Sydney Metro - Tallawong to Bankstown

Sydney / New South Wales Transport Discussion
Transtopic
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Transtopic »

tonyp wrote:
Transtopic wrote:Let's not forget that he was the instigator of the failed North West Metro and CBD to Rozelle Metro under the previous Labor government. I was appalled when he was promoted to Secretary of Transport for NSW, when there were others within the Transport bureaucracy who were better qualified than him. It's like putting Dracular in charge of the blood bank. How can we expect any objective analyse of transport options under his stewardship?
As I've said before, Staples isn't the instigator of the metro, he's the engineer-bureaucrat implementing it. Proposals for a metro/rapid transit system date back to the Sydney Region Outline Plan of 1968 and have been revived from time to time over the years since, the firmest statement being in the Ron Christie report of 2001 which was buried by the Labor government but then later the metro aspects of it were revived by them a few years later (as I recall, this was the point at which Staples became involved as an engineer). The foundations for the present government's projects were very much laid by Garry Glazebrook's 30 year plan of 2009. All of the proposals since 1968 have involved creating a system that is separate from the suburban rail system.
I beg to differ, which I'm sure won't surprise you, in spite of my previous post actually agreeing with you :lol:. My comments with regard to Rodd Staples were specifically referring to his influence on the outcome of the original North West Rail Link proposal as an extension of the existing CityRail/Sydney Trains, when it morphed into the current metro line now operating. The earlier metro proposals, including Christie's in 2001, were based on the premise that new metro lines would be completely segregated from the existing network, without any conversions, which IMO was the sensible course of action.

As far as I can tell, there was never any proposal for the North West Rail Link to be built as a metro until it was proposed by the Iemma Labor government as a stand alone metro line, running on a different alignment from Epping to the CBD along the Victoria Rd corridor via Eastwood, Top Ryde, Gladesville and the Inner West, which still to this day doesn't have a rail service. In hindsight, although I've still got reservations about a metro style service being provided to the lower density outer suburban region such as the North West, the North West Metro proposal would have been preferable to what we now have. It would have provided a new rail service, not only to the North West, but also along the Victoria Rd corridor to the CBD, completely separate from the existing network. It would have avoided the duplication, disruption and compromises to existing services in converting the Epping to Chatswood Rail Link and most likely provide a faster route to the CBD without the circuitous route via Macquarie Park and the North Shore.

Commuters from the North West could have interchanged at Epping, which had separate metro platforms, to the then existing ECRL to gain access to Macquarie Park and North Shore destinations. Judging by the previous patronage on the bus services from the North West, they would be in the minority, with the overwhelming bulk of commuters travelling to the CBD. In saying that, I acknowledge that the new line, whether it is part of the existing network or metro, would pick up additional patronage from those from the North West who previously drove to Macquarie Park destinations. Most would still be destined for the CBD. In time, Opal will tell us the real outcome.

Getting back to my original comments re Staples, he was more than just an engineer/bureaucrat as you put it. Here is his resume:-

Secretary, Transport for NSW -
December 2017 - Present

Program Director, Transport for NSW -
June 2015 - Present

Project Director, North West Rail Link -
April 2011 - June 2015

Deputy Director General, Transport Infrastructure, Transport NSW -
June 2010 - March 2011

Chief Executive, Sydney Metro -
January 2009 - June 2010

Director, Centre for Transport Planning, NSW Ministry of Transport -
November 2007 - January 2009

General Manager, Network Development, Railcorp -
October 2005 - November 2007

You can't ignore the fact that he has been a major influence on the direction of the planning for expansion of the Sydney rail network over the last decade, culminating in the current strategy of the "one size fits all" metro strategy, which I don't agree with.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by rogf24 »

Transtopic wrote:The earlier metro proposals, including Christie's in 2001, were based on the premise that new metro lines would be completely segregated from the existing network, without any conversions, which IMO was the sensible course of action.
This is actually kinda incorrect. The Christie Metros were proposed to be integrated with the existing network. That is, the signalling system would be compatible with the heavy rail network, which would obviously rule out full automation. One of the proposed Christie Metro Lines took over the Cronulla Line between Cronulla and Miranda (IIRC) and the "conversion" would simply have been running Metro trains on existing tracks with minimal changes. This is hardly completely segregated. In fact, it would be quite the disaster, it would instantly undo the sectorisation proposals they rest of the report bangs on about. It's like do this, then no, don't do this, we should introduce another layer of complexity instead, quite incoherent, no wonder it was ignored.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

Yes, I forgot that Christie proposed that mish-mash "solution". Staples doubtless has his viewpoint on metro that he would have been pushing, but he always has been a single, very capable public servant in a network of proponents for metro/rapid transit solutions, dating back to the 1960s. These proponents have included politicians, state planners and academic planners. It hasn't come from a single megalomaniac, Bradfield-like figure, much as both the spin machine and opponents might like to push this scenario.

