone through a decade of significant change, including the acquisition of Patrick Corporation and Pacific National under Toll, and the development of Asciano. When Alex Badenoch joined the company she found the ports and rail management business needed to undergo significant change in regards to communication between management and workers, training opportunities, rewards and recognition of success, leadership and even gender diversity. “Having come from a turbulent background — particularly the spin-off from Toll and being thrown into a period of survival because of that and the global financial crisis — it was a business focused on survival and not on culture or people and customers,’’ Badenoch says.

Newstead rallies for train's return

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

LIKE The Seekers, the Regional Rail Alliance loves nothing more than the sound of a train whistle blowin'. Yesterday members stepped up their campaign for the government to restore the rail link between Bendigo, Castlemaine, Maryborough, Ballarat and Geelong.

Standing the test of time

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#666666][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]She’s stood guard over Dubbo for more than 130 years, and while she could do with a lick of paint, the city’s old railway bridge still upholds the tradition of rail as an integral part of the region’s ongoing history. STEVE HODDER helps tell the tale.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#666666][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]God knows when it last had a coat of paint or when it’s likely to get another one but according to those vested with its care, Dubbo’s ageing railway bridge is not likely to fall apart any time soon.[/font][/size][/color]

Mayor encourages community to make most of grant funding

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Aurizon

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]GLADSTONE Region Mayor Gail Sellers is encouraging local charities and not-for-profit organisations to make the most of available community funding grants.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Councillor Sellers said there were many funding grants available to charity groups and organisations each year and it was important they did not ignore these financial opportunities.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"The money is out there and Gladstone Region groups and organisations should be taking the opportunity to try to access these available funds," Cr Sellers said.[/font][/size][/color]

State Government announces closures of Seaford and Belair rail lines for upgrades

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

SOUTHERN suburbs rail commuters will have their patience tested once again, after the State Government announced services would be suspended on the Belair and Seaford lines for further “revitalisation’’ work from tonight. The government said substitute buses would be used during the rail closures – including all of Easter on the Seaford line and 17 nights for the Belair line. Both lines will be interrupted by partial closure at other times. The Seaford line closures will enable the connection of the new duplicated Tonsley line track, allowing it to reopen for passengers by the middle of next month, Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan said. “These works have been scheduled during a low patronage period to keep disruption to a minimum, significantly reducing the inconvenience for Adelaide Metro customers,” Mr Mullighan said. Services will resume on both lines on Anzac Day. Both lines were out of action for several months due to electrification work last year.

High speed rail could bankrupt Laos, but it’ll keep China happy

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

Despite impressive economic growth rates over the last decade, a third of Laos’s population still lives [url=]below the extreme poverty line[/url] of US$1.25 per day. Most of the extreme poor Laos are ethnic minorities living in rural and upland districts, who depend on local ecological resources for cash income and food. Expanding transport infrastructure can no doubt be very important for effective poverty reduction – but it would be a stretch to argue that the country’s most urgent human and social development need is a high-speed rail connection between its capital, Vientiane, and its northern neighbour China. Yet, the Lao government has reiterated its intention to integrate into an emerging ASEAN-China high-speed railway grid. At times, the country’s quest for rail takes on an almost fetishistic quality, with officials simply repeating the mantra that the Laos must move “from land-locked to land-linked”. But for all their zeal, the economic case for high speed rail in Laos remains weak.

Scone bypass preferred option for rail level crossing

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The federal and state governments say the preferred option for the much-anticipated upgrade of the New England Highway at Scone will significantly boost road safety. Scone is regularly cut in two by long coal trains. To solve the problem, the federal and state governments say the preferred option includes a two-lane New England Highway bypass to the west of Scone. Once that is complete, a road bridge over the rail line at Kelly Street will also be built.

Siemens hands over last domestic ICE 3 train to DB

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

[color=#444444][size=2][font='Open Sans', Arial, sans-serif]Siemens has delivered the eighth and final new high-speed ICE 3 trainset to operate domestic services for Deutsche Bahn (DB).[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Open Sans', Arial, sans-serif]The German manufacturer is delivering 17 new Series 407 sets for DB.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Open Sans', Arial, sans-serif]Following a series of delays, the ICE 3 was cleared by the German Federal Railway Authority (EBA) in December 2013. Since the original order for 15 trains was placed in 2008, Siemens has agreed to supply two extra vehicles – one to compensate for the delay and another to replace an ICE3MF set which was damaged in an accident in 2010.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#444444][size=2][font='Open Sans', Arial, sans-serif]Eight more trains will now be used for testing in France and Belgium to gain approval for cross-border operation.[/font][/size][/color]

Massive rail yard opens early

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by bevans in International Rail News

SANTA TERESA, N.M. – Months ahead of schedule, Union Pacific’s new $400-million rail yard quietly opened last week on 2,200 acres just west of the Santa Teresa Airport. They called it a “soft opening” for the inland port, allowing trainloads and truckloads of goods that normally would use Union Pacific’s El Paso Alfalfa rail yard to use the Strauss Rail Yard instead.

Man found on rail tracks at Wyong

Posted Tuesday, 8 April, 2014 by bevans in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]POLICE are investigating after a man was found dead on railway tracks at Wyong on Monday night.[/font][/size][/color]

Free wifi for Vic country rail services

Posted Tuesday, 8 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=4][font=LiberationSerifRegular, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif][font=LiberationSerifRegular, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif][font=LiberationSerifBold, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]COUNTRY Victorian rail commuters will soon join the information super-railway, as the state government rolls out wireless internet on regional trains.[/font][/font][/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=4][font=LiberationSerifRegular, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]The $40 million package will deliver free wifi on V/Line's newest V/Locity trains from Melbourne to Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat, Seymour and Traralgon, along with improved mobile reception along rail corridors.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=4][font=LiberationSerifRegular, 'Times New Roman', Times, serif]Premier Denis Napthine said the government will seek expressions of interest to install the free service, which he said will be ready by the end of next year.[/font][/size][/color]

Police to keep track of rail station crime

Posted Tuesday, 8 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Bendigo police say they hope having dedicated officers regularly positioned at the city's railway station will make the area safer.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Five Protective Services Officers will work at the Bendigo train station from the end of this month.[/font][/size]

7 ways the Beeching cuts stitched up the Welsh rail system

Posted Tuesday, 8 April, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

[color=#2c2c2c][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]In 1963, Lord Beeching took an axe to the British rail system - and made getting around Wales by public transport significantly more difficult.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2c2c2c][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Gone were key lines linking east with west, and south with north.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2c2c2c][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Once Beeching's cuts were done, just three main lines traversing Wales remained - one stretching along the northern coast, another linking Aberystwyth with Shrewsbury via the towns of Mid Wales, and another stretching from Pembrokeshire to Newport, and on to London.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#2c2c2c][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]In addition, the Cambrian Coast line remained to link the towns of Pwllheli, Harlech and Barmouth with the main Mid Wales route, while the Heart of Wales line, cutting down from Shrewsbury through to Swansea, was spared the axe simply because of the number of marginal constituencies it crossed.[/font][/size][/color]

Mulder says 'Rail Revival' project a no-go before election

Posted Tuesday, 8 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]The Victorian Government has ruled out rebuilding a rail link between Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong ahead of this year's state election.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]A feasibility study by Public Transport Victoria was completed last year for the so-called 'Rail Revival' project.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]However, Transport Minister Terry Mulder says there has has not been a strong push from regional councils to build the link.[/font][/size]

Rail museum in North Williamstown to reopen this Sunday after four year hiatus

Posted Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]RAIL enthusiasts are celebrating the long-awaited reopening of a train museum at North Williamstown.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The museum in Champion Rd, operated by the Australian Railway Historical Society (Vic), closed in 2010 after almost 50 years when a site audit by land owner ­VicTrack found numerous safety hazards, mostly relating to visitors climbing on exhibits.[/font][/size][/color]

East coast high speed rail is financially viable

Posted Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]A report has found a high-speed rail network connecting Australia's major cities, including Newcastle, would be able to turn a profit.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The study by think-tank Beyond Zero Emissions, the German Aerospace Centre and the University of Melbourne has recommended a network joining 18 cities and regional centres on the east coast.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]It says the network could be built for $84 billion, that is $30 billion less than estimated in a previous study.[/font][/size]

Commuters face delays as rail staff lose jobs, union warns

Posted Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 by bevans in Cityrail News

Rail commuters face longer queues to buy tickets because the government has begun to remove staff from station ticket windows, the rail union warns. With the Opal public transport smartcard working at all Sydney rail stations, Sydney Trains is cutting the number of sales staff at stations. But large numbers of commuters have still not switched to the Opal card, which so far can only be used on a couple of bus services. Student, low-income concession tickets and pensioner excursion tickets are not available on the Opal yet. According to the Rail, Tram and Bus Union, 47 ticket sales positions have been removed or face review at larger stations in the city, eastern suburbs and in western Sydney. And further positions face review at larger stations on the Bankstown, Illawarra and Western lines.

