Started by Buzz Killington, October 29, 2016, 03:04:48 PM
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Quote from: Bus 503 on October 29, 2016, 09:18:50 PMI think the Woden stage two route needs to be direct and faster than buses. The corridor is right there and is designed specifically for light rail to go through it so it seems a bit weird to go and detour around that. I would have thought City to the Airport would make a good stage two, or City to Belconnen because there needs to be a solution (especially during peak hours) to the constant overcrowding on the Blue Rapids - there is constant demand for buses throughout the day to get to the City from Belconnen or Belconnen to the City, so I would've thought that or the Airport would be a sensible stage two.
QuoteACT government signs suite of light rail stage 2 contractsKirsten Lawson The ACT government has signed a series of contracts with consultants to design its second stage of light rail from the city to Woden, using many of the consultants it used on the first leg.Ernst and Young has been appointed commercial adviser, including preparing the business case and economic analysis, market soundings, and advising on how to structure the contracts to deliver stage 2. The company also worked on the stage 1 business case, and was contracted for $2.3 million of work on stage 1 in the three years to June 2016.Arup has been appointed technical adviser for stage 2, and its tasks include engineering design, traffic and access design, underground investigations, urban design, safety planning and planning approvals.Arup, also technical adviser for stage 1, is one of the most highly paid light rail consultants date, winning contracts worth $7.6 million over the three years to June 2016.Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris was unable to provide the final costs of the latest tranche of contracts this week, with details still being signed off, but in November 2016 she said the contracts were together worth about $7 million, of a total $25 million to prepare for stage 2.The route is expected to be finalised this year, with contracts signed before the 2020 election.Turner and Townsend has been appointed to estimate costs for the 10km route to Woden, which is more complicated than the line from Gungahlin. It must cross Commonwealth Avenue bridge, and is to be wire-free over the bridge and through the parliamentary triangle.Turner and Townsend, which also costed the Parramatta light rail line for the NSW government, appears to have been paid nearly $2 million to date for cost estimation work, as "constructability advisor", and assessing the tenders for stage 1.An audit report last year detailed some of the negotiations between cost-estimator Turner and Townsend and the ACT government when Turner and Townsend initially the capital cost of stage 1 at $1.01 billion in 2014. The figure prompted a "value-engineering workshop" "to allow Turner and Townsend an opportunity to clarify elements of the design for their costing assumptions" and to refine the design to reduce costs, the auditor reported. Soon after, Turner and Townsend revised down the cost to $610 million, including scrapping $100 million of "owners' costs" and a $227 million contingency. Eventually, the construction contract was signed for $710 million.Elton Consulting has been appointed as communications and engagement advisor. Elton, also involved in Sydney light rail, was contracted to do Canberra planning work in 2015-16, worth $220,000, according to annual reports. In 2015, Elton employed former deputy head of the ACT Land Development Agency Dan Stewart and its website boasts Mr Stewart's experience in light rail.Sydney rail engineering consultancy SNC Lavalin Rail and Transit has been appointed as operations advisor, including deciding on the light rail vehicles. SNC Lavalin Rail was also operations consultant on stage 1, with contracts worth $2.2 million.Veitch Lister Consulting will do transport modelling for the second stage, including calculating expected patronage. Veitch Lister worked on demand forecasting for stage 1 and has been contracted for about $400,000 of work to date.Clayton Utz has been appointed as legal advisors and Sparke Helmore as probity advisor. Hudson Global, in charge of recruitment for stage 1, has also been given the recruitment task for stage 2.Most of the contracts were tightly contested in the tender round, with the ACT government website listing nine separate bids for the cost-estimation contract won by Turner and Townsend. Four companies bid for the transport modelling contract, and four to be commercial advisor.Six companies bid for the communications contract. Two companies bid be to technical advisor, but it appears SNC Lavalin Rail and Transit was the only formal bid for the operations management contract. Ten companies bid for the recruitment contract.
