Why Newcastle?

 
  Ethan1395 Station Master

Location: An OSCar H Set
Sydney lost it's old tram system alongside the Sandown and Ropes Creek lines, Wollongong lost the Unanderra-Moss Vale line, Newcastle/Hunter lost:

  • 1930: West Wallsend Line lost: West Wallsend via Barnsley and Holmesville (I think)
  • 1939 (I think): Wallsend Line lost
  • 1950: Old Tram System lost, this previously provided rail service to West Wallsend, Speers Point, Wallsend, Lambton, Georgetown, Waratah, Mayfield, Adamstown, Broadmeadow, Tighes Hill, Carrington, Islington, Merewether, and the Newcastle CBD:
  • 1953 (I think): Morpeth Line lost
  • 1971: Passenger services on Belmont line lost, Belmont via Kahibah, Whitebridge, Readhead, and Jewells
  • 1972: Passenger services on Cessnock line lost, Cessnock via East Greta, Aberdare Junction, North Kurri Kurri, Weston, Abermain, Neath, and Caledonia (I think)
  • 1990: Toronto Line lost: Toronto via Blackhalls Park
  • 2014: Newcastle Line truncated: Newcastle via Civic

Also throw in the loss of express buses in there somewhere.


Is there other any city in the world that has a history of removing public transport like Newcastle does?

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  Junction box Chief Commissioner

Location: newy
Like Ropes Creek, they shut Redhead and Toronto then build house estates, backwards?
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Some interesting reading on the newcastle tram network http://www.railpage.org.au/tram/goddmack.html#newcastle
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

Bevans, wouldn't this thread be better in the main Newcastle rail line thread?

At Ethan, I leave you this question about why? What would you do if you were a developer (greedy ones only) & you saw land, with infrastructure on it or not that is valuable real estate & has harbour views?
  Ethan1395 Station Master

Location: An OSCar H Set
Like Ropes Creek, they shut Redhead and Toronto then build house estates, backwards?
Junction box

It doesn't help that Newcastle / Lake Macquarie area can be considerably difficult for the average person to get around using public transport, at least Toronto has the shuttle bus to Fassifern Station, Redhead, on the other hand, is only served by one bus route, and it's one of the longest bus routes in Newcastle, and takes two U-turns turns.



Bevans, wouldn't this thread be better in the main Newcastle rail line thread?

At Ethan, I leave you this question about why? What would you do if you were a developer (greedy ones only) & you saw land, with infrastructure on it or not that is valuable real estate & has harbour views?
Newcastle Express


My thread isn't just about the Newcastle Line, it's about lines lost the Newcastle / Lake Macquarie / Hunter area in a whole, and I am asking if there are any other cities with a history of removing public transport like Newcastle does?
  Junction box Chief Commissioner

Location: newy
Could be bad town planning in the Hunter, add the Stockrington line to Minmi, housing estates encroaching near there these days.
Most of these Newy branch lines were coal and future urban development was never considered.
Logic would see a feasibility study on passenger services on the SMR reintroduced, but buses seem to always be the cheaper alternative.
  Xavier Station Master

Location: Newcastle, AU
Amongst many things, it would come down to the costs associated with maintaining each transport link vs passenger numbers along with developers   seeing opportunities and wanting to line their pockets.
  x31 Chief Commissioner

Location: gallifrey
Reading https://www.railpage.com.au/news/s/fast-train-the-missing-link highlights the competing priorities in Newcastle.

Newcastle wanted the heavy rail link removed and buses and a slow costly tram service replacing the train service.  Now Newcastle wants a high speed rail line to service the city.  based on the way the have treated the heavy rail service Newcastle should be bypassed for high speed rail just the way they did with the heavy rail.
  Shed_Rat Train Controller

Location: 'A' Shop - Swindon Works
Many of the lines mentioned were privatley owned coal lines of which the NSWGR ran passenger services on but paid for by the coal companies.

West Wallsend line was a private coal line with passenger services provided by Caledonian Collieries/Seaham Coal Company.

Wallsend Line privately owned coal line with passenger services ran by the NSWGR (paid for by coal company from passenger traffic reciepts) services ceased when the line couldn't compete with the then recenetly electrified tram network.

Belmont line was once again a privately owned colliery line with services provided by the NSWGR paid for from passenger traffic reciepts by the coal company.