Adelaide rail commuters furious over ‘pathetic’ communication over line suspensions

Posted Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 by JimYarin in South Australian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]ADELAIDE train commuters last night expressed frustration at the suspension of some rail services while lines are upgraded.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Newly appointed Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan came under fire yesterday after he admitted being “informed” about the closures of the Belair and Seaford lines last week.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]But the Transport Department only announced the changes six hours before coming into force on Monday, [b][url=][color=#999999]to the fury of commuters who questioned the timing.[/color][/url][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Mr Mullighan, who won a seat in Parliament at the recent State Election, was last night facing his first political fight just weeks after he was promoted to Cabinet as a first-term MP.[/font][/size][/color]

Beware Easter road, rail, tram disruptions

Posted Thursday, 10 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Drivers and public transport users will be forced to battle major disruptions during the Easter period due to a blitz of statewide road, rail and tram projects. Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder has warned of lengthy delays across the urban and regional networks for 11 days from April 17, urging Victorians to "plan ahead". The busy intersection of Victoria Parade and Nicholson Street, East Melbourne, will be closed to all traffic April 17-26, including three working days, as Yarra Trams replaces 70-year-old tram tracks. Those works will also affect tram routes through the area.

The Eastern Transport Coalition’s Transport Summit at Springvale talks up rail upgrades but falls short on cash commitments

Posted Thursday, 10 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]MUCH talk and little commitment was the theme at The Eastern Transport Coalition’s Transport Summit, when MPs discussed rail capacity, upgrades to bus services and traffic congestion at Springvale this morning.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Knox councillor Peter Lockwood chaired the transport summit held to encourage debate between the major political parties. The summit looked at the Metro Rail Capacity Project and Doncaster and Rowville rail in the lead-up to the November election.[/font][/size][/color]

Property Council backs Hunter Street route for light rail

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]LIGHT rail built on the existing heavy rail line will bring ‘‘marginal change’’ to Newcastle and undermine the NSW government’s renewal strategy for the city.[/font][/size][/color]

Man trapped under tram in Collingwood

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in Tram and Light Rail News

A man has been rescued after becoming wedged under a tram at Collingwood. It's believed the man was lying beside the tram tracks in Victoria Street when he was hit by a tram shortly after 5am.

The first of KiwiRail's asbestos-containing locomotives were back on the tracks yesterday after being given the all clear

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in New Zealand Rail News

More of the 40 Chinese-made DL locomotives will be re-introduced to service over the coming weeks, following the hazard scare at the end of February.  Asbestos-containing materials were found in soundproofing compound inside one of the vehicles, which prompted the withdrawal of the DLs.  They have now been cleaned and sanitised, with car body doors replaced, KiwiRail said, and all have passed air and swab sample tests. "Remaining asbestos containing materials in the locomotives will be removed within 12 months, and appropriate management procedures and controls will remain in place during his period."

Minister hears Mildura rail case: Hopes for state budget inclusion

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The MDC, along with Mildura Rural City Council and five mayors from the Mildura-Maryborough rail line, were among a delegation that met recently with Transport Minister Terry Mulder to advocate for the urgent upgrade and standardisation of the Mildura line.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The MDC said it had prepared a business case for the minister at the meeting which was organised by Member for Mildura and Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Development Peter Crisp.[/font][/size][/color]

Amtrak rail service between Chicago and Rockford to begin in 2015

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#292727][size=2][font=Georgia, Times, serif]Long-sought plans to restore passenger rail service next year between Chicago and Rockford got a boost Thursday with the announcement of a new route.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#292727][size=2][font=Georgia, Times, serif]Service between the two cities stopped in 1981.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#292727][size=2][font=Georgia, Times, serif]The new Amtrak service will begin in late 2015 with one roundtrip daily between Union Station and a temporary 7th Street station in Rockford, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. A permanent Main Street station along the Rock River in Rockford will be constructed later, officials said.[/font][/size][/color]

Media Release: Mulder Ignores the facts on Rail Revival

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

The statement by the Minister for Transport, Terry Mulder this week that he would not support the policy that he took to the last State election for a Bendigo to Geelong[color=#222222][size=3][font=Arial, sans-serif] [/font][/size][/color]rail service is just another case of his all talk, no action by his administration. Mulder has made a raft of promises on public transport to both country and city residents prior to the last election yet has not initiated one centimetre on new railway track under his administration. He has made much of the Regional Rail works in Melbourne but all he is doing is to completing the job that was started under the previous Labor government. The list of projects that are not going ahead is stunning. Doncaster rail line, Roweville rail line, the airport rail link and the Bendigo to Geelong Rail link were all much heralded in the run-up to the last election. Of course there was the fanfare and the consultants reports and then a string of excuses for non-action. The Minister has claimed three reasons for Rail Revival being shelved. Firstly, says the cost would be between $760M and $935M. Independent costing of this figure has shown it to be inflated up to ten times over and the real figure is in the order of $90M.

A Conatainer Yard / Intermodal Freight Yard for Bendigo

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Warrnambool has a container yard and has a smaller population than Bendigo. So we need to think why on earth doesn’t Bendigo have one ? – I would suggest a lack of vision, complacency, strategic planning and a dependence on road transport by truck. Bendigo services a considerable region, similar to Warrnambool that would enable a container yard and intermodal freight terminal to be constructed and linked to the Geelong Port Via Castlemaine, Maryborough and Ballarat as well as to the Port of Melbourne and Hastings. This would put Bendigo in an enviable position to lure business and companies to the region. It also part of bi-partisan policy to export Victoria’s agricultural commodities to Asia.

Unused railway to be removed

Posted Friday, 11 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

VicTrack will remove unused rail track, rail safety signage and other equipment from nine level crossings in the Castlemaine area. The sections of disused rail corridor between these crossings will remain in place. A Minister for Public Transport spokesperson said the works did not in any way preclude the possible return of rail services to the line in the future.

Rail industry tells feds to get creative with infrastructure funding

Posted Saturday, 12 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

The [url=]Australasian Railway Association (ARA)[/url] has called on the federal government to look at new and innovative ways of sourcing money to finance the nation’s yawning backlog of infrastructure projects. The plea to tap into super funds to bankroll projects is contained in a [url= SUBMISSION FINAL 4 APRIL 2014.pdf]submission from the ARA[/url] to the Productivity Commission, as well as a [url= Infrastructure_ Rail_submission_final.pdf]group submission[/url] from ARA freight members [url=]Asciano[/url], [url=]Aurizon[/url] and the [url=]Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC)[/url]. The call to put superannuation wealth to work to by funding nation-building projects comes as the Abbott government continues to prepare voters for a tough love budget appears certain to deliver another big deficit, cruelling the chances of direct federal funding for big ticket builds.

Tanner calls for smarter infrastructure funding

Posted Saturday, 12 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

Chairman of the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) Lindsay Tanner will appear before the Productivity Commission’s inquiry hearing into public infrastructure tomorrow to highlight the need for an institutional shift in the way the nation’s infrastructure projects are funded and financed. The ARA has welcomed the findings of the Productivity Commission’s Draft Report into Public Infrastructure in its own submission along with a group submission incorporating ARA freight members, Asciano; Aurizon; and Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC). The submissions highlight practical and proven funding solutions that would help address the nations’ issue of increasing pressure and congestion on our transport networks, such as Road User Charges; Value Capture; and ‘Unlocking’ Superannuation Funds. “In my address to the Commission I will be painting a clear picture on how all governments can deliver the critical infrastructure projects this country is in dire need of whilst remaining within the confines of their respective budgets,” said Mr Tanner.

Vandals attack the Hitachi Farewell Train Tour near Rushall in Melbourne

Posted Saturday, 12 April, 2014 by newsbot in Railpage Australia News

What was expected to be a fond farewell of the Hitachi  Electric Train was today marred by an attack on the train by vandals near Rushall Railway Station in Melbourne’s inner Northern Suburbs.  The train organised by Metro Trains and ElecRail was returning to Flinders Street Railway Station from a timetabled visit to South Morang when the train was stopped near Rushall on the approach to Clifton Hill. Once stopped a vandal emerged from trackside peppercorn trees and began “tagging” the train.

Gheringhap Sightings w/e 12/4/2014

Posted Sunday, 13 April, 2014 by GheringhapLoop in Gunzelling Reports

There were 109 sightings for this week; this is 14 sightings less than last week (11 Melb – Perth – Melb trains cancelled due to flooding and derailment in WA) making a total of 1761 sightings for this year to date On day 102 last year we had recorded 1718 sightings. This is 43 sightings more that at the same time last year.

Premier Denis Napthine promises Melbourne airport rail link

Posted Sunday, 13 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

A rail link to Melbourne airport will become a reality under a Coalition government. Premier Denis Napthine announced it was time the rail link was built, during his address to the Victorian Liberal Party's state council meeting on Sunday. Dr Napthine said the rail link will deliver efficient, high-capacity regular services to Melbourne airport. The project will be outlined in the upcoming May state budget, he said.