QuoteNames of Canberra's first 13 light rail stops revealed, next the designKatie Burgess They've been immortalised in ink, in coffee cups and in cake but transport minister Meegan Fitzharris says Canberra's new light rail stops could be as iconic as the city's famous bus shelters.The minister unveiled the latest "little milestone" in stage one of the city's light rail project - the names of the 13 light rail stops stretching from Gungahlin Place to Alinga Street in Civic.The new light rail stops will be: Gungahlin Place, Manning Clark North, Mapleton Avenue, Nullarbor Avenue, Well Station Drive, EPIC and Racecourse, Phillip Avenue, Swinden Street, Dickson Interchange, Macarthur Avenue, Ipima Street, Eloura Street and Alinga Street.And the next milestone in the project will be the design of the stops, which the minister hopes will be as distinctive as the 'bunker' bus shelters."[The design] will come out in the next couple of months so we'll have some designs for people to look at," Ms Fitzharris said."Obviously we've been working with Canberra Metro on those designs as well as NCA because the design of the stops, particularly on the spots they're responsible for, are very important to them as well so we'll have the final designs out for people to look at over the next couple of months as well."Ms Fitzharris said the design will be "broadly similar" to the ones in the original artist's impressions but will be "much more developed"."They've had a lot of input from local designers as well so they represent parts of the city people will be familiar with so they'll be pretty exciting for people to have a look at," Ms Fitzharris said.Ms Fitzharris said stage one of light rail is on schedule, with work underway at every point along the rout.The first piece of track to be laid in May or June and the first vehicle shells have gone into production in Spain.Work is also underway to integrate stage one and two of the project "seamlessly".At the Alinga Street stop will be a recharging facility for the trams, as stage two of the light rail has to be wire-free, Ms Fitzharris confirmed."Because we'd always planned for this to be a city-wide project we knew that anything beyond Alinga Street would require us to be wire free and that includes a Russell extension or across the lake so the capacity is within each of the vehicles to be wire free anyway and within the tracks itself," she said."My understanding [of the charging station] that it'd be no extra time, it sort of recharges as it goes, as in no extra time from the time it takes to stop and unload and load on passengers anyway so there's no additional time."Work is also continuing on updating the bus network to make way for light rail.Ms Fitzharris said there would be two bus network refreshes between now and this time next year."We don't want to be at the point where we are refreshing the whole network at the same time as we're starting up light rail so there'll probably be two points of network updates between now and the start of light rail so one this year with the introduction of new rapid services and one in the first quarter of 2018, although that date may be subject to change," Ms Fitzharris said.
Quote from: Busfanatic101 on August 22, 2017, 07:05:40 PMIt does not answer the fundamental question of whether it is intended to replace that portion of the blue rapid completely, though I now think that is unlikely
Quote from: King of Buses on August 22, 2017, 09:31:08 PMDon't go there. From what I can gather* it likely will - even if it runs through Barton
Quote from: King of Buses on August 22, 2017, 09:31:08 PMThe source for this is ... slightly biased towards the Barton diversion to the point that they seem completely oblivious to the fact that it will be around 5 minutes slower than the existing bus service.
QuoteACT government announces preferred stage two light rail routeSteven Trask April 19 2018 - 12:00AMThe ACT government says its preferred route for stage two of the territory’s light rail network will travel to Woden through Parkes and Barton.Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris announced the government’s preference on Thursday morning, which would rely on approval from the federal government before getting the green light.The other option was to run the light rail track to Woden through Civic and via Parliament House.“Light rail stage two has been going through a rigorous planning process that involves negotiation with the National Capital Authority and commonwealth government due to the heritage and national importance of the parliamentary triangle,” Ms Fitzharris said.“What’s clear is that the ACT government is committed to extending light rail to Woden, and we will continue to work with relevant stakeholders on the exact alignment through the parliamentary triangle.”The ACT government’s final business case for stage two of the project hinged on working through details of the route with relevant federal government authorities, Ms Fitzharris said.“It’s not appropriate for the ACT Government to finalise the business case for the project until the NCA’s requirements and alignment details are worked through.“We’re hopeful we can continue to progress these negotiations in good time so that we can get on with delivering a world-class public transport network for Canberra.”In late 2017, following months of consultation and analysis, the ACT government narrowed down the possible routes the light rail will take south from the city from four to two.Ms Fitzharris said at the time that community feedback revealed a need to place the light rail route near "as many of the key employment hubs and national institutions as possible in the parliamentary triangle".Three-quarters of Canberrans surveyed supported a route via Barton."It would also be Canberra's first light rail route with a section that doesn't follow a current road," Ms Fitzharris said last year."This design option would allow the route to get through Barton more quickly while also servicing more employment hubs and our important national institutions and tourist attractions."A popular light rail extension to the Canberra Hospital was dumped last year due to technical restraints.Ms Fitzharris said she was confident the community would support the Barton and Parkes proposal.“This route provides the best access through the Parliamentary zone to employment hubs, cultural institutions and other places of interest such as Manuka Oval,” she said.“There is no question that the City to Woden stage will be the most difficult section of a city-wide network to design and build.“Due to the location of the route, it’s heritage and national significance, it is also necessary for commonwealth government approvals to be obtained, including commonwealth parliamentary approval, and that is our focus right now.”
Quote from: Busfanatic101 on April 19, 2018, 12:38:36 PMWhat I hope this means it that Blue rapid is retained between Woden and Civic (or at least during peak the 100 series). This is of course more likely with the Barton route than the alternative route. But that doesn't been it will happen. And if it doesn't happen, well...
Quote from: Sylvan Loves Buses on April 19, 2018, 12:44:57 PMAgreed, and It would've been good if it were to be directed off to the Hospital too, but oh well.
