Are all the industrial properties still operating?
Is there no cargo to be taken out of, or taken into there, if so, why are they not using trains?
The glass manufacturer is still open, and served by trucks. The main traffic to the siding when it was open was sand from a quarry on the Leongatha line. The closure of that line put an end to that traffic. The Mobil depot is still there, but also road served. There isn't much oil traffic by rail today - IIRC Shell at Corio is the only refinery to still despatch by rail.
Why would you bother removing them? It isn't like they're obstructing anything.
The rails were in the side of the road, and quite a lot of workers park in the street. Perhaps the council wants to resurface the road?
Having said that, were the two Mobil sidings ever joined together? There is another track down of Spotswood that heads towards Newport but curves away a little before Newport.
According to Andrew Waugh's station histories
(3049K) they were never connected. Also, there was only every three tracks across the crossing.
Wongm, have the got rid of the sidings that run parralel to the down line closer to Newport. The ones seen in the foreground of this image?
I gather this siding was once electrified, why remove these when upcomming extra electrified rolling stock will need more places to call home over night?
That is the now dismantled "Spotswood - Newport Power Station and Oil Lines" - a 1951 diagram of the area is a Mark Bau's site - Linky
The line was built to bring coal to the former Newport 'A' and Newport 'B' power stations. One power station was opened by the VR to power the suburban railways upon electrification. The second was later opened by the SEC to supply Melbourne. IIRC the coal sidings were electrified in conjunction with the Gippsland electrification works (to allow the through working of col trains) A number of other sidings off this line served a number of oil depots.
If you look at the diagram, there were a number of siding going everywhere. What you see today from the Werribee line is a big empty gap beween the two tank farms. This was the coal sidings that ran at a 90 degree angle to the main line. These lines ran eastward a fair distance, where they crossed Douglas Parade, and entered the power stations (the old power stations were located to the south of the current gas powered station) The area to the north of the plant was various sidings.
Parallel to the coal sidings were the oil lines, which diverged soon after Hall Street. I believe the various Shell Co. sidings were located in the empty space you see today. Further away from the main line, another track branches off from these lines, running north-east. It splits into two - the left being the Caltex siding, that crosses Burleigh Street between Drake St and Douglas Parade, before entering their terminal.
The right hand branch continues along further and splits again, with a spur to the right leading to Ampol's oil depot, a thread about it is here
(with a loading platform still visible) The left hand branch crosses Burleigh Street at the corner of Douglas Parade (the property line here reflects the former track) and then continues north along the oil pipelines, until it reaches the 'Holden Oil Dock' which is located to the north of the Westgate bridge - it's a few kilometres long this siding!
At present only the tracks between the main line, and Hall Street are still in place. The points were straight-railed a number of years ago. The coal sidings closed in the 1970s when the coal fired plants closed. The oil sidings lasted longer, until the 1980s or early 1990s.
There are also rails burried in the ground in yarraville
That is the former goods yard, that was located in the park on the east side of the station.
Also - you could just avoid my longwinded description, and check out this *.kml file for Google Earth. http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=http://members.optusnet.com.au/~mwongfamily/spotswood-rail.kml&layer=&ie=UTF8&om=1&z=15