Luke Foley derails second harbour rail tunnel

 
Topic moved from News by dthead on 14 Mar 2015 21:30
  Transtopic Deputy Commissioner

Location: Sydney

LABOR leader Luke Foley has said he will dump the second harbour rail tunnel to connect the North West Rail line to the Bankstown line if he wins the March state election.



“I am not convinced another connection from the north is a priority for the city,” Mr Foley said yesterday, as he promised to release his infrastructure plan next month.

“I am looking at all the proposals on the drawing board at the moment and I’ll have a policy before the public of NSW early in the campaign.”
"Luke Foley derails second harbour rail tunnel"


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  62440 Chief Commissioner

The ALP in Vic dumps the linking of roads in favour of rail while the ALP in NSW dumps rail in favour of something else. Do we know where the ALP are in Bris on the rail/bus tunnel and in Perth on the airport rail link?
  Transtopic Deputy Commissioner

Location: Sydney
My previous post did not register and I'm trying to post it again.
  Transtopic Deputy Commissioner

Location: Sydney
I entirely agree with Luke Foley's position.  The Rapid Transit extension across the harbour and conversion of the Bankstown Line will do absolutely nothing to address congestion on the heavily patronized Western Line from Strathfield to the CBD.  Think what could be achieved in upgrading the existing network, particularly from the West, if the $10.4 billion earmarked for the Rapid Transit second harbour rail tunnel could be at their disposal.

The conversion of the Bankstown Line to Rapid Transit is a complete waste of money, when with minimal expense in upgrading signalling, the same level of service frequency could be achieved AND seating capacity could be doubled with the continued use of double deck trains.  The direct Liverpool via Bankstown services would no longer be possible because of the incompatibility with the Rapid Transit system.  The only reason why the Bankstown Line was chosen as an extension of the North West Rapid Transit across the harbour is because it is the only line left to connect with, when all other potential options were eliminated for one reason or another.  It's got nothing to do with any objective transport planning, but merely another compromise to justify the extension of the privatized Rapid Transit concept.  

If the North West Rapid Transit is destined to remain an isolated glorified shuttle service between Rouse Hill and Chatswood, then so be it.  It's just another example of a poorly conceived privatized rail project, like the Airport Line, where the taxpayers of NSW will ultimately have to pick up the tab.

In any event, there's no guarantee that the lease of the poles and wires will realize anything like the $20 billion that Mike Baird is suggesting.  If they fail to achieve that outcome, what is their Plan B?
  Watson374 Chief Commissioner

Location: Fully reclined at the pointy end.
So what's your alternative? Opposition isn't about just saying no; it's about coming up with a credible alternative to sell to the people. It's all well and good to bang on about how the plan won't work, but what's your alternative solution? How are you going to relieve overcrowded services and lines?
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
I entirely agree with Luke Foley's position.  The Rapid Transit extension across the harbour and conversion of the Bankstown Line will do absolutely nothing to address congestion on the heavily patronized Western Line from Strathfield to the CBD.  Think what could be achieved in upgrading the existing network, particularly from the West, if the $10.4 billion earmarked for the Rapid Transit second harbour rail tunnel could be at their disposal.

The conversion of the Bankstown Line to Rapid Transit is a complete waste of money, when with minimal expense in upgrading signalling, the same level of service frequency could be achieved AND seating capacity could be doubled with the continued use of double deck trains.  The direct Liverpool via Bankstown services would no longer be possible because of the incompatibility with the Rapid Transit system.  The only reason why the Bankstown Line was chosen as an extension of the North West Rapid Transit across the harbour is because it is the only line left to connect with, when all other potential options were eliminated for one reason or another.  It's got nothing to do with any objective transport planning, but merely another compromise to justify the extension of the privatized Rapid Transit concept.  

