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linkey

Australian East Coast HSR

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marknewton

I'm happy enough to pay out on a non-existent railway. As I wrote earlier, we'll never see HSR in Australia, but that doesn't really bother me. I'm quite ambivalent about the whole idea. I'd rather see money spent on maintaining or even improving the existing network.

 

FWIW, I'd be happy for really simple, cheap things to be done, like finally commissioning the bi-di signalling between Oatley and Sutherland. That way when another one of PacNat's shitty, no-maintenance-in-living-memory coal trains fails going up Como bank, we can run around the stupid thing, and not have to wear 90 minute delays, like last night. Or like tonight, when there's a fatality, also at Como, we can run around the so-called "crime scene", and the dimwitted constabulary.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

 

(who is tired and cranky...)

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bikkuri bahn
PacNat's shitty, no-maintenance-in-living-memory coal trains fails going up Como bank

 

Ah, looks like they follow the American model of railway operation- run as many heavy freight trains with as little maintenance as possible, and occasional derailments are just par for the course.

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marknewton

That's pretty much the way PacNat operates, although fortunately it wasn't a derailment. The grade up through Como is 1 in 36, the train was right on the load for 4 locos, and one of them shut down.

 

What pisses me off is that this happens regularly, yet no-one seems to have kicked PacNat's arse about it. Their trains keep delaying ours, but when you're trying to explain to a trainload of justifiably angry passengers why they're going to be late home, they're not interested in the distinction between CityRail and a private operator who is merely a guest on our network.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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bikkuri bahn
Their trains keep delaying ours, but when you're trying to explain to a trainload of justifiably angry passengers why they're going to be late home, they're not interested in the distinction between CityRail and a private operator who is merely a guest on our network.

 

Oh, the beauties of open access on the railways.

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The_Ghan

 

... when another one of PacNat's shitty, no-maintenance-in-living-memory coal trains fails going up Como bank, we can run around the stupid thing, and not have to wear 90 minute delays, like last night. Or like tonight, when there's a fatality, also at Como, ...

 

 

I'm just across the river, with a view of Como.  Slept through the PacNat failure, apparently.  There was a helicopter in the air around 19:10 tonight.  Was that to do with the fatality?

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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disturbman

To stir back the conversation toward the original subject. I've been reading (not in depth) the HSR study. Interesting piece and as it seems quite neutral.

 

So, to correct the Ghan's assumption about air traffic between Melbourne and Sydney, it's not around a million but 7.88 million in 2010. That's more than enough to justify HSR.

 

Actually, covering the whole East Coast (from Brisbane to Melbourne) seems financially possible and viable... depending of the real price of the infrastructure. But clearly, the starter leg should be Sydney to Canberra or maybe Canberra to Melbourne. But since it's obviously going to be built in sections, I'm afraid there is no possibilities for continuous journeys until the whole infrastructure is going to be built. That would be impairing.

 

Other observations:

1/ there is real need to look if it's possible to include stations at airports for people transferring inter-continental flights.

2/ the Sydney to Newcastle stretch could also be a nice starter line if it wasn't so short and expensive.

3/ I kind of like the possibility to connect Canberra by a spur. I have the impression this wouldn't be so much time consuming for trains stopping there and advantageous for the most express train allowing them to stay at high speed without crossing an urban area. You can imagine a driver change at Canberra to minimize rotation time at that station.

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westfalen

When asked about the report, the Prime Minister was quoted as saying she'd need much public feedback to decide whether HSR would be desirable and needed, public feedback hasn't played much of a part in other decisions she's made. In other words, another round of studies and committees so that it looks like they are in favour of doing something without actually having to do anything. And of course if you ask Joe Public, who has never ridden a Shinkansen, ICE or TGV and who's rail travel experience is the 7:30 to Town Hall or Flinders Street if he'd rather catch a train or fly between Sydney and Melbourne you know his answer already. Politicians have a knack for asking questions in a way that they get the answer they want.

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The_Ghan

...

So, to correct the Ghan's assumption about air traffic between Melbourne and Sydney, it's not around a million but 7.88 million in 2010. That's more than enough to justify HSR.

