Ballarat Integrated Transport Plan – Rail Network

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 11 Jun 2019 16:07
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
A really positive approach to engaging with the community and similar in some respects to what has already happened in Bendigo.

A copy of the June Report is available at:

https://www.railpage.com.au/downloads?mode=download.view&id=1200

A survey and questionaire is available by clicking through to https://mysay.ballarat.vic.gov.au/itp-trains/survey_tools/survey

Ballarat Integrated Transport Plan – Rail Network

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  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Ballarat to Geelong Connectivity

The Regional Rail Revival study found that minor upgrades to the existing line between Geelong and
Ballarat could provide for a passenger rail service operating speed of 130km/h on most of the line. These
relatively low cost works would have a much more reasonable benefit-cost ratio than the entire Bendigo-
Geelong project. The cost of this and other works through the Geelong Freight yards would come to $250-
320M (2012). While the benefit cost ratio of the whole project was found to be low, the cost of the Ballarat
to Geelong upgrade is only 30% of the overall cost, and it would generate 70% of the project benefits. The
benefit cost ratio of the Ballarat-Geelong section is therefore much more favourable than the whole
project.

Connectivity between Ballarat and Geelong has been recognised by the State Government as an important
factor that supports or undermines the future economic potential of both cities and their regions. It is
therefore a critical weakness that public transport services between the two cities consists of four services
per weekday in each direction (49 services per week) compared with 8 services per weekday in each
direction to Ararat (111 per week). For reference Geelong has 20 times the population of Ararat but only
half the service levels to Ballarat.

The rail connection between Ballarat and Geelong is also important for key Victorian strategies including
the Education State. Ballarat has two universities and Geelong has a large presence of Deakin University.

There are many regional students who grow up in one of those cities and enrol in tertiary education in the
other.

The connection to Geelong provides one coach in each direction that meets the needs of a traditional
working day in Geelong, but does not provide any services timed to the needs of a traditional working day
in Ballarat. Patronage estimates show that an increased level of services would be used by the public.
Modelling of train patronage in the Ballarat-Geelong corridor shows that from day one, trains would attract
a very similar level of patronage per train to the services on the Traralgon corridor (around 180 passengers
per train).

Trains from Ballarat to Geelong can also continue to Melbourne. For many decades, Ballarat to Melbourne
trains routinely used the Geelong track to provide counter peak services and improve reliability of peak
direction trains on the Ballarat Melbourne track via Bacchus Marsh. Due to the operating speeds possible
on each track, the trip via Geelong was not much longer than other services in the timetable.

The lack of this option in the current timetable directly impacts on people wishing to travel back to Melbourne from Ballarat between 4 and 6pm on any weekday. There are no trains during that time, and the only alternative
is a road coach departing at 5:15pm. This road coach arrives into Melbourne at 7:15pm, taking more time
than the train would need to travel from Ballarat to Melbourne via Geelong.

In summary, utilising the existing railway track between Ballarat and Geelong could cater for high speed
services that attract a significant number of people and provide greater flexibility and reliability on the
main Ballarat-Melbourne corridor. Such services would have a positive impact on the economies of both
cities and their regions and reinforce State government efforts to create a State of several significant cities.
It would also improve safety on the rural roads linking the cities.
  kitchgp Chief Commissioner

Ballarat to Geelong Connectivity needs updating. It overlooks the fact that Warrenheip - North Geelong will be SG, eg "Trains from Ballarat to Geelong can also continue to Melbourne."
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Ballarat to Geelong Connectivity needs updating. It overlooks the fact that Warrenheip - North Geelong will be SG, eg "Trains from Ballarat to Geelong can also continue to Melbourne."
kitchgp

SG from North Shore station to SCS is way too slow and circuitous to be operating a frequent service on. Better to have a third rail between Ballarat and Geelong so BG trains can travel to Melbourne via Wyndham Vale if required

Mike.
  True Believers Chief Commissioner

I think it's better to focus on duplicating the remaining sections of single track between Ballarat and Melbourne before even considering reopening the Geelong - Ballarat rail line to passengers.

This would allow 20-minute frequencies on the Melbourne - Ballarat route in the future.

Also reintroducing light-rail to Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo is another future project that we should be looking at into the future.
  Dangersdan707 Chief Commissioner

Location: On a Thing with Internet
I think it's better to focus on duplicating the remaining sections of single track between Ballarat and Melbourne before even considering reopening the Geelong - Ballarat rail line to passengers.

