Help me out are you saying the idea of Port Rail Shuttles is dead and the concept will not go ahead because of the road freight lobby?
Or are you saying electrification will not happen?
At the outset, I don't know any more than you, or just about anyone else, which is why I said:'I hope that I am wrong but it is my belief that it will never happen'. Electric traction is out in my view for the following reasons:
How many voting truckies are going to be out of work if the Port Trip Trains concept succeeds? There are going to be a squillion unemployed tippers and dogs when current tunnel projects are complete as it is.Visualise, please:A container for Joe the Goose arrives at Swanson Dock on Monday, is picked up (lift $$$) by Fred's truck and delivered to Joe Monday afternoon or Tuesday morning.
- Much of the potential traffic is on SG where there are 'no poles and wires'.
- There are no electric locos either BG or SG.
- You cannot work a wired container terminal.
- Any regular/reliable/ timely BG traffic is out because of Metro.
The same container arrives at Swanson Dock on Monday and is transferred ($$$ lift) to a trip train. Trip train wanders off to suburban terminal sometime on Monday ($$$ linehaul). Container unloaded from train ($$$ lift). Fred arrives Tuesday and collects container ($$$ lift and $$$ roadhaul). Fred delivers Tuesday at best but probably Wednesday.
Apart from Fred's truck somebody has to provide/pay for:
- Maintenance port/terminal sidings
- Track access
- Rolling stock
- Cranes etc
These are all in addition to Fred's single truck journey from the wharf to Joe's factory
Without some decisive government (haha) force and/or subsidy I don't see the inconvenience and/or economics stacking up. There simply are not the will/guts/competence at government level to make it work.
More likely the status quo of studies, reports, investigations, dreams, spin, smoke and mirrors will remain. ??????