...

 

so I redid my math ...  :BangHead: ... it actually adds up to 10.2m, not 1.02m as I first said.  So I'll happily accept the 7.88m in the report as I'm counting seats available, not seats sold.  I feel like a goose ... !

 

disturbman, does the report talk about tourism on the QLD coast in relation to HSR?  I thought Cairns - Sydney (or the opposite direction) is the most popular route for international tourists.

 

Cheers

 

The_Ghan

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disturbman

No, the study doesn't mention Cairns. And I can understand why, Cairns is small (around 100k) and far away from everything (1.700 km from Brisbane!). I don't think HSR would be ever profitable on that stretch. Anyway, the study only covers the following corridor: Melbourne - Canberra - Sydney - Newcastle - Brisbane. Which makes sens in terms of distance and density of population serves.

 

I don't think you'll ever see any project build for anything else. Cairns like Perth, is too far away, a continent away (for me European). With the distances involved the only possibility for Cairns is a slow touristic train. But if the infrastructure doesn't exist or is not required for something else I don't see that happening. If it's for international tourist then my guess is that Cairns is something like a beach resort and for that it doesn't need to be connected to the rest of Australia more than by road or air. From there what would be the destination anyway?

 

Back to the report. I have only read it quickly, I haven't read every line of it. But it's quite complete. It speaks a lot about commuters (from Newcastle to Sydney) but I don't remember anything about Tourism. But I'm sure it must raises those questions somewhere. It's a nice piece even if some issues needs to be  studied further (like definitive corridors, more precise cost and ridership projections). You should read it.

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linkey

If the project goes ahead there might be a service from Melbourne to Perth cause at the moment you would need to board more than two trains to do so unless you go from Melbourne to Sydney then Sydney to Perth rather than Melbourne to Adelaide, Adelaide to Port Augusta change over for Perth.

 

In which the HSR would take less than 6 hours to get there! :P

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disturbman

It's normally admitted that HSR is suited for trips up until 4 hours. For Perth to Melbourne we are speaking about a 2.700km long HSR line. Which would take around 8 or so hours at 350kph... Way too much people would prefer to fly than to take the train, even more when the train cost at least the same price as the plane. The time incentive of HSR over flying is here lost.

 

Plus, I'm not sure that a Perth to Melbourne HSR line would ever attract enough ridership to justify to build it. I mean the predictable tag price for that is around 100 billion € if Australia is subject to normal European costs and not crazy inflated USA type costs.

 

It would be different if the country was more densely populated on the corridor but it's already an issue on the most populated part. So at such low density of population Intercontinental HSR doesn't make sense in the actual and predictable situation.

 

Here HSR would be a luxury that a few people that have time and money can take. But then, if they have, why should have to go that fast?

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keitaro

This is true Disturbman. However plane prices are only going to keep going up. Tighter air security and rising fuel and saftey requirements are going to push this up.

 

While for the business man the flight is definately going to be the choice I feel it will be a 50 - 50 for those going on a holiday. Relaxing on the train and enjoying the view.

 

Not to mention the lack of lining up to check in, going through security, waiting for the plane, In theory less chance of cancelled train only the possible delay (See last comment), quicker access to the city and hotels than from the airport.

 

Volcanoes are a good example of why it's good to have a hsr. While the planes will be cancelled a HSR is not affected by such circumstances and there for can keep at least the traffic going within Australia.

 

On top of this theres always going to be the overseas traveller who lands in Sydney and after some time might catch hsr to qld or melbourne to ride the train and see the scenery etc. for example.

 

Hopefully we choose japan to build and get that 99.9% of services on time including natural disasters.  :grin

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disturbman

Are you actually saying that what is nowadays true for roughly 1.000km trip could become true for 2.000 to 4.000km trips?

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keitaro

4000km might be going to far but a 2000km trip for up to 7 hours of travel really is not "that bad".

 

I say 7 hours because we all know australia wouldn't run at 350 if if they claimed they would be able too.

 

plus you need to add stops in etc.