This would allow 20-minute frequencies on the Melbourne - Ballarat route in the future.

Also reintroducing light-rail to Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo is another future project that we should be looking at into the future.
True Believers
Remember Ballarat and Bendigo still have Trams. IIRC Bendigo did attempt a trial for a month but it got nowhere
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: North Haverbrook; where the monorail is king!
I think it's better to focus on duplicating the remaining sections of single track between Ballarat and Melbourne before even considering reopening the Geelong - Ballarat rail line to passengers.

This would allow 20-minute frequencies on the Melbourne - Ballarat route in the future.

Also reintroducing light-rail to Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo is another future project that we should be looking at into the future.
Remember Ballarat and Bendigo still have Trams. IIRC Bendigo did attempt a trial for a month but it got nowhere
Dangersdan707
Ballarat and Bendigo have tourist trams. Ballarat's goes partway around a lake in the middle of the botanic gardens. Bendigo's does indeed pass through the CBD, but doesn't connect with major trip generators like hospitals, train stations or higher education facilities. That's part of why the trial was a failure.

To implement a useful light rail network in either city would require the construction of brand new (isolated) lines or significant track extensions to the existing networks.

Geelong, despite having lost its trams long ago is still just as likely to get a light rail network in future - i.e only a remote possibility.
  kitchgp Chief Commissioner

VLocitys Ballarat - (Nth) Geelong - Melbourne won't be feasible when Ballarat - Gheringhap is converted to SG under the Murray Basin Rail Project (unless the possible Geelong electrification is SG). The above Ballarat - Geelong Connectivity is based on the LNP-era pre-MBRP 2013 Regional Rail Revival: Geelong-Ballarat-Bendigo study which was costed assuming BG between Geelong and Ballarat. The study needs updating as it would now require such things as SG VLocitys and DG North Geelong - Geelong. There may be savings if it was implemented at the same time as SG Ballarat - Gheringhap or the re-gauging was carried out with a future 115 - 130 km/h passenger service in mind.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
I think the biggest part of the document was now the Geelong Ballarat Maryborough and Bendigo proposal was lumped in together and with Geelong and Ballarat only 9as a service between the two regional centres) a large series of benefits actually emerge and are realisable.  Obviously the PTV deliberately did this.  Who get's joy from the continued burrying of rail benefits across the state to delay the implementation of projects which clearly have community benefit which is why the government is there,

It was poor form on the part of vline to remove the service between Geelong and Ballarat anyhow as it was well used.
  x42 Junior Train Controller

Location: NSW
Has consideration been made for a siding in the new Ballarat industrial park and the possibility of a new station at the Lucas development that backs on to the former Skipton line branch with new track built on the existing formation ?
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Yes.

M.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Yes.

M.
The Vinelander

Ok Mike, you have our attention. Smile

When @x42 you ask about industrial park what exactly do you mean passenger platform or freight access?
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Yes.

M.

Ok Mike, you have our attention. Smile

When @x42 you ask about industrial park what exactly do you mean passenger platform or freight access?
bevans

Freight access.

Where the Ring Road bridge currently crosses the Ararat line, if you look at the allocated space underneath that bridge, there's enough space for 6 tracks 2 BG, 2 for the industrial park and 2 SG and if I recall, the bridge is high enough for double stacked containers to pass under.

Mike.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Ballarat to Geelong Connectivity

The Regional Rail Revival study found that minor upgrades to the existing line between Geelong and
Ballarat could provide for a passenger rail service operating speed of 130km/h on most of the line. These
relatively low cost works would have a much more reasonable benefit-cost ratio than the entire Bendigo-
Geelong project. The cost of this and other works through the Geelong Freight yards would come to $250-
320M (2012). While the benefit cost ratio of the whole project was found to be low, the cost of the Ballarat
to Geelong upgrade is only 30% of the overall cost, and it would generate 70% of the project benefits. The
benefit cost ratio of the Ballarat-Geelong section is therefore much more favourable than the whole
project.

Connectivity between Ballarat and Geelong has been recognised by the State Government as an important
factor that supports or undermines the future economic potential of both cities and their regions. It is
therefore a critical weakness that public transport services between the two cities consists of four services
per weekday in each direction (49 services per week) compared with 8 services per weekday in each
direction to Ararat (111 per week). For reference Geelong has 20 times the population of Ararat but only
half the service levels to Ballarat.

