Time to try double decker trains again?

 
Topic moved from Melbourne suburban by dthead on 16 Jun 2015 16:37
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
I've read that the City Loop was designed with double deckers in mind. Are the tunnel dimensions of the city loop the same as those for underground railways in Sydney?
We had a double decker train before, but at the time decided not to order more, but with the soaring patronage on our lines, I wonder if maybe we should follow Sydney suburban and start buying double decker trains and progressively dump single deckers.

Sydney's double decker trains have 40% more floor area, twice as many seats, and much more interior space in relation to exterior dimensions. And they have a high enough capacity to justify the economics of a crew of two.

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  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Gheringhap Loop Autonomous Zone
Time to try double decker trains again?
Myrtone


Dwell times are horrible when you only have two doors per carriage side. The trend on highly-patronised metros is to go for more doors on single-deck rollingstock.
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
They work well in Sydney, where their trains carry more people than ours. Our suburban railway network is most definitely not a metro, we have stations spacing further apart, and similar to Sydney suburban.
In fact, many suburban rail operators around the world such as Paris are progressively bringing on more double deckers and phasing out single deckers.
They do indeed work best if stations are at least a mile apart.
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
We had a double decker, one unit. It was scrapped.  And they spent a  lot of money to make one route available. It would cost too much to redo the Melbourne system to cope.

So I do not see why you bring it up unless you just want to redo the same old discussion.

Regards,
David Head
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
How much money and time did Sydney spend to make all their suburban lines accessible to double deckers when they were first introduced?

I would be interrested to know how clearences on newer sections of track compare with those in Sydney.

EDIT: With appropriate station spacing (no less than a mile apart or at most one per suburb), double decker trains do carry more people per service.
  73LJWhiteSL Deputy Commissioner

Location: South East Melbourne Surburbs
NYC Subway moves 3+ times more people than Sydney & Melbourne put together with single deck stock.

Sydney's network is setup with clearance for double deck, Melbourne's is not. The costs to change it would be much better spent grade seperating every level crossing in Melbourne, and increasing the frequency of trains.

Dwell times on Double Deck stock are much longer than Single, so to be honest i suspect building double Deck Velocitys would be a better choice. The longer trips wouldn't be as impacted by longer dwell times and more people could be transported.

Ironically pretty much all American surburban stock is single deck with many regional and long distance trains being double deck. And to be honest our environments have more in common with the US than the high density of Europe.
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
I would guess, again, that the NYC subway doesn't have tunnel dimensions as large as Sydney. Grade separations do require considerable civil engineering work, similar to what is needed to accomodate double deckers. Do newer and recently grade separated sections of track here have clearences no less than in Sydney?

EDIT:I'm not sure diesel multiple units are suitable for double deck construction, unless the loading gauge is very tall. Running them under wires would mean that the overhead wires would need to be taller than international standards, with custom made gantries, either custom made pantographs larger than off-the-shelf, or standard pantos on pedestals, and maybe non-standard overhead wire maintainence equpiment.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Paris are progressively bringing on more double deckers and phasing out single deckers.
Myrtone
I think you need to go to Paris and see for yourself !

Paris Métro Is single deck trains, lots of doors, few seats.

Paris RER Is the system that uses double deck trains.
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
I know that but I believe that Paris metro stations are much closer that those of the RER, and tunnel dimensions are smaller. Also, the Paris metro (all lines except 14) are older than the RER.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
I know that but I believe that Paris metro stations are much closer that those of the RER, and tunnel dimensions are smaller. Also, the Paris metro (all lines except 14) are older than the RER.
Myrtone
Paris Métro stations are very close together, about 300 metres (as the Métro largely superseaded the Paris street tramway syetem)

The Paris RER system Is like Melbourne's RRL, but city wide (and yes was built with much larger tunnel dimensions, for overhead power supply)
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
I think the RER is more like a suburban railway network than an intercity one. Also, double decker trains, even with two doors per side, are sutable for suburban rail with appropriate station spacing.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Also, double decker trains, even with two doors per side, are sutable for suburban rail with appropriate station spacing.
Myrtone
Well no, as many people have pointed out double deck trains take too long to unload than load with passengers and this greatly slows the trains down.

