Ingham pushes for regional passenger services to Townsville

 
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

Lets be real a 108km light rail project separate to the current NCL isnt going to work.  

Just get a Sprinter, put it on NG and shuttle it back and forth and see what happens*.



*if it doesnt topple over on a curve
james.au

The Sprinters and VLocity sets are only 5cm wider than the 2800s already running on the line...they should be okay on the curves.

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  james.au Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney, NSW
Lets be real a 108km light rail project separate to the current NCL isnt going to work.  

Just get a Sprinter, put it on NG and shuttle it back and forth and see what happens*.



*if it doesnt topple over on a curve

The Sprinters and VLocity sets are only 5cm wider than the 2800s already running on the line...they should be okay on the curves.
Sulla1
How about centre of gravity?
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
Lets be real a 108km light rail project separate to the current NCL isnt going to work.  

Just get a Sprinter, put it on NG and shuttle it back and forth and see what happens*.



*if it doesnt topple over on a curve

The Sprinters and VLocity sets are only 5cm wider than the 2800s already running on the line...they should be okay on the curves.
How about centre of gravity?
james.au
The engines are already at the lowest point on the railcars possible anyway....
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

Given that ex-standard gauge rollingstock is already operating on 3ft6 and 2ft gauge in North Queensland, I would be quietly confident a near factory standard VLocity on narrow gauge bogies and a narrowed pilot (below the frame) could operate out of Townsville to Cairns and Mt Isa with perhaps some platform modifications. Shave 5cm off the existing VLocity body width and they could probably operate in most parts of Queensland other than west of Brisbane and probably west of Cairns.
  james.au Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney, NSW
Given that ex-standard gauge rollingstock is already operating on 3ft6 and 2ft gauge in North Queensland, I would be quietly confident a near factory standard VLocity on narrow gauge bogies and a narrowed pilot (below the frame) could operate out of Townsville to Cairns and Mt Isa with perhaps some platform modifications. Shave 5cm off the existing VLocity body width and they could probably operate in most parts of Queensland other than west of Brisbane and probably west of Cairns.
Sulla1
Sulla1, I admire your unflappable factuality that goes further than I implicitly asked even when I make a joke about Sprinters.
  Dangersdan707 Chief Commissioner

Location: On a Thing with Internet
Given that ex-standard gauge rollingstock is already operating on 3ft6 and 2ft gauge in North Queensland, I would be quietly confident a near factory standard VLocity on narrow gauge bogies and a narrowed pilot (below the frame) could operate out of Townsville to Cairns and Mt Isa with perhaps some platform modifications. Shave 5cm off the existing VLocity body width and they could probably operate in most parts of Queensland other than west of Brisbane and probably west of Cairns.
Sulla1, I admire your unflappable factuality that goes further than I implicitly asked even when I make a joke about Sprinters.
james.au
Knowing this place it can be difficult at times to Decipher what is intended as a joke or not, given some of the outlandish ideas and gunzely Armchair ideas often put forward.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

Tongue in cheek maybe, but James' idea has merit. The $100-million to four-lane five kilometres of the parallel Bruce Highway would buy five three-car VLocity sets.

Wouldn't be the first time an off the cuff remark got turned into a solution.

Still, in the end, a future Queensland Government won't buy VLocity sets, it won't commit to major four-laning projects for the Bruce Highway in North Queensland and dozens of North Queenslanders will die each year on a congested, dangerous commuter corridor. It is what it is.
  jasmin81 Beginner

I don't think there is any real point in a Townsville-Ingham service. There's no enough to demand to run a reasonable frequency, and without that it's not going to attract any real patronage.

Between Cairns and Townsville there would definitely be demand, if it was a high quality service. As it stands, the rail journey takes almost six and half hours, and that's on a tilting train. Without significant investment in track upgrades,  it'd be hard to get journey times down by much. If you could the journey time down by 30min then it'd be possibe for two trainsets to give a 3 departures (morning, early afternoon and evening) each way, which is probably the minimum service that you could call reasonably convenient. It'd still be slower than driving, but a lot less stressful.