Video released showing train vandals near Rushall Railway Station

Posted Sunday, 13 April, 2014 by newsbot in Railpage Australia News

A [url=]video[/url] containing footage of graffiti vandals attacking a Melbourne train has been released.  The train was attacked by vandals during the [url=]Hitachi Farewell Tour[/url] through Melbourne Yesterday.  The tour was organised by Elecrail and Melbourne's Metro Trains.  The vandals are seen approaching the train as it slows for operational purposes between Rushall and Clifton Hill Railway Stations. Once the train had come to a complete standstill the vandals began tagging the train.  In all 3 vandals appear in the video. During this time abuse was hurled at the youths. [color=#000000][size=3][font='Open Sans', Calibri, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]If you have information on the identities of these offenders please contact crime stoppers on 1300 333 000.[/b][/font][/size][/color]

Response to Premier Napthine's announcement to build the rail link to Tullamarine Airport

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

There is no denying that Melbourne needs a rail line to Tullamarine Airport 40 years ago which would have brought it into line with other major city airports. However, the announcement by Dr Denis Napthine  to build the rail link to the airport, should be considered a policy of desperation in an attempt to improve the public transport credentials of an ailing government. The announcement could not be considered credible coming from Dr Napthine, who during the Kennett era, endorsed the closure of the rail line from Geelong to Warrnambool through his own electorate. The Napthine Government also harbours Peter Ryan, Minister for Regional Development, who ripped up the rail line in his own electorate.

Trains fail to meet punctuality goal

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

V/LINE has again failed to reach its punctuality goal for services on the Ballarat line.  Only 88.3 per cent of services during March reached the goal of arriving within six minutes of the scheduled time.  The goal for punctuality is to have 92 per cent of trains arrive within this time frame

Premier Denis Napthine promises Melbourne airport rail link

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Premier Denis Napthine has moved to bolster the Coalition's public transport credentials before the November 29 election, with a promise to build a long-awaited rail link to Melbourne Airport. Addressing a gathering of Liberal Party faithful, Dr Napthine confirmed the May 6 state budget would include plans for a new electrified rail service running along dedicated tracks from Melbourne Airport to Albion, where it would join an existing rail corridor running to Southern Cross Station. Under the plan, the service would leave Southern Cross Station every 10 minutes during peak periods, with the journey expected to take about 25 minutes.

Shunted back to the past on the XPT Melbourne to Sydney

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Rail News

James Bond travelled by train, as did Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint in North by Northwest. Of course I knew the XPT from Melbourne to Sydney would not offer cocktails, lobster and courteous, uniformed attendants but I still thought it would be less polluting than air travel, relaxing and uncomplicated, taking us into Sydney’s heart for a simple transfer to Circular Quay. Two weeks before our departure earlier this year we were advised by text that due to track works, the return trip would involve switching to a bus at Albury in the dead of night. We cancelled the return trip and booked plane tickets instead. I rang Countrylink to ask if the same works would affect our journey to Sydney. Yes, said the operator. There’s a bus to Albury and it leaves at 7.30am, not 8.20am (the train departure time). How fortunate that I’d rung. We rose at 5am on departure day to eat breakfast and catch a train into Spencer Street to wait in the grimy, concrete vault from which country buses depart.

Cowra Rail tender a test process

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in New South Wales Rail News

Federal Member for Hume Angus Taylor says the tender process to reopen the Cowra rail lLines under private sector management is a test case for inland rail along the east coast. “After years of lobbying from local councils, the recent announcement from the NSW Roads and Ports Minister Duncan Gay is welcome indeed,” Mr taylor said.

Group makes inroads on rail

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

THE Southern Tablelands Rail Users’ Group (STRUG) is “cautiously optimistic” some useful changes can be made to the Goulburn Endeavour train timetable following a meeting with MP Pru Goward last Thursday. The meeting between Ms Goward and the rail users’ group’s president Greg Price and secretary Leon Oberg, trawled through a number of timetabling issues that were affecting many in the local community following adoption of the October, 2013 timetable.

Mystery Australian Oakajee port and rail investor to be revealed

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in Western Australian Rail News

Padbury Mining has promised to reveal the mystery Australian backer of its $6 billion Oakajee rail and port project after a request from the ASX. [url=$6bn-to-develop-oakajee-port-proje]Last week the junior miner made a market announcement that the Western Australian project would go ahead after receiving massive financial funding.[/url] Padbury said the $6 billion needed to build the port and rail infrastructure in the mid-west region had come from Australian private equity partners that want to remain anonymous.

Northern Horizons report says Bell St duplication and Upfield high-speed rail required in Moreland

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE duplication of Bell St and high-speed rail along the Upfield train line are among major infrastructure projects required in the north, according to a new report.[/b] [/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Moreland was among eight municipalities to partner with industry groups to release[i]Northern Horizons: 50 Year Infrastructure Strategy for Melbourne’s North.[/i][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The report addresses the north’s traffic congestion and stress on services.[/font][/size][/color]

Opal cards could end up costing rail commuters an extra $440 a year on train fares

Posted Monday, 14 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

RAIL commuters switching to the Opal card system could be forced to fork out an extra $440 a year on train fares. While posters promoting the much-hyped “tap on, tap off” system tout savings on “single, return and weekly” fares, there is no mention of the fact 50,000 commuters who choose monthly, quarterly and yearly fares face hikes of up to 18 per cent on the cost of their tickets. And it’s those in public transport-starved areas such as Western Sydney and distance commuters who are copping the biggest price hikes. The sneaky price rises mean those travelling from stations such as Gosford, Katoomba, and Wollongong now spend $2440 on a yearly my train ticket, but $2880 with an Opal card, a whopping increase of $440 for the sake of convenience.

Inland rail appointments

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

Parkes Mayor Ken Keith has welcomed the appointment of two key figures for the inland rail project. The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has announced the appointments for projects pivotal to driving Australia’s new rail freight future, the Inland Rail and Advanced Train Management System (ATMS) projects,. ARTC CEO John Fullerton said Mr Peter Winder had been appointed Executive General Manager, Major Projects, and will be responsible for overseeing the delivery of both the construction elements of the Inland Rail project, funded by the Australian Government, and the roll-out of ATMS.

Rail Revival Alliance - It Pays to Research

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by newsbot in Press Releases

The Napthine Government has granted the Mt Alexander Shire $822,000 towards the Walking and Cycling Strategy Implementation (Castlemaine to Newstead Trial) and the Vic Track spokesperson assured that the rest of the rail line between Castlemaine and Newstead wasn't going to be ripped up in the Castlemaine Express.

Qld Rail recovery underway post-Ita

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

QUEENSLAND Rail crews have begun assessing damage to the regional network after Cyclone Ita crossed the North Queensland coast on Friday night, tracking along the North Coast rail line. Senior Manager Regional North Shane Hinchcliff said the Queensland Rail network was currently closed north of Mackay, with the exception from Townsville to the port which had been declared safe and open for service. “Our crews have continued to monitor the situation and will now begin to assess the network to reopen it to our freight and long distance customers as safe and as soon as possible,” Mr Hinchcliff said.

Is a new airport at Badgerys Creek really needed?

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by bevans in Other Transport News

Within weeks of taking office Treasurer Joe Hockey commissioned a Productivity Commission inquiry into the funding of infrastructure. Its draft report released in March identified what it said was a classic example of how not to do it. “The National Broadband Network, Australia’s largest public infrastructure project, was commenced without a cost-benefit analysis having been done,” it said. “It also appears that detailed analysis of the project was focused, from a relatively early stage, on how best to implement the government’s policy objectives, rather than considering the merits of different options.” It sounds like Badgerys Creek.

Concerns raised over Tumbarumba rail trail

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by newsbot in New South Wales Rail News

TUMBARUMBA mayor Ian Chaffey has urged caution over the shire's proposed rail trail after a number of residents voiced their opposition to the proposal. A meeting of 36 residents last Thursday saw the group - who have dubbed themselves the Anti-Tumbarumba to Rosewood Rail Trail Committee - condemn the proposal to create a public rail trail between the two towns.

V/Line delays cause commuters frustration

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A spokesperson for Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder has hit back at Ms Edwards' claims. "Maree Edwards obviously has a short memory," the spokesperson said. "Instead of taking cheap pot-shots in press releases she should be acknowledging that the Coalition Government has improved V/Line's performance since taking over from Labor in 2010." The spokesperson said under Labor in March 2010 more than 20 per cent of V/Line's trains were late.

Trucking Industry Steps In After Rail Washout And Derailment

Posted Tuesday, 15 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

Bad weather and derailments are affecting intermodal services in three states and territories. Trucking companies are picking up freight that was left stranded on the east-west rail line due to heavy rainfall. The Tarcoola-Perth line has been cut since last Thursday. Both Linfox and Toll Group have increased their road services to help deliver freight. Linfox spokesman Gary Max says it’s still unknown how many customers have been affected.

Regional benefits unclear for airport rail link

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

IT’S a piece of rail infrastructure Premier Denis Napthine says has been 40 years in the making, but opinions are  mixed on whether Ballarat will benefit from an airport rail link. On Sunday, the state government pledged to deliver a 25-minute rail link between central Melbourne  and Melbourne Airport, with plans to be outlined in next month’s state budget. The state government has not revealed much detail, however it did say the train would travel from Southern Cross through Footscray to Albion before running on dedicated tracks to the airport.

