Re-opening the Cobram line to Passenger Traffic

 
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Mike - swapping the XPT for a SG V/Line train to Wagga is hardly "regional rail expansion" - the service already exists albeit run by a different operator!!! Completely inappropriate to use that as a comparison to re-opening a rail service to Tocumwal and I suspect that with a bit of afterthought you might well agree!

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  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
BTW, here's some over the top dreaming Smile

If the Goulburn Valley line was converted to standard gauge and the line between Tocumwal and Narranderra was fixed up, you could run a train from Melbourne to Griffith rather than a bus! Smile
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Mike - swapping the XPT for a SG V/Line train to Wagga is hardly "regional rail expansion" - the service already exists albeit run by a different operator!!! Completely inappropriate to use that as a comparison to re-opening a rail service to Tocumwal and I suspect that with a bit of afterthought you might well agree!
"Ballast_Plough"


However the catchment will still be in NSW, and some minimalist posters in particular have an anti-NSW bias, for whatever personal reasons.

My point is, I'm an expansionist.

We are all aware that expanded rail services increase the patronage on any given service. IE buses do NOT attract Joe Average to travel by PT unless it's a necessity, however when a train is provided, it's been proven over and over to governments of both persuasions that the pax will give the train the nod, the stats prove it, and the anti-expansionists lose their credibility.

Wait till later today when that same mob rant about a Vline proposal to extend services to Wagga  ExclamationRolling Eyes

If the patronage warrants it, and Griffith appears to be a service that's grown substantially in recent years, then why should I not support increasing the regional rail network for V/line services to Tocumwal Question

Some posters show obvious bias in their rantings against any expansion of regional rail, yet they won't state why they have this bias Exclamation

IMO it's because they are pro-investment in Melbourne PT, and their narrow minds think a dollar spent on regional rail is a dollar less that can be spent on their precious suburban PT services.

Mike.

 
  ZH836301 Chief Commissioner

Location: BleakCity
Probably the same posters (search is our friend) who still maintain extending pax services to Ararat and the RFR was waste of precious $$ that could have been spent on their beloved sparks.
"Mikelander"

One-track mind Mikelander strikes again - it's all or nothing.

Can't see that a regional trunk has slightly more importance than a dead end branch?

As for Griffith, Melbourne is the main city for visits to doctors and other professional services. Particularly as the boomers get older and require specialist services and it's too far to drive, patronage can only increase further.

Will the anti-regional rail expansion pressure group also campaign against Vline services to Wagga once the standard gauge is completed
"Mikelander"

Yes - if the northerners don't like it, they can pay the full cost, or secede.

We are all aware that expanded rail services increase the patronage on any given service. IE buses do NOT attract Joe Average to travel by PT unless it's a necessity, however when a train is provided, it's been proven over and over to governments of both persuasions that the pax will give the train the nod, the stats prove it, and the anti-expansionists lose their credibility.
"Mikelander"

Show me the stats - for most people making long trips the train isn't even a consideration

IMO it's because they are pro-investment in Melbourne PT, and their narrow minds think a dollar spent on regional rail is a dollar less that can be spent on their precious suburban PT services.
"Mikelander"

Again, no substance.

Don't just say this line of thinking is wrong, actually tell me why it is wrong.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Best to distinguish between anti - expansionists (!) and devils advocates. I fall in the latter category because whilst I would love to see rail services return to something like the 1950's - 1960's, I'm also pragmatic enough not to get swamped in the romantic entanglements that this involves. As I said, would love to see lines re-open everywhere but unfortunately these days, every thing is driven by the mighty $. Consider the worked example:

Restore rail service to Tocumwal:

- Upgrade of track to something that can run faster than 60 kmh - $ lots.
- Purchase of suitable rolling stock - $ lots.
- Allowance for fare subsidy - keep in mind that V/Line revenue is about 10% of it's costs.

Restore bus service to Tocumwal:

- Buy maybe 2 buses - $ fair bit.
- Incrememental cost of a few drivers - $ average amount.

If the required numbers can be moved by bus, I can kinda guess where the decision path is going.

Regarding the comments that re-instate the trains brings back more passengers - isn't that a case of the tail wagging the dog? I thought the normal process flow is that people need to travel from A to B - how can we achieve that? You're sort of saying lets provide the solution and see if we can make the problem big enough to justify the solution.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p

Show me the stats - for most people making long trips the train isn't even a consideration
"ZH836301"


If people can afford it, planes will be the preferred option. Rex have a Griffth - Melbourne service for $135. Yes it's more expensive than V/Line, but some people would probably pay for the speed of flying rather than spend 7 hours travelling.