Not the first time that this sort of argument has arisen of course - like the Bradfield/Freeman debate over who designed the Harbour Bridge, when it can be argued that it was really designed by a Czech emigree from Brno who designed the Hell Gate Bridge in New York, of which the SHB is a pretty direct copy!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustav_Lindenthal

(Really have to watch out for those Czechs: https://adambager.wordpress.com/2015/03 ... ur-bridge/ )

So I think we need to avoid pinning these issues down to a single personality.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Transtopic »

rogf24 wrote:
Transtopic wrote:The earlier metro proposals, including Christie's in 2001, were based on the premise that new metro lines would be completely segregated from the existing network, without any conversions, which IMO was the sensible course of action.
This is actually kinda incorrect. The Christie Metros were proposed to be integrated with the existing network. That is, the signalling system would be compatible with the heavy rail network, which would obviously rule out full automation. One of the proposed Christie Metro Lines took over the Cronulla Line between Cronulla and Miranda (IIRC) and the "conversion" would simply have been running Metro trains on existing tracks with minimal changes. This is hardly completely segregated. In fact, it would be quite the disaster, it would instantly undo the sectorisation proposals they rest of the report bangs on about. It's like do this, then no, don't do this, we should introduce another layer of complexity instead, quite incoherent, no wonder it was ignored.
Screengrab:
I acknowledge that there is some qualification with regard to "segregation" in those instances, but the thrust of the report's proposal for future "metro" lines, was for each new line "to operate independently of the existing rail network and each creating an entirely new operational "sector" ". The report went on further to say "the physical separation of these (or similar) new lines from the existing rail network (and from its augmentations and extensions over the next two decades) is an important principle and vital to the long-term future of rail".

This may appear to be somewhat at odds with "sharing" limited sections of track with the then existing CityRail services in each instance mentioned, but it has to be looked at in the context of the then proposal to operate compatible SD "metro style" trains, even if for the most part they would operate independently. The point is, that they would not "take over" existing track to the exclusion of existing services, but operate in tandem with them on the same limited lengths of track at the extremities of each line.

In the case of the River Metro Line, it would share tracks with the then proposed Parramatta to Epping Rail Link along a new line between Parramatta and Rydalmere. I agree not ideal, but the "metro" proposals with further refining could have been fully segregated by simply building separate tracks along the same respective corridors. In any event, the River Metro Line is now redundant as it has been replaced by Metro West on the other side of the Parramatta River. With a fully segregated metro system, operational compatibility is no longer needed, which opens up the opportunity for automatic operation.

The whole crux of my argument against the government's current metro strategy, is not the metro concept per se, but the misguided belief that congestion issues on the current network can be resolved by building more metro lines or converting existing lines to metro, while refusing to acknowledge that upgrades through amplifications and extensions should also be in the mix and in fact have greater priority. The forthcoming rollout of signalling upgrading to ATO standard across the existing network, welcome as it is, will only be trying to squeeze more capacity out of the already overstretched network. In the longer term, it won't be enough in itself. Even ordering more DD trains to meet the demand will be meaningless unless they also expand the track capacity on the most congested lines to run them.

My major criticism is adopting the supposedly cheaper option of converting existing lines to metro operation and compromising existing Sydney Trains' operations in the process, as it has already done with the conversion of the ECRL, and will do with the conversion of the Bankstown Line. If I may use the analogy of Infrastructure NSW's recommendation under Nick Greiner's stewardship in the early days of the Liberal's election win in 2011 for extension of the M4 Motorway into the CBD, now known as WestConnex, they suggested that it be built in a trench along the existing Parramatta Rd corridor. It ultimately proved to be unworkable because of the cost of disruption to existing traffic, access to properties and intersecting roads and the unknown cost of relocating services along the route. They subsequently decided that it would be cheaper and less disruptive to build it in tunnel instead. The same principle applies in converting existing rail lines to metro operation. We've already seen the compromises which have belatedly been made on the Bankstown Line conversion because of the difficulty in straightening out some of the legacy platforms. This needn't have happened if the metro line was extended along a different corridor completely independent of the existing network. The conversion of the ECRL, which is only a decade old with modern straight platform design, was a walk in the park compared with the forthcoming Bankstown Line conversion. I don't have a problem with building new completely segregated metro lines, particularly into areas in the inner and middle ring suburbs without a rail service, although in saying that, I've got some reservations about their appropriateness in servicing outer suburban areas, and that includes Badgerys Creek Airport. But that's another story.