QuoteNational Capital Authority concerned over light rail stage two routeKatie Burgess April 20 2018 - 12:00AMCanberra's iconic Parliament House vista could become a giant bottleneck if two lanes of traffic are permanently closed for light rail, the National Capital Authority has warned.The Barr government released its preferred route for the second stage of light rail on Thursday, scotching the Parliament House option in favour of snaking through Barton and Parkes on the way to Woden.But because the rail line will run over Commonwealth land, the NCA can scuttle the route if they chose.The National Capital Authority's chief executive Sally Barnes said the authority did not support the territory government's plan to reduce traffic from six to four lanes along Commonwealth Avenue and the bridge, and add an extra set of traffic lights.She said reducing road capacity when the population of Canberra was growing would "negatively impact on traffic movements over the long term"."The proposal is the most significant change to the Central National Area, and in particular the National Triangle, since the 1974 decision to locate Parliament House on Capital Hill," Ms Barnes said."A project of this magnitude requires careful consideration of all the impacts to the heart of Canberra."She said the NCA had reminded the government of their preference for no overhead wires in the Parliamentary Zone, as well as the need for an appropriate standard of landscaping, urban design and infrastructure.Ms Barnes said she was also worried about plans to reduce car parking in Barton, and has asked for assurances there will continue to be parking along the route.“The proposed light rail route highlights the important role the NCA serves to safeguard this area of national significance for future generations of Australians," Ms Barnes said."We need to carefully consider the associated impacts of the proposed works as well as clearly identify the benefits of this new transport route for Canberra."Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris said the government was considering building a new bridge in between the existing Commonwealth Bridge for the light rail."It’s a really important part of this route – not only for city to Woden, but for the whole city – to get over Lake Burley Griffin," Ms Fitzharris said."Simply there are two options. One is to be on the existing road surface, the other is to build a new bridge in the middle of the existing bridges."Recently the NCA had some public consultation and put forward their proposal that Commonwealth Avenue be reduced to two lanes of traffic. They have not settled on that view. They have now asked us to consider light rail on a new bridge in the middle of Commonwealth Avenue bridge. And that’s the work that we are doing now."Engineers Australia's Rolfe Hartley said Commonwealth Bridge presented no "insurmountable" engineering challenges."Commonwealth Avenue bridge is actually quite strong and certainly capable of taking a light rail system as is pretty much, although it might need additional reinforcing, but by the nature of the bridge it could do it," Mr Hartley said."It's a box girder so it's hollow inside. It's essentially a big strong concrete box. Kings Avenue bridge is different, it's narrower, with two lanes instead of three, and made of reinforced concrete. The third bridge is always an option, but it comes down to the planners' design."Asked about the traffic impact of building light rail on existing lanes, Mr Hartley said it was an issue traffic engineers could overcome."Some years ago some necessary expansion joints on Commonwealth Bridge had to be replaced and that meant closing one carriageway for a period of time and making it a single carriageway bridge. There weren't that many traffic problems," Mr Hartley said."All of the technical challenges of sending light rail over that bridge into the Parliamentary Zone can be solved."Like with stage one of the light rail, the ACT government will have to file a formal works approval with the NCA. The NCA will then put the project out for public consultation, the results of which will determine their decision.Stage two will also have to be rubber-stamped by the federal parliament. ACT Liberal Senator Zed Seselja has already indicated he will try to refer the proposal to an inquiry for an extra layer of scrutiny.Ms Fitzharris said she "continued to be worried about what the Canberra Liberals will do to undermine this project".