The SMR to Cessnock was once again a privately owned colliery line with passenger services provided by the NSWGR & paid for by reciepts from the coal company from 1930 (when SMR's own carriage fleet was destroyed in a fire) to 1961 when SMR took over all but through services using 3 Tulloch built diesel railcars. The SMR diesel railcar serivice lasted until 1967, limited NSWGR through services lasted until May 1972 when this service ended.
  Junction box Chief Commissioner

Location: newy
Which was one of the reasons Newcastle station had five platforms, the branch line services, will Wickham have capability for future increased services, prolly not.
  walfactor Station Staff

Why Newcastle is the subject, Well it is quite obvious that you vote one way, and the other side don't like it, Take away their toys, their enjoyment, the means to communicate and travel. That will show them.

Sound familiar,  Just close it down, spend eternity talking about restoring it, (fooled you again) Do nothing, as they are only our political subject.

For the record, I do not support any person, party, they are all IMO somewhat tainted.

Off the soapbox until later,

To the Mods, it out of line tell me, BUT isn't it the truth.

The Walfactor.
  msct095 Station Master

How many of these lines were paid for by freight? If the freight stops paying for the line, and the passenger volume does not justify the maintenance cost, then you get lines shutting down.
  Northern Flyer Junior Train Controller

How many of these lines were paid for by freight? If the freight stops paying for the line, and the passenger volume does not justify the maintenance cost, then you get lines shutting down.
msct095
All of them. Even the main line started life because of coal.
  msct095 Station Master

Thanks NF. I suspected so.

Mystery solved. We can restate for the OP like this:
1. Freight subsidises PT tracks
2. Freight stops subsiding PT tracks
3. PT shuts down because the track maintenance cost per passenger km is not justified
  Xavier Station Master

Location: Newcastle, AU
How many of these lines were paid for by freight? If the freight stops paying for the line, and the passenger volume does not justify the maintenance cost, then you get lines shutting down.
All of them. Even the main line started life because of coal.
Northern Flyer

I'm not sure the old tram system which was closed in 1950 falls into this category. That one closed purely due to maintenance costs and competition from buses which would have been deemed cheaper to run and more flexibility. Similar reasons to why the original tram system in Sydney closed down.
  Ethan1395 Station Master

Location: An OSCar H Set
  • While the Belmont Line was opened as a coal line, passenger service ceased in 1971, the line wasn't closed until 20 years later in 1991.
  • The Toronto Line was never a coal line.
  • The Newcastle CBD line was not a coal line, although I believe coal once did operate on it was the tracks once extended further out, and branched off at Civic to collieries in Merewether.
  • As mentioned previously, the tram system was not for coal, and neither were express buses - something Newcastle also lost.

Speaking of buses, I hear that things were removed because of competition with buses - my grandmother tells me the Belmont line died because people coming from further south preferred to stay on the bus rather than get off and change to a train.
But the Newcastle bus network is awful and I don't see how it could provide any competition in it's current state (At the time of the 2001 Census, less than 4% of the population caught public transport, of which around 2.5% travelled by bus and 1% used the train or ferry to commute to work. - Wikipedia, and this was when express buses and the Newcastle line were in service),

I will give an example, Cardiff is home to one of the busiest stations in Newcastle, 7 minutes east of Cardiff is the considerably upper-class lakeside suburb of Warners Bay, 7 minutes car that is, by bus it's 31 minutes because there is NO bus that uses the direct road between Warners Bay and Cardiff, there is one bus that goes via Cockle Creek Station (a small SP4 station where express trains don't stop) and Glendale Shopping Centre. This is why I say the Newcastle Bus network is a donut.
  Newcastle Express Chief Commissioner

^^ Let's do the double up arrow to refer to Ethan's post, saves on something

This if for a Warners Bay to Charlestown example, not Ethan's example.
Hunter Valley Buses (HVB) has buses that go on the most direct path possible between Warners Bay & Charlestown. It's compatible to near car driving times, yet still in most cases with some very rare exceptions carries no more than so about 3 to say about 5 passengers at the most.

Route 269 is timed for 12 minutes, with one of them to Charlestown 14 minutes. That's compatible with car times.

No matter HOW good public transport is in Newcastle, even if it's a lot faster than the car, the majority in Newcastle still drive. Take the Stockton Ferry for example, 4 minutes across or about 30 to 45 minutes by car depending where you're coming from, and they still drive.

That has been proved by the motorcross event (NOT the event lumped onto Newcastle East, by the former dictator, dictator Baird) when it caused extreme traffic delays - worse than a weekday peak hour. Bus was timed for about 4 minutes. It took has about 20 minutes, all due to the traffic.

And that will NOT change.
Their have been some exceptions of course, when public transport has been crowded in Newcastle. Search for one of my videos about a large crowd at Newcastle Station here (youtube.com/user/platforme) & see for yourself. And their is a video or two, that shows a crowd, with no event.

The majority of Newcastle residents drive because they take them to show them off. They have an attitude of "I've got to take my car 'cause my car is better than yours."