Finally, I'd like to quote another comment from Christie's report, which is as relevant today as it was then -

"In many overseas cities higher train loads are achieved in inner city areas by using single-deck "metro" style trains with very limited seating, large numbers of standing passengers and up to six doors on each side of the carriage.

If such an approach were adopted in Sydney very large and expensive interchanges between the existing Suburban and Intercity trains and the new metro trains would need to be constructed, and passengers would suffer significant inconvenience, especially in the case of the large numbers of commuters passing through the CBD on their way to other major destinations such as Parramatta and Chatswood.

For these reasons, major European cities faced with similar problems - even those with established metro systems - are now choosing to extend their suburban railways in new tunnels through the CBD, rather than continuing to rely on interchanges to metros."

I rest my case!
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

The government has an interest in making the suburban system work better because it's an essential part of the whole Sydney public transport network and they can't afford to have it fail, so the conspiracy theory that it's "constraining" the suburban system to show the metro "in a better light" is nonsense. The metro is quite capable of displaying its own capabilities without a need to suppress any alternatives.

Contrary to stymieing the suburban system, the government is helping the suburban system work better by taking out ECRL and The Bankstown line, thus reducing the number of trains crowding the capacity of these sectors and at the same time releasing rolling stock to augment services elsewhere. At the same time, when the metro is completed, users of the ECRL and Bankstown lines will have faster and more frequent journeys. It sure as anything looks like win-win for everybody to me.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by boxythingy »

Here's hoping that some of these simple yet shocking instances of week 1 to 3 operation will be ironed out during this week's trackwork:
That the journey progress bar moves in the correct direction to the next station

That doors will actually open and closed when stationary


At least make sure that the escalators actually work so it doesn't look like that the entire Metro network and infrastructure is a joke
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by gld59 »

Transtopic wrote:and compromising existing Sydney Trains' operations in the process, as it has already done with the conversion of the ECRL, and will do with the conversion of the Bankstown Line.
In the longer term, taking out the ECRL will *hopefully* turn out to not get much worse - in terms of network layout it's just a reversion to what was there a decade or two ago, so apart from loss of flexibility the real issue is load-balancing / train paths. Once the CBD & South-west is open, the metro may draw enough passengers off at Epping that T9 can survive on a fairly sparse timetable.

At the other end, I see Bankstown as mainly positive. Sure, it orphans Yagoona and beyond, but by taking T3 off the existing CBD to Sydenham lines, it allows for more T8 services.

It'd be interesting to see the Opal data on passenger flows transiting the CBD. If it didn't cause too much interchange load, I'd like to see T1 go around the Circle and link with T8 (using only Waratah and other new sets as required, *including spares*), and put T2 across the bridge with T9. It wouldn't increase CBD to Strathfield capacity, but at least T1 wouldn't be the line sharing paths there with T9.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Swift »

With the Bankstown line out of the picture, will we see a return of Illawarra services to the city circle?
Just think of the possibilities if we didn't have hysterical crazy nimby bludgers in the picture. All day Bondi Beach to Cronulla Beach services with surfboard racks!
Last edited by Swift on Sat Jun 22, 2019 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by gld59 »

I wouldn't see any point. The Airport (which at the moment can *only* either go round the circle or terminate on 22/23) links into T8, so you'd only create T4 / T8 contention. (And possibly tangle those lines up if some T8 went to BJ to compensate.)
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Swift »

gld59 wrote:I wouldn't see any point.
Maybe for the passengers that want to go elsewhere besides Martin Place and Town Hall. Does T8 need the City Circle to itself? Seems indulgent to me.
Could the underutilised Redfern dives be used here or dormant ones revived/ completed?
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by GazzaOak »

gld59 wrote:
It'd be interesting to see the Opal data on passenger flows transiting the CBD. If it didn't cause too much interchange load, I'd like to see T1 go around the Circle and link with T8 (using only Waratah and other new sets as required, *including spares*), and put T2 across the bridge with T9. It wouldn't increase CBD to Strathfield capacity, but at least T1 wouldn't be the line sharing paths there with T9.
How would that work??