 

Also a trip from melbourne to brisbane the 2000 roughly km trip is for a average flight at this time today 1 way with www.virginblue.com.au is at cheapest $230 opposed to what maybe $150 (although must of the news articles reffer to from $90 area) for the HSR.

The flight is 2hr 10 mins, you need to get there 30 minutes before flight absoloute minimum and then need to pay for parking etc. This already is for most people 3hrs 10 minutes, let me mention the airport is annoying to get in in sydney not sure about melbourne. But if you're flight is for example at 8am peak hour traffic is a bitch and the train takes along time to get there as well.

 

A HSR you could arrive as little as 5 - 10 minutes before and one would hope it is positioned in an area easy to get to via other train services as in japan.

 

To me already i have saved $200 for a family of 4 to spend an extra 3 and a half hours travelling via HSR

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Mudkip Orange

Not only is Perth-Sydney via HSR crazy, but it actually becomes more crazy if you build HSR up the whole east coast from Geelong to Byron Bay.

 

Because having that HSR in place (i) frees up your airport capacity, and with less demand for landing spots the airports can't charge as much (so the prices come down), and (ii) having trains in place acts as a natural "check" on the growth of how much random crap American TSA-style security they can put in airports. If you're dependent on planes there's nothing to stop that, if you've got trains in place then the airlines have a non-air competitor and are thus incentivized to fight against the increasing security. Less security theater = lower airport wait times = faster trip times via plane.

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marknewton
Oh, the beauties of open access on the railways.

 

LOL! You're not wrong, bb!

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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marknewton
I'm just across the river, with a view of Como.  Slept through the PacNat failure, apparently.  There was a helicopter in the air around 19:10 tonight.  Was that to do with the fatality?

 

Yes, the victims were airlifted to St George Hospital.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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marknewton
You've hit the nail on the head we need politicians with guts.

 

We can't even get politicians with brains, so getting ones with guts may be a long way off. And I include ALL the current crop in that assessment - ALP, Liberal, Nationals, Greens, Independents. I wouldn't piss on any of them.

 

The politicians are always talking about doing the best for the environment, what could be better than taking every airliner, truck and bus that plies its trade between Sydney and Melbourne and sending them to the scrap yard. HSR should be looked at in wider terms than the financial ones.

 

I agree, it should, but our pollies can't look beyond the next election, and sucking up to the likes of Moody's/Standard & Poors - as if those wankers knew anything.

 

Mark, now sick, tired and cranky...

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marknewton
One thing, if the airlines would be a problem, it's always possible to offer them a seat on the project. Even more if the HSR is build as a PPP. It wouldn't be stupid for an airline to get associated in the operational part and even lend it's branding to such a high profile project. I could envision "Quantas Trains", red with a white kangaroo. Those trains would be a neat and I think it will give a different flavor to the modal shift. I even think it could encourage that shift (by appeal of branding and transfer of passengers).

 

An interesting suggestion, but I think maybe counter-productive at the moment. The gloss has gone right off airlines here lately. Qantas has done a marvellous job of trashing it's own good reputation, Jetstar never had a good repututation to begin with, and Tiger are currently grounded for safety breaches. The only mob worth considering as partners would be VirginBlue.

 

And last point, about our stupid politics, if you don't like their ideas you should become militant, create an association to spread what you think (with studies, interviews...) is good business/policies and raise consciousness about the matter in the general population and in the politic classes. But you have to act before it's too late.

 

There was a time when I was politically motivated and active, but that's long ago. I reached a point where I felt dirty just being in the same room as some of our so-called leaders, so I gave it away. Sadly, there are no good policies to be found in this country, at any level of government. All we have is a bunch of shysters, mendicants and testicle-squeezers lining their pockets.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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disturbman
a trip from Melbourne to Brisbane

 

Ah... but that's not what I was speaking about. I was debating about (and against) extending the HSR line to Perth. Project that I don't think will make sense financially before long.

 

An interesting suggestion, but I think maybe counter-productive at the moment. The gloss has gone right off airlines here lately. Qantas has done a marvellous job of trashing it's own good reputation, Jetstar never had a good repututation to begin with, and Tiger are currently grounded for safety breaches. The only mob worth considering as partners would be VirginBlue.