Alternatively, you can just drive. The roads are quite good between Melbourne and Griffith. Most people would probably take the view that if they are going to be on the road anyway, they would rather be in their own vehicle than sharing a bus with ferals.
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned
Best to distinguish between anti - expansionists (!) and devils advocates. I fall in the latter category because whilst I would love to see rail services return to something like the 1950's - 1960's, I'm also pragmatic enough not to get swamped in the romantic entanglements that this involves. As I said, would love to see lines re-open everywhere but unfortunately these days, every thing is driven by the mighty $. Consider the worked example:

Restore rail service to Tocumwal:

- Upgrade of track to something that can run faster than 60 kmh - $ lots.
- Purchase of suitable rolling stock - $ lots.
- Allowance for fare subsidy - keep in mind that V/Line revenue is about 10% of it's costs.

Restore bus service to Tocumwal:

- Buy maybe 2 buses - $ fair bit.
- Incrememental cost of a few drivers - $ average amount.

If the required numbers can be moved by bus, I can kinda guess where the decision path is going.

Regarding the comments that re-instate the trains brings back more passengers - isn't that a case of the tail wagging the dog? I thought the normal process flow is that people need to travel from A to B - how can we achieve that? You're sort of saying lets provide the solution and see if we can make the problem big enough to justify the solution.
"Ballast_Plough"


Quote from todays age Kenneth Davidson.

“The fringe benefits tax concession on private use of company cars costs some $2 billion a year. It should be scrapped and the savings used to cut income taxes or, even better, improve public transport.”

Do you have a company car that I pay for Mr Plough?

Also when the railways where one Freight paid for Passenger services so perhaps we should consider this next time we Vote.
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned

Show me the stats - for most people making long trips the train isn't even a consideration
"ZH836301"


If people can afford it, planes will be the preferred option. Rex have a Griffth - Melbourne service for $135. Yes it's more expensive than V/Line, but some people would probably pay for the speed of flying rather than spend 7 hours travelling.

Alternatively, you can just drive. The roads are quite good between Melbourne and Griffith. Most people would probably take the view that if they are going to be on the road anyway, they would rather be in their own vehicle than sharing a bus with ferals.
"VRfan"


Don't forget the Carbon Footprint!
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic

Do you have a company car that I pay for Mr Plough?
"luznug"


Not in my drive last time I checked Mr. Luznug
  NottaGunzel Banned

Location: Banned
[quote="The Vinelander"][quote="NottaGunzel"][quote="ZH836301"]Don't ask Mikelander to substantiate his rhetoric with fact - that would eliminate his hilarious posts entirely[/quote]


Why not ?

It's even more entertaining to watch him try

Maybe he can get together with Wilfy - now that would be a "Double Act" worth paying to see

Over to you Mr. "How Many Percent" Mike "Big On Rhetoric" Lander

[/quote]

[quote] [color=darkblue] Obviously over 100% Exclamation

On some scheduled services, if you have 1 bus, then add a second bus, because the first is full, then on occasion add a taxi or 2, because the second bus is also full, obviously there has to be an over a 100% pax increase Rolling Eyes [/quote]

On one day of the bloody week - and the provision of a second bus on Sundays , in all probabilty , was always anticipated ! So it's certainly NOT 100%



[quote]My point is some posters are obsessed with not expanding regional rail. [/quote]

And some are over-obsessed with expanding it regardless of cost Rolling Eyes


[quote]I'll stand by, and be vindicated at some point in the not too distant future, by my argument regarding the Mildura line unless it's killed stone dead by the government.[/quote]

Now this is a good one ( even for Mikelander ) - Mike WILL BE vindicated in the "not to distant future" - unless they decide not to do it ! ConfusedConfused


[quote]Will the anti-regional rail expansion pressure group also campaign against Vline services to Wagga once the standard gauge is completed Question

Perhaps the anti pax posters could stand at Albury station with protest banners, objecting to Vline trains travelling north-bound beyond Albury Question [/quote]

An Anti-Regional Rail Expansion Group ShockedShocked Not quite Mike - just folks who would like a little more justification than sightings of TWO Buses on a Sunday before many millions are spent on a dead-end Branch Line. Rolling Eyes

There must be a balancing of views and Mikelander's OVER-OBSESSIONS need to closely questioned - especially since there are folks on here who fall for the trap of accepting outlandish comments and statements as fact Rolling EyesRolling EyesRolling Eyes

Mikelander certainly has a passion - unfortunately he does not have the same passion for sound and reasoned decision-making. SadSadSad


[/color][/quote]
  NottaGunzel Banned

Location: Banned
[quote="The Vinelander"]
[color=darkblue] However the catchment will still be in NSW, and some minimalist posters in particular have an anti-NSW bias, for whatever personal reasons.

