Future of Overland train service in doubt

 
Topic moved from News by dthead on 25 Nov 2019 19:16
  Dangersdan707 Chief Commissioner

Location: On a Thing with Internet
Let Vline run to the border and stuff the South Australians.
The rails are a little too close together for V/line's liking.
One day V/line will be forced to recognise that there is a gender other than BG but, sadly, it may be too late for the overall long term good of Victoria. Smile
YM-Mundrabilla
Are you threatening me master YM?

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  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

North East loco hauled sg sets wont be released for some years yet. Both the track upgrade by ARTC and new sg V/Locity acquisitions are moving with all the usual speed of a crippled snail. Endless announcements about planning, paving the way for this and that. The contract for the track work has only just been announced and then it is said to be something like a 2.5 year job, and still no indication when the 4 - 5 sg V/locity sets required to run 5 trains each way as proposed in the RNDPwill be ordered. Still awaiting sg certification, they were originally a sg train !!!!

So short term beyond Ararat the options are

1. Pay Journey Beyond to continue Overdue as now.
2. Pay Journey Beyond to run as daily Nhill - Melbourne return service via North Shore with connection at Ararat with bg V/locity to Ballarat & Melbourne.  (Has to go to melbourne to maintain the cars)
3. Pay Journey beyond to run as sg shuttles between Ararat and Horsham with set running through to Melbourne Friday Pm and back Sunday PM via North Shore for Melbourne maintenance.
4. Standard gauge VLP V/locity shuttle between Ararat & Horsham,  mainatined in Melbourne MT changeover via North Shore. This option requires upgarded lx protection between Ararat and Horsham .
  don_dunstan The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Adelaide proud
Here's some numbers to chew over; annual VIC subsidy for the Overland is $2 million p/a... the cost of constructing ONE railway station (Talbot) was $2.5 million only a few years ago. Realistically wouldn't we be talking at least $15-$20 million for rolling-stock (refurbished standard gauge N-sets cascaded from the Albury line?), platform and station upgrades to DDA standards, stabling (if necessary)? Any upgrade of the service to V/line standards is likely to be relatively expensive in the order of tens of millions.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Thanks for that Dummy name that why a love rail. HISTORY can't get enough. This Melbourne bloke I wish I was Batman.
C2
'This Melbourne bloke I wish I was Batman'

Be careful what you wish for. Is that THE same John Batman who was described by his neighbour as:

'a rogue, thief, cheat and liar, a murderer of blacks and the vilest man I have ever known'

and who died from syphilis at age 38?
  C2 Junior Train Controller

Yep thats our history all over the earth. At least we know that guy. Lord  Melbourne never came here like Seymour of Somerset. I Just think you should of come here to see it for your self so we know who you are. if you want a name in our chequered history.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Let Vline run to the border and stuff the South Australians.
The rails are a little too close together for V/line's liking.
One day V/line will be forced to recognise that there is a gender other than BG but, sadly, it may be too late for the overall long term good of Victoria. Smile
Are you threatening me master YM?
Dangersdan707
DD

Me! Threaten you or anybody (even anyone silly enough to believe in the BG)! As Greta said 'How dare you'  ........

You need to remember that I am renowned for tact, tolerance and diplomacy?  

I am therefore amazed, appalled, incredulous, surprised, shattered, dismayed, horrified, distressed, alarmed, disgusted, offended and shocked that anybody could think that I am threatening them. (Even if they are so misguided as to believe in the BG.)

Look what happened to Brunel's BG and its demise that happened almost overnight. You don't need to worry, however, as that is not likely to happen here in Mexico this decade (century).

The BG Overland was one one of the very few things better on BG than SG!

Anyway Best Wishes for 2020 Smile .

PS: There are a few here on RP that I would like to threaten but that might get me banned (which may be a good thing?). Rolling Eyes
  C2 Junior Train Controller

275 ks of Brunel gauge track plus branch lines and sidings converted in a weekend to SG. 3500 gangers pushing hard. But what was the price you ask Don? Being the best of the best mate its all ego with taxes. God Save the Queen God save America. Please leave Lucifer my prawns done.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
The gate Valvegear, The gate........

