...and on it goes, the Napthine government with another PT Fail!...the Dandenong corridor

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 18 Oct 2014 11:09
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/dandenong-rail-upgrade-in-disarray-20141017-117v0v.html


A multibillion-dollar upgrade of the Dandenong railway line is in disarray after the Napthine government said on Friday it would not sign contracts with the consortium delivering the project until next year.

The government's admission that it could not commit to the project before November's election puts in doubt a string of promised improvements to Melbourne's busiest railway corridor, including 25 new "high-capacity" trains, four level crossing removals, three rebuilt stations and new signalling technology. It would deliver capacity for 2 million extra passenger journeys a year on a line that suffers chronic overcrowding.

Labor has refused to commit to the project, arguing there is too much secrecy and uncertainty about how it would be delivered.

The government and the consortium had originally sought to sign contracts for the $2 billion-$2.5 billion project by September 30, but Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder said he was not yet confident enough that every part of the project would deliver value for money for taxpayers.

Instead, the government has made an agreement with the consortium on the requirements it must meet before contracts are signed.

"We want the best design, the best delivery timeframe and the best value for money and we won't settle for anything less," Mr Mulder said in a media release.

"We expect that we will be in a position to sign contracts in mid-2015, subject to the evaluation processes demonstrating the project represents value for money."

The release was published on the government's website but, unusually, was not distributed widely to journalists.

The Cranbourne-Pakenham rail upgrade is an unsolicited proposal that was pitched by Metro, Melbourne's railway operator, in what would be the biggest public-private partnership for a public transport project in Australia's history.

The consortium, which includes Metro's Hong Kong parent company MTR, construction giant John Holland and UGL Rail Services, hopes to receive up to $5.2 billion in availability payments between 2019 and 2034.

The rush to sign off on the project by the end of September, just seven months after the government's surprise announcement in March, has been rocked by doubts about whether it featured enough local manufacturing and whether the proposed signalling upgrade was technically feasible.

Jill Hennessy, Labor's public transport spokeswoman, said the government's agreement sounded "like a PR exercise for a project that's falling apart".

"The public is being hoodwinked into thinking it's an imminent project when it's nothing of the sort," Ms Hennessy said.

Labor would not commit to any element of the project.

"We are committed to removing 50 level crossings and building Melbourne Metro," she said.

The consortium issued its own statement on Friday that it "will ensure it meets the requirements to deliver the Cranbourne-Pakenham rail corridor project".

Public Transport Users Association president Tony Morton said control of the project should be taken out of the consortium's hands and given to Public Transport Victoria.

"The project will be good for commuters if it's delivered properly but we have our doubts that it will be," Dr Morton said.

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  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
There's no mention in that article of the intense lobbying by certain former Liberal party treasurers on behalf of Metro? They bought in the very best 'facilitators' for that project, I was astonished to hear that Napthine & Co. have not rushed it through.

The effective interest rates on this Public-Private Partnership (PPP) are very high - much higher than the government could obtain on the bond market at the moment. If they press ahead on this they will be committing the exact same sin that Labor did with the Southern Cross Station redevelopment.

And the project as it stands is not what it needed. Labor were told over a decade ago that the Dandenong corridor really needed a third track but they sat on their hands before eventually getting funding for something entirely different (Regional Rail Link). Then they used their own inaction as an excuse to propose putting even more lanes onto the Monash Fwy.

Both sides are hopelessly corrupted by the political lobbyists and rent-seeking financiers to deliver any proper fast transit. We'll never get a proper infrastructure agenda for our enormous and growing city - 100km from Bacchus Marsh to Pakenham.
  HardSleeper Junior Train Controller

Location: Route 48
The government and the consortium had originally sought to sign contracts for the $2 billion-$2.5 billion project by September 30, but Public Transport Minister Terry Mulder said he was not yet confident enough that every part of the project would deliver value for money for taxpayers.
The Vinelander

Because it's not a road project.
  wobert Chief Commissioner

Location: Half way between Propodolla and Kinimakatka
Your title sums it up perfectly Mikey, I wonder if the current LNP Luddites, both federal and state understand the words irony and hypocrisy?
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
And three tracks to Dandenong.
wxtre

No. A third track would do nothing other than create an irregularity in the stopping patterns.
  Some rail man Junior Train Controller

Location: CIA Headquarters in Washington D.C
"This project makes East-West Link nonviable and should be scrapped so we can roll in toll money!" some bureaucrat said
  ARodH Chief Train Controller

Location: East Oakleigh, Vic
Really! I'd've thought that without this and East-West, Port of Hastings is nonviable?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Really! I'd've thought that without this and East-West, Port of Hastings is nonviable?
ARodH

Hastings really needs a standard-gauge link for effective traffic of heavy bulk haulage across the state but that's extremely unlikely to happen - Mulder proposed it some time ago when the expanded port was first mooted and then later quietly dropped it. East-West isn't necessary for Hastings to go ahead, there's already a perfectly good Monash toll-way connecting it to the rest of Victoria.