If the North West Rapid Transit is destined to remain an isolated glorified shuttle service between Rouse Hill and Chatswood, then so be it.  It's just another example of a poorly conceived privatized rail project, like the Airport Line, where the taxpayers of NSW will ultimately have to pick up the tab.

In any event, there's no guarantee that the lease of the poles and wires will realize anything like the $20 billion that Mike Baird is suggesting.  If they fail to achieve that outcome, what is their Plan B?
Transtopic
Removal of the Bankstown line from teh city tunnels provides more paths from the west solving that part of the problem, but there is more to do than just that. The track capacity of the current 6 lines from Central to Lidcombe are not efficiently used so there needs more work done to sort things out, but freeing up space in the tunnels is a key part. The next step I think is an additional pair of tracks to Lidcombe so all stoppers can start from there and thus allow outer western services to run more frequently on a common very limited stopping pattern and interurban services to use the nth pair of tracks.

Services from Liverpool, people change trains. Not hard to do and the age of single service from your local station to the city are over. The network cannot grow and move more people on the same tracks with this approach.

The NWRL has started, so like it or not the project needs to be finished and finished correctly not left half arsed unlike so many other ALP projects.

If they cannot get the cash from the leasing and also some private investment in public transport, then watch the growth of the Sydney rail system stall. At 35% return on fares, expansion is limited by the ability for the tax payer to fund.
  donttellmywife Chief Commissioner

Location: Antofagasta

If they cannot get the cash from the leasing and also some private investment in public transport, then watch the growth of the Sydney rail system stall. At 35% return on fares, expansion is limited by the ability for the tax payer to fund.
RTT_Rules
You are conflating funding and financing there.  Private investment is only made on the expectation of a financial return.  The cash flow for that return still has to be funded by the taxpayer, unless you are going to hike fares (e.g. airport stations).
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

Removal of the Bankstown line from teh city tunnels provides more paths from the west solving that part of the problem, but there is more to do than just that. The track capacity of the current 6 lines from Central to Lidcombe are not efficiently used so there needs more work done to sort things out, but freeing up space in the tunnels is a key part.
RTT_Rules

The "benefit" of the NWRL 2nd crossing to the west is just 4 new paths, and then only to sector 2, not sector 3.  Sector 2 has difficulty making use of those paths in any event because of the tight spacing of the inner west stations.

The idea that the RT 2nd crossing will "increase rail capacity by 60%" is complete BS.  It increases capacity primarily on the Bankstown and Hurstville lines, which individually are running at less than a1/3rd of their capacity (ie, it does SFA).

Basically, the "other works" to cope with the issues created by the NWRL are the only things that are going to increase capacity.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
You are conflating funding and financing there.  Private investment is only made on the expectation of a financial return.  The cash flow for that return still has to be funded by the taxpayer, unless you are going to hike fares (e.g. airport stations).
donttellmywife
Yes and no.
- The state has limited access to cash to build new rail projects quickly. Previously stated by the govt their taxation base limits them to one major rail project a decade. ie SWRL, then NWRL, then something else. Generalisation but I think you know what I mean.

Cityrail is high capital cost to build and high operational cost compared to other systems, part of the reason the farebox recovery is so low compared to other systems around the world. The world trend towards building more off the shelf technology as a total package is for good economic reason.

For Sydney's rail based PT network to expand faster than a 10 year cycle, it needs to lower both its operating and capital costs. ie increasing frequency on existing lines before building more and where they are built look at alternative technology. We don't need to be locked in to the current technology based systems that have evolved from steam era. Many other bench mark cities have followed this path. The days of running your suburban network like a European regional rail network are over. Its moved to sectorisation and line based up and back only. Bondi to Cronulla/Waterfall being the classic example.