QuoteParliament House light rail route may be more direct, but not cheaperBy Katie Burgess21 June 2018 — 9:18pmBuilding the light rail network via Parliament House instead of Barton may make the trip shorter, but not cheaper.On Wednesday, it was revealed the trip on stage two of light rail to Civic to Woden via the Barr government's chosen route will take around 25 minutes.It is five minutes longer than an alternate route proposed that went past Parliament House.The current blue rapid bus that connects the two centres takes about 15 minutes.Those living on the southside say their trip times into the city will suffer as a result of the change to light rail.The Woden Valley Community Council said travel times would double for Woden residents, with even more blowouts for people living in Tuggeranong.But ACT government officials appearing before a federal parliamentary committee examining the impact of the project on the Parliamentary Triangle on Thursday said the Barton route was preferable in a number of ways.Transport Canberra deputy director-general Duncan Edghill said an overwhelming number of people supported the Barton route when surveyed last year, and it would take in more employment hubs, national institutions and hotels than the more direct route.He said while the Parliament House route may be more direct, it would likely be more expensive because of the extra heritage constraints, the need to build another bridge and more pedestrian crossings.However he was unable to provide any alternate costings that the $1.3-1.6 billion figure released on Wednesday.He also chose his words carefully when asked if the light rail would take longer and run less frequently than the current bus."People's journeys will change," he said."Upwards?" committee chair Ben Morton asked.Transport Canberra director general Emma Thomas stepped in, saying light rail and the blue rapid should not be compared directly."It's not just from Woden to Civic people are travelling, there's a whole range of journeys," she said.Mr Edghill said it was yet to be decided if the blue rapid would be dumped once the Woden leg of light rail came online.The government's submission to the inquiry said the idea of a Kings Avenue route had been quickly scuttled because it would have taken five to seven minutes more, reducing patronage by one-fifth.A spokeswoman for stage two light rail said passenger modelling showed about the same level of people catching the light rail both on the Barton and Parliament House routes."Although the Parkes and Barton route has a longer travel time, this is offset by people wanting to travel to places of employment and interest in the area," she said.Officials were also questioned on the choice of Commonwealth Avenue over Kings Avenue.Mr Edghill said that alignment allowed them to pick up passengers from the Australian University.Mr Morton asked whether Parkes Way had been considered as an alternate route to take the tram via Kings Avenue bridge to Woden."Parkes Way has other functions that don't lend itself to light rail," Mr Edghill said.Mr Edghill also revealed the cost of building the bridge in between the existing Commonwealth Bridge for light rail would be roughly the same as building infrastructure on existing lanes."It's actually easier to build a bridge in between. There's complications with retrofitting an old bridge," Mr Edghill said.In a bizarre twist, while the Commonwealth Bridge is the owned by the federal government, it appears the ACT government will own the bridge in the centre."We're paying for it," Mr Edghill said, by way of explanation.Another bridge would need to be built if the light rail were to use Kings Avenue as well.Mr Edghill admitted the idea of tunnelling under the lake had been briefly considered, but quickly scrapped due to cost.Representatives from the National Capital Authority looked at each other when asked which bridge they would prefer the light rail to use."We'd prefer to see more traffic modelling first," chief executive Sally Barnes said.The National Capital Authority has also indicated they would prefer Adelaide Avenue to be wire-free on the approach to Parliament House.However Ms Thomas said current technology would not permit the light rail batteries to hold a charge for the 2.3 kilometres in between the last Barton stop and the Hopetoun Circuit stop, meaning wires were required.Mr Edghill said wires allowed the light rail to reach its top speed, whereas running from a battery meant it had to go somewhat slower to conserve charge.However he noted the light rail would be running in 2024 at the earliest, meaning the technology could have changed by then.
QuoteMr Edghill said it was yet to be decided if the blue rapid would be dumped once the Woden leg of light rail came online.The government's submission to the inquiry said the idea of a Kings Avenue route had been quickly scuttled because it would have taken five to seven minutes more, reducing patronage by one-fifth.A spokeswoman for stage two light rail said passenger modelling showed about the same level of people catching the light rail both on the Barton and Parliament House routes.
Quote from: Busfanatic101 on June 22, 2018, 11:32:26 PMThis article still refers to the blue rapid but with the new rapid network, I would be more optimistic about the retention of R4 as the light rail would be perceived more as a replacement of R5 rather than R4 perhaps?
QuoteACT threatens to pull pin on light rail if forced to use Kings AvenueBy Katie Burgess28 August 2018 — 6:18amThe Barr government has threatened to pull the pin on the second stage of light rail if it's forced to use Kings Avenue bridge to travel over the lake, saying it would cost at least $300 million more but take longer and pick up fewer passengers.The federal parliament's joint standing committee has interrogated ACT government officials for the past few months over the decision to use Commonwealth Bridge to get light rail to Woden, amid concerns it will negatively impact on the Parliamentary Triangle.Committee chair and Liberal MP Ben Morton has returned repeatedly to the question of whether Kings Avenue bridge would be preferable, given it would lend itself to an offshoot to the Russell offices and the airport.That would require light rail to travel down Constitution Avenue, which is already earmarked for use on the future east-west spine between Belconnen and the airport.However ACT Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris said the government was unlikely to invest in the project if the light rail was forced to cross via Kings Avenue."Canberra is best served by a