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2651351 Views 23258 Replies 435 Participants Last post by  Bridges&Tunnels

NSW Premier Morris Iemma has today announced a three-month trial of heavily discounted off-peak rail tickets for commuters on the Western and Carlingford lines, beginning next month.

A 50 per cent discount would be available to commuters on services scheduled to arrive at Central Station either before 7.15am or between 9.15am and 10.15 am.

To qualify for the full benefit of the ticket, passengers would have to return on trains departing Central before 4pm or after 6.30pm.

The trial comes after a highly successful World Youth Day week during which many commuters travelled in the off-peak, easing the burden on Sydney's congested transport network.

The Minister for Transport, John Watkins, said if the trial was successful it would be rolled out across the whole network.

"It would mean that, if you're travelling in from Penrith, that would be a $36 per week saving," he said.

The three-month trial is hoped to shift 5 per cent of passengers on those lines to services outside the peak, and is expected to cost $2 million.

AAP reports: Commuters from Parramatta will save $23 a week.

The trial will run between Emu Plains and Auburn on the Western Line, Richmond Line stations and Carlingford Line stations.

The trial will run until October 31.

Linton Besser is the Herald's Transport Reporter.


Step in the right direction.
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It's too complex and too restrictive. I don't like the idea that you have to buy the cheap tickets daily and wont address the problem of long ticket queues.

They should adopt the Melbourne system and make the cheap tickets available between 9am and 3pm and after 6pm.
They should do what Conexx are doing down here (ie-free travel on any line before 7am departures)

It works quite well
Yeah, those times are a bit wierd. In SEQ, we have an off-peak daily which is valid for travel between 9 and 3:30 and after 6:30. I don't really like the times they're trialing. Keep it simple, stupid.
I agree with the above posters, off-peak discounts are a much better option than random and restrictive times.
They should do what Conexx are doing down here (ie-free travel on any line before 7am departures)

It works quite well
Does it really work well? You'd have to queue up for a ticket to go home every single day though... I'd rather buy a monthly pass and avoid the queue.
pre 7-am free rides are a fucking joke.

Think about it-- unless you are driving home you need a return ticket anyway in the evening (where at no point there is free travel). So it works out to be nearly as expensive buying single trip tickets (2hr pass) because they become cheaper the more time your ticket has (eg/ Day pass, Weekly). The Government is aware of this. It's a total scam.

The best option is a monthly, if you travel that much.
My parents (who work in Melbourne, and travel everyday) buy 10weekly tickets cause they are quite cheap than say 2weekly or 4weekly tickets on Vline.

Yearly's are good, but so damn expensive
Procrastination at its best.

Yet another "solution" to the wrong problem.
The government has decided to scrap the discount tickets. It didnt gain much support from commuters.
They were scrapped back in October, i.e. at the end of the trial.

It was a flop, not surprisingly.

flyer_18-737 said:
They should do what Conexx are doing down here (ie-free travel on any line before 7am departures)
Does it really work well? You'd have to queue up for a ticket to go home every single day though... I'd rather buy a monthly pass and avoid the queue.
Not many people take advantage of this feature, but Melbourne's Metcards are available in convenience stores and newsagents everywhere, plus on the internet. Regulars who don't use periodical tickets would tend to buy their tickets in bulk. Queues for tickets here aren't anywhere as bad as they are in Sydney from my experience.

Melbourne's early bird ticket isn't effective because it only applies to the train system and overall just serves a small market of people. I'm not opposed to the ticket itself though - it'd cost pretty much nothing to implement.
Sydney Public Transport

This thread is dedicated for the general trend in public transport overall instead of specific discussion in one particular mode. To start off, here is a related article.

22 million more trips on public transport

Date: February 22 2009

Paul Bibby

A GROWING number of Sydney commuters are abandoning their cars in favour of trains and buses as economic and environmental concerns bite, with experts predicting the start of a fundamental, long-term shift in travel behaviour.

Sydneysiders undertook about 22 million more train and bus journeys last year than the year before, and tens of thousands of people have abandoned the two main roads into the city this year.

As petrol prices soared and some commuters paid more than $10 each way in tolls, CityRail experienced a 5.7 per cent increase in patronage - about 17 million individual journeys - from December 2007 to December 2008.

There were also 5.6 million more trips on State Transit buses - up 3 per cent - despite the fact that many services, particularly those in the inner city and eastern suburbs, are already packed to capacity.

Public transport use is expected to swell further with the long-delayed opening of the Epping to Chatswood rail link tomorrow.