The rail connection between Ballarat and Geelong is also important for key Victorian strategies including
the Education State. Ballarat has two universities and Geelong has a large presence of Deakin University.

There are many regional students who grow up in one of those cities and enrol in tertiary education in the
other.

The connection to Geelong provides one coach in each direction that meets the needs of a traditional
working day in Geelong, but does not provide any services timed to the needs of a traditional working day
in Ballarat. Patronage estimates show that an increased level of services would be used by the public.
Modelling of train patronage in the Ballarat-Geelong corridor shows that from day one, trains would attract
a very similar level of patronage per train to the services on the Traralgon corridor (around 180 passengers
per train).

Trains from Ballarat to Geelong can also continue to Melbourne. For many decades, Ballarat to Melbourne
trains routinely used the Geelong track to provide counter peak services and improve reliability of peak
direction trains on the Ballarat Melbourne track via Bacchus Marsh. Due to the operating speeds possible
on each track, the trip via Geelong was not much longer than other services in the timetable.

The lack of this option in the current timetable directly impacts on people wishing to travel back to Melbourne from Ballarat between 4 and 6pm on any weekday. There are no trains during that time, and the only alternative
is a road coach departing at 5:15pm. This road coach arrives into Melbourne at 7:15pm, taking more time
than the train would need to travel from Ballarat to Melbourne via Geelong.

In summary, utilising the existing railway track between Ballarat and Geelong could cater for high speed
services that attract a significant number of people and provide greater flexibility and reliability on the
main Ballarat-Melbourne corridor. Such services would have a positive impact on the economies of both
cities and their regions and reinforce State government efforts to create a State of several significant cities.
It would also improve safety on the rural roads linking the cities.
bevans

Based only on the above, I am concerned about the Murray Basin project again - if they are indeed suggesting passenger services on this line, then this could be a door for them to abandon the standardisation of Warrenheip-Gheringhap.  I wonder what the freight providers think about that and if they've been involved in the consultation?  

Though, it may also go the other way, but that would need some SG works from North Geelong to Geelong itself which would cost $$ - but is this what is referred to in the $250-$300m??

The whole FPSP seems to be missing from this.  More thinking is needed in this document.
  potatoinmymouth Chief Commissioner

Ballarat to Geelong Connectivity

The Regional Rail Revival study found that minor upgrades to the existing line between Geelong and
Ballarat could provide for a passenger rail service operating speed of 130km/h on most of the line. These
relatively low cost works would have a much more reasonable benefit-cost ratio than the entire Bendigo-
Geelong project. The cost of this and other works through the Geelong Freight yards would come to $250-
320M (2012). While the benefit cost ratio of the whole project was found to be low, the cost of the Ballarat
to Geelong upgrade is only 30% of the overall cost, and it would generate 70% of the project benefits. The
benefit cost ratio of the Ballarat-Geelong section is therefore much more favourable than the whole
project.

Connectivity between Ballarat and Geelong has been recognised by the State Government as an important
factor that supports or undermines the future economic potential of both cities and their regions. It is
therefore a critical weakness that public transport services between the two cities consists of four services
per weekday in each direction (49 services per week) compared with 8 services per weekday in each
direction to Ararat (111 per week). For reference Geelong has 20 times the population of Ararat but only
half the service levels to Ballarat.

The rail connection between Ballarat and Geelong is also important for key Victorian strategies including
the Education State. Ballarat has two universities and Geelong has a large presence of Deakin University.

There are many regional students who grow up in one of those cities and enrol in tertiary education in the
other.

The connection to Geelong provides one coach in each direction that meets the needs of a traditional
working day in Geelong, but does not provide any services timed to the needs of a traditional working day
in Ballarat. Patronage estimates show that an increased level of services would be used by the public.
Modelling of train patronage in the Ballarat-Geelong corridor shows that from day one, trains would attract
a very similar level of patronage per train to the services on the Traralgon corridor (around 180 passengers
per train).

Trains from Ballarat to Geelong can also continue to Melbourne. For many decades, Ballarat to Melbourne
trains routinely used the Geelong track to provide counter peak services and improve reliability of peak
direction trains on the Ballarat Melbourne track via Bacchus Marsh. Due to the operating speeds possible
on each track, the trip via Geelong was not much longer than other services in the timetable.