Gippsland trains late again

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

THE Gippsland rail line was the worst performing V/Line service in the past 12 months, with only 80.7 per cent of services delivered to Traralgon on time, according to government data. This figure was well short of the 92 per cent target of trains arriving within six minutes of the scheduled time, which has not been met on the Traralgon line since 2006. While Albury recorded a worse 12-month average punctuality figure of 71.8 per cent, large sections of track between Seymour and Albury are subject to speed restrictions due to works.

Metro recommends $927-million contract for downtown L.A. rail project

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

A nearly $1-billion contract to build a downtown subway that would close one of the most frustrating gaps in Los Angeles County's rail network should go to two companies with experience in local rail construction, according to a [url=]Metro[/url] report published Tuesday. The recommendation comes even though the firms were not the lowest bidders. In the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority analysis, staff members recommended awarding a $927-million joint contract to Skanska USA and Traylor Bros., two firms now building other regional rail projects.  The Downtown Regional Connector is a 1.9-mile, $1.46-billion underground link between rail lines that skirt opposite ends of L.A.'s downtown, one near Union Station and the other near [url=]Staples Center[/url]. When the project debuts, scheduled for 2020, passengers will be able to travel across the county on one train, eliminating two transfers and $3 a trip in extra fares.

Does Badgerys Creek kill off hopes of a high speed rail project?

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Rail News

For air travellers, Sydney's second airport has been a long time coming. But devotees of train travel have been waiting almost as long for high speed rail - and they're still waiting. Both projects have seemed at times to be the impossible dream of anyone hoping for faster, more efficient journeys around the nation's major cities. So has Badgerys Creek airport finally killed off hopes of a very fast train project becoming a reality?

Rail projects will not help traffic congestion, hearing told

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

The Doncaster and Metro rail projects would not ease the road congestion that the East West Link has been designed to fix, according to the authority in charge of building the road. Instead Melbourne faces "unimaginable” congestion without the $6 billion to $8 billion tunnel, with traffic every day akin to the chaos experienced when in 2012 when CityLink’s tunnels were closed due to a computer malfunction. On the last day of the public hearings into the East West Link, the Linking Melbourne Authority quoted figures showing congestion problems will not be fixed if billions earmarked for the project are instead spent on public transport. "If we did not have East West Link but spent money on some other projects, we’re not going to get relief in future from traffic congestion that will arise," Stuart Morris QC, for the Linking Melbourne Authority, told the expert panel assessing the road.

Food giant wants track investment in order to increase freight exports

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

BIG grain company Graincorp has thrown its weight behind the campaign to pressure the Victorian Government into upgrading the railway line between Yelta and Melbourne. Graincorp spokesman Angus Trigg said that if the north-south corridor was converted to standard gauge, a short connector linking Lascelles to the existing standard-gauge line from Hopetoun to Portland, through Murtoa, would be “hugely advantageous”. Mr Trigg said his company’s ability to freight grain from north-western Victoria to Geelong by rail was critical to keeping its grain exports competitive in international markets.

Barossa back on track?

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by newsbot in South Australian Rail News

Ivan Venning, retired member for Schubert, isn’t the only one wanting to see the Barossa Railway line back in action.  Regional Rail in SA Group has set up a petition on the world’s largest petition platform,, requesting the South Australian Government re-opens the mid north and Barossa Railway Lines.  In the petition it states that the lines should be re-open to promote tourism and passenger rail links to the Barossa and into the Mid North.

Mayor joins rail debate on standardisation of the Victorian Railway Network

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Shire Mayor, Cr Kevin Erwin, is confident of a positive outcome from a delegation to Government over the standardisation of the Melbourne-Mildura rail line. Cr Erwin joined a delegation to State Parliament, that was led by Member for Mildura Peter Crisp, to push for Mildura-Maryborough rail line upgrades. Mr Crisp, the Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Development, was accompanied by Cr Erwin and the mayors from Buloke, Central Goldfields, Mildura and Yarriambiack shires last Wednesday.

Great plan for rail transport just one hitch: no trains

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

A PRIVATE investor has told a parliamentary committee one of the problems facing the government's plan to move agriculture products across the state using the rail network was a "distinct lack of trains". The Transport, Housing and Local Government Committee have been tasked with investigating options available to the agricultural and livestock industries in a bid to get them using rail instead of road. GrainX Australia CEO Chris Hood said on Monday  the only company that had the capacity to move agriculture products via rail was generally unwilling to do so. He said his Allora-based company was in a position to do so if it could get access to trains. "There is huge potential under this proposal," he said.

State government to make announcement about Ballarat rail line construction

Posted Wednesday, 16 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

AN announcement regarding the construction of a passing loop on the Ballarat train line, to be built near Ballan, is expected in the near future.  Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder said an announcement would be made soon for the project, which was a promise made by the then Liberal opposition in the lead-up to the 2010 election.  “We committed at the same time that we would build a railway station at Talbot and a passing loop at Ballan,” Mr Mulder said.

Cyclone Ita recovery: Queensland rail network under repair after category-four storm

Posted Thursday, 17 April, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

Queensland Rail says there is significant damage in the state's north after Cyclone Ita, with parts of the east coast network likely to stay closed until at least Sunday. The service between Townsville and Cairns is expected to reopen tomorrow morning, but the track between Mackay and Townsville will remain closed.

Federal government plans for airport rail line but will not build it

Posted Thursday, 17 April, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

The Abbott government will not build a train line to a new airport at Badgerys Creek, but says it wants to allow for a rail link to be easily added to a working airport later. This would mean digging tunnels for train lines and a station at the same time as runways are prepared for the airport but not using them for years. ‘‘We are very much attracted to the idea of ensuring that any work associated with the railway is incorporated in the design of an airport at Badgerys Creek,’’ federal Transport Minister Warren Truss said.

Extra V/Line services to the Clunes Booktown Festival

Posted Thursday, 17 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

V/Line will run two extra return shuttle trains from Ballarat, Creswick, Talbot and Maryborough to the Clunes Booktown Festival on Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 May, Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder announced today. “We are pleased to support one of Victoria’s key regional events that attracts around 18,000 people to central Victoria over the first weekend in May each year,” Mr Mulder said. The Booktown Festival comprises over 60 book-traders from around Australia bringing stock to the village and setting up shop for the weekend.

Why blind paralympian Bart Bunting doesn’t trust Sydney’s trains

Posted Friday, 18 April, 2014 by bevans in Cityrail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]A BLIND paralympian is warning other vision-impaired people not to trust the state’s train system after he fell out of carriage with his guide dog.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Two-time gold medallist alpine skier Bart Bunting, 37, fell two metres onto the tracks with his guide dog after staff failed to warn passengers in the first carriage that the platform was shorter than the train and they could not get off.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Mr Bunting said he opened the door of the TrainLink carriage and stepped out.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“I just sort of stepped out and dragged Chevy (his guide dog) after me,” Mr Bunting said.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The incident happened at Leura station on Friday night.[/font][/size][/color]

83 years of electric suburban rail

Posted Friday, 18 April, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

Electrical trains between Beach and Tambaram began in 1931. This April, the city’s suburban railways, as we know it, turns 83. On April 2, 1931, the first electrically-operated railway service between Madras Beach and Tambaram was launched by Sir George Fredrick Stanley, the then governor of Madras. The newly-inaugurated rail road happened to be the earliest metre gauge to be electrified in the country. It was only a month after the official inauguration that the service was opened to the public on May 11, 1931. The plan to electrify railway lines in Madras however was not new. Sir Percy Rothera, an agent of the South Indian Railways, had foreseen the need for such a service way back in 1923.

Southern NSW Rail Demand

Posted Friday, 18 April, 2014 by newsbot in Press Releases

[color=#141823][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif]From the agricultural food producers are increasing their lobbying and advocacy to extend the broad gauge into NSW and to reopen lines that have ben closed to export their agricultural commodities to Asia via Melbourne Port and Geelong as it is more cost effective and time efficient to send their produce to Melbourne and Geelong than Sydney. This will substantially increase the freight[/font][/size][/color][color=#141823][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif] rail transport through the Echuca -Toolambie and Echuca - Bendigo to Melbourne lines.[/font][/size][/color]

Marong Intermodal Freight Terminal

Posted Friday, 18 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#141823][size=2][font=Helvetica, Arial, 'lucida grande', tahoma, verdana, arial, sans-serif]The Marong Intermodal Freight Terminal proposal is to site the Terminal just outside Morong near Leichardt, so that it can operate 24hrs a day 7 days a week to provide rail and road transport for the export of agricultural and manufacturing commodities from the surrounding regions.[/font][/size][/color]

Farmers and churchmen call for rethink on Galilee Basin rail proposal

Posted Friday, 18 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

A Queensland church congregation has written an open letter to the Premier calling on the government to open up negotiations for proposed railway lines in the Galilee Basin State Development Area. In November 2013, the Queensland Government announced the Galilee Basin Development Strategy to increase the efficiency of coal mines - a key part is the proposed Galilee Basin State Development Area that seeks to establish areas for rail infrastructure. Reverend Dr David Ferguson has written an open letter on behalf of the Clermont congregation of the Uniting Church, saying his members were disappointed to see there was hardly any room for negotiations between local farmers and the Coordinator-General of the project.