BigShunter.
  lkernan Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
So short term beyond Ararat the options are

1. Pay Journey Beyond to continue Overdue as now.
2. Pay Journey Beyond to run as daily Nhill - Melbourne return service via North Shore with connection at Ararat with bg V/locity to Ballarat & Melbourne.  (Has to go to melbourne to maintain the cars)
3. Pay Journey beyond to run as sg shuttles between Ararat and Horsham with set running through to Melbourne Friday Pm and back Sunday PM via North Shore for Melbourne maintenance.
kuldalai
Journey Beyond would have no interest in that would they?
They're more like a cruise line and that's like asking them to run the Manly Ferry.
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Norda Fittazroy
The gate Valvegear, The gate........
"BigShunter"
I was actually thinking of the stocks.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

Journey Beyond would have no interest in that would they?
They're more like a cruise line and that's like asking them to run the Manly Ferry.
lkernan
Journey Beyond don't have any strategic interest in either the Overland or an Ararat-Nhill regional train.

But if governments keep offering them enough money to make it profitable, you can't blame them for accepting it.
  lkernan Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Journey Beyond would have no interest in that would they?
They're more like a cruise line and that's like asking them to run the Manly Ferry.
Journey Beyond don't have any strategic interest in either the Overland or an Ararat-Nhill regional train.

But if governments keep offering them enough money to make it profitable, you can't blame them for accepting it.
justapassenger
That's like saying if you throw enough at Spirit of Tasmania they'll run a Geelong-Melbourne service.    
In reality, they'd never agree to that.
  justapassenger Minister for Railways

Journey Beyond would have no interest in that would they?
They're more like a cruise line and that's like asking them to run the Manly Ferry.
Journey Beyond don't have any strategic interest in either the Overland or an Ararat-Nhill regional train.

But if governments keep offering them enough money to make it profitable, you can't blame them for accepting it.
That's like saying if you throw enough at Spirit of Tasmania they'll run a Geelong-Melbourne service.    
In reality, they'd never agree to that.
lkernan
Probably not, given that TT-Line (operator of the Spirit of Tasmania ferries) is a business wholly owned by the Tasmanian Government. Getting TT-Line involved in a Victorian transport operation would be too tough to sell politically in Tasmania.

Journey Beyond is a private company though, so a better comparison might be SeaLink Travel Group which operates a variety of A-to-B ferries and cruise operations around Australia - and this year to become the owner of Transit Systems.
  C2 Junior Train Controller

Isn't  the Abel Tasman cheap because theres no tarmac M1 to Tassie so feds chip in for National Hwy idea to get mainlanders down there.
  doyle Assistant Commissioner

I'm back on the overland on 24th march, red premium, I will see what the staff say about its future.
  Trans-Siberian Station Master

Location: Krasnoyarsk, Siberia
Thanks for that Dummy name that why a love rail. HISTORY can't get enough. This Melbourne bloke I wish I was Batman.
C2

Dimboola perhaps renamed with its original Indigenous name - Watchegatcheca
  Trans-Siberian Station Master

Location: Krasnoyarsk, Siberia
The gate Valvegear, The gate........
I was actually thinking of the stocks.
Valvegear

Vacancy....room with stocks in the Mark "Chopper" Read Wing...
  M636C Minister for Railways

275 ks of Brunel gauge track plus branch lines and sidings converted in a weekend to SG. 3500 gangers pushing hard. But what was the price you ask Don? Being the best of the best mate its all ego with taxes. God Save the Queen God save America. Please leave Lucifer my prawns done.
C2
One of the reasons it could be converted easily was that there were no sleepers as we understand them.
The rails were on longitudinal sleepers (or baulks) which were held in gauge by steel rods every six feet or so.

So the steel tie rods were cut and the rails were pushed towards eachother and new rods inserted.

The cost in materials would have been very low, particularly if the tie rods could be recycled by having new screwed ends machined on. You had to pay the labourers but they were probably only paid for the days they worked.

I've seen photos of the old longitudinal sleepered track still in use in Cornwall ten years after the conversion.