The lack of this option in the current timetable directly impacts on people wishing to travel back to Melbourne from Ballarat between 4 and 6pm on any weekday. There are no trains during that time, and the only alternative
is a road coach departing at 5:15pm. This road coach arrives into Melbourne at 7:15pm, taking more time
than the train would need to travel from Ballarat to Melbourne via Geelong.

In summary, utilising the existing railway track between Ballarat and Geelong could cater for high speed
services that attract a significant number of people and provide greater flexibility and reliability on the
main Ballarat-Melbourne corridor. Such services would have a positive impact on the economies of both
cities and their regions and reinforce State government efforts to create a State of several significant cities.
It would also improve safety on the rural roads linking the cities.

Based only on the above, I am concerned about the Murray Basin project again - if they are indeed suggesting passenger services on this line, then this could be a door for them to abandon the standardisation of Warrenheip-Gheringhap.  I wonder what the freight providers think about that and if they've been involved in the consultation?  

Though, it may also go the other way, but that would need some SG works from North Geelong to Geelong itself which would cost $$ - but is this what is referred to in the $250-$300m??

The whole FPSP seems to be missing from this.  More thinking is needed in this document.
james.au
The chance of Ballarat council single-handedly breaking the MBRP even further is pretty minimal. As alluded to above their thinking simply apes the 2013 report, which is meaningless in the current context.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Don;t be so dismissive at present.  If the lines go to ARTC which is a possibility then the Geelong to Ballarat Line (which V/Line is stating needs to have BG access) then it will either be DG or the better option would be to go back to double track one BG and one SG as there is plenty of room in the easement.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
The chance of Ballarat council single-handedly breaking the MBRP even further is pretty minimal. As alluded to above their thinking simply apes the 2013 report, which is meaningless in the current context.
potatoinmymouth
Yes I've read more into this and see that it is Council not a Vic Govt plan.
Ive made a submission - see what they do with it!
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
which V/Line is stating needs to have BG access
bevans
Where are they saying this??

AFAIK the need for BG on this corridor changed when the Ballarat line upgrade project came into being, which was after the Murray Basin project was business cased.
  stooge spark Train Controller

I think it's better to focus on duplicating the remaining sections of single track between Ballarat and Melbourne before even considering reopening the Geelong - Ballarat rail line to passengers.

This would allow 20-minute frequencies on the Melbourne - Ballarat route in the future.

Also reintroducing light-rail to Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo is another future project that we should be looking at into the future.
Remember Ballarat and Bendigo still have Trams. IIRC Bendigo did attempt a trial for a month but it got nowhere
Ballarat and Bendigo have tourist trams. Ballarat's goes partway around a lake in the middle of the botanic gardens. Bendigo's does indeed pass through the CBD, but doesn't connect with major trip generators like hospitals, train stations or higher education facilities. That's part of why the trial was a failure.
LancedDendrite
Not to mention I reckon frequency was probably limited. I believe the Bendigo Tramway has sections where there's only 1 tram track?
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Most of the current Bendigo tourist tram system Is single track.

Double track In the centre of the City, with 2 loops on the line out to the Joss House.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
At one point the tram network in Bendigo did connect with the railway station.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
At one point the tram network in Bendigo did connect with the railway station.
bevans
There was a spur to the Railway Station at one stage, but not In place when the system closed.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

At one point the tram network in Bendigo did connect with the railway station.
There was a spur to the Railway Station at one stage, but not In place when the system closed.
Nightfire
Yes, the horse tram terminated there in the 1890s, but was gone when the electric tram opened to Quarry Hill in the 1900s. I Mitchell Street is 125 metres from the railway station. I reckon that's close enough to consider it as a connection - it's might be further from the suburban platforms at Southern Cross to a Spencer Street tram stop than to the station tram stop in Mitchell Street.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

There was a big debate in Bendigo about 10 years ago when they were rebuilding Mitchell St. Running light rail down it was discussed but it ended up in the too hard/too expensive basket as usual.

Anyway, a lost opportunity IMO.

I find these council studies always have high aspirations but in reality they either:
1) don't happen
2) just build more roads
3) everybody still drives cars because they're lazy.
  kitchgp Chief Commissioner

SG VLocitys Geelong – Ballarat are quite feasible. BG running on DG above 80 km/h hasn’t been approved yet. Even so, it’s more likely to be 100 km/h than 115 – 130 km/h. The 2013 passenger study needs to be revised in light of SG Ballarat – Gheringhap. It may be that it is cheaper as a consequence.

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