Springfield rail just the ticket for commuters

Posted Saturday, 19 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

FIVE months on from the opening of the Springfield train line and the public transport extension has connected the fledgling region to south-east Queensland. The $475 million train line had long been mooted as the infrastructure investment needed to kick start Springfield and encourage long term development. That prediction seems to be coming true. Reports of strong commuter figures, increased shoppers, and in some cases enrolments in private schools are being attributed to the train line. Combined with the upgrade of the Centenary Hwy to two lanes each way, getting to and from Springfield is much easier than it was a year ago.

Tumba Rail calls for members

Posted Saturday, 19 April, 2014 by newsbot in New South Wales Rail News

TUMBA rail members are calling on anyone interested in joining the group in a voluntary capacity to contact them. In 2003 the Tumba Rail group was ensuring the preservation of the Railway Station area in Ladysmith, as well as operating railway section care on a two kilometre section of the track. Rides on this section were open to the public. The collapse of insurance companies stalled operations, but now they are back on track.

Ita leaves rail service chaos

Posted Sunday, 20 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

[color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]PASSENGERS are enduring early-morning pit stops in Mackay since rail lines have been cut between Mackay and Cairns. [color=#111111][size=2][font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]But Queensland Rail North Regional supply chain manager Michael Mitchell said rail networks between Townsville and Mackay were expected to be fully operational by tomorrow.[/font][/size][/color][/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Brisbane to Cairns and Cairns to Brisbane route had been affected by flooding since Cyclone Ita, meaning the Queensland Rail Sunlander service had only been able to reach Mackay's train station on its northbound route since Monday.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#4a4e47][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The train had been arriving at early times, such as 4.30am, in Mackay from Brisbane and then passengers had to make the switch from train to a bus for the remainder of their trip north to Cairns.[/font][/size][/color]

Environmental hurdles for airport rail link

Posted Sunday, 20 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

A rail link to Melbourne Airport would require the state government to build through several contaminated sites, acquire private land, and threaten environmentally sensitive areas - including some of ''national and state significance''. One week after Premier Denis Napthine announced that a long-awaited train line to Tullamarine would become a reality if he is re-elected in November, the government's own study has revealed the project could face a range of problems unless it is carefully managed.

Too Close To Tracks, Conductor Kicks Him In The Head

Posted Sunday, 20 April, 2014 by Katie Caboose in International Rail News

Selfie addicts take note of this cautionary video when posing for pics near large moving vehicles, realizing that if you only get kicked in the head you got off easy.

The Father of the NSW SRA XPT (Xpress Passenger Train) Former NSW Premier: Neville Wran dead at 87

Posted Sunday, 20 April, 2014 by LegendsofSteam in New South Wales Rail News

The Father of the NSW SRA XPT (Xpress Passenger Train) AKA (The eXpensive Political Toy) has died, aged 87Years after battling illness... "Nifty Nev" went to the 1976 State Election in New South Wales with a mandate to improving public transport as one of it's major policies, one of the promises of the incoming Wran State Government was to buy new rolling stock for country rail services, hence The NSW SRA XPT was born... Entering service 8 April 1982...

No ifs, no buts: Australia needs high-speed rail

Posted Monday, 21 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

High-speed rail would revolutionise interstate travel, and would also be an economic game-changer. All we need is politicians with vision This quotation from blind American educator Helen Keller is an excellent starting point for anyone thinking about building a high-speed railway (HSR) line down [url=]Australia[/url]'s east coast. At the superficial level, the project seems a challenge too large to consider undertaking. It is estimated the 1,748km line linking Brisbane and Melbourne via Sydney and Canberra would cost about $114bn in 2012 terms. However, studies have shown that for every dollar spent on HSR on the first section between Sydney and Melbourne, the project would return $2.15 in economic benefit to our nation.

Rail plans need further review

Posted Monday, 21 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

ATTENDING the Rail Revival Alliance Groups Rally at the Old Newstead Railway Station on April 6, I would like to congratulate them and the large gathering of local residents supporting the need for the return of a rail service to their town. Even to the point that they have been chasing grants to revamp the old station which is still in good condition and has escaped the vandalism of many others that have finished up ruined beyond repair.

The Moreton Bay Rail Link progress has moved into Mango Hill as major works begin on Dohles Rocks Road

Posted Monday, 21 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

[b]The Moreton Bay Rail Link is making its first visible marks on Mango Hill.[/b] Clearing works for the $1.147 billion project are making their way into Mango Hill with work now visible from Anzac Ave.

Rail map gets a rainbow update

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Melbourne's long-standing yellow-and-blue train network map is headed for the bin, to be replaced next year by a new, rainbow-coloured map aimed at making it easier for passengers to navigate around the city. But the new map, a trial version of which has been put on show at just three stations on the Frankston line and at the PTV Hub at Southern Cross Station, lacks key information such as fare zones and whether a station has car parking or a connecting tram or bus. The current Metro map, with its simple two-tone design in which yellow signifies zone one and blue zone two, has been around for several years but will be scrapped in time for the opening of the Regional Rail Link next year.

China's high-speed rail dream begins to take flight

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

[color=#1b2024][size=4][font=HelveticaNeue-75-Bold, Helvetica, Arial, 'times new roman', serif]Within just a few years, China’s 2400 km north-south spine will be linked by a giant rail network, with Hong Kong at one end, Beijing at the other, and hundreds of millions of people in between.[/font][/size][/color]

Premier Mike Baird says South-West Rail Link stations complete but commuters still waiting for trains

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by newsbot in Cityrail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]The New South Wales premier Mike Baird has announced the railway stations on Sydney's new South-West Rail Link has been finished a year ahead of schedule, but it maybe some time before commuters use them.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Premier and the Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian have toured Leppington station which they say has been completed $100 million under budget.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Along with Edmondson Park, the new stations are ready to go.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"The transformation of the south-west is close to completion," Premier Baird said.[/font][/size]

Regional rail network reopened following track repairs

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

QUEENSLAND Rail has reopened the regional network for customers from Brisbane to Cairns following the completion of track repairs from Cyclone Ita. Queensland Rail Regional Manager Supply Chain North Michael Mitchell said crews have worked tremendously to reopen the network after it was closed Townsville to Cairns, including the Kuranda Scenic Range on Friday 11 April and the line between Cairns and Mackay on Sunday 13 April. "In total we had more than 100 staff, mainly track workers out at a number of locations between Cairns to Mackay to repair approximately 1,500 metres of track, replace around 700 sleepers and 2500 tonnes of ballast," Mr Mitchell said.

Melbourne Airport joy at promised rail link to city

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

Melbourne Airport authorities have welcomed the Napthine government’s budget promise to get behind a new rail link to Southern Cross Station. “The Coalition government is undertaking the detailed design, planning and consultation work on this important project,” Dr Napthine told the Liberal Party state council last week. Melbourne Airport acting chief executive Adam Watson said the rail link would be great for Melbourne.

THE sale of the Mount Isa Rail line has been identified on a new interactive website

Posted Tuesday, 22 April, 2014 by newsbot in Queensland Rail News

THE sale of the Mount Isa Rail line has been identified on a new interactive website where Queenslanders have the opportunity to give feedback on how to wipe up to $30 billion of the state's debt. The website suggests Gladstone and Townsville ports and the Mount Isa Rail line could fetch $1.69 billion and the sale of electricity generators CS Energy and Stanwell and Ergon's retail business could raise $3 billion.

Author to visit South West Rail and Heritage Centre

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by newsbot in Western Australian Rail News

WITH many centenary commemorations of World War I being planned around the country, a West Australian author will this week be heading south to make a meaningful contribution that highlights the rail system that became a strategic and valuable form of transport for troops and farmers alike. Philippa Rogers is a historian and heritage officer and the author of Troops, Trains and Trades, a book that explores the role of railways during World War II.

Sources close to investigation claim missing Malaysia Airlines plane MH370 may have landed, not crashed

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by newsbot in Other Transport News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane may return to the possibility that the jet landed somewhere, according to latest media reports.[/b] [/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][i]The New Strait Times[/i] [url=][color=#07416c]quoted sources [/color][/url]close to the investigation saying that the failure to turn up any debris at the current southern Indian Ocean search site was causing a rethink among investigators.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The sources said that they were considering revisiting the scenario that the plane had landed at an unknown location.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]“The thought of it landing somewhere else is not impossible, as we have not found a single debris that could be linked to MH370. However, the possibility of a specific country hiding the plane when more than 20 nations are searching for it, seems absurd,” the sources said.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The sources told the paper that another possibility was that the plane had crash landed in a remote spot.[/font][/size][/color]

Hong Kong Democrats call on Ombudsman to probe high-speed rail link delay

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by newsbot in International Rail News

The Democratic Party has complained to the Ombudsman that the Highways Department has not fulfilled its responsibility to monitor the construction of a high-speed cross-border railway link. The MTR said last week that the opening date of the Hong Kong section of the high-speed line would be delayed by two years to 2017 because of a damaged tunnel-boring machine. It also said it encountered great difficulties in excavation work at the West Kowloon terminus and near the border. Secretary for Transport and Housing Professor Anthony Cheung Bing-leung said he was “totally caught by surprise” when he found out about the delay.