My point is, I'm an expansionist.

[quote]We are all aware that expanded rail services increase the patronage on any given service. IE buses do NOT attract Joe Average to travel by PT unless it's a necessity, however when a train is provided, it's been proven over and over to governments of both persuasions that the pax will give the train the nod, the stats prove it, and the anti-expansionists lose their credibility.[/quote]

Especially in Senior's Week Shocked

[quote]Wait till later today when that same mob rant about a Vline proposal to extend services to Wagga ExclamationRolling Eyes [/quote]

Am I part of that mob Mike Question

[quote]If the patronage warrants it, and Griffith appears to be a service that's grown substantially in recent years, then why should I not support increasing the regional rail network for V/line services to Tocumwal Question[/quote]

But it does nothing to change the alleged "multi-busload problems ex-Griffith"

[quote]Some posters show obvious bias in their rantings against any expansion of regional rail, yet they won't state why they have this bias Exclamation [/quote]

I assume you include me in this group of posters allegedly biased against regional Rail Expansion Question
Why do I have this (alleged ) bias Question
I'll tell you Mike - I'll state it here and now Exclamation

It's because I don't jump in the deep-end and make ridiculous assertions without questioning closely - it's a practice you would do well to adopt rather than wanting to commit tens of millions of dollars simply because a few Griffith residents have to catch a bloody bus for 45 minutes longer than they would have to if the train went to Tocumwal 8)

You call it bias - I call it [b]sound and responsible Management Practice[/b]

[quote]
IMO it's because they are pro-investment in Melbourne PT, and their narrow minds think a dollar spent on regional rail is a dollar less that can be spent on their precious suburban PT services.[/quote]

Nothing of the sort - just some more emotional rubbish. As Gordon Ramsey would say you're just piling Crap on Crap on Crap. RazzRazz

[/color][/quote]
  dalts 1985 Banned

Location: Banned
BTW, here's some over the top dreaming Smile

If the Goulburn Valley line was converted to standard gauge and the line between Tocumwal and Narranderra was fixed up, you could run a train from Melbourne to Griffith rather than a bus! Smile
"VRfan"


I was actually thinking the same thing, but wasn't willing to have a "People this person is insane, they must be locked up & reeducated" tag placed around my neck.

The other thing here, is it provides a secondary artirial line to Melb. also...
  NottaGunzel Banned

Location: Banned
BTW, here's some over the top dreaming Smile

If the Goulburn Valley line was converted to standard gauge and the line between Tocumwal and Narranderra was fixed up, you could run a train from Melbourne to Griffith rather than a bus! Smile
"VRfan"


I was actually thinking the same thing, but wasn't willing to have a "People this person is insane, they must be locked up & reeducated" tag placed around my neck.

The other thing here, is it provides a secondary artirial line to Melb. also...
"dalts 1985"


It is indeed visionary and , whilst it may be "over the top dreaming" , a secondary arterial access to Melbourne primarily for freight would be an asset.

Similarly , Ouyen / Pinnaroo could provide the same for East-West Traffic.

I often read comments on here regarding the unreliability of services due to lack of infrastructure. The recent derailment @ Pura Pura crippled East/West traffic for about a week because there was NO Alternative route unless you call vis Sydney / Broken Hill an alternative  Rolling Eyes Similarly , the Benalla Derailment had the same effect with North/South Traffic.

As for "fixing up" Tocumwal/Narrandera - I don't think there's anything to fix up is there ? Hasn't the track been lifted  Question

Infrastructure is what it's all about  Idea

Far better than spending tens of millions of $$$ on a dead-end Branch Line purely for Passenger purposes of questionable viability !
  dalts 1985 Banned

Location: Banned
As for "fixing up" Tocumwal/Narrandera - I don't think there's anything to fix up is there Question Hasn't the track been lifted  Question
"NottaGunzel"


Only parts of it, mostly in the section Toc. - Jerilderie, plus a small section, just outside Jerilderie's outskirts heading to Narrandera...
Still, from what I've seen of it (I travel the Newell Highway along side this line, twice a year heading to Dubbo) it would need a mass rebuild, the timber trestle bridge over the Murrumbidgee River on the outshirts of Narrandera will need to be replaced, the part over the Sturt Highway to Hay no longer stands, it was removed years ago & the dip in the road has been filled back to normal height again.
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned

