A modified timetable is temporarily in place on the Stony Point line, with buses replacing trains on the following weekday services:
5:41am Stony Point to Frankston
11:04am Stony Point to Frankston
6:35pm Frankston to Stony Point
What works are going on that prevents these three trains running on weekdays? I understand that there was previously a problem with running single Sprinters on the line due to millipedes. Has this restriction been put back into place?
On the topic on bus replacements, I believe that it is really time to introduce a bus running along the line full-time to compliment trains to provide a more frequent service. The current single line situation prevents more than one train running along the entire line at one time. Even if a passing loop was provided, there is currently no spare V/Line rollingstock to allocate to Stony Point.
Running both buses and trains means you could provide a 45 minute service during peak hour and hourly off-peak and on the weekends. The line also needs a full-time service from 6am to midnight instead of the last train (currently a bus) leaving Frankston at 6:35pm. Perhaps a handful of off-peak services could extend to Southern Cross seeing as they need to travel there anyway to swap over the Sprinters.
While the patronage on the line is currently not high, a major factor in this is the abysmal service frequency. Looking at the RFR lines, if you provide a decent amount of services then people might actually use it.