Since T2 operates on the all stops line and its will tricky for it to cross onto the north shore train tracks from the all stop lines since the all stop lines go into the city circle and vice versa with the current western line trains crossing into the city circle from the middle 2 tracks.

But other than that, its sounds good.

And even once the CBD metro is open, I still think T9 needs a lot more than a sparse timetable as there are places like Rhodes which didn't exist more than a few decades ago.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by stupid_girl »

Swift wrote:With the Bankstown line out of the picture, will we see a return of Illawarra services to the city circle?
Just think of the possibilities if we didn't have hysterical crazy nimby bludgers in the picture. All day Bondi Beach to Cronulla Beach services with surfboard racks!
It may be possible to send Hurstville local to City Circle (take over Bankstown line timeslot). Then, there will be rooms for additional trains from Waterfall and Cronulla.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Transtopic »

gld59 wrote:
Transtopic wrote:and compromising existing Sydney Trains' operations in the process, as it has already done with the conversion of the ECRL, and will do with the conversion of the Bankstown Line.
In the longer term, taking out the ECRL will *hopefully* turn out to not get much worse - in terms of network layout it's just a reversion to what was there a decade or two ago, so apart from loss of flexibility the real issue is load-balancing / train paths. Once the CBD & South-west is open, the metro may draw enough passengers off at Epping that T9 can survive on a fairly sparse timetable.

At the other end, I see Bankstown as mainly positive. Sure, it orphans Yagoona and beyond, but by taking T3 off the existing CBD to Sydenham lines, it allows for more T8 services.

It'd be interesting to see the Opal data on passenger flows transiting the CBD. If it didn't cause too much interchange load, I'd like to see T1 go around the Circle and link with T8 (using only Waratah and other new sets as required, *including spares*), and put T2 across the bridge with T9. It wouldn't increase CBD to Strathfield capacity, but at least T1 wouldn't be the line sharing paths there with T9.
One of the primary justifications for the original Parramatta to Chatswood Rail Link, of which the ECRL forms part, was to relieve congestion on the inner T1 corridor, particularly from Strathfield through the CBD to the North Shore. The intent was to divert commuters from Western Line stations bound for Macquarie Park and North Shore destinations to the new link, rather than going the long way round through the CBD, which made a lot of sense. In addition, Northern Line services north of Epping would be diverted to the CBD via the new link and the Harbour Bridge instead of via Strathfield, which was previously the longstanding operating pattern as you point out. This in turn would free up even more paths, as it did for a time, on the inner T1.

As we know, we finished up with half a line from Epping to Chatswood, because of the truncation of the original line by the then Labor government, which was very short sighted IMO. Consequently, the benefits of the original concept in diverting Western Line commuters bound for Macquarie Park and North Shore destinations were never fully realised, although it still contributed in a smaller way to diverting Northern Line services to the CBD from Hornsby via the Harbour Bridge, rather than via Strathfield.

Contrary to the opinions of some, including tonyp, the conversion of the ECRL to metro operation HAS compromised services on the Sydney Trains' network. Firstly, the Northern Line services from Hornsby have been re-directed to the CBD via Strathfield, which adds further congestion to the T1 Line through the Inner West, which the then ECRL as part of the existing network avoided. Secondly, it's not just reverting to the previous longstanding pattern, because in peak hours, these services now terminate or start to and from Sydney Terminal, as there are no paths available on the Suburban tracks to continue through the CBD to the North Shore, as they previously used to. That's a clearly inferior service, whatever spin you like to put on it.