No public toilets for new $21m Southland train station

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Southland shopping centre's train station will have none of the bells and whistles promised by the state government while in opposition, including public toilets, and will now cost $8 million more. Premier Denis Napthine and Transport Minister Terry Mulder announced the new station, which Mr Mulder said had been promised since 1880, on Wednesday. Mr Mulder said the preliminary work would begin this year and construction in early 2015. In 2010, while campaigning in opposition, the government said it could build the station for $13 million compared with Labor's $45 million costing.

Rail corridor takes shape

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by bevans in South Australian Rail News

[color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]THE platform at the former Mount Gambier railway station will soon take on a different look as part of the next stage of the City Council's $4m rail lands redevelopment.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Construction of a large drainage basin and artificial lake is already underway following the removal of tracks and other infrastructure and burial of contaminated material.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=3][font=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The makings of a sweeping three metre wide corridor that will serve as a bike and walking path can also be seen.[/font][/size][/color]

Concerns aired over East West Link

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE Napthine Government’s own Health Department is pressing for more details on the impact of the East West Link project on local residents.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Potential for more road crashes, disruption to key public transport services and reduced ability for cycling and walking have been highlighted in the department’s submission to the project’s assessment committee.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]The $6-8 billion tunnel is a key plank of the Government’s re-election campaign, but is facing stiff political opposition from Labor, some inner-city councils and affected residents.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Relying on data provided by the Linking Melbourne Authority, the submission said there would be significant traffic impacts during construction, including closure of the Upfield rail line, disrupted tram services through Royal Park and bus services on Hoddle St.[/font][/size][/color]

Springvale level crossing and Premium Station open

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

The removal of the Springvale level crossing and the opening of a new Premium Station will greatly improve the daily commute and public safety of thousands of Melburnians travelling by bus, train or car. Premier Denis Napthine was today joined by Minister for Roads and Public Transport Terry Mulder to officially open the $159 million Springvale level crossing removal project. “This is another landmark moment in the Victorian Coalition Government’s program to reduce traffic congestion and improve public and pedestrian safety across Melbourne,” Dr Napthine said.

Double-decker trains a mistake for Sydney: O'Farrell

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

[color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Double-decker trains should not have been introduced into Sydney, says Barry O'Farrell, in comments that repudiate much of the past 40 years of rail planning in the city.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Premier was speaking at a press conference in Sydney's north-west on Monday, where his government is building an $8.3 billion train line that will never be able to accommodate double-decker trains.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"One of the decisions I think state governments got wrong decades ago was to move to double-decks, instead of matching what's happening in Paris, in London, where single-deck were retained," Mr O'Farrell said.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#333333][size=2][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"Single-deck ... can carry more people, travel more quickly, and disembark those people more quickly without people having to come down those difficult steps that exist on our double-decks and that delay people at railway stations."[/font][/size][/color]

Free public transport services for the ANZAC Day Dawn Service

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

Free buses, early morning trains and extra trams will be available for people who want to attend the ANZAC Day Dawn Service at the Shrine of Remembrance on Friday 25 April. Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder said that the Victorian Coalition Government was proud to provide these services in honour of Australia’s service men and women. “We want to encourage everyone to attend the ANZAC Day Dawn Service at the Shrine of Remembrance and show their support and appreciation for our heroes and their families,” Mr Mulder said. “Passengers can catch a free bus from 12 RSL locations across Melbourne, take a train to arrive at Flinders Street by 5.40am or catch one of the dozens of extra trams. “Rail passengers can connect with a tram or free bus along St Kilda Road to the Shrine of Remembrance.

Inland rail link given State Government priority

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Rail News

PLANS for an inland rail line linking Toowoomba to Gladstone have been labelled a priority by the State Government. The proposed rail line, which would allow the export of significant volumes of coal through the Port of Gladstone, has been strongly supported by the organisers of the Surat Basin Energy and Mining Expo. "With the rail line and other infrastructure projects currently under way or planned, including the recently approved $1.7 billion Toowoomba Range Bypass, we will see a real boost in productivity and available jobs," event director Bob Carroll said. Mr Carroll credited the developments with contributing to the region's status as an investment hotspot, with land values increasing by 8.4 per cent - the highest in Queensland.

Transforming NSW: South West Rail Link takes shape

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Cityrail News

NSW Premier Mike Baird and Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian today announced major construction has been completed at two brand new stations on Sydney’s South West Rail Link – a project which is one year ahead of schedule and $100 million under budget. Mr Baird, Ms Berejiklian and local MPs visited the site of the new Leppington Station, which along with Edmondson Park, is one of two new stations along the 11.4km South West Rail Link. “A key priority of the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government is delivering infrastructure that will transform NSW,” Mr Baird said. “The South West Rail Link is being delivered at a rapid pace, with services set to start for customers next year - 12 months ahead of schedule and $100 million under the $2.1 billion budget. “This site was just grass paddocks three years ago, and now you can see major construction of two modern and accessible stations has been completed and track has been laid for the length of the new rail line, from Glenfield to Rossmore.

The Napthine Government certainly does not govern Victoria for all Victorians

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Napthine Government can find millions of dollars to prop up commercial organisations but is hard pressed to find funds to open the Maryborough to Castlemaine rail line to benefit entire regions of Victoria and create the Regional Rail Link from Geelong to Ballarat, Maryborough, Castlemaine and Bendigo.

NSW Government introduces almost 8,000 extra weekly public transport services

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

Minister for Transport Gladys Berejiklian today announced the NSW Government had introduced almost 8,000 extra weekly public transport services since March 2011, including more than 4,700 in Sydney’s west. The extra services include hundreds of extra bus services starting in coming weeks, as the NSW Government responds to customer feedback asking for more services between major interchanges. “At the end of this month the NSW Liberals and Nations will have introduced more than 1190 extra weekly train services, 6494 extra weekly bus services and 220 extra weekly ferry services across the state since coming to Government in March 2011,” Ms Berejiklian said. “The introduction of a new integrated public transport timetable in October last year was a major catalyst for the new services, along with reduced journey times for many customers, more regular and consistent departure times and improved connections between services.” In Western Sydney there will be more than 3900 extra weekly bus services, 734 extra weekly train services and 84 extra weekly ferry services by the end of this month.

Hope for progress on Mildura-Menindee freight line

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]Proponents of a possible freight rail link from Mildura to Menindee are hoping the project will get off the ground, after more than a decade of speculation.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Victorian Government's finalising details of the proposed link from Mildura to the transcontinental rail line at Menindee.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The study's considering future freight demands in the Murray-Darling Basin and is due for release in the next couple of weeks, ahead of next month's state budget.[/font][/size]

Free Anzac Day public transport for NSW diggers

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Victor Dominello today announced free public transport to and from Anzac Day commemorations this Friday for diggers and their families. "Current and former Australian Defence Force personnel wearing their uniform or medals will be entitled to free travel to and from Anzac Day events on Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink Intercity services, Sydney Ferries, regular bus services across Sydney and light rail," Mr Dominello said. "Spouses, children or grandchildren can also travel free by displaying their medals. "Widows, widowers, their children and grandchildren carrying a letter from their local RSL branch or other ex-services organisation or the War Widow’s Gold Card will be able to travel free on these services as well," he said. Mr Dominello said the NSW Government provides free travel in recognition of the contribution of servicemen and servicewomen to our national identity and the significance of Anzac Day.

Tonsley line - Reopens

Posted Thursday, 24 April, 2014 by Michelle12 in South Australian Rail News

The $18.2m electrification, duplication and rail revitalisation works have now been completed along the Tonsley line with services resuming from Monday 5 May 2014. Tonsley passengers are encouraged to use the new 600 space Clovelly Park Park ’n’ Ride (adjacent to Clovelly Park Station) to make their travel easier and more convenient.

Rail rules: Slow or fast, train travel is the best

Posted Friday, 25 April, 2014 by bevans in Letters to the Editor

This week, I'm writing my column on the fast train from Paris to Lyon. I'm a fan of trains, especially the French TGV, which I've always found comfortable and efficient. In fact, train is my preferred mode of travel. I'd rather be on the ground than on the sea or in the air. Fast cars make me nervous. But I love the whoosh of speeding along by rail. Or even the teeth-rattling excitement of jolting through the landscape in an old train. I really feel I'm going places.

Rail hub on track to put Charlton Wellcamp on the map

Posted Friday, 25 April, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

THE team behind a $235 million rail freight and industrial hub in Charlton say they are on target to begin construction next year. InterlinkSQ will be a 200ha estate with its own customs office, manufacturing facilities and the ability to transfer road freight directly to rail. It lies adjacent to the Western Rail Route, slated for major upgrades linking Melbourne to the Port of Brisbane via Charlton.

Huge graffiti spree derails V/Line train

Posted Friday, 25 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

GRAFFITI vandals have wrecked a V/Line train carriage, spraying a huge 25m mural that will cost thousands of dollars to scrub off. Police are investigating the brazen graffiti attack on Tuesday night at Albury station, where the V/Line train was parked before travelling to Melbourne on Wednesday. V/Line chief Theo Taifalos lashed the “bored and witless people” responsible for painting the entire carriage blue and covering it with a red tag, part of which said “Rumba”. The train was driven to Melbourne on its usual 6.35am run and then taken for cleaning.