Rather than building new tiltrains one option could be to reintroduce a dedicated sleeper on the Brisbane-Cairns run, and re-purpose the diesel tilts to a Cairns-Townsville service. As NSW retires their XPTs, they could be refurbished and refitted with new bogies for that role, possibly with heavier locos so it could offer motorail service as well - given the tourist traffic on the route, and the crappy nature of the road, this could be profitable. They would be slower than the TiltTrain, but on the Brisbane-Cairns run it's an overnight route, so it really doesn't matter that much.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
Rather than building new tiltrains one option could be to reintroduce a dedicated sleeper on the Brisbane-Cairns run, and re-purpose the diesel tilts to a Cairns-Townsville service.
jasmin81
If (and that's a very BIG if) sleepers were to be reintroduced it would be by adding new sleeping cars to the existing sets or converting cars from the existing cars to sleepers. I doubt there would be the demand for a Townsville-Cairns commuter service such that the capacity of the existing DTT sets would be required. Some fast-ish DMU sets (3, 4 cars?) should suffice.
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Between Cairns and Townsville there would definitely be demand, if it was a high quality service. As it stands, the rail journey takes almost six and half hours, and that's on a tilting train.
jasmin81
The Tilt train doesn't tilt between Townsville and Cairns.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

As part of its state election campaign, the LNP has launched a $33-billion policy to four-lane the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns, a distance of 1518km, minus the 45km of intermittent dual carriage ways encountered in urban areas along the way.

Incredibly unlikely this plan will reach fruition, but needless to say, if it does, demand for new short, medium and long distance passenger services on the parallel North Coast Line will likely be next to zero.

Of the 1474km earmarked for duplication, there are five highway sections totalling 559km carrying less than 5000 vehicles per day; Gin Gin to Mirriamvale; Yaamba to Sarina;Proserpine to Bowen; Merinda to Home Hill; and the Cardwell Range to Cardwell. These sections demonstrate the locations where commuter traffic falls away to mostly long distance highway traffic.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
As part of its state election campaign, the LNP has launched a $33-billion policy to four-lane the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns, a distance of 1518km, minus the 45km of intermittent dual carriage ways encountered in urban areas along the way.

Incredibly unlikely this plan will reach fruition, but needless to say, if it does, demand for new short, medium and long distance passenger services on the parallel North Coast Line will likely be next to zero.
Sulla1

That's highly unlikely. Not everyone 'enjoys' driving and many people these days actively avoid driving cars or even getting drivers licences. Gen Y & Z and retired boomers in particular.

Moreover, surface transport buses or trains have the advantage of being able to see the scenery as one travels along as well as being able to work/snooze, or share a drink with friends, family or other travel companions without having to think about Mr Plodd.

Many people fly between Brisbane and Cairns...a percentage take the train or bus, but those who prefer to see the scenery won't be abandoning public transport for a dreary...and boring 4 lane drive over many hundreds of km's.

Mike.
  james.au Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney, NSW
Incredibly unlikely this plan will reach fruition,
Sulla1
Well, if they want federal funding for it there will need to be a business case, and in some of these areas the BCR for four lanes will no doubt be poor.  Infra Australia will probably rate it poorly.

Now, politics always comes into play with roads, but this isnt the Hume Highway were talking about where a highway can be built without a business case (and probably overcapitalised).
  Big J Deputy Commissioner

Location: In Paradise
As part of its state election campaign, the LNP has launched a $33-billion policy to four-lane the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns, a distance of 1518km, minus the 45km of intermittent dual carriage ways encountered in urban areas along the way.

Incredibly unlikely this plan will reach fruition, but needless to say, if it does, demand for new short, medium and long distance passenger services on the parallel North Coast Line will likely be next to zero.

That's highly unlikely. Not everyone 'enjoys' driving and many people these days actively avoid driving cars or even getting drivers licences. Gen Y & Z and retired boomers in particular.

Moreover, surface transport buses or trains have the advantage of being able to see the scenery as one travels along as well as being able to work/snooze, or share a drink with friends, family or other travel companions without having to think about Mr Plodd.

Many people fly between Brisbane and Cairns...a percentage take the train or bus, but those who prefer to see the scenery won't be abandoning public transport for a dreary...and boring 4 lane drive over many hundreds of km's.

Mike.
The Vinelander
True.