Do you have a company car that I pay for Mr Plough?
"luznug"


Not in my drive last time I checked Mr. Luznug
"Ballast_Plough"


Sorry that stab in the dark did not work out.
But most posts regarding $$ wasted never bring in the full econmic costs of roads.
B doubles cause $30,000 worth of damage yet cost 0ne fifth of that to register.
The sooner all vehicles are fitted with GPS so you pay for the amount of miles the vehicle travels just like Rail has too.
So maybe you should look to 2020-2030 rather then 1950-1960's
We all have a right to Travel safely around Australia no matter how much money we make and Rail is that safe way.
Catching a train to Toch would be much more appealing than a Bus and driving is only getting more expensive, dangerous and dirty so please look to the future not Howards 50's because thats when roads where the way of the future and look where its got us now.
  Sir Thomas Bent Minister for Railways

Location: Banned
Mikelander: I have a "bias against regional rail" as I have looked at the history of the VR and have done so without rose-coloured glasses, and quite frankly the history of regional passenger travel is littered with discreet pork-barrelling as a passenger service, nor did any expansion of "rail services increase the patronage on any given service".  


The pass service to Tocumwal was underpatronised in the 1960's and less so in the 1980's when it went to Cobram.  I can cite - and did cite - a report that was written in 1985 stating this.

It is not a bias to metropolitan services - there are quite a few metro services that I think are equally stupid.

It is not a case of "looking to the 1950's and 1960's" - the simple fact is that there are more sensible ways that are more cost-effective to haul people than trains in some instances and the historical record backs this one up.

As well, the carbon difference between a 44-seater bus (NOT a truck - a truck rarely hauls large numbers of people, and Tocumwal has a good freight service) and a railmotor AND a loco-hauled pass with actual cites and references would be interesting.
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned
Does anyone have a soul or do you need reports and statistics to remind you.
The sooner we have a social aware Government and not Bean Counters running the show peoples health will come first.
Also if Tocumwal has a good freight service why will it cost Millions to return Pass Services.
Nothing is more uncomfortable then a Bus but just keep throwing all these records around Deep Throat because the reality is Rail's comfort, speed and safety is a reality.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p

Only parts of it, mostly in the section Toc. - Jerilderie, plus a small section, just outside Jerilderie's outskirts heading to Narrandera...
Still, from what I've seen of it (I travel the Newell Highway along side this line, twice a year heading to Dubbo) it would need a mass rebuild, the timber trestle bridge over the Murrumbidgee River on the outshirts of Narrandera will need to be replaced, the part over the Sturt Highway to Hay no longer stands, it was removed years ago & the dip in the road has been filled back to normal height again.
"dalts 1985"


I wasn't aware any of it had been lifted. However, the whole line would probably need a substantial re-sleepering (if not all sleepers) and ballasting program, and of course there's the bridge at Narranderra which would probably need replacing, plus IIRC there were a few other timber bridges that would probably need alot of work. Like I said, an over the top dream Wink

However, with that being said, if the line was re-opened and it was standardised south of the border, it would give an alternative route to Sydney for freight.
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned

Show me the stats - for most people making long trips the train isn't even a consideration
"ZH836301"


If people can afford it, planes will be the preferred option. Rex have a Griffth - Melbourne service for $135. Yes it's more expensive than V/Line, but some people would probably pay for the speed of flying rather than spend 7 hours travelling.

Alternatively, you can just drive. The roads are quite good between Melbourne and Griffith. Most people would probably take the view that if they are going to be on the road anyway, they would rather be in their own vehicle than sharing a bus with ferals.
"VRfan"


TheAge

Virgin Blue spokeswoman Heather Jeffery said all airlines were hurting.

"We've said before we don't believe any airline model can remain profitable with jet fuel at $170 a barrel. Airlines can't continue to absorb fuel costs at these levels," she said. "We have a strategic review meeting next week and plans to mitigate our fuel bill are high on the list."

Its a bright a sunny climate changing day with quotes like these.
GO RAIL GO RAIL.
  NottaGunzel Banned

Location: Banned
Does anyone have a soul or do you need reports and statistics to remind you.
The sooner we have a social aware Government and not Bean Counters running the show peoples health will come first.
Also if Tocumwal has a good freight service why will it cost Millions to return Pass Services.
Nothing is more uncomfortable then a Bus but just keep throwing all these records around Deep Throat because the reality is Rail's comfort, speed and safety is a reality.
"luznug"



A soul ?????