New Hope Coal plans to greatly expand its mining production in Acland

Posted Friday, 25 April, 2014 by bevans in Queensland Rail News

New Hope Coal - which owns the coal uploader at the Port of Brisbane - plans to greatly expand its mining production in Acland. Mr Dornbusch said InterlinkSQ would be vital to that expansion. The project's financial backer, former Toowoomba mayor Ross Miller, accumulated the 200ha estate piece-by-piece over the past decade and remains a director.

Stick to the facts over regional rail

Posted Friday, 25 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

I HAVE long admired those with a passion and commitment for rail, both passenger and freight. It is disappointing therefore to read the Scott Ramsay defence of Labor’s Jacinta Allan in his letter of April 7 ("Transport concerns over zoning").

Electric trains welcome boost for rail travel

Posted Saturday, 26 April, 2014 by bevans in New Zealand Rail News

One remembrance encapsulates just how much Auckland is due the electric train service that will finally roll out on the Onehunga line on Monday. It is that of Terry Scott, the managing director of Transdev, Auckland's rail operator. He recalls catching the city's present diesel trains as a schoolboy in Perth long before the fleet was sold to Auckland in the early 1990s. Subsequently, and for far too long, passengers have had to endure these 60-year-old bone-shaking hand-me-downs. All that changes on Monday, however. Aucklanders are being assured that they will be very pleasantly surprised by the comfort, quietness and speed of their new trains.

Transport Minister Dean Nalder reveals MAX light rail rethink

Posted Sunday, 27 April, 2014 by bevans in Tram and Light Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]NEW Transport Minister Dean Nalder has vowed to get Perth’s delayed $2 billion light rail back on track – saying it may be faster and “smarter” to split the project into two parts.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]In a wide-ranging interview on how to fix Perth’s congestion problem, Mr Nalder said he was investigating “breaking up” the MAX Light Rail plan.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Mr Nalder said he considered the north-south route connecting Mirrabooka with the CBD a priority ahead of the proposed east-west line between Victoria Park and Nedlands.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]He hopes staging the 22km scheme would allow construction of the Mirrabooka-CBD corridor to be brought forward “as much as possible” from 2019.[/font][/size][/color]

Deadly St Albans rail crossing to be removed

Posted Sunday, 27 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Melbourne’s deadliest level crossing, which locals say is responsible for the deaths of 16 people, will be removed under a new project announced by the state government. On Sunday morning, Premier Denis Napthine said the Coalition would remove the Main Road crossing in St Albans after allocating $200 million for the overhaul, $151 million of which will be provided the by the Federal Government, and the rest from the state with savings generated from the Regional Rail Link project. Dr Napthine said the St Albans level crossing was “undoubtedly the most dangerous level crossing in Melbourne”, and had to be abolished. “Tragically, there have been two fatalities and 39 near misses involving pedestrians since 2006,” he said.

Rail history saved

Posted Sunday, 27 April, 2014 by bevans in Northern Territory Rail News

A 90-YEAR-OLD section of the North Australian Railway (NAR) including a trestle bridge in Katherine, have been permanently protected under the Heritage Act. The decision comes after remnants of the NAR in near-by Pine Creek were declared earlier this year. Minister for Lands, Planning and the Environment Peter Chandler said it’s important to maintain a connection to our history. “The NAR was such a significant part of the Territory’s history but also our early economy,” Mr Chandler said.

Premier Mike Baird is up and away on the rail link for Badgerys Creek airport

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by bevans in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif][b][b]PREMIER Mike Baird has declared he will get on with the job of making a second Sydney airport — and the infrastructure that supports it — a reality.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]His government is already setting aside a corridor for the rail line that will eventually link the new airport with the South West Rail Link and ultimately the Western Line. The proposed route of the $5 billion line will be released for public consultation today but will not be built until after the road links and airport.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Mr Baird has set himself apart from his predecessor Barry O’Farrell’s lukewarm support for the second airport project, declaring “Hallelujah” that a decision had been made. But he said: “It’s roads first, the airport second and then rail.”[/font][/size][/color]

Heavy rail removal serves precious few

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

THE selection of Gladys Berejiklian as the new Minister for the Hunter, alongside her continuing role as Transport Minister, is a golden opportunity for shedding light on the government’s controversial decision to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on “revitalising” the Newcastle CBD through the removal of the heavy rail line and the introduction of light rail. In her time as Transport Minister Ms Berejiklian has never properly justified the need for light rail in Newcastle at the expense of the current rail service.  While the government has made many contestable claims regarding the ‘‘benefits’’ of truncating the heavy rail line, perhaps the most dubious is that the installation of light rail will improve public transport patronage.

Mr Ryan must be deluding himself if he believes a rail trail can compete with the passenger and freight economic benefits

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[color=#222222][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]Mr Ryan conveniently misinterprets my letter in his response on (April 18 in the Bendigo Advertiser) about the Regional Rail link and fails to acknowledge that he deceived the electorates between Geelong and Bendigo with his trumpeting of the Regional Rail Link. The feasibility study miraculously appeared after the election to get Mr Ryan off the hook. It is interesting to note that if Mr Ryan had a strong  and purposeful conviction and commitment in the first place about the Regional  Rail Link, one would have thought that as Minister for Regional Development, that he would have walked over hot coals to get it down.[/font][/size][/color]

Abbott Government to contribute $1.5 billion for East West Link Stage Two

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

THE Herald Sun can reveal that the Federal Government will contribute $1.5 billion to bankroll East West Link Stage Two. This doubles the Abbott Government’s commitment to the project, after contributing $1.5 billion for Stage One which the Prime Minister said would create about 3500 jobs in the construction phase. In late February, Mr Abbott said a big federal cash injection for East West Link Stage Two, which will run from CityLink to the Western Ring Rd, would fast-track the full 18km toll road “by several years”. He told Radio Gold 104 that Premier Denis Napthine had pushed hard for him to support Stage Two during a meeting.

Rail journey lines up a tour mecca

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

THE inaugural Rosewood Railfest has marked the official reopening of the historic railway between Cabanda and Kunkala stations after the popular tourist attraction was damaged during the floods. Nearly 1000 residents and visitors were treated to two days of picturesque rides on Saturday and Sunday behind Ken Biggs, a 1922 C17 class steam locomotive, and RM55 Red Fred, an historical 1930s railmotor. The restored route, departing from the Tallegalla platforms, climbed a spur of the Little Liverpool range with 180-degree view from Mt Flinders to the Great Dividing Range, allowing travellers to enjoy the sights and sounds of the authentic steam train journey which is steeped in the region's history.

Former Deputy Prime Minister, Tim Fischer, for early completion of the Geelong - Bendigo the goldfields rail link

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

[justify][color=#222222][size=3][font=Times New Roman', serif][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]Rail Revival Alliance President, Noel Laidlaw, has welcomed the generous support of former Deputy Prime Minister to the Rail Revival Alliance's push for the Geelong – Bendigo the Goldfields Rail Link.[/font][/size][/font][/size][/color][/justify] [justify][color=#222222][size=3][font=Times New Roman', serif][b][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]In an email to the Alliance this week, Mr. Fischer said[/font][/size][/b][/font][/size][/color][/justify] [justify][color=#222222][size=3][font=Times New Roman', serif][b][i][size=2][font=Calibri, sans-serif]“The Great Cross Country Rail connection from Geelong to Bendigo via Meredith, Ballarat, Maryborough and Castlemaine is all about planning smartly for the future in both rail  freight and rail passenger movement. Renewing this rail linkage will boost regional efficiency and productivity greatly. It also happens to follow the train route used by various VIPS of past years, former Premier Henry Bolte, Engineer and later US President Herbert Hoover and Author Mark Twain to name three. May this project gather momentum and come to fruition sooner than later. "[/font][/size][/i][/b][/font][/size][/color][/justify]

ARTC shuts Hunter rail line for maintenance work

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

[size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][b]The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is closing the Hunter Valley rail network for three days this week as part of its quarterly maintenance and upgrade works.[/b][/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]It is Australia's busiest rail network outside Sydney and Melbourne.[/font][/size] [size=3][font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The Hunter Valley rail network is overwhelmingly dominated by kilometre long coal trains bound for Newcastle, the largest coal port terminal in the world.[/font][/size]

The Geelong – Bendigo the Goldfields Rail Link

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

I write this paper in support of developing rail links from Bendigo to connect to Ballarat and Geelong. As seen with our rail links to both Echuca and Swanhill our small towns like Elmore and Rochester are able to use this service to access work and services in the bigger regional centres. This helps retain people in small towns and provides access to services that should be readily available to all Australians. It also facilitates jobs through tourism and provides a better and more connected lifestyle for rural and regional folk.

Push for new rail line continues at full steam

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

A TRAIN line between Bendigo and Geelong could be a vital freight and passenger corridor into the future, according to former Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer. Mr Fischer has thrown support behind the project, which is being pushed by the Rail Revival Alliance. The state government costed the project 12 months ago at between $760 million and $935 million.