Ok for express trains, but Melbourne has few of them, and likely to get even fewer !
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
The double decker trains in Sydney manage fine, and even with two doors per carriage per side, they don't take too long to dwell, at least not with the station spacing they have.
The point is, that dwell time is less of an issue if stations are further apart.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
The double decker trains in Sydney manage fine, and even with two doors per carriage per side, they don't take too long to dwell, at least not with the station spacing they have.
The point is, that dwell time is less of an issue if stations are further apart.
Myrtone
Sydney Is proposing to Introduce single deck trains again !
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
Only on one standalone line that was originally planned as an extension of the existing suburban rail network. And when they changed the plan to a standalone single deck metro, there was a public outcry, and there may still be.

See this blogpost for example.

Also EcoTransit's unfit for purpose:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5upD1WkEvBE
  Edith Chief Commissioner

Location: Line 1 from Porte de Vincennes bound for Bastille station
What about loco-hauled DD carriages on the Geelong and Ballarat lines with push-pull locos or driving carriages on the other end to the loco ?  They can have quite a few passengers and can run express through as many stations as are needed to overcome dwell time issues
  melbtrip Chief Commissioner

Location: Annoying Orange
PTV are introducing double deck buses, why not double deck trains?

The double deck trains can be used on long distance trains for example on the Pakenham line( extend the Pakenham service to Warragul or Traralgon) and run the line as the following:

1st tier (single deck trains - 9 train carriages) : City to Dandenong
2nd tier(double deck train based on Oscar has around 880 seats)  City - stopping limited stations to Dandenong and stopping all stations to Warragul or Traralgon
  TheMetman Locomotive Driver

Location: gippsland
PTV are introducing double deck buses, why not double deck trains?

The double deck trains can be used on long distance trains for example on the Pakenham line( extend the Pakenham service to Warragul or Traralgon) and run the line as the following:

1st tier (single deck trains - 9 train carriages) : City to Dandenong
2nd tier(double deck train based on Oscar has around 880 seats)  City - stopping limited stations to Dandenong and stopping all stations to Warragul or Traralgon
melbtrip
The electrification to Warragul and Traralgon hasn't existed for 10-20 years now. And would never be re-electrified.
  topher1976 Train Controller

Location: Mill Park, Vic
Um no way.  Firstly, as others have mentioned, they will only run on one line (due to clearances etc) and the fact that dwell times are far greater (which can be shown by how long the trains usually stop at stations in Sydney.  2 minutes compared to 30 seconds here (except when morons force doors)).
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
What about loco-hauled DD carriages on the Geelong and Ballarat lines with push-pull locos or driving carriages on the other end to the loco ?  They can have quite a few passengers and can run express through as many stations as are needed to overcome dwell time issues
Edith


The Canadian province of Ontario has these, there are a number in North America.

PTV are introducing double deck buses, why not double deck trains?
melbtrip


Same with double decker trams.

Double deck multiple unit trains could in fact be used on some suburban lines with appropriate station spacing as Sydney has shown.

Um no way.  Firstly, as others have mentioned, they will only run on one line (due to clearances etc) and the fact that dwell times are far greater (which can be shown by how long the trains usually stop at stations in Sydney.  2 minutes compared to 30 seconds here (except when morons force doors)).
topher1976


From my memories with travelling on trains in Sydney, they don't usually spend two minutes at each suburban station. There fewer stations you have per mile, the more time there is for dwelling at each station.

There are indeed a number of lines here where double decker trains are unattractive because some stations are too close together, for example, Jewel, Brunswick and Anstey on the Upfield line.

This diversion could be an opportunity to consolidate them.

EDIT:Also see the ABC fact check.
  Mr. Lane Chief Commissioner

Two things that keep coming up: DD EMUs and re-electrification to Traralgon. Both tried, both failed.

The future is a combination of higher frequencies and sometime down the track 9 carriage trains through the Metro... but even that will only happen when moving block signalling cannot offer any more capacity.

DD DMUs to Geelong might have a shot...
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
In order to fit our loading gauge and under our wires (our wire clearance being the international standard) the lower deck would need to be sunk between to bogies, leaving no room for an engine or transmission.

We only tried one DD EMU, which could run on the City Loop, and I'm sure we could do so again, just make sure that new sections of track have them in mind.
That EMU did have many technical problems which did lead it to be taken out of service. But we could still try again with a Waratah.
  Flygon Train Controller

Location: Australia
You're ambitious, Myrtone, but overlooking how risk averse we are with design here.