While its not viable even in best cost senerio to get 100% fare box recovery, subsidies can be reduced even if using private ownership model. There is no devine right the state must be the only operator of the network or even part of it. Buses have never operated this way and many major cities have a number of operators due to funding arrangements. So long as its a seamless and consistent fare system to the passenger, who cares. Personally I don't see Sydney trains being franchised out as I think many operators would see it as too complex and hence to much risk and hence charge to much. But new lines, different story.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
The "benefit" of the NWRL 2nd crossing to the west is just 4 new paths, and then only to sector 2, not sector 3.  Sector 2 has difficulty making use of those paths in any event because of the tight spacing of the inner west stations.

The idea that the RT 2nd crossing will "increase rail capacity by 60%" is complete BS.  It increases capacity primarily on the Bankstown and Hurstville lines, which individually are running at less than a1/3rd of their capacity (ie, it does SFA).

Basically, the "other works" to cope with the issues created by the NWRL are the only things that are going to increase capacity.
djf01
Hi,
Bankstwown lines during peak between 8:30 and 9:00AM weekday I counted 8 trains entering the city tunnels in 30min and same leaving. So if Bankstown is converted to Metro and redirected into the new tunnel from Central to Chatswood, you now have 8 paths in 30min at the busiest part of peak for services from other locations.

This doesn't solve the problem for the west, but its a significant start because at least now they have somewhere to go.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

Hi,
Bankstwown lines during peak between 8:30 and 9:00AM weekday I counted 8 trains entering the city tunnels in 30min and same leaving. So if Bankstown is converted to Metro and redirected into the new tunnel from Central to Chatswood, you now have 8 paths in 30min at the busiest part of peak for services from other locations.

This doesn't solve the problem for the west, but its a significant start because at least now they have somewhere to go.
RTT_Rules

Just checked (I'm not as familiar with the latest timetable as the previous one), but there 8 tph during the AM peak, 4 limited stops ex Liverpool via TH, 4 ex Lidcombe turnback via Museum.

So I think I'm right in the Bankstown line conversion to RT would free up 4 westbound slots on sector 2 (as well as 4 south bound ones, and 6 on sector 2).

The incompatible format means the benefits of the extra sector go where they aren't needed.
  Raichase Captain Rant!

Location: Sydney, NSW
Hurstville lines, which individually are running at less than a1/3rd of their capacity (ie, it does SFA).
djf01
Yes, because the only trains on the "Hurstville Line" run in their own little bubble between Arncliffe and Hurstville. They certainly DON'T join the main flow of ESR trains at Wolli Creek at all, and the ESR is certainly under capacity! No trains run on that in peak hour at all.

Rolling Eyes
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Just checked (I'm not as familiar with the latest timetable as the previous one), but there 8 tph during the AM peak, 4 limited stops ex Liverpool via TH, 4 ex Lidcombe turnback via Museum.

So I think I'm right in the Bankstown line conversion to RT would free up 4 westbound slots on sector 2 (as well as 4 south bound ones, and 6 on sector 2).

The incompatible format means the benefits of the extra sector go where they aren't needed.
djf01
I just checked again, maybe I'm reading it wrong. 8 trains travel from Bankstown to Central arriving at Central between 8:30 and 9:00.

http://www.sydneytrains.info/timetables/index.htm#landingPoint

8 trains removed from the city tunnels between 8:30 and 9:00 allows for roughly another 8000 people.

The trains from Liverpool could still come this way, just a change is required. Some rejigging is obviously required, but is so for any solution. The current mixed express with all stoppers eats into capacity.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Yes, because the only trains on the "Hurstville Line" run in their own little bubble between Arncliffe and Hurstville. They certainly DON'T join the main flow of ESR trains at Wolli Creek at all, and the ESR is certainly under capacity! No trains run on that in peak hour at all.

Rolling Eyes
Raichase
Perhaps the intent is to have the DD's by-pass the inner stations between Hurtsville and Wollie Creek?
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I just checked again, maybe I'm reading it wrong. 8 trains travel from Bankstown to Central arriving at Central between 8:30 and 9:00.

http://www.sydneytrains.info/timetables/index.htm#landingPoint

8 trains removed from the city tunnels between 8:30 and 9:00 allows for roughly another 8000 people.