My understanding is that a new bulk port at Hastings aimed at export brown coal briquettes to China from the Latrobe Valley but the recent drop in coal prices has more or less sunk that anyway.
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
The third track would be used for express services would it not. On the Blackburn line they alternate how the third track is used. Until noon 2 tracks head towards the city and vice versa in the afternoon. Could the Dandenong corridor not work in a similar fashion.
wxtre

That's the irregularity I was referring to.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
The third track would be used for express services would it not. On the Blackburn line they alternate how the third track is used. Until noon 2 tracks head towards the city and vice versa in the afternoon. Could the Dandenong corridor not work in a similar fashion.
wxtre

The major problem Is where do you keep all the trains that came Into the city on the morning peak, until the afternoon peak comes !
  Madjikthise Assistant Commissioner

The major problem Is where do you keep all the trains that came Into the city on the morning peak, until the afternoon peak comes !
Nightfire

How about provide an actual service in the counter-peak direction for everyone who is not a drone going into the city?
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Usually transports hubs are built with close access to a port near a rail-link, for rail/road 'intermodal transport'. Maersk has a new container services and storage facility at Altona in Melbourne next to a rail-link. The Bay West port proposal near Geelong would have closer rail transport access than the Port of Hastings. Trains would not have to traverse across the city to these facilities. I do not know about the ocean depths and the amount of dredging required between each proposal.
wxtre

Yeah I'm not sure why they thought Hastings was a better option than Geelong but that's a conversation for another time.

If you have travelled along the Dandy corridor it becomes fairly obvious that any multiple-tracking is going to be a massive construction project. I can think of several spots where it's already really tight along the easement and any additional tracks will involve compulsory acquisition and lots of disruption.

Compare that to the RRL corridor where there were not many urban acquisitions - mostly that part through Footscray but nothing much else. I wonder from time to time if the reason they went with a major upgrade in the West was because it represented an easier engineering task? Anyway - for $5 billion total cost the proposal from Metro Trains is not even going to deliver any additional lanes... is that the best way of spending that money?
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
How about provide an actual service in the counter-peak direction for everyone who is not a drone going into the city?
Madjikthise

The problem comes when the counter peak line can not handle all the trains coming off the two peak direction lines.

low traffic density things work, but the counter peak line Is the weakest link.

Every time there Is a timetable change, the Government of the day brags about adding more trains to the timetable, so the counter peak line Is going to hit capacity.

Tracks need to be In pairs ! 2, 4, 6, 8 etc
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
When city planners first envisaged the Dandenong rail-line, would they not have left room for double-tracking or amplification within the corridor. Has this crown land been encroached on or sold off. I know with the new Springvale station there is no future proofing and they only added two platforms. Would they not plan for this eventuality, it seems ad-hoc. Especially with Dandenong being a major metropolitan business, manufacturing and commercial area.
wxtre

The new Springvale station Is expandable ! look at the artist drawings.
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
You may be correct, I will look. But would it not make sense to add the extra platform/s when they upgraded Springvale recently instead of a later date which may make construction more difficult.
wxtre

Where the old station stood was immediately south of the new Springvale station. The extra two platforms could sit in there easily.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
The Metro animations for their unsolicited project has no sign of third or fourth track reservations either, despite the fact that it's badly needed Oakleigh-Caulfield. As has been discussed on this board previously, 'high capacity signalling' might not integrate very well with the rest of the network and may not actually improve the situation.

It's a ridiculous situation where 100,000+ people migrate to Melbourne each year but the most crowded railway lines are not seriously considered for expansion. You only have to catch a peak hour Cranbourne/Pakenham train to realise what a rat race this place has become, nearly two hours each way.
  Bullucked Assistant Commissioner

The major problem Is where do you keep all the trains that came Into the city on the morning peak, until the afternoon peak comes !
Nightfire

Build a roof over Jolimont and store the trains there!!!!  (Ducks for cover)Laughing
  Heihachi_73 Chief Commissioner

Location: Terminating at Ringwood
Sending those trains straight back to where they came would be a start. Or on the lines which have a useless 30 minute (or worse) off-peak timetable. Trains should be no further apart than 15 minutes, even on the extremities like Sunbury, Lilydale, Belgrave, Cranbourne and Hurstbridge, which all seem to have halved frequencies regardless of the passengers (well, except for Diamond Creek/Wattle Glen/Hurstbridge) due to every train terminating early or branching off to another line at some point (e.g. at Ringwood where one train is a Lilydale, the next is a Belgrave, followed by a Lilydale again). Useful for those at Glenferrie (when the train stops, although most "limited express" services do), absolutely useless for those stuck waiting half an hour for a train at Croydon, not to mention hourly buses that don't wait for trains or are timetabled to arrive two or twelve minutes after the train has left, or depart while the train is pulling into the station despite the train being on time (e.g. both services depart on the exact same minute, or the bus one minute earlier because someone at Ventura et.al. didn't do their homework... or maybe they did, so they don't have to run more buses since no-one catches it (because they missed it), thus the service doesn't need upgrading).
  Bobman Locomotive Fireman

So, what happened with Labor's big plans of quadruplication over 10 years ago?

Just wait until next year and make sure Liberal wins for this to happen.

Will never happen under ALP.

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