It's early days yet, but it remains to be seen how many commuters from the Upper Northern Line, bound for CBD destinations, will actually bother interchanging to the metro when it's extended into the CBD. They will most likely already have a seat and having regard to the fact that it's a faster semi-express service in peak hours via Strathfield and that it's not a convenient interchange at Epping, they may choose to stay on the train instead rather than chancing their arm on getting a seat on the metro, which is unlikely. If the current operating pattern continues, terminating/starting at Sydney Terminal, then they are faced with the choice of interchanging at Epping to the metro where they will mostly likely have to stand for the rest of the journey, or continuing on the train with a seat, interchanging at Central, which may be their destination anyway. Even interchanging at Central would be far preferable, when they would only have to stand for a short time to reach other CBD destinations, which is what metros typically do anyway. I doubt if the metro will take much pressure off the Northern Line south of Epping, even if many do interchange, because this is where the greatest increase in development and resulting patronage on the Northern Line will occur, in places like Eastwood, West Ryde, Meadowbank, Rhodes, Concord West and North Strathfield. It would hardly warrant "a fairly sparse timetable". The Christie Report reinforced this by suggesting that it would be the fastest growing sector of the then CityRail network. There is limited scope for increasing direct services without further amplification between Strathfield and the CBD. Metro West is not the answer.

Please tonyp, don't bore me with more of your diatribe about how the journey time is the defining parameter and if you mention Perth again, I'll scream. It's a minnow, compared with Sydney's much larger and more complex network. There are other considerations, which others have also rightly pointed out. There is an assumption that commuters will readily accept more interchange, particularly travelling to the CBD, which I question. In time, Opal will tell the true story.

Similarly, the Bankstown Line metro conversion also throws up compromises to existing Sydney Trains' services. You may lightly dismiss the fact commuters west of Bankstown will be inconvenienced in losing their direct services to the CBD, but at the end of the day, it's an inferior service by forcing them to interchange to the metro, even if it is faster. While I agree that it takes paths off the City Circle, a better alternative would have been to connect the metro with the Airport Line with potentially even more paths freed up for T8 services. It would allow for more of the existing stations servicing the line between Central and Wolli Creek including Sydney Airport, compared with the ridiculous situation that there is only one intermediate station at Waterloo between Central and Sydenham on the proposed line. This was an unfortunate compromise to speed up journeys for the longer distance commuters. The curved platforms on the Airport Line would be no more an issue than it is currently on the Bankstown Line conversion, where compromises have been made.

I can't see the logic of re-directing T1 services around the City Circle and T2 across the Harbour Bridge. It would require greater crossover movements between sectors on the flying junctions at Central, which would only add to the complexity of operations. The T1/T9 Suburban tracks are logically aligned with the route across the Harbour Bridge to the North Shore and the T2 Local tracks to the City Circle. Why complicate it?

At the end of the day, the defining parameter is comfort and convenience v speed. I think the jury is still out on this and we won't know until a few more years yet through Opal data.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Swift »

stupid_girl wrote: It may be possible to send Hurstville local to City Circle (take over Bankstown line timeslot). Then, there will be rooms for additional trains from Waterfall and Cronulla.
Surely some services will fill the void left by BL, it's just a matter of which they will be. Paths are like gold dust in an exploding city. I think a major reshuffle will occur as metro 2 comes online.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

Transtopic wrote: At the end of the day, the defining parameter is comfort and convenience v speed. I think the jury is still out on this and we won't know until a few more years yet through Opal data.
The defining parameters for the optimum commuter experience are speed and frequency. Nobody wants a slower journey other than those with plenty of time on their hands, like gunzels. You set your sights low Transtopic in a way that's unacceptable to most people and contrary to what any good transit operator strives for. Fortunately this is only a discussion forum, such notions as yours don't go beyond it and I'm sure that even the Sydney and NSW Trains people would strive towards the same two criteria when they are ultimately able to.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by neilrex »

what is needed is a network that serves more needs that just the CBD job market.

It's ridiculous that so many people have to travel through the CBD to get to any lower north shore or Macquarie destination, and vice versa. Its ridiculous that it takes 3 trains from anywhere south of the harbour, with poor connections, to get to Macquarie. It's ridiculous that none of the suburbs along the whole of Victoria Rd, except west ryde, have a train service. Oh, and Rydalmere. Its ridiculous that there is a 30 minute frequency between Auburn and Parramatta.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by GazzaOak »

neilrex wrote:what is needed is a network that serves more needs that just the CBD job market.