Most likely driven by the people outside of SEQ that will drive that "dreary" road and that will vote. That will likely determine the next Qld gov.

Realisticly I think most people are sceptical of this "promise" as it requires a majority of Federal funding and they do pay attention and have seen how long it has taken to do the Pacific highway from Sydney to Brisbane as a divided Highway. They are not stupid and will require more that the platitudes offered so far. But it will put pressure on the incumbent government not to be SEQ focussed.

However some will be persuaded, as they will be for the bogus Bradfield Scheme (sending the northern gulf waters to the southern states), classic One Nation, that ignores the life cycle costs exceeding the supposed beneifits. That has been demonstrated with the election of the One Nation person in the seat of Mirani and the ongoing support of the Katters in Northern Qld.

It can mean the balance of power. These promises are not for SEQ, but for outside of there. Qld is not Vic, NSW, or SA. The Metro does not dominate.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
4 lane road between Gympie and Cairns? Hardly justified and the various govts know it. The Pacific highway quad, not sure if complete took how many years for half the distance and there is 12m who live along its corridor.

Parts of the Bruce highway are only moderately used for some of the day in comparison to the Pacific.

There will never be sleepers again on the rail corridor to Cairns/Townsville again, the CTT is more than adequate and the only deficiencies are lack of 7 days a week running, easily solved by the purchase of another set and significant improvement in running time between T'ville and Cairns.  The current average speed is a miserable 50-55km/h between these two cities. Its at least 70-75km/h to T'ville to Brisbane,
  phil_48 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Wynnum North
I stopped driving on the Bruce Holeway in Feb 2008, after one flood too many, and till the end of the Sunlander used its Motor Rail, neither of which now exist.   My next trip north will be when they are re instated.

If the highway goes ahead, ( I recall a cartoon in the Townsville Bulletin years ago where likenesses of 11 straight Prime Ministers all said the same thing, namely we pledge to rebuild the Bruce Highway ) and is finished by the said 2035, I will probably be watching the opening ceremony from the clouds ( I hope )….
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

4 lane road between Gympie and Cairns? Hardly justified and the various govts know it. The Pacific highway quad, not sure if complete took how many years for half the distance and there is 12m who live along its corridor.

Parts of the Bruce highway are only moderately used for some of the day in comparison to the Pacific.

There will never be sleepers again on the rail corridor to Cairns/Townsville again, the CTT is more than adequate and the only deficiencies are lack of 7 days a week running, easily solved by the purchase of another set and significant improvement in running time between T'ville and Cairns.  The current average speed is a miserable 50-55km/h between these two cities. Its at least 70-75km/h to T'ville to Brisbane,
RTT_Rules

In actual fact there are several sections of the two-lane Bruce Highway carrying more than 10,000-vehicles per day and 62% of the two-lane highway between Gympie and Cairns carries more than 5,000-vehicles per day. The Federal Government is currently funding four-laning for the Midland Highway in Tasmania and the Western Highway in Victoria for sections carrying 6,000-vehicles per day.

More than 200 people die on the Bruce Highway every year - one fifth of all Australian road deaths - and the Bruce Highway has made it to the top ten deadliest highways in the world based on road deaths. The Bruce Highway serves a resident population of 1.3-million between Gympie and Cairns - a number that doesn't take into account the tens of thousands of road-based tourists using it each year.

Vehicle numbers between Ayr and Townsville are at 12,000 per day, north of Townsville it's 14,000-vehicles per day and between Innisfail and Cairns it's 16,000-vehicles per day - in any other state these sections would be already duplicated or planning well advanced for such works...apart from this week's policy promise by an opposition party, there is no such planning, except for a section between Edmonton and Gordonvale south of Cairns.

Even on the quieter sections of the highway there are congestion issues caused by slow vehicles, today I ended up driving at 80km/h for nearly 50km in a 110km/h zone near Marlborough behind caravans and wideloads. The 100km section between Kalarka and Marlborough has no overtaking lanes, a situation repeated for northbound traffic between Bowen and Home Hill over a similar distance.

Fortunately for North Queensland, Brisbane is getting another tunnel under the Brisbane River, with some of the works occurring in the current Transport Minister's electorate.

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