The trains from Liverpool could still come this way, just a change is required. Some rejigging is obviously required, but is so for any solution. The current mixed express with all stoppers eats into capacity.
RTT_Rules
Not trying to sound glib here, but I think you really must be reading it wrong.


I read that as 8 trains between 8:00 and 9:00 (so an hour, not half hour) with 4 from the west (ex Liverpool) and 4 from the south (ex Lidcombe).

Not that I really want to go into the detail of how, but IMHO they fudged the patronage figures a bit to justify bumping the number of trains on the Bankstown line up from 6tph to 8 tph too.  The Bankstown corridor generates (very) roughly ~6000Pax per hour peak, and it's used to handle a small overflow from Liverpool - patronage which will be lost after conversion to RT.

As Sydney expands geographically (and the CBD declines in relative significance as an employment centre), the demand profile for peak services is shifting to the outer suburbs, often beyond the reach of the rail catchment.  Hence the need for the NWRL.  This is part of the reason Metro/RT is not really appropriate.  The problem is demand is shifting toward more distance/commuter oriented services, yet the solution they want to deliver is designed for shorter haul services - for reasons that have little to do with solving actual real world problems.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Not trying to sound glib here, but I think you really must be reading it wrong.


I read that as 8 trains between 8:00 and 9:00 (so an hour, not half hour) with 4 from the west (ex Liverpool) and 4 from the south (ex Lidcombe).

Not that I really want to go into the detail of how, but IMHO they fudged the patronage figures a bit to justify bumping the number of trains on the Bankstown line up from 6tph to 8 tph too.  The Bankstown corridor generates (very) roughly ~6000Pax per hour peak, and it's used to handle a small overflow from Liverpool - patronage which will be lost after conversion to RT.

As Sydney expands geographically (and the CBD declines in relative significance as an employment centre), the demand profile for peak services is shifting to the outer suburbs, often beyond the reach of the rail catchment.  Hence the need for the NWRL.  This is part of the reason Metro/RT is not really appropriate.  The problem is demand is shifting toward more distance/commuter oriented services, yet the solution they want to deliver is designed for shorter haul services - for reasons that have little to do with solving actual real world problems.
djf01
Yes, my mistake. 8/hr. So thats 8/hr not 4.

The point remains this is still 8 trains per hour now available for Western (longer haul) Services to use the tunnels so capacity for another 8000 pax per hour.

Its Bankstown + Hurtsville they are using to prop up the numbers. As a phase 1 this is ok, but ultimately I think they need to include the Inner west as well to Lidcombe but this will require two new tracks from Homebush. The outer ends of the Bankstown loop should also be considered, but there are more challenges separating the freights and it would most likely only go to Cabramatta.

Not sure of what benefits to the ESR-Southern line is by removing the all stoppers to Hurtsville? More trains from the south I suppose/

What they get to on the south side should be aimed more to balance the nth side traffic.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

Yes, my mistake. 8/hr. So thats 8/hr not 4.

The point remains this is still 8 trains per hour now available for Western (longer haul) Services to use the tunnels so capacity for another 8000 pax per hour.
RTT_Rules

If the second crossing were built in NSW "standard" HR, then it would add at least 20 slots (probably 24), and they (probably - depends where they build it) wouldn't be limited to sector 2.

Having incompatible formats creates inefficiencies which, in my view, exceed the alleged benefits of the new NWRL format.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
If the second crossing were built in NSW "standard" HR, then it would add at least 20 slots (probably 24), and they (probably - depends where they build it) wouldn't be limited to sector 2.

Having incompatible formats creates inefficiencies which, in my view, exceed the alleged benefits of the new NWRL format.
djf01
But you get that capacity effectively with Metro, just source of trains from south side maybe different and you still have to deal with the gross inefficiency of the inner west which prevents that capacity from being used.

