Greens call for a new study into local rail

 

News article: Greens call for a new study into local rail

CAMPBELLS Creek, Newstead and Carisbrook have at least one thing in common - a deteriorating, disused rail line.

  F4PhantomRAAF Locomotive Driver

CAMPBELLS Creek, Newstead and Carisbrook have at least one thing in common - a deteriorating, disused rail line.

The Victorian Greens and the Rail Revival Alliance believe this rail line can "revitalise" the small towns between Castlemaine and Maryborough.

Greens candidate for Bendigo West John Brownstein visited the former Campbells Creek train station on Wednesday, now an overgrown, littered pile of dirt.

Mr Brownstein said a recent $2 million state government report had overstated the cost of rehabilitating the 55 kilometre track, which came in at up to $290 million.
Greens call for a new study into local rail


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When are we going to end this love affair with public spending to satisfy deep emotional needs?

The simple thing is people moved to Melbourne to be in the city. Or Geelong.

But if the Greens who are pro-centralization, as in they want us all to live in 100 storey high rises and not touch a blade of grass for development, need to ask themselves what practical measures are they going to take to make it profitable? None and they don't care.

Only providing tax incentives to those living in regional areas of Australia will we see a comeback in regional rail. Up to this point there is no sign of this happening. Even NSW has been quiet on this issue since the election.

An idea for you train buffs. Work for the dole-get the scheme to deliver free labour for this project and it will reduce the construction cost.

But the economic viability of the rail operation is still in doubt. Australia is not Germany. We need a population to have effective utilization of the rail passenger service.

If the Greens were more serious about development I might take the idea more seriously. At this point with people like Sarah Hanson Young in the Federal Senate I discount any practical thinking from the Greens......

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  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
The Greens are rat bags totally focused on Socialisation . Don't fall into the trap of believing they are conservationists first because nothing could be further from the truth . The reason why "I watch Sea Patrol" Sarah got back up again was because of Palmers folly .
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Gheringhap Loop Autonomous Zone
When are we going to end this love affair with public spending to satisfy deep emotional needs?

...

Only providing tax incentives to those living in regional areas of Australia will we see a comeback in regional rail. Up to this point there is no sign of this happening. Even NSW has been quiet on this issue since the election.

An idea for you train buffs. Work for the dole-get the scheme to deliver free labour for this project and it will reduce the construction cost.

But the economic viability of the rail operation is still in doubt. Australia is not Germany. We need a population to have effective utilization of the rail passenger service.
F4PhantomRAAF

Population growth in regional areas is a lot more complicated than just 'tax incentives'. There's a lot to be said about the employment opportunities and quality of infrastructure in these areas - you need to look at improving both. Improving public transport quality (service frequency and comfort/psychological appeal) comes before patronage increases, not the other way around.

Free labour isn't free. When you're using 'work for the dole', you're using an under-skilled, often unmotivated workforce. You need to invest more in training, management and quality assurance to get them up to speed and working productively. If they're unemployed, they may not have a car available to them - then you have to start looking at transporting them to the work site. If they're unmotivated, they're less likely to turn up on time (if at all). There's certainly an opportunity to train up the unemployed to rebuild a railway line, but you're better off giving them a real job that pays real money out of it instead of the punitive quarantining of welfare payments.

Tourist and heritage railways have often used Work For The Dole in one guise or another to help with reconstruction, but we're talking about relatively low-skill tasks like pre-drilling sleepers, not operating heavy machinery generally. Throwing unskilled manpower at a problem is a decidedly Maoist way of approaching such projects, with all of the attendant issues that brings.

Rail (and PT as a whole) is a small proportion of journeys relative to cars nowadays - we have the population to support it if we can encourage more people to switch to using PT. That means investing in quality public transport, even out in rural areas.

Maryborough-Castlemaine is a marginal line from what I've read here and elsewhere, so unless you can encourage freight investment on it then you're best off spending money on more coach services.
  ZH836301 Chief Commissioner

Location: BleakCity
The Victorian Greens and the Rail Revival Alliance believe this rail line can "revitalise" the small towns between Castlemaine and Maryborough.

Haha, what towns?


"We think that a feasibility study should consider the project as comparable with speeds of road transport.

Creswick - Castlemaine via Midland Highway: 66km
Creswick - Castlemaine via Mborough rail: ~100km


Ie. Rail is 50%+ further, meaning to match the travel time against 100km/h on the road you need 150km/h.
  MD Chief Commissioner

Location: Canbera
Feasability studies are wonderful.
They provide lots of work for bureacrats,which means spending lots of taxpayers money, and usually copious overseas trips to see how other countries solve the problem that the feasability study is supposed to address, and then eventually, years later down the track, the study is quietly dropped as its found that the project was not feasable.
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Is there anything wrong with offering and funding a public service like this line ?

Why the negatitive view. Passenger rail services play a very important role in rural communities. Governments doub this out when they decided to penny pinch.

We are way beyond that now. They were the Kennett years. A disaster for Victoria.
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
Is there anything wrong with offering and funding a public service like this line ?

Why the negatitive view. Passenger rail services play a very important role in rural communities. Governments doub this out when they decided to penny pinch.

We are way beyond that now. They were the Kennett years. A disaster for Victoria.
freightgate

The passenger service doesn't necessarily need to be a train service to have a vital role in a community, does it?
  ZH836301 Chief Commissioner

Location: BleakCity
Is there anything wrong with offering and funding a public service like this line ?
freight_gate

Money, and the state's limited supply of it.

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