Community takes fight for rail to the Supreme Court
Rail corridor between Glenfield and Macarthur earmarked for medium density
Rail Trail boost to tourism - and local economy
Newcastle rail case may be long wait
Save Our Rail questions semantics argument over rail line cut
North West Rail Link corridor to extend through to Marsden Park
Camurra West to Weemelah Line Booked Out of Use
Rail Trail full steam ahead
John Holland Commissions Electronic Train Orders
Closure of Newcastle rail stations not technically a closure of whole line, State Government lawyer says
The Maitland-Newcastle rail line could be saved if Novocastrians understood the massive impact the state government's plan to stop the railway at Wickham will have on motorists, transport advocate Rick Banyard saidMr Banyard said Newcastle residents had not been informed about the dire consequences they would face when the line is truncated west of Wickham.
Mr Banyard said Newcastle residents had not been informed about the dire consequences they would face when the line is truncated west of Wickham.
He said cutting the line west of Wickham, building a makeshift station and operating buses from Station Street would create traffic chaos on Stewart Avenue, Station Street, and Railway Street and have a flow-on effect in Beaumont Street.
Mr Banyard said Stewart Avenue would face increased buses transporting commuters from the new station to the CBD and a large number of pedestrians crossing the avenue - especially in peak hour - which would disrupt traffic flow more than the existing rail line.
He said more trains would pass through Beaumont Street to park at Broadmeadow because there was no room at Wickham and more motorists would use the street because of the increased bus and pedestrian volumes on Stewart Avenue.
He said a percentage of rail commuters would opt to catch the train at Hamilton, which would put extra pressure on parking spaces.
Mr Banyard said Beaumont Street was the third most dangerous rail crossing in NSW according to the Australian Level Crossing Assessment Model and increased traffic volumes across the street would see its closure to remove the risk of potential collisions.
"There are 12,000 cars on that street every day - they would have to build an overpass to keep the street open and there is no room for that and it would be too costly," he said.
Mr Banyard said a report by technology consultants AECOM, which was released in November 2010, recommended the truncation of the line but warned a traffic study of the impacts of the closure had to be done.
He said Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian discovered the study had not been undertaken last month prior to Premier Barry O'Farrell's scheduled announcement of the truncation of the line at Wickham.
Mr Banyard said the announcement was then put on hold and a rushed traffic study on vehicle volumes on the affected roads had been conducted in the past two weeks. "There is no benefit for Stewart Avenue in this plan - its the main thoroughfare for motorists and while they are frustrated at waiting for the trains to pass through now, the closures will be more frequent because of the pedestrians and buses," he said.
Ms Berejiklian would not confirm if she had seen the traffic study but did say the state government believed the future of the rail line needed to be considered as part of a broader examination of the CBD and its future.
She also said it was clear that the future of the line was an issue that generated community interest.
This article first appeared on www.maitlandmercury.com.au
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2021 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.