The Inland Railway - For Better or Worse

 
  electrax Assistant Commissioner

M Mitchell, Railway Digest, v52, n7, July 2014; pp32-38.

A look at some of the significant differences between alternative approaches to the Melbourne - Brisbane inland railway project.

Sponsored advertisement

  M636C Minister for Railways

While I understand the addtional efficiencies to be gained by using US Domestic track standards, there isn't anyone prepared to pay for the bare bones ARTC version, let alone a more expensive version.

While many trains are scheduled to run Melbourne to Brisbane and vice versa, most of them carry traffic for Brisbane - Sydney and Melbourne - Sydney and vice versa.

The inland route would only carry traffic for the full journey and the trains might look a bit sparser than they do now.

M636C
  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
Maybe people need to ask themselves about the road routes and priority .
Wind back the calendar to the day where the Hume and Pacific highways were goat tracks most of the way and the "direct" inland road route probably wasn't flash either .
Now discuss whether making a better route would be more beneficial on the coast (present Hume/Pacific) or the inland highway ...
Given that the needs of the many (potential election winners) outweigh anything else ...

Discuss .
  M636C Minister for Railways

Maybe people need to ask themselves about the road routes and priority .
Wind back the calendar to the day where the Hume and Pacific highways were goat tracks most of the way and the "direct" inland road route probably wasn't flash either .
Now discuss whether making a better route would be more beneficial on the coast (present Hume/Pacific) or the inland highway ...
Given that the needs of the many (potential election winners) outweigh anything else ...

Discuss .
BDA

Certainly even I was surprised to see the two tunnel mouths just inland from Byron Bay and the fact that a substantial portion of the mountain range has been moved elsewhere.

But the real question is whether there will be a need for either rail route once the four lane divided highway runs all the way from Sydney to Brisbane. And that day is closer than you think.

It runs from Brisbane (or Cooroy if you are coming from further north) to Byron Bay and from Port Macquarie to Raymond Terrace already. It isn't far across the Hexham Swamp to the Sydney -Newcastle Freeway although there is no sign of work on that section yet.

The Woolgoolga bypass north of Coffs Harbour is complete if not fully opened yet. The extent of the parallel roads in that area has to be seen to be believed.

My recollection is that the Inland Railway went through every National Party electorate in NSW, but not even they are offering to pay for it.

M636C
  MD Chief Commissioner

Location: Canbera
How many of the existing MB , BM trains carry Sydney loading?
Looking at ARTCs current timetables for these trains, they all seem to stop in Sydney for several hours.
Is this to pick up , drop off loading, or for other reasons.
If so, then there seems to be zero market for Melbourne to Brisbane direct trains.
  K-Class Chief Train Controller

Location: Melbourne
How many of the existing MB , BM trains carry Sydney loading?
Looking at ARTCs current timetables for these trains, they all seem to stop in Sydney for several hours.
Is this to pick up , drop off loading, or for other reasons.
If so, then there seems to be zero market for Melbourne to Brisbane direct trains.
MD

All Brisbane to Melbourne trains must stop at Sydney to refuel due to the restrictions on fuel loading through Sydney.

Since they are stopping to refuel anyway most if not all MB/BM services take this opportunity to add/remove containers that are only going for half the trip.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

Melbourne is by far the largest container port in Australia and the heart of the nation's largest manufacturing and processing hub. The majority of freight moving by rail into Queensland originates in Melbourne and relatively little comes out of Sydney. Much of the southbound interstate freight out of North Queensland also goes to Melbourne, not Sydney. In short, the main East Coast rail freight market is Melbourne to Brisbane (and further north)...the shorter and/or smaller hauls from Melbourne to Sydney and Sydney to Brisbane have already been mostly lost to road.
  mikesyd Chief Commissioner

Location: Lurking
Yes, Melbourne to Sydney especially is far more favourable for Road Freight now that the last town (Holbrook) has been bypassed. The trip from CBD to CBD can be done in under 10 hours driving time, with a Speed Limit of 110 from around Craigeburn to Liverpool. Passing through Albury on the Freeway beside the railway is a depressing sight - a deserted Albury Yard (some of which contributed to the Freeway alignment it seems). I did the northbound trip about 4 weeks ago on a weekday, and on the section from about Violet Town to Table Top where the Railway is about 75% visible, did not see one train (of course I may have missed them in the 25%).

So trucks can deliver door to door in about 10 hours (it seems the 100kmh limit for trucks has been quietly removed too - overtaking a B-Double at 110 in pouring rain is like driving through a car wash!!) - rail is probably 24 hours or more by the time that they deliver to Dynon/Chullora, plus loading time etc, then the same at the other end, not to mention that it is about 120km longer as well.

A truck with two drivers would be able to do Melbourne to Brisbane in about 24 hours via the "Inland Highway" - the Newell, which is also 110 (two lanes!) in many places.

Of course, the Governments have poured a few Billion into the Hume and other highways over the last decade - rail has got how much for the related lines?
  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
Incorrect , NRs can make Brisbane out of Melbourne on one full tank of fuel . Ruling Grades north bound allow 1300T/NR and just under 1200T southbound on the east coast corridor .
Largest consumer market in Australia is in the semi circle taking in Newcastle Sydney Wollongong or NSW for short .

Sponsored advertisement

Subscribers: K-Class, Pressman, wurx

Display from:   

Quick Reply

We've disabled Quick Reply for this thread as it was last updated more than six months ago.