north-south light rail spine via Commonwealth Avenue, which will provide better light rail coverage through the City and Parliamentary areas, and result in higher passenger numbers, fewer significant trees needing removal and better travel times," Ms Fitzharris said."Up until now all our planning and design has been for a City to Woden route that crosses the lake at Commonwealth Avenue. Crossing the lake at Kings Avenue to get to Woden would increase the cost to around $1.9 billion, while isolating vast areas of the city."Given the lasting, sub-optimal outcomes this would produce for Canberra, the ACT government is reluctant to support it."In responses to questions on notice, the government estimated the cost of building light rail via Kings Avenue would be between $1.53-$1.9 billion. By comparison, the Commonwealth Avenue route is expected to cost between $1.3-$1.6 billion.These costings are not detailed and are based on a price per kilometre, given the Kings Avenue option is two kilometres longer than the Commonwealth Avenue route.It also doesn't take into account the higher annual maintenance cost, or the need for extra light rail vehicles, drivers and staff, which could add up to an extra $7 million per year.The government said using Constitution Avenue and Kings Avenue for both north-south and east-west services would reduce the overall capacity of the future light rail network, given the two lines will overlap on Constitution Avenue.It would also limit future expansion of the network and would cause major traffic problems on Coranderrk Street.The government analysed the intersection of Constitution Avenue and Coranderrk Street when considering the Russell extension during procurement for light rail stage one.While the intersection was expected to cope with light rail services to Russell and the airport, it was expected to fail if it was also used for north-south light rail."In turn this would expose the city road network to unacceptable delays," the government said.Already, Constitution Avenue is not wide enough for a separate light rail corridor, which exposes the network to delays from broken down cars and traffic.According to its modelling, using Kings Avenue would blow out the travel time from Civic to Woden to 35-39 minutes.Southside residents already say the 25-30 minutes the chosen stage two route will take is too long, and have called for the government to dump the Barton dogleg.The government also said the Kings Avenue route would pick up fewer passengers, with a projected daily patronage of 31,200 in 2041, compared to 39, 000 for Commonwealth Avenue.There are buses that replicated the chosen route for light rail stage two and the alternative Kings Avenue route -a standard bus service from Civic to Woden that down Commonwealth Avenue and through Barton; and a Rapid bus that goes via Constitution Avenue, along Kings Avenue and through Barton.An analysis of MyWay data showed there were four times as many commuters travelling over Commonwealth Avenue rather than Kings Avenue.The government also pointed out more Charles Weston trees would have to be chopped down if the light rail went down Kings Avenue - 40 compared to 28.The ACT Labor conference recently voted for stage three of light rail to go from Belconnen to the Airport, and Ms Fitzharris said she would "be looking into how we can make that happen"."Ultimately we are building a light rail network that needs dedicated corridors travelling east-west and north-south, both intersecting in the city," Ms Fitzharris said."We can't look at each route in isolation – we need to think about how it will work within the broader network if we want to get this right."An alternative via Kings Avenue would ultimately be detrimental to both the road network and the light rail network as it would force both the route to Woden and a future route to the Airport to share the same track along Constitution Avenue, creating significant delays to both routes."
Quote[size=3rem]What will happen if the Woden leg of Canberra's light rail is dumped?By Katie Burgess31 August 2018 — 11:49amThere comes a point in every journey where it's easier to keep going than it is to turn around or stop.For the Barr government - who this week warned all the officials and politicians squabbling in the back seat over whether Kings Avenue would be a better route than Commonwealth Avenue to pipe down or they'd turn this car around - that point cannot come quickly enough.Four months out from completion of its first stage of light rail and after having won two elections on the issue, the territory government is having trouble convincing a parliamentary committee to allow it to cross Commonwealth Avenue bridge to get over the lake to Woden.[/size][size=0.8125rem]An artists's impression of the tram in front of Old Parliament House. The ACT government's vision may not materialise if the National Capital Authority and federal parliament decide light rail will negatively impact the Parliamentary Zone.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Supplied[/size][size=1.125rem]Until the Kings versus Commonwealth stoush is sorted, the business case for the second stage of the project can't be completed, making it less and less likely the ACT can conveniently roll the workforce from one stage to another and get the contracts signed before the next election.Dissatisfied with the whole affair, [/color]they've threatened to pull the pin on stage two if forced to take Kings Avenue, saying the $1.9 billion price tag that would accompany it is a bridge too far.Ironically, it's the bridges where the second stage of light rail keeps running into trouble.Already the $1.3-1.6 billion figure put on the Commonwealth Avenue Bridge route, complete with its wire-free running and Barton dog leg, came with the caveat it could fluctuate depending on when the project began and whether the construction market was still overheated.Combined with the near billion-dollar cost of the first stage, it makes the $2 billion pricetag on the 54-kilometre, city-wide network proposed by the Stanhope government nearly a decade ago look positively cute by comparison.[/size][size=0.8125rem]The ACT government's preferred route for light rail stage two.