Council doesn’t want responsibility for rail bridge

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 19 Nov 2018 15:39
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
This suggests to us the bridge is not being knocked down but is being replaced adjacent to the current bridge?

Council doesn’t want responsibility for rail bridge

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  RustyRick Chief Commissioner

Location: South West Vic
Reads that way. If it remained, it still would have a 10 km/h speed limit unless it had a heap of cash spent on it which would defeat the purpose of having a new bridge.

If I was the Council, I wouldn't want to take over maintenance on a timber bridge that long. It would be a very expensive item to maintain.

Rick
  justarider Chief Commissioner

Location: Released again, maybe for the last time??
Reads that way. If it remained, it still would have a 10 km/h speed limit unless it had a heap of cash spent on it which would defeat the purpose of having a new bridge.

If I was the Council, I wouldn't want to take over maintenance on a timber bridge that long. It would be a very expensive item to maintain.

Rick
RustyRick
Heritage Bridge = must be kept.

A likely outcome is being used as part of the rail trail. Parks Victoria to the rescue.

It will be funny watching bikes ride over much faster than the current 10kph limit.

cheers
John

EDIT: Not a lot of timber on the bridge itself. It's concrete, brick and steel.
  gippslander Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland, Vic
The conservation of the bridge is extremely problematic given the fact that the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail (Traralgon-Maffra-Stratford) has a new side track into Stratford that bypasses the rail corridor. There is no way that VicRoads would allow the old bridge to be used as part of a walking trail that required users to cross the Princes Hwy, and the future maintenance and potential liability costs of the bridge as a static ruin will be astronomic. The solution might be to retain the bridge to the end of the brick pier section as a static walking experience, and let the timber trestle section deteriorate without public access.
  david harvey Chief Train Controller

Location: Bairnsdale Wharf
Quite true ,I cannot see Vic roads wanting cyclists and pedestrian's crossing the Princess Highway as part of the old rail trail . Nobody wants to take responsibility for the old Stratford bridge, until there is a huge bucket of money on offer, then all parties put up their hands with gusto. Its not just the bridge, its the approaches on the flats that need looking after . Back in 1998 the rail line was washed away due to flooding of the Avon River and the PTC installed a two culverts to take away flood water that could cause damage in the future.
  justarider Chief Commissioner

Location: Released again, maybe for the last time??
Quite true ,I cannot see Vic roads wanting cyclists and pedestrian's crossing the Princess Highway as part of the old rail trail . Nobody wants to take responsibility for the old Stratford bridge, until there is a huge bucket of money on offer, then all parties put up their hands with gusto. Its not just the bridge, its the approaches on the flats that need looking after . Back in 1998 the rail line was washed away due to flooding of the Avon River and the PTC installed a two culverts to take away flood water that could cause damage in the future.
david harvey
David, there are 3 issues you mentioned that may/may not squash the rail trail, but each are solvable.

1. Crossing Princes Hwy. Needs a bridge obviously.
Question being does the works for the Avon River and river flats extend all the way back to the highway. Replacing all the old viaduct with new elevated track leaves an old (weak ?) point at the highway crossing - it would make sense to replace that bridge now with a modern one, it will have to be done eventually.
That leaves the old bridge for cyclists and pedestrians.

2. Wooden elevated track. Without any major work, the lesser load (bikes instead of train) would give it at least 20 years before need to worry about.
It's not really needed for bikes. They can ride at grade, and a simple ramp up to the brick & steel part. It's not that high and bikers handle uphill at lot easier than trains.

3. Cost. Obviously not the council.
To some extent it's Big Build Vic - they spent squillions on the Dandenong line bike path, so why not Stratford.
It's also a addition for Parks Vic and Heritage Vic - they also need to stump up and not assume somebody else will always pay for their bailiwick.

If all 3 can have a sensible solution, than maybe the bike trail will have another attraction to lure the visitors.

cheers
John
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Quite true ,I cannot see Vic roads wanting cyclists and pedestrian's crossing the Princess Highway as part of the old rail trail . Nobody wants to take responsibility for the old Stratford bridge, until there is a huge bucket of money on offer, then all parties put up their hands with gusto. Its not just the bridge, its the approaches on the flats that need looking after . Back in 1998 the rail line was washed away due to flooding of the Avon River and the PTC installed a two culverts to take away flood water that could cause damage in the future.
David, there are 3 issues you mentioned that may/may not squash the rail trail, but each are solvable.