Meanwhile, The Sun-Herald can reveal that 10 Australian and international companies have expressed interest in running a privatised Sydney Harbour ferry service.

Nationwide research commissioned by Victorian transport authority Metlink shows a growing number of people switched from using cars to public transport last year, due in part to high petrol prices. Among the Sydneysiders surveyed, 62 per cent said they were substituting car use with train, bus, or ferry travel.

Figures from the Roads and Traffic Authority show this trend has continued in 2009, despite fuel costs falling, suggesting that the economic downturn, environmental and health concerns may be making public transport a more attractive option.

Forty-one-thousand fewer cars used Sydney's most congested harbour crossings - the Harbour Bridge and tunnel, and Victoria Road - in the morning peak between January 27 and February 16 this year than did so last year.

The 6.4 per cent drop coincided with the introduction of variable tolling on the Harbour Bridge and the Harbour Tunnel, where the toll has increased to $4 during peak periods.

It also followed revelations, published in The Sydney Morning Herald, that the average peak-hour speed on Victoria Road had dropped to 23 kmh.

University of Technology planning expert Garry Glazebrook said the figures were a part of a long-term global trend that would require new transport planning, and reflected a range of factors including the cost of car travel in tough economic times and changing land use patterns.

"The cost of car-based travel has gone up with petrol prices and tolls," Dr Glazebrook said.

"Even with petrol prices falling back to $1.20 a litre, public transport is cheaper overall. The financial downturn has made people more aware of that than, say, a year ago.

"But even more than that, we're starting to see the impact of changes in land use patterns - from detached housing on the fringe to high-density. This is the beginning of a major shift and we have to reassess our infrastructure priorities.

"The days of building toll roads are at an end. We have to stop catering for more car traffic."

Metlink research shows 44 per cent of people who reduced their car use in favour of public transport did so because of petrol costs; 9 per cent due to environmental concerns. About 70 per cent of Sydneysiders viewed the change as permanent, though 62 per cent thought the Government needed to provide more options for car drivers such as improved road infrastructure.

The change follows similar trends in the US, where car use dropped significantly as the economic crisis worsened, with public transport use increasing rapidly.

The American Transit Association reported that public transport use in the December quarter of 2008 was 6.5 per cent higher than for the same period the year before, the biggest rise annual rise in 25 years.

The executive director of the International Association of Public Transport, Peter Moore, said the Sydney figures hinted at what the city could become if it had a transport system with sufficient capacity.

"The evidence from around the world is overwhelming that if we could supply the necessary capacity in NSW, it would be fully utilised - it's a no-brainer," Mr Moore said.

"Clearly the demand is there in Sydney but at the moment people are being crowded out of trains and buses. The Government needs to stop widening roads and start implementing integrated transport planning policies now."

NSW Transport Minister David Campbell said the Government was planning for the future by delivering 300 new buses, along with 620 extra train carriages that the private sector is contracted to deliver from 2010.

"We have also begun detailed planning for a new metro system to cater for the increased demand to be completed in 2015," Mr Campbell said.

"Sydneysiders are taking to public transport in significant numbers and I believe this is a credit to the public transport system in NSW and our frontline staff.

"I always encourage people to hop on a bus, ferry or a train and obviously that's exactly what people are doing, because they are confident they will get a good service."

The number of train commuters is expected to swell further from tomorrow, with the opening of the overbudget and overdue $2.3 billion Chatswood-Epping rail link.

Mr Campbell said the new line would put an extra 12,000 people on the CityRail network every day.

That number would have been higher had the Government not scrapped its original vision of a $1.4-billion rail link between Parramatta and Chatswood because the plan was deemed too expensive.

Instead, after 11am tomorrow, commuters will have a new five-station line, with shuttle services running at 15-minute intervals while train drivers adjust to the new line.

Tomorrow, travel on the Epping-Chatswood line will be free but from Tuesday full-fare adult passengers will pay $7.60 for a return peak-hour trip. Normal weekday services will begin about 6am and finish about 9.30pm.

Opposition transport spokeswoman Gladys Berejiklian said new public transport infrastructure was always welcome but this new line was a great example of how not to build it.

"We're getting half the line for double the cost," she said.

What the experts say: all travel options on the table as Sydneysiders vote with their feet

University of Technology planning expert Dr Garry Glazebrook:

"Even if you build new metros, heavy rail is going to remain the backbone of the public transport system in Sydney. The percentage of passenger kilometres travelled that are