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Supplied[/size][size=1.125rem]Having had two years to get used to the idea of light rail heading south though, the news that stage two was in doubt would have come as a rude shock to some, not least those who'd been buying up slabs of land in the Woden town centre.Labor announced light rail would go to the satellite city in September 2016 - a month out from the territory election - in what could reasonably be interpreted as a bid to win over voters in the new electorate of Murrumbidgee.The government said at the time it wanted minimal downtime between the construction of the two stages in order to continue an employment pipeline, and has poured $20 million into geotechnical studies, economic analysis and engineering design in order to make it happen. Another $12.5 million was set aside for project planning and associated works in the June budget.It set an ambitious timeline, aiming for Commonwealth approval in 2018-19, to sign contracts before the 2020 election, and break ground in 2020-21.But politicians on the hill threw a spanner in the works by launching a formal inquiry into the project earlier this year.About 65 per cent of the route to Woden traverses land controlled by the National Capital Authority, and both the authority and the federal parliament will have to rubber-stamp the project before the first sod can be turned.Liberal Senator Zed Seselja pushed for the inquiry, saying it would provide the extra scrutiny he believed was missing from the first stage of the project.On that, the Joint Standing Committee on the National Capital and External Territories has certainly delivered.Transport Canberra and National Capital Authority officials have been hauled before the committee twice now, with its Liberal chair Ben Morton hellbent on figuring out why the ACT government wants to go over Commonwealth Bridge rather than Kings Avenue.[/size][size=0.8125rem]The Griffins' plans for light rail throughout Canberra.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Supplied[/size][size=1.125rem]The Griffins’ initial vision for Canberra included many radial rail lines linking different parts of the city, including down Kings Avenue.The NCA says sticking to the Griffins’ plan would ensure the three jobs hubs at the junctions of the national triangle - Civic, Russell and Parliament House - were served by light rail, without the need to muck up the road geometry by jutting across the parliamentary triangle.But the ACT says that route would cost $300 million more and would fail to deliver the patronage, uplift in property value and urban renewal it’s banking on to make the project viable.“Given the lasting, sub-optimal outcomes this would produce for Canberra, the ACT government is reluctant to support it,” Transport Minister Meegan Fitzharris said this week.Mr Morton has maintained his take on the project is not political, nor is he looking at the route as a whole.“We are looking at the impact on the national capital area and the parliamentary zone and that is all,” Mr Morton said.[/size][size=1.25rem]Woden light rail route not in isolationBut the territory government - which “welcomed” the inquiry in the same way one welcomes a landlord picking through their underwear drawer during a rental inspection - clearly resents the intrusion.Chief Minister Andrew Barr was blunt in saying a change in the federal political environment in 2019 would enable his government to “get on” with a number of projects, including light rail, a fast train to Sydney and a city deal.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Future stages of light rail, laid out in the ACT government's latest submission to the Joint Standing Committee on the National Capital and External Territories. [/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Supplied[/size][size=1.25rem]Ms Fitzharris said Labor governments had a track record of investing in infrastructure in Canberra, including the Majura Parkway and Constitution Avenue, and Senator Seselja had proven he didn't have Canberrans' best interests at heart with his vote against restoring territory rights on euthanasia and his role in the Liberal party room coup against Malcolm Turnbull.The government points out in its submission to the inquiry it’s not looking at the Woden route in isolation, but rather as one spoke in a city-wide network. Belconnen and the airport will be next, with Kingston, Fyshwick, Tuggeranong, the Molonglo Valley and even Kippax earmarked for future stages.Only the future extension from Belconnen to Kippax would not trespass on designated areas and thus require the blessing of the authority, it notes wryly.In her comments this week, Ms Fitzharris said she “encouraged” the committee to think about the broader network when considering their approval processes for light rail stage two, and that she “looked forward” to their final report so the project could “proceed with certainty as soon as possible”. Presumably her statement was dictated through gritted teeth.But what happens if the federal government doesn't change, the committee rules out Commonwealth Avenue, and the light rail terminates in Civic as threatened?The situation has Woden Valley Community Council president Fiona Carrick worried.“It’s created uncertainty in the market. Woden suffered from that uncertainty for many years. We would hate to see Woden [light rail] not going ahead and investment being further entrenched in north Canberra,” Ms Carrick said.Ms Fitzharris wouldn’t be drawn on whether Woden’s loss would be Belconnen’s gain, only that the timing of future stages would be looked at down the road, and she was sure that the committee would deliver a “timely” report (again, probably through clenched teeth).Civic to Gungahlin light rail 'great on its own'But if the north-south spine of light rail was in doubt, would that make the Gungahlin to Civic leg less appealing for commuters?Professor Graham Currie, who is Monash University’s Institute of Transport Studies Public Transport Research Group director, doesn't think so.“Stage one is a self-contained project. Its ridership will grow as development in Canberra grows,” Professor Currie said.“Adding in stage two will boost ridership and if we don’t do it we won’t get that boost. Nevertheless stage one is a great project on its own.”Professor Currie visited Canberra last week to check out how construction on stage one was going, and believes the project is encouraging “sustainable and attractive land uses” without the need for “endless car parks”.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Stage one light rail construction, as seen from City Hill.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Elesa Kurtz[/size][size=1.25rem]“Growth is going to happen anyway so more single occupancy cars, more need for car parks and congested roads are coming. Is that what you want? I think it’s better to have options and light rail transport is one of the highest quality options available for advanced cities. It’s time for Canberra to become a big city in a smart way,” Professor Currie said.He said the “great losers” if stage two was canned were the residents and workforce along that route, who would have to deal with the increase in congestion and car parks in the future.