It's ridiculous that so many people have to travel through the CBD to get to any lower north shore or Macquarie destination, and vice versa. Its ridiculous that it takes 3 trains from anywhere south of the harbour, with poor connections, to get to Macquarie. It's ridiculous that none of the suburbs along the whole of Victoria Rd, except west ryde, have a train service. Oh, and Rydalmere. Its ridiculous that there is a 30 minute frequency between Auburn and Parramatta.
They should have went with the old labor idea (back in 2008) with the NWRL metro to cbd via top ryde, gladesville, balmain and pyrmont. If they went with that, they would have at least done Epping to NWRL part by now and rest around the same time as current CBD metro opening date. It's would cost double than the current CBD metro but its a lot more worthwhile as Victoria Rd is congested as hell.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

Putting the tram back would satisfy the capacity requirements of the Victoria Rd corridor. The NW corridor is much more in need of the capacity of a metro. Eventually the metro will also link to the Richmond, western and southern lines, improving the scope for cross-regional movement by train.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Linto63 »

tonyp wrote:The defining parameters for the optimum commuter experience are speed and frequency.
In your opinion. Others place comfort, i.e. not being rammed in like cattle or being able to sit fairly high on the priority list. For some a slower, more comfortable trip is preferable, or due to physical reasons, a necessity.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

Linto63 wrote:
tonyp wrote:The defining parameters for the optimum commuter experience are speed and frequency.
In your opinion. Others place comfort, i.e. not being rammed in like cattle or being able to sit fairly high on the priority list. For some a slower, more comfortable trip is preferable, or due to physical reasons, a necessity.
Quite a lot of presumptions there. However, fortunately neither transport planning nor the desires of the majority of users are trending in the direction of slower journeys - which are themselves by their nature less comfortable, just ask any south coast commuter. That outcome will, I assure you, be ultimately denied you in the medium to long term. Not only will services become faster, but, due to sheer weight of growing patronage numbers, seating numbers and configuration are in general taking a dive in the interests of achieving a more internally functional vehicle. Look at the NIF as a harbinger of things to come, as well as the general lowering of standards of public transport seating comfort due to the need to find robust, low-maintenance, vandal-proof and lightweight seating materials. This is of course another reason why journey time becomes critical - to minimise standing time. Apart from which, standing time in reality is over-rated by critics with their doomful forecasts of end-to-end standing journeys, which is rarely actually the case (except on the south coast).

Also, because of the size and congestion of the cities, this change will no longer drive people off to their cars as it used to because the car alternative is increasingly unattractive and, the faster the public transport journey, the less attractive the car alternative becomes. This is one of the policy forces behind the NW metro and, from anecdotal public feedback so far, it's working. People are choosing standing for (usually only part of) the journey over driving their car. Neither you nor Transtopic are on the winning side of this argument, but by all means persist with it.

Funnily enough, your comment comes on a day when my wife, who has a physical condition, forgot our previous bad train experiences and decided to accompany another family member by train(/s) from Nowra to Olympic Park. That's a 3.5 hour journey. By Hurstville she was in agony, seated in one of your "comfortable" trains and I was hearing from her that she wanted me to drive to Sydney and pick her up. They're presently at Olympic Park and the last thing I heard was talk of staying in a hotel, that's still unresolved. I'm hoping they'll get the train back and she can somehow spend the week recovering, although we have to go to Sydney again twice this week - driving of course. If I get somewhat p...d off hearing somebody say that a slower journey is preferable for physical reasons, it's not only from deep-rooted professional instincts, it's personal. Fortunately it seems to be only older transport enthusiasts who hold these out of touch views, ignoring the changes in our cities that have occurred since the "golden" days of the past. I guess I shouldn't get so provoked by it because the eventual outcomes are inevitable. They have to be, or the public transport systems will be overwhelmed.
Last edited by tonyp on Sun Jun 23, 2019 5:39 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Fleet Lists
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Fleet Lists »

Firstly let me sympathize with the situation your wife has found herself in. But if the journey was reduced to 2 and half hours which I think would be a best case situation and she had to stand all the way because of a lack of seats, I am sure she would have been even less comfortable. So undoubtedly you have not convinced me and many others.

And I am getting sick of this being argued in EVERY rail thread on this forum. So can we please give this matter a break.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

Fleet Lists wrote:Firstly let me sympathize with the situation your wife has found herself in. But if the journey was reduced to 2 and half hours which I think would be a best case situation and she had to stand all the way because of a lack of seats, I am sure she would have been even less comfortable. So undoubtedly you have not convinced me and many others.