1. Crossing Princes Hwy. Needs a bridge obviously.
Question being does the works for the Avon River and river flats extend all the way back to the highway. Replacing all the old viaduct with new elevated track leaves an old (weak ?) point at the highway crossing - it would make sense to replace that bridge now with a modern one, it will have to be done eventually.
That leaves the old bridge for cyclists and pedestrians.

2. Wooden elevated track. Without any major work, the lesser load (bikes instead of train) would give it at least 20 years before need to worry about.
It's not really needed for bikes. They can ride at grade, and a simple ramp up to the brick & steel part. It's not that high and bikers handle uphill at lot easier than trains.

3. Cost. Obviously not the council.
To some extent it's Big Build Vic - they spent squillions on the Dandenong line bike path, so why not Stratford.
It's also a addition for Parks Vic and Heritage Vic - they also need to stump up and not assume somebody else will always pay for their bailiwick.

If all 3 can have a sensible solution, than maybe the bike trail will have another attraction to lure the visitors.

cheers
John
justarider
As has been mentioned the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail don't want the old railway bridge, as It would be nothing but a costly nightmare.
They have established their own pathway Into Stratford township.
  david harvey Chief Train Controller

Location: Bairnsdale Wharf
AS I live on the Bairnsdale side of the Avon River Bridge I would dearly like to see it built and secure the future of the Bairnsdale Line. It would be magnificent to have all these add on but the real issue is just rebuild the bridge. With a wave of a politicians wand sprinkling spin disguised as fairy dust,all that money can disappear and it could end up  rebooting the long suffering Murray lands gauge conversion or heaven forbid other road project.
1/   NO body will build a pedestrian bridge across the Princess Highway at Stratford to service a rail Trail that have a suit able pathway already.
2. Wooden elevated track and earth bank approaches to the bridge which is a good 800 meters long. Without any major work, this will just erode away as the bank was compromised and the track was washed away in 1998 and the PTC had to install two new culverts for the next flooding of the Avon River……………………

3. Cost. Obviously not the council not the DLWEP SHIRE VICROADS .Unless the mythical somebody throws that huge bucket of cash at the bridge, the first and the last steel spans will be removed to prevent pedestrian access,or the cheap option is just erect cyclone fencing across both ends  

cheers
Dave  again
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
AS I live on the Bairnsdale side of the Avon River Bridge I would dearly like to see it built and secure the future of the Bairnsdale Line. It would be magnificent to have all these add on but the real issue is just rebuild the bridge. With a wave of a politicians wand sprinkling spin disguised as fairy dust,all that money can disappear and it could end up  rebooting the long suffering Murray lands gauge conversion or heaven forbid other road project.
1/   NO body will build a pedestrian bridge across the Princess Highway at Stratford to service a rail Trail that have a suit able pathway already.
2. Wooden elevated track and earth bank approaches to the bridge which is a good 800 meters long. Without any major work, this will just erode away as the bank was compromised and the track was washed away in 1998 and the PTC had to install two new culverts for the next flooding of the Avon River……………………

3. Cost. Obviously not the council not the DLWEP SHIRE VICROADS .Unless the mythical somebody throws that huge bucket of cash at the bridge, the first and the last steel spans will be removed to prevent pedestrian access,or the cheap option is just erect cyclone fencing across both ends  

cheers
Dave  again
david harvey
The old bridge would probably just have a vandal proof steel picket fence at each end of the heritage listed section, anything that not heritage listed would be mostly removed / recovered for use elsewhere.

Like how the Mitchell River bridge (Bairnsdale) has been kept.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
The Railway doesn't want to keep it.
The Local Government don't want to keep it.
The Rail trail groups don't want it.

It seems pretty simple to me: Build the new bridge. If the old one is a potential hazard, remove it. If there is no potential hazard with it remaining in place, just fence off access to it and let it stay in place in a disused state until someone somewhere decides they want to take the responsibility.

We need to stop overthinking every little thing.

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