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Commonwealth Avenue Bridge. An academic says if stage two of light rail is not completed workers and residents of south Canberra will suffer from endless car parks.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong[/size][size=1.25rem]University of Canberra adjunct associate professor of economics Cameron Gordon thinks it would be better if the government put the brakes on on stage two until stage one actually begins running.Even then, he believes a demand study for Canberra’s public transport should have been done long before any track slab was laid.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Construction workers laying the light rail concrete slab on Flemington road.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Rohan Thomson[/size][size=1.25rem]“I’ve always been of the opinion that Canberra can justify light rail in theory but the problem is we haven’t really done a study or based the planning of light rail on where people are now, where they’re going to be in the future and where they want to go,” Dr Gordon said.“My own personal preference would have been to beef up the bus network then do light rail but they haven’t done that, they’ve decided to do it in one sort of leg.”Dr Gordon said it wouldn’t matter much if the second stage of light rail wasn't built as “we still need to move most people on buses”.However he has major concerns about the proposed bus network overhaul timed to integrate with light rail, again because of the absence of a demand study.“It’s a dangerous thing to have data when you don’t understand what it means,” Dr Gordon said.“When buses aren’t well patronised it’s assumed people don’t want to take the bus. The fact that just because there’s not many people riding doesn't mean there’s not demand. You need to ask people where they want to go and figure out your network around that.”Benefits of light rail at 'a 10th of the cost'?Even the academic who revived the idea of light rail for Canberra reckons the second stage could use a rethink.Professor Peter Newman, from Curtin University's Sustainability Policy Institute, co-authored a study in 1991 that concluded light rail could solve a myriad of Canberra’s existing and future problems, like urban sprawl, pollution and congestion.Now he says while their overarching proposal - which included traffic calming measures through the city and creating urban villages like the one being built at Macarthur Avenue - is still relevant, the technology has changed so much so that he no longer supports light rail. Instead, he’s begun advocating for trackless trams.“I’ve been to China recently and looked at the new technology which is significantly better than anything else around at the moment for a 10th of the cost,” Professor Newman said.“Sydney’s light rail is $120 million per kilometre, the Gold Coast is $127 million per kilometre. This is five to six million dollars per kilometre.”[/size][size=0.8125rem]Light rail construction in Sydney has caused havoc. Business owners have even launched a $40 million class action.[/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: Jessica Hromas[/size][size=1.25rem]Those trams are electric with batteries on the roof, and use an optical guidance system to follow dashed white lines instead of having steel wheels on rails.They have been tested in the Chinese city Zhuzhou and hit the market in 2019.Because you don’t have to dig up the road or install overhead wires, disruption is likely to be minimal, unlike in Sydney where fed-up business owners have launched a $40 million class action over the bungled build of their light rail. However because the trams need to be recharged at stations, the stations become a focal point for building around, just like light rail stops.“It means land development around stations is still very attractive and urban regeneration will be unlocked in the same way light rail does," Professor Newman said.Professor Newman believes that technology will overtake light rail, although the transit forms can be complementary.“It can of course run on the same track as light rail, if it’s a grassed track it could run down there but in other parts of Canberra it would take over,” Professor Newman said.However, ACT Property Council executive director Adina Cirson said there are economic benefits to be gained from tracks in the ground.“Rail lines don’t move, bus routes do. There’s no greater certainty for people who are buying land, investing in development, and creating new communities,” Ms Cirson said.[/size][size=0.8125rem]David Pope cartoons on light rail from 2014. Politicians have been making hay out of the issue for a long time. [/size][size=0.8125rem]Photo: David Pope[/size][size=1.25rem]She’s also concerned that the uncertainty around the route going ahead could have an effect on the revitalisation of Woden, which has only just begun.Developers like Geocon, Doma, Hindmarsh and KDM have invested millions of dollars into land in the Woden town centre, some biding their time for years only for the project now to be up in the air again.“This really is the problem when politics comes into play with infrastructure projects,” Ms Cirson said.“This uncertainty for the developers and for the community is not good for the city.”The uncertainty is something Canberrans are all too familiar with though.Politicians have been making hay out of light rail since Kate Carnell and her driverless capsules and it's likely to continue until the tram finally gets to Kippax.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/font][/color][/size][/font]
Quote from: Busnerd on December 03, 2018, 04:52:58 PMCommon sense has finally prevailed, it seemed it was only D.C. Haas pushing for the Barton diversion, thinking that tourists and the small number of weekday workers in Barton were more important than every southside resident.
Quote from: ajw373 on December 03, 2018, 06:51:57 PMThough only on the bases the expresses buses from the south continued to Civic.
Quote from: Busfanatic101 on December 03, 2018, 08:17:22 PMThe result of this compromise is that now this will almost certainly replace both R4 and R5 between Woden and Civic - sure they will get the passenger numbers that way but if the original plan was to retain R4 with LR to replace R5 (as hoped), this is going to disadvantage a lot of people...