The Newcastle rail line was was coal line as well, with lot's of sidings, & many branches. Have a look in the sand on the ocean side about  3/4 of the way along the Nobby's walk & see just how far the rail line went.

Edit: Don't forget Ethan, that a lot of the bus routes INCLUDING private buses such as what was the equivalent for the 269 were cut out &/or reduced by the Labor Party. The 269 now doesn't run on Sundays due to Labor. It's equivalent, the 270 ran everyday & extended in a loop from Charlestown via Garden City/Westfield Kotara at the time.

At a meeting, an MP tried to claim that they increased/improved the Toronto - Charlestown bus services. But when it was made clear that the service was actually reduced & cut back, they were just as "defensive" as the Liberals are about trying to not answer questions.
  Xavier Station Master

Location: Newcastle, AU
The majority of Newcastle residents drive because they take them to show them off. They have an attitude of "I've got to take my car 'cause my car is better than yours."

Not sure where you are getting your figures from to make that kind of statement...majority ?!?

Personally, I drive to work because:

a) I live in Charlestown, commuting to the CBD and find buses (the only option from there) to be too slow. eg  A timetabled route for the 350 bus from C/town to Newcastle is 25mins. I can make this trip in 15mins and can dictate my own timetable.

b) My job requires me to have a car as I travel from my office to locations around Newcastle often carrying equipment.

c) I prefer to drive

I don't give a flying toss what kind of car others are driving and similarly I do not care what they think of mine.

I'm 100% sure the 'majority' of residents drive vehicles here not for the reason you quote. If there was an extensive PT network in Newcastle consisting of trams, buses, ferries and rail which covered the major suburbs linking places people actually need to go...it may then drive more people towards it. As it stands, we do not have that and we drive purely due to it being the best option available to us.
  Northern Flyer Junior Train Controller

Bevans, wouldn't this thread be better in the main Newcastle rail line thread?

At Ethan, I leave you this question about why? What would you do if you were a developer (greedy ones only) & you saw land, with infrastructure on it or not that is valuable real estate & has harbour views?
Newcastle Express
A conspiracy theory with not one scrap of evidence. The government has valued the just over 1 hectare of land that will be sold to private developers at $16 million. All of the land with harbour views is being retained for open space. That hardly justifies the $510 million they are spending if the greedy developer conspiracy is the only reason for truncation does it?
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Bevans, wouldn't this thread be better in the main Newcastle rail line thread?

At Ethan, I leave you this question about why? What would you do if you were a developer (greedy ones only) & you saw land, with infrastructure on it or not that is valuable real estate & has harbour views?
A conspiracy theory with not one scrap of evidence. The government has valued the just over 1 hectare of land that will be sold to private developers at $16 million. All of the land with harbour views is being retained for open space. That hardly justifies the $510 million they are spending if the greedy developer conspiracy is the only reason for truncation does it?
Northern Flyer
But it does justify a kickback in the 1-2 million dollar range, or the promise of a cushy do-nothing job in return for services previously rendered.
  simstrain Chief Commissioner

Like Ropes Creek, they shut Redhead and Toronto then build house estates, backwards?
Junction box
Actually the Toronto reservation still exists and there is actually track still visible. It could easily be turned into light rail.
  RTT_Rules The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Dubai UAE
Most of the lines closed because they were simply too slow with too few users.

Toronto was a surprise but again it was far slower than almost anything else. The line also had numerous LX.

Ropes Creek was never going to survive as a single or even double station line but the ROW would have been useful for a future circle line from the Richmond line and potential extension of NW metro.
  tazzer96 Assistant Commissioner

Have you seen the new 180X bus route?    It looks like they are setting it up to replace hunter line rail services.
  Northern Flyer Junior Train Controller

Bevans, wouldn't this thread be better in the main Newcastle rail line thread?

At Ethan, I leave you this question about why? What would you do if you were a developer (greedy ones only) & you saw land, with infrastructure on it or not that is valuable real estate & has harbour views?
A conspiracy theory with not one scrap of evidence. The government has valued the just over 1 hectare of land that will be sold to private developers at $16 million. All of the land with harbour views is being retained for open space. That hardly justifies the $510 million they are spending if the greedy developer conspiracy is the only reason for truncation does it?
But it does justify a kickback in the 1-2 million dollar range, or the promise of a cushy do-nothing job in return for services previously rendered.
justapassenger
Why would there be a kick back for some low grade land on an old corridor which will be sold to the highest bidder? You can buy nearly a hectare of land right on the waterfront at Honeysuckle. Care to explain why a few scraps of land on the old corridor is so valuable that someone would risk 10 years in goal to bribe a government to spend $500 million?

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