 

True, Airlines have lost their glamour. But still, it will always be better to have them on-board than battling against such projects.

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linkey
a trip from Melbourne to Brisbane

 

Ah... but that's not what I was speaking about. I was debating about (and against) extending the HSR line to Perth. Project that I don't think will make sense financially before long.

 

An interesting suggestion, but I think maybe counter-productive at the moment. The gloss has gone right off airlines here lately. Qantas has done a marvellous job of trashing it's own good reputation, Jetstar never had a good repututation to begin with, and Tiger are currently grounded for safety breaches. The only mob worth considering as partners would be VirginBlue.

 

True, Airlines have lost their glamour. But still, it will always be better to have them on-board than battling against such projects.

 

 

 

It was a theretical question of would they be thinking of such as the IP (Indian Pacific) takes 5-7 days (correct me if I am wrong as I haven't travelled on it) while the HSR would reduce the time frame by a big margin, it would then go by demand vs. effectiveness.

 

 

At the moment it takes nearly a 1 and a half to get from Melbourne to Brisbane via XPT and that is if you didn't swap over at Strathfield Station and I've done that and no way would I want to do that again, flights at the moment is 2hr 10mins but as stated you need to add time before you leave the departure point. With fuel costs be expected for higher ticket prices on any Australian airline carrier.

 

Maybe it was my mistake of even placing this on the forums? But this is something that Australian people have been asking for a long time and can't wait for pen pushing, backchatting pollies to get this started.

 

I have been at Airports all along the East coast of Australia and the better way to take away their customer service is by having this HSR operational and fully running.

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keitaro

hsr just has so much benefits for Aus. especially for those rural areas listed previously.

 

I hope they decide to have a high speed dedicated freight linealong side the hsr. They are always whining about wanting to get trucks off roads especially interstate ones. would make a big difference IMO.

 

I really want to see this happen !!!!!!!!!!!!

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marknewton
It was a theretical question of would they be thinking of such as the IP (Indian Pacific) takes 5-7 days (correct me if I am wrong as I haven't travelled on it)

 

Three nights from Sydney to Perth. The IP leaves here at 1455 on Wednesday arvo, and arrives in Perth at 0915 or thereabouts on Saturday morning.

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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keitaro

with perth to bris or syd or melbourne. I could only really see this being a 1 run each way a day. I my self would love to do a 8 hour trip from sydney to perth would be awesome views along the way.

 

 

But as it stands the IP is not really to save money but more for the scenic views trip. It's $369 one way for basic travel and up to $2000 in gold travel. A flight is cheaper than that last i checked.

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disturbman
Maybe it was my mistake of even placing this on the forums?

 

Why are you speaking about mistake? I'm only saying that extending the future HSR network to Perth doesn't look sound financially speaking to me considering:

- the price tag, that's going to be around the same price as the Melbourne to Brisbane (60 to 100 billion)

- the size of the market, which is around 1.5 million people (I could add Adelaide but I think it's out of the scope of the conversation)

 

So extending the HSR network to Perth will double the price of the investment for a fraction of the population.

 

I believe the plane will remain more competitive and maybe even more efficient than HST on that corridor. A quick calculation will put at least Perth 9 hours away from Melbourne and around half a day away from Sydney. That's a lot, with access we are speaking about a day long trip. As long as flying remains as expensive or cheaper than taking the train I just don't see people riding that thing massively. Which means building a very expensive piece of infrastructure for a handful of trains... this is not something going to happen anytime soon.

 

Keitaro, HSR Freight also doesn't make sense economically. Most of the goods moved by rail are bulk freight, products that in general don't need to go fast and that the market price won't allow to go fast. To have HSR Freight you need to move around commodities that have a high price tag. Meaning that the shipping, even at HS, will only represent a small fraction of the good's price. And even then, you don't need to go to real HS. Most of the time, a 160kph corridor should be enough to move freight around. Higher speeds only means higher maintenance cost and in Australia freight railways are managed like in the States, minimum upkeep.

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