Quote from: Busfanatic101 on March 12, 2019, 01:36:02 PMFederal funding for LR stage 2https://amp.canberratimes.com.au/politics/act/federal-labor-promises-200-million-for-canberra-s-light-rail-20190311-p513bn.html
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 05, 2019, 08:43:16 PMI suspect that no extra vehicles will be procured for this extension; however as a compromise only the section between City Interchange and City West will operate during peak hours, as there may only be enough light rail vehicles to cater for that length of an extension; the service to Regatta Point will only operate during the middle of the day, and on weekends
Quote from: LWF on July 06, 2019, 12:24:01 AMSo, the government spends hundreds of millions of dollars to extend the light rail line, to only use it off peak and weekends? That's not only highly unlikely, but would be branded an enormous waste of taxpayers money.I know this is a 'discussion' board, but sometimes, the content of the discussion is so absurd, it needs to be called out
Quote from: Urbos Rider on July 06, 2019, 12:24:01 AMSo, the government spends hundreds of millions of dollars to extend the light rail line, to only use it off peak and weekends? That's not only highly unlikely, but would be branded an enormous waste of taxpayers money.
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 08:55:42 AMIt appears that the only absurd poster on this board is yourself; there is a strong precedent for such an extension that has been set in my former home city of Adelaide
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 08:55:42 AMIt appears that the only absurd poster on this board is yourself
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 08:55:42 AMin my former home city of Adelaide
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 08:55:42 AMprior to relocating permanently to Canberra to accept an APS3 graduate role at the Department of Human Services in 1995
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 08:55:42 AMWhilst I have not returned to Adelaide since 2011; nor have I left Canberra at all since 2016, aside from weekend to Batemans Bay
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 11:52:19 AMThe provision of a turnback facility at City West is highly desirable; it would allow services to operate between Gungahlin Place & City West during trackwork closures of the southern section
Quote from: undefinedthe turnback at Alinga Street is also necessary for services to operate between Woden & Alinga Street during trackwork closures on the northern section
Quote from: undefinedIt appears you posses a strong bias towards the south side; this is why you are ignoring the need for north side commuters to travel to both Civic stops during service disruptions
Quote from: undefinedIt is possibly best if you choose to "butt out" of the planning for this project; our excellent Barr Government knows what it is doing and chooses to employ professionals who will read sites such as this one to scan for valid ideas, which is the reason why I am sharing my thoughts on here, it is very similar to how my department conducts consultations without having to directly engage
Quote from: Urbos Rider on July 06, 2019, 12:48:31 PMplease justify having a turnback less than a kilometre down the track from a fully functioning turn back to perform the same task, but only serving one extra stop.
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 11:52:19 AMIt is possibly best if you choose to "butt out" of the planning for this project;
Quote from: Barry Drive on July 06, 2019, 01:13:26 PMBut having said all that, I would like to see the provision for a siding between Alinga and London Cct.
Quote from: Barry Drive on July 06, 2019, 01:13:26 PMYou may disagree, but it is not appropriate to tell forum users to "butt out", especially those who have received the rank of Moderator - discussion is open to all, provided the rules are adhered to.
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 06, 2019, 04:21:00 PMI am 20 years older than them and also am employed at a high level in the Australian Public Service as an EL1, which is a strong indication that I am a person whose opinion matters and who commands a level of respect from those junior to myself.
Quote from: Toyota Camry on July 05, 2019, 08:43:16 PMI suspect that no extra vehicles will be procured for this extension; however as a compromise only the section between City Interchange and City West will operate during peak hours, as there may only be enough light rail vehicles to cater for that length of an extension; the service to Regatta Point will only operate during the middle of the day, and on weekends.
Quote from: Sylvan Loves Buses on July 26, 2019, 11:50:12 AMThat's what I'm perplexed by. If there's no additional depot that's going to be constructed down south, there's going to be quite a few trams going back to Mitchell at the dead of night to get back to the depot - and there will likely be people probably wanting to get them cause they're still out and about. If ridiculous Tuggeranong to Fraser/Belconnen to Banks dead-running buses weren't bad enough, there will be trams doing it too. I know Tuggeranong is a few decades (at least) off, but you have to wonder.
Quote from: Sylvan Loves Buses on July 26, 2019, 11:50:12 AMthere's going to be quite a few trams going back to Mitchell at the dead of night to get back to the depot - and there will likely be people probably wanting to get them cause they're still out and about. If ridiculous Tuggeranong to Fraser/Belconnen to Banks dead-running buses weren't bad enough, there will be trams doing it too. I know Tuggeranong is a few decades (at least) off, but you have to wonder.
QuoteThe 1.7km Stage 2A extension is due to begin operating in 2024.