The sectorisation is not fixed in concrete, surely it can be changed to suit future needs.

Overseas trends would dictate that expanding networks will use non-compatible latest technologies to achieve greater cost savings than maintaining a single technology that is like Microsoft products, nearly always backwards compatible.

ie
Singapore
Paris
Vancouver
Melbourne
Half the European networks I have ever used.
This could go on!

The traditional DD stock in Sydney has a staffing cost of roughly $150/hr for the guard and driver/train. If you assume 4 trains per hour for NWRL from terminus to City (assume 1hr trip, 16hr/day, 4trains/hr, assume driving 40hr/week) => $8M/yr in wages, but I'm sure its higher and thats just for one line. In return for the taxpayer and user enjoy fully Automated, more frequent services so less waiting time, lower running costs, more reliable service, reactive timetable...
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
ie
Singapore
Paris
Vancouver
Melbourne
Half the European networks I have ever used.
This could go on!
RTT_Rules
Assuming for Melbourne you are referring to the incompatible train types, this was mainly due to the splitting of the system between two operators in 1999.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Assuming for Melbourne you are referring to the incompatible train types, this was mainly due to the splitting of the system between two operators in 1999.
railblogger
Hi,
Not really, was referring to conversion of two lines to light rail. Effectively the same outcome.
  donttellmywife Chief Commissioner

Location: Antofagasta
The traditional DD stock in Sydney has a staffing cost of roughly $150/hr for the guard and driver/train. If you assume 4 trains per hour for NWRL from terminus to City (assume 1hr trip, 16hr/day, 4trains/hr, assume driving 40hr/week) => $8M/yr in wages, but I'm sure its higher and thats just for one line. In return for the taxpayer and user enjoy fully Automated, more frequent services so less waiting time, lower running costs, more reliable service, reactive timetable...
RTT_Rules
There is nothing stopping you from automating DD stock.  There is nothing stopping you from moving to the same labour requirement level as the new metro stock.  Automation is not tied to the structure gauge.

Introducing automation to the existing network offers the potential for significant capacity increases and significant cost savings.  Far more than what can be achieved through piecemeal construction of new lines with incompatible structure gauge.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner


The sectorisation is not fixed in concrete, surely it can be changed to suit future needs.
RTT_Rules

In the case of the NWRL and the new RT format/loading gauge, it is quite literally set in concrete!
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
There is nothing stopping you from automating DD stock.  There is nothing stopping you from moving to the same labour requirement level as the new metro stock.  Automation is not tied to the structure gauge.

Introducing automation to the existing network offers the potential for significant capacity increases and significant cost savings.  Far more than what can be achieved through piecemeal construction of new lines with incompatible structure gauge.
donttellmywife
Nothing stopping apart from the simple issue there is no off the shelf provider for this and the aim of the game for the NWRL is to reduce both Capital and Long term operating costs. ie Low risk, commercial fall back, supplier is operator etc, not repeat past mistakes by mixing an R&D project with a commercial order that needs additional money to bail it out.

There is nothing stopping further automation of Sydney trains, but we all know the challenges that lie ahead and the complexity in doing so. Everything needs to be backwards compatible to enable trains operating on NWRL to go elsewhere and vice versa. Not going to happen, reality NWRL automation benefits mostly lost. Should there be moves to further automate Sydney trains yes, but the pace will probably be similar to whats happening now and very different scope.

Meanwhile in 5 years the NWRL will be running automated trains and 5 or so years later they could be running to city and beyond.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
In the case of the NWRL and the new RT format/loading gauge, it is quite literally set in concrete!
djf01
Yes, it is now. Does not need to be limited to that corridor though. Extend where practical.
  Transtopic Deputy Commissioner

Location: Sydney
I am having trouble posting comments on this thread. Some are accepted and some aren't.  I keep getting a message "Post Mode not specified".  Can anyone help?  I hope this gets through.

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