Another iron ore project in SA

 
  SAR526 Chief Train Controller

Location: Adelaide, South Australia.
Need some music to accompany this idea:-
nm39

No!!!!! Never!!! Have some consideration to the fact that I grew up when songs were written by musically educated composers, and the words could actually be understood.

Let me be lulled to sleep by the clicketty clack of steel wheels passing Tumby Bay, while the dulcet sounds of 'Beautiful Dreamer' soothe my ageing ears, and my old body sinks luxuriously into the soft mattress of my roomette bed. You can keep your damned 'planes, and Birdseye's Buses as well. Give me back my trains. I'll be generous and allow you to perch on top of the ore in the second last dump wagon on the first train on the new direct line to the new port – if and when they come into existence.

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  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
Birdseye's buses now there is a memory for me! I can remember going to Port Lincoln on one leaving from Hindmarsh Square bus depot for Birdseye back then. The depot was were an arcade is now on the North Western part of the square!
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

As one of the pompous twats (only two of us admit that we are)
"SAR526"
A bit premature to concede that purely on the basis of a story in the Advertiser designed to drum up interest from investors. It hasn't, to my knowledge, appeared in any other media outlets so far - maybe Rupert Murdoch has money in the project and wants the price pushed up before cashing out?

I note that the mine will be connected to the port by a brand new direct heavy-duty line. All of our talk about upgrading the roundabout route via the existing lines and the necessary extra construction has gone out of the window. Of course such a line should be standard gauge, even though upgraded narrow gauge can carry very heavy loads, and the opportunity to do this to the light weight Eyre Peninsula system will be lost, I think forever.
"SAR526"
If the existing lines were to be used they would require a full rebuild and not just minor upgrade-in-place works. Were a full rebuild of the current lines was to be undertaken, then the choice of gauge would be worth considering afresh, instead of putting down a new narrow gauge line just because that's what was there before.

In my opinion, the best overall solution (if the mine actually happens) would be to use the current corridors but rebuilt with 25TAL standard gauge where needed for iron exports and normal mainline standards elsewhere - including to Port Lincoln. The chance to future-proof it for a potential national network connection (via the National Highway corridor from the Whyalla line to Kimba) shouldn't be passed up - and that is the one thing which a heavier narrow gauge line cannot do.

The downside of this approach is the amount of joined-up thinking required - it would require Iron Road, GWA, federal and state governments to all work together, even ARTC would need to be involved regarding safeguarding of a future link from the Whyalla line via the National Highway corridor towards Kimba.

It begs the question however – will  there have to be another such port much further northwards, i.e. Point Lowly, if the large northern deposits are to be exported through South Australia? The proposed new port at Point Hardy is a long way from Whyalla if standard gauge connection is envisaged, though it has the advantage that its location is in protected waters and is not a huge detour from the existing shipping routes.
"SAR526"
Both locations are in the protected waters of Spencer Gulf. A major point in favour of Cape Hardy over Point Lowly is that it is in a wider part of Spencer Gulf - capesize vessels require a lot of room to manoeuvre and to do this at Point Lowly would probably necessitate the expensive establishment and operation of a Traffic Separation Scheme. That alone could make it worth accepting the train journeys being a couple of hours longer, and not any more circuitous than any other major rail corridor on the national network to the south or east of Crystal Brook.
  awsgc24 Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney


In my opinion, the best overall solution (if the mine actually happens) would be to use the current corridors but rebuilt with 25TAL standard gauge where needed for iron exports and normal mainline standards elsewhere - including to Port Lincoln. The chance to future-proof it for a potential national network connection (via the National Highway corridor from the Whyalla line to Kimba) shouldn't be passed up - and that is the one thing which a heavier narrow gauge line cannot do.
justapassenger


New lines in WA leading to Geraldton (and the suspended Oakajee project) are being built Dual Gauge or Dual Capable. There is no problem mixing SG and NG, and both WA and QLD have plenty of experience with same.

This would be the most flexible of all possible schemes.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

I doubt that building hundreds of kilometres of new dual gauge track would be cheaper than building it just as standard gauge and doing the extra 70km or so to Port Lincoln. Doing the whole lot is by far the most flexible option, every location on the line gets connected without any need to faff around with bogie exchanges, and the Iron Road rolling stock gets access to Port Lincoln's already operating depot for heavy maintenance.

The difference between WA and Eyre Peninsula is that WA actually has a narrow gauge network instead of just one Y-shaped line.
  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
A bit premature to concede that purely on the basis of a story in the Advertiser designed to drum up interest from investors. It hasn't, to my knowledge, appeared in any other media outlets so far - maybe Rupert Murdoch has money in the project and wants the price pushed up before cashing out?
justapassenger

Good conspiracy theory re Murdoch, but company put out a press release on 7/4/2014 which has been picked up mining journals and local newspapers. But I would concur it is just another ruse to drum up support from would be investors.

I would have thought it a lot less bother to just send out a few e-mails claiming to be a Nigerian prince.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

Good conspiracy theory re Murdoch, but …
"bingley hall"
I then remembered that successfully managing to sell Rupert Murdoch an investment that bad would probably have an ending involving concrete shoes and the nearest significant waterway. This one would be more suited to Clive Palmer or maybe even Nathan Tinkler if the bailiffs haven't caught up yet.
  mrjones Station Master

There is a lot of scuttlebutt around work at the moment re a line between Iron Knob and Kimba, whether this means Arrium is looking at Wilcherry again or is looking to share their port and lines I have yet to clarify.

The Iron Knob line upgrade tender process is in full swing and one company didn't do itself any favours by having one of it's reps barred from entering the Knob because of a failed breath test. Laughing
  ANDL36Y Train Controller

Good conspiracy theory re Murdoch, but company put out a press release on 7/4/2014 which has been picked up mining journals and local newspapers. But I would concur it is just another ruse to drum up support from would be investors.

I would have thought it a lot less bother to just send out a few e-mails claiming to be a Nigerian prince.
bingley hall


I'm not aware of the level of knowledge people on Railpage or other expert forums have of this project or the commitment of its backers but I will say it's kept a few of us local South Aussies in employment for the last few years.

Somebody IS serious about it. But they're not Nigerian.
  Pressman Spirit of the Vine

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me
I'm not aware of the level of knowledge people on Railpage or other expert forums have of this project or the commitment of its backers but I will say it's kept a few of us local South Aussies in employment for the last few years.

Somebody IS serious about it. But they're not Nigerian.
"ANDL36Y"


It's keeping a few employed where I work too, and the 'not Nigerians' we are dealing with are based in an eastern australian state.
  ANDL36Y Train Controller

It's keeping a few employed where I work too, and the 'not Nigerians' we are dealing with are based in an eastern australian state.
Pressman


In Adelaide you only have to travel down Currie Street to see the named 'Iron Road' building for a clue...

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