And I am getting sick of this being argued in EVERY rail thread on this forum. So can we please give this matter a break.
Sequel to today's events. They've spent $67 hiring a Uber to get from Olympic Park to Sutherland to shorten the train journey to survivable dimensions. They're freezing their heels at Sutherland right now waiting half hour for the train, then another 2.5 hours to Nowra. Yep, the extended "comfortable" journey time concept is working really well here. Wonder if I can claim the $67 off Sydney Trains for substandard service? I've heard stories like this before from people down here, it's quite common. Sitting sideways in the Mandurah train sure sounds good by comparison. Likewise my wife - who is not a public transport person and therefore I use her for impartial destruction testing - was very impressed by both Perth AND the Sydney Metro.

She didn't mind standing at times and she liked the quick journeys.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Linto63 »

tonyp wrote:However, fortunately neither transport planning nor the desires of the majority of users are trending in the direction of slower journeys
I don't think anybody here has ever advocated slower journeys, but where I and some others have disagreed with you is the notion that speed is the number one priority. For others it is one of a number of factors.
tonyp wrote:Look at the NIF as a harbinger of things to come, as well as the general lowering of standards of public transport seating comfort due to the need to find robust, low-maintenance, vandal-proof and lightweight seating materials.
Depends on how you look at it though, as I understand the NIF will be 2+2, albeit fixed, vs 2+3 on an Oscar. Not doubting that the Oscar seats are not everybody's cup of tea, but we are all different shapes and sizes, and there will never be the perfect seat that fits all. Uncomfortable as the existing seats may be, bench seats on 3 hour journeys isn't the answer.
tonyp wrote:I guess I shouldn't get so provoked by it because the eventual outcomes are inevitable.
None of us really know what will happen in the future, anybody who says they do is kidding themself. We have have differing opinions on what should happen, but the agro results when somebody says this must happen, trying to enforce their opinions as fact. If anyone has a real beef with something and wants action, this forum with at best a couple of hundred readers isn't the place from which it will originate.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by tonyp »

The Oscar seats are bench seats! Even the metro seats are more comfortable. Nobody but a grenadier guard would have a body profile of a ramrod straight back and thighs! I'm hoping that a better effort will be put into the ergonomics of the NIF. Still, they will only have a minority of seats facing forward, something between 1/4 and 1/3. The rest will face sideways or backwards.

As for journey time, it's sad to see how standards and expectations have slipped. Lucky we at least have metro holding the light in Sydney.
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Re: NSW Future Rail Plan - NWRL/Metro/Harbour Crossing

Post by Transtopic »

tonyp wrote:Putting the tram back would satisfy the capacity requirements of the Victoria Rd corridor. The NW corridor is much more in need of the capacity of a metro.
I agree with you (again :lol: ) that the NW corridor should have a greater priority, whether it were to be an extension of the existing network or metro. However, I can't seriously see trams being brought back to the Victoria Rd corridor. It's no longer the 1940s and motor traffic along this corridor has increased exponentially over the decades. Imagine the chaos if two or more lanes of traffic are taken out of service, with the need to introduce 24 hour Clearways during and after construction. It would decimate the local strip shopping centres which it passes through. That would include across the Gladesville Bridge, where there would also be issues with traffic intermingling to and from Victoria Rd and Burns Bay Rd via the interchange.

Unlike Parramatta Rd or even potentially Military and Spit Rds for that matter, Victoria Rd doesn't have the luxury of an alternative route for through traffic such as WestConnex or the proposed Northern Beaches tunnel. I doubt if any government will have an appetite for constructing new light rail lines along existing major traffic arteries, in view of the lessons that will hopefully be learnt from the current C&SE light rail debacle. It remains to be seen if the Parramatta light rail project, apart from the Carlingford Line conversion, will fare any better. Why do you think the idea of extending the Parramatta light rail from Carlingford to Epping has been quietly shelved?

The only alternative is to construct new underground rail links along major commuter corridors without an existing rail service, avoiding the surface disruption with light rail, notwithstanding the fact that it would be much more expensive. In hindsight, the South East Metro should have been built in the first place, as it will be inevitably, instead of the current LR project. The likely $3 billion plus cost of the LR would have given it a big leg-up, without going through the trials and tribulations now being experienced. Victoria Rd also falls into this same category, as does Military and Spit Rds, where a Northern Beaches Rail Link will also be necessary.

Ultimately, it all comes down to a question of priorities. Where a new metro line along the Victoria Rd corridor sits in the pecking order is still to be determined, but I think it will eventually happen. I can only see limited opportunities for further light rail construction in a car oriented city like Sydney, perhaps based on major sub-regional centres like Parramatta, Penrith, Liverpool, Campbelltown etc, similar on a smaller scale to Singapore.
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