I do personally feel that Double Deckers could work on a few certain lines, myself. Sunbury, future Melton, Geelong, and Werribee, coming to mind specifically. And all have the main advantage of largely having quite spaced apart stations and relatively easy routes to prepare for the additional loading gauge required.

But there's problems that work against this concept. We don't want another split like the currently ongoing Siemens on one half, X'traps on the other issue that's currently going on, and there's an inherent risk that if the proposed new Double Decker sets turn out to have a problem inherent to the Double Decker design itself (such as the mentioned lack of doors, even if they were very very wide like in Sydney, causing incredibly overblown dwell times at key stations), that, to such an extent, makes the sets an operational liability, we would essentially have to scrap or sell the sets (likely to Sydney), and lose a lot of money on both the investment on getting the infrastructure ready, and for the design of the new sets themselves.

Again, I do personally think there's a potential future for Double Decker EMUs in Melbourne, but there is a lot working against them. And we're just extremely risk averse peoples as a whole, in this country.

Just remember, with situations like this, the phrase to remember is "If it aint broke, don't fix it".
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
I do personally feel that Double Deckers could work on a few certain lines, myself. Sunbury, future Melton, Geelong, and Werribee, coming to mind specifically. And all have the main advantage of largely having quite spaced apart stations and relatively easy routes to prepare for the additional loading gauge required.
Flygon


If Sydney managed to prepare for it back in the 1960s when they introduced their first double decker trailers, and later motor units, why would it be too expensive here.

I should note that the Sunbury and Melton lines will infact be incorporated into the MMRT group, and the MMRT itself with probably have appropriate station spacing for double decker trains.

But there's problems that work against this concept. We don't want another split like the currently ongoing Siemens on one half, X'traps on the other issue that's currently going on, and there's an inherent risk that if the proposed new Double Decker sets turn out to have a problem inherent to the Double Decker design itself (such as the mentioned lack of doors, even if they were very very wide like in Sydney, causing incredibly overblown dwell times at key stations), that, to such an extent, makes the sets an operational liability, we would essentially have to scrap or sell the sets (likely to Sydney), and lose a lot of money on both the investment on getting the infrastructure ready, and for the design of the new sets themselves.
Flygon


Note that Sydney seemed to manage to transition from single deckers to double deckers without any split in the mean time.

That said, they are about to have a much bigger split than us with the construction of a standalone metro in the North West, later to be extended across their Harbour, with some conversion of the existing suburban railway network projected, according to the plan by Rod Staples.

Again, I do personally think there's a potential future for Double Decker EMUs in Melbourne, but there is a lot working against them. And we're just extremely risk averse peoples as a whole, in this country.
Flygon


They do have a future as long as we have them in mind on every new section of track and no more than one station per suburb.

Hopefully they can carry enough people per train per service to justify the economics of a crew of two, and the capcity ceiling of our suburban rail network will be higher.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
I think it's time for some FACTS on here;

FACT 1: The previous attempt at double deck EMUs in Melbourne was the 4D. The 4D primarily was limited to the Ringwood Lines, this was due to the fact that it was based out of Bayswater Yard. The only lines it was prohibited from were the Clifton Hill lines due to clearance issues, mainly the Jolimont - West Richmond tunnels. The 4D is known to have run on other lines, notably Pakenham and Williamstown. The main reason it was limited to Belgrave and Lilydale lines is due to its terrible reliablity issues, meaning it never run in service for long enough for it to get well used on other lines.

FACT 2: Dwell times are a significant issue. This is not opinion but fact. Due to the configuration required due to the design of a double deck carriage, only 2 doors per side together with narrow stairway corridors leading to these doors, mean EACH stop takes on average at the very least another minute compared with a single carriage train. This means on a service with 20 stops - The Frankston line has 26 stations, not including City Loop stations and most trains stop all stations - you are adding at least 20 minutes, the reality is probably more like 30. Thats an additional 1/2 an hour to ride from Frankston to Melbourne. This severely limits the amount of trains that can run on this line at any one time.

FACT 3: What works in Sydney doesn't necessarily work well in Melbourne, and vica versa. Sydney has a significant Ferrie network, that works in Sydney, I can't imagine it would ever work as well in Melbourne. Just because Sydney has double decker trains, that doesn't mean they are better.

Just remember, it's about striking the correct balance. Double deck carriages struggle to get that balance right on Melbourne's network. Whether or not they might be suitable for Interurban services between Melbourne and Geelong or Melbourne and Ballarat, that's another story.

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