Another reason voting ALP for the coming federal election as we will finally get a project up that has been talked about almost as long as the Melbourne Airport Link.
So many benefits will flow from this project including the start of longer distance electrification across state boundaries.
We will see towns between Sydney and Melbourne flourish with people moving into enjoy the lifestyle of a regional centre with easy access to Sydney or Melbourne. Think about Albury and its place in the centre of the network and how you could get and take the fast train to Sydney for the day and Melbourne later in the week. With NBN now more available working from home and doing business in either capital is a real possibility with the project.
If the airlines were really smart they would link FF programmes like BA has in the UK.
Melbourne-Sydney fast train a top Labor priority
- 7 years of previous ALP govt and they didn't progress it any further than Howard
- Creating an authority for a project still 1-2 decades away is hardly rocket science, but hell if you want your taxes to fund 6 figure salaries to sit in offices in Canberra to work on a this pipedream, go for it!
- electrification for HSR across the state border doesn't help freight or commuter and not required for either + existing regional services.
- towns flourish ? So you want to build $100B worth of infrastructure so rich people can commute to Sydney/Melbourne. Might be worth a look at HSR fares OS before buying your country estate at Yass, Wagga or Albury. Hint look at the current interurban fares for either Sydney or Melbourne which are heavily subsidised by up to 75% or more and then ask yourself what a 400km fare will be on something that cost $100B to build and only for long haul pax and will not have anywhere near the same level of subsidy?
- HSR will NOT have stations in these towns as it will by-pass most of them and stations of HSR will be on average once every 100 or more km. So between Sydney and Melbourne we are talking about half a dozen locations for which you may have 30min drive just to get to the station.
- Didn't need NBN to work from home, broad band off my phone was fine and what I use when travelling. Before the era of the smart phone I had a satellite dish for the internet on my acreage and I and my wife frequently worked from home.
- Airlines may or may not choose to link themselves, however as the net effect of even the most ambitious East Coast HSR on the airlines is minimal. The only service at high risk from HSR is Syd-Can and to a lessor degree Mel-Can. Syd-Mel is borderline at best.
- Finally Costello didn't have 100's of Billions to play with. The govt surplus was around $20-30B a year for only the last few years of Howard Govt and rightfully they dumped much of the surplus after retiring govt debt into the Future Fund to pay for the unfunded Fed govt employee Super scheme which had been set up, but contributions not fully paid, rather deferring to future budgets. Obviously this was such a wrong move the first thing Rudd did as PM was put Coestello in charge of the Future fund and continue to make contributions even borrowing money from China during the GFC when the govt when into deficit.
Additionally, during the mining boom was not the time for the Australian Govt to start such a major construction project such as this, the damage to the economy would have been horrific.
This is nothing more than a election propaganda. They will not start construction in the next term or two of govt, they simply do not have that sort of money, its not viable privately and there are far more issues to deal with. The govt has only just managed to come into surplus and a fragile one at that facing a potential down turn in the national and global economy placing that surplus at risk. The Feds are indebted to nearly $400B or what ever but basically 41% of GDP.
I believe the project was previously expected to start in the early 2030's and not before and take over 20 years to complete, ie join Brisbane to Melbourne. So yes, its highly unlikely that some here will ever be around to see it. Personal opinion is that the timeline is probably correct and suited to Australia and demand. The corridor should be identified and protected and that the initial focus should be to have MSR up and running to Canberra before 2023 and Newcastle by 2025 which enables all existing services to share the same upgraded tracks thus diluting the cost amongst multiple services including freight. HSR can build off the back of these projects within 10-15 years and have an existing half decent regional network to help boost the ridership.