Tokyo trials high-speed magnetic rail

Posted Monday, 28 April, 2014 by JimYarin in International Rail News

Japan is resuming trial runs for the world's fastest magnetic-levitation train that will complement the Shinkansen bullet-train network when ready in 2027. Central Japan Railway plans to begin work on the 5.1 trillion yen ($51 billion) maglev line between Tokyo and Nagoya as early as April. Trial runs resumed on Thursday after the company spent five years building a 24-kilometre extension of a test track. The trains can run at speeds of up to 500 kilometres per hour. The maglevs will whisk passengers to Nagoya, a city of 2.3 million people, from Tokyo in as little as 40 minutes for the 286-kilometre journey, from as short as 95 minutes now, according to JR Central. Faced with the challenge of tunneling under Tokyo's skyscrapers and Japanese Alps, the project is unlikely to be completed on time even as Japan's population is projected to shrink.

Rail calls for trucking charges to reflect road use

Posted Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 by newsbot in Rail News

The Footplate Padre is an author of 16 railway books and in several of those tomes he called for more haulage to be placed on rail due to issues such as safety and economics, and this new call is now one step further along. ([url=][/url])  The Sydney Morning Herald recently featured an article written by business reporter Matt O'Sullivan that the rail lobby has claimed in effect, that if the trucking industry was charged the reality of their road cost, so much more freight would be placed on rail. In my books all those years ago in the late 80's and early 90's, I was able to reference the Department of Transport Economics and in more recent articles, the economics associated with road accident and rehabilitation expense.

‘Sophisticated’ vandals stop City Loop train by interrupting signal equipment

Posted Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

A CITY Loop train was stopped on the tracks in a sophisticated midnight holdup by vandals at the weekend. Criminals interrupted the signal equipment to halt the Sandringham line train as part of a plan to cover carriages in spray-painted graffiti tags. Passengers waited inside the carriages for nine minutes and the train’s driver abandoned the controls while police and staff searched the tracks for the group. Metro Trains spokeswoman Leah Waymark confirmed the train was stopped for nine minutes just before midnight on Saturday.

Myki to continue beyond contract, says Public Transport Victoria

Posted Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 by newsbot in Victorian Rail News

Myki was fatally flawed from its inception almost 10 years ago, but it will live on as Melbourne’s public transport ticketing system well after the day the contract with system operator NTT Data expires in June 2016. Public Transport Victoria has confirmed to Fairfax Media that ‘‘while the term of the revised operating contract with NTT Data is until 2016, the myki system itself will operate well beyond that’’. But any further cost incurred in repairing myki’s remaining deficiencies, such as speeding up the slow response times of myki gates and readers, will be borne by the state, not the contractor, under an agreement finalised last year.

Five new train stations for South West Rail Link in Camden

Posted Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 by JimYarin in New South Wales Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif][b][b]CAMDEN commuters will finally have stations to call their own after Premier Mike Baird announced plans to extend the South West Rail Link to Narellan.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Mr Baird said yesterday the government would spend $5 billion extending the rail link from the new station at Leppington to Badgerys Creek airport via Bringelly. The plan also involves building stations at Rossmore, Bringelly, North Bringelly and as far south as Oran Park and Narellan.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]However, it could be a long wait for the new stations. The train line won’t be extended until after the roads and airport are built.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font=arial, helvetica, sans-serif]The proposal also involves reserving corridors of the South West Growth Centre for the future train line.[/font][/size][/color]

Rail station PSOs begin work

Posted Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Victorian Rail News

Police say a shortage of facilities was among the reasons why country train stations had to wait for an allocation of Protective Services Officers (PSOs). The PSOs will work their first shifts in Bendigo tonight, from 6:00pm (AEST) until the last train arrives. There are now 702 of the officers based at train stations across Melbourne, Bendigo and Ballarat and police say the feedback from commuters is generally very positive.

State budget to ramp up plans for Metro rail project

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

The Napthine government is set to ramp up plans for a metro rail tunnel in a major public transport budget pitch potentially funded by proceeds from the sale of the Port of Melbourne. In an interview ahead of next Tuesday's state budget, Treasurer Michael O'Brien has also revealed Victoria is in discussions with the Abbott government over a radical plan to help fund the second stage of the East West Link using cheap loans from the Commonwealth provided to private sector construction companies. Mr O'Brien warned Victoria had reached the limits of its ability to take on new debt, and had been in talks with the Commonwealth about funding major projects without jeopardising the state's coveted AAA credit rating.

Delays to continue after trains suspended due to fire

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by bevans in Victorian Rail News

Commuters will face further delays on major train lines in the morning peak as Metro crews work to repair damage caused by a fire next to railway tracks at Richmond station. A fire broke out in an electrical substation near Richmond station about 6.30pm on Tuesday night, affecting signalling equipment. Trains were suspended on a number of major lines for about five hours. Twelve firefighters attended the scene and brought the fire under control within an hour. Some outbound trains resumed on the Cranbourne, Frankston, Pakenham and Sandringham lines about 11pm. Buses were still replacing city-bound trains between Elsternwick and Richmond. But Metro spokeswoman Leah Waymark said fewer trains would be running on these lines until Wednesday afternoon at the earliest, as the fire had burned the "trunking where the signalling cables are housed".

Graffiti gangs stop trains full of commuters to spray carriages

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by X'Trapolis-904M in Victorian Rail News

BRAZEN graffiti gangs are holding up commuters by forcing trains to stop so they can get their spray-can kicks. The alarming trend - dubbed "in runnings", as the incidents occur when the trains are in service - involves vandals tripping signals to trigger red lights, bringing trains to a halt and giving them an opportunity to spray-paint. Metro statistics seen by the Herald Sun - after six weeks of trying to obtain them - reveal there were 518 "in runnings" last year and 531 in 2011 - up from 347 in 2010.

Allegations Bruce Moller provided inappropriate accounting advice to Queensland Rail

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by JimYarin in Queensland Rail News

[color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif][b][b]THE man who was in charge of Queensland Rail’s finances allegedly prepared multiple budgets in an apparent attempt to hide an $11.3 million revenue shortfall.[/b][/b][/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Documents lodged in the Supreme Court show former acting chief management accountant Bruce Moller had his $357,000 a year position terminated on February 20, eight days before his contract was due to expire.[/font][/size][/color] [color=#000000][size=3][font='Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]He had been stood down on full pay since September 13 during an investigation into “irregular work practices” at Queensland Rail.[/font][/size][/color]

Australia's largest coal haulage company Aurizon today announced Above Rail Volumes for the March 2014 Quarter

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by bevans in Aurizon

Australia's largest coal haulage company Aurizon today announced Above Rail Volumes for the March 2014 Quarter. Net Tonne Kilometres (NTK) growth of 19% compared to the pcp reflects increased growth in longer haul contracts in Queensland.  Intermodal volumes have increased 20% compared to the pcp principally due to volumes from new customers

Padbury Mining abandons $6.5bn Oakajee port and rail project

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by waynes in Western Australian Rail News

PADBURY Mining has been forced to abandon its botched plan to revive the $6.5 billion Oakajee port and rail project after it failed to answer the corporate regulator’s concerns about the source of the funding. The Perth-based junior explorer told the market on April 11 that it had raised 100 per cent of the equity needed to build Oakajee through an agreement with an unnamed entity, later revealed to be a company controlled by colourful Sydney business identity Roland Frank Bleyer.

Vic rail chaos may continue for third day

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by waynes in Victorian Rail News

THE disruption to Melbourne train services could continue for a third day as rail operator Metro works to install new cabling. A blaze near Richmond Station on Tuesday evening threw services into chaos for commuters, leaving thousands stranded in the CBD. Four lines were still experiencing major delays during Wednesday evening's peak hour with city loop passengers on the Frankston, Cranbourne, Pakenham and Sandringham lines being asked to travel to Flinders Street station by foot or tram. The fire damaged telecommunications equipment which controls signalling.

Rail service way off track: survey

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by waynes in Cityrail News

IT appears 73 per cent of train users are dissatisfied with their rail service as against the 17pc that are satisfied, according to a survey conducted by the Southern Tablelands Rail Users’ Group (STRUG). The survey, launched at the Lilac City Markets on Saturday April 5 and followed up at multiple venues over the following two weeks including Marulan and Bundanoon, found that 93pc of respondents were train users. Significantly, 69pc made the point they wanted to arrive in Sydney prior to 10am, the bulk of those, some 54pc, preferring a 9.30-10am arrival. Just two per cent did not mind an arrival time in Sydney beyond 10am.

ACT Liberals would stop light rail project if elected

Posted Wednesday, 30 April, 2014 by waynes in Tram and Light Rail News

Construction of Canberra's promised light rail network will stop if the ACT Liberal opposition wins the 2016 election. A key aspect of the deal that brought Labor and the Greens together to form government in 2012, construction on the $600 million-plus first stage of the network, is due to begin before voters go to the polls. But opposition transport spokesman Alistair Coe said his party would do all it could to scrutinise Capital Metro and stop further rollout if Opposition Leader Jeremy Hanson becomes chief minister. Mr Coe stopped short of saying an incoming Liberal government would tear up existing contracts or demolish already constructed infrastructure after the election.

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