Mate - ya gotta be kiddin' - ya must be jokin'  QuestionQuestionQuestion

I'll throw it straight back at you  Idea

Haven't you got a scrap of good old fashioned COMMON SENSE  QuestionQuestion

As for the costs - it's a bit of a Goat Track and if you're so concerned with safety you'll be only too aware of the need to upgrade the track to an acceptable level  --  and it is far from acceptable at present.

But no - stuff the economics - stuff the cost - re-instating the train to Tocumwal will make Luznug's Soul feel warm and fuzzy !

Get in the REAL WORLD !
  dalts 1985 Banned

Location: Banned

Show me the stats - for most people making long trips the train isn't even a consideration
"ZH836301"

If people can afford it, planes will be the preferred option. Rex have a Griffth - Melbourne service for $135. Yes it's more expensive than V/Line, but some people would probably pay for the speed of flying rather than spend 7 hours travelling, via a combo of Roadcoach/Train Service.
"VRfan"


An example is hereby given of how the ever increasing sky-rocketing fuel prices, are affecting the airline industry:


The Age

Virgin Blue spokeswoman Heather Jeffery said all airlines were hurting.

"We've said before we don't believe any airline model can remain profitable with jet fuel at $170 a barrel. Airlines can't continue to absorb fuel costs at these levels," she said. "We have a strategic review meeting next week and plans to mitigate our fuel bill are high on the list.
"The Age: Thurs. 29 May 2008"


Its a bright a sunny climate changing day with quotes like these.
GO RAIL GO RAIL
.
"luznug"


Firstly I think Rex has actually cancelled it's "New" Melb. - Griffth Air Services, due to the servere polit shortage they are expereincing with Rex losing most of it's polits to JetStar & Virgin Blue of late...

Secondly, what makes you all think, that rail is also not feeling the pinch of high fuel prices also... Diesel after all, is currently more expenseive then Petrol or even LPG...

Sure I realise in the grand scheme of things, a 1500m Super freighter travelling the Melb. - Syd. corridoor wipes close to 100 Semi's off the adjacent Hume Highway, making it more safer for the general motorist to travel this highway & delivers mass savings in GreenHouse CO2 Gas emissions ect, but Rail, still faces the same operating costs, fuel wise on a slightly lower scale to that of the road industy & private motoring industry...

As a closing point: I doubt even electrifying the Melb. - Syd. line, would cut these operating costs, as the power to supply the overhead power source still has to come from somewhere... Not to meanton each operator having to acquire new Electric Traction to run on the now electricifed line
  pollyclown Station Master

its like the dodo.............
  Sir Thomas Bent Minister for Railways

Location: Banned
Does anyone have a soul or do you need reports and statistics to remind you.
The sooner we have a social aware Government and not Bean Counters running the show peoples health will come first.
"luznug"
By the calibre of your posts directed toward me, this government needs to spend more on mental health coming first.
Also if Tocumwal has a good freight service why will it cost Millions to return Pass Services.
"luznug"
Because to incrementally improve line speed to make the service attractive to people would require a rebuild of the line from the ground up, with new sleepers/new ballast/newer alignments, replacement of platform structures, new rails... Just to support a pass service that was servicing less than 1000 people a year.  And was connecting with a railmotor that was the smallest the VR had. When the money could be spent on better using rail where it is needed for larger numbers of people better.  I'd rather see Shepparton-Melbourne at 130km/h-160km/h than Tocumwal-Shepparton at 115.
Nothing is more uncomfortable then a Bus but just keep throwing all these records around Deep Throat because the reality is Rail's comfort, speed and safety is a reality.
"luznug"
Damn, those facts getting in the way of a good story
  NottaGunzel Banned

Location: Banned
Does anyone have a soul or do you need reports and statistics to remind you.
The sooner we have a social aware Government and not Bean Counters running the show peoples health will come first.
"luznug"



By the calibre of your posts directed toward me, this government needs to spend more on mental health coming first.
"Deep Throat"



Not a bad idea Deep Throat  Very HappyVery Happy

He sounds like a "Social Worker" - or in need of one  Rolling Eyes

I was thinking someone may have left the gate open  LaughingLaughing
  luznug Banned

Location: Banned
Hmm if I am a social worker does that make most post here from undertakers?
Here are some more statistics and records,

http://www.caradvice.com.au/2852/road-toll-statistics-australia-getting-worse/

But when has the truth ever been a good story.

P.S I am not directing posts at you Deep Throat it just getting my views out for the Universe to judge.
God Blees The Rail Pager’s

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