Peter
  C2 Junior Train Controller

So we consider how long that line stayed certain ways after conversion. England ran 100 mile hr steam we never did. Then the money money upgrade that was not that great. But higher speeds .ARTC is not in the public interest of world class Railways. While our iconic trains are out of reach for young Australian family's due to the government selling them as our Laundry for dirty cash.
  bramt Deputy Commissioner

I took it to Melbourne last Friday - the first Overland of 2020. There were 40-50 pax, not too bad given we all had less than a week's notice it was returning. I had to cancel a non-refundable flight to catch it, but I was coming from Perth on the Indian Pacific so I wanted to complete the entire journey home by rail if I could - 3,497km!

We left Parklands Terminal on time, arrived ~15mins early into Murray Bridge (but left on time), and were 10mins early into Southern Cross. It definitely feels fast, there's not much time spent travelling slowly, or waiting for a signal.

There does seem to be a few carriages that are surplus to requirements. Consist was:
Loco
Red car: blocked off with 'staff only' signs. Same thing last time I caught it to Adelaide 2 years ago, when is it ever used?
Red car
Red car: with ~1/4 of the seats reserved for V/Line customers
Cafe car
Red premium car
Baggage car
Power car

Why drag the third Red car all the way from Parklands terminal to Melbourne and back, when it's guaranteed it won't be needed, for this trip at least?
And given there was only about 10 people with checked baggage (myself included), do they really need a separate baggage car? Can't fit in the power car, or put them in the empty Red car (which would have had AC, unlike the baggage car!)?

Re additional carriages for increased frequency: I did notice many many spare carriages at Parklands, some from The Ghan, some without signboards, probably many undergoing maintenance/refurbishment, and probably some are only surplus during the Great Southern season, and perhaps they're all sleepers anyway.

The trip itself was excellent, the staff fantastic (one of them was on my Indian Pacific trip as well, so the same high level of service). On board food (and beverages) great. Imagine if the XPT had this level of service!
But I agree with others here JBRE hardly advertises it, and there was no Overland merchandise in the Parklands Terminal gift shop at all. I did get a pen & mug on board (so not sure why they don't sell them in their shop).
  route14 Chief Commissioner

Perhaps JBRE pays a fixed rate for chartering the NR class locomotive regardless of fuel consumption so they don't bother with the coupling and uncoupling.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Data from Journey Beyond shows Overland's patronage steady.

As the Victorian and South Australian governments work to determine the future of the Overland passenger train, new figures show the service has had relatively steady patronage over the past three years.

https://www.mailtimes.com.au/story/6582010/data-from-journey-beyond-shows-overlands-patronage-steady/?cs=225

Link from yesterdays Wimmera MailTimes, if the link above doesn't work, just google Wimmera MailTimes.... eh bevans !

From yesterdays Wimmera MailTimes.

BigShunter.
  michaelgm Chief Commissioner

Data from Journey Beyond shows Overland's patronage steady.

As the Victorian and South Australian governments work to determine the future of the Overland passenger train, new figures show the service has had relatively steady patronage over the past three years.

https://www.mailtimes.com.au/story/6582010/data-from-journey-beyond-shows-overlands-patronage-steady/?cs=225

Link from yesterdays Wimmera MailTimes, if the link above doesn't work, just google Wimmera MailTimes.... eh bevans !

From yesterdays Wimmera MailTimes.

BigShunter.
BigShunter
Thanks BS.
Link works fine.
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
Even with another lifeline (albeit much shorter), 6AM8 left Adelaide yesterday with only 5 vehicles (4 carriages & power van), I just don’t see the point in this service continuing. Either put it out of its misery or have, say VLine take over & actually market the train.
  don_dunstan The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Adelaide proud
Any actual news about how the negotiations on the future of the Overland are going? Time is ticking away (yet again), only two months left of the 'life-line'.

If it was up to our Premier Steve Marshall I'm sure it would have been permanently 'bustituted' by now, complete with vinyl stickers proclaiming "The Overland" (bus). We'll just tell people it's a train, they won't notice the difference...

The Victorian government needs to come up with some other plan independent of the South Australian government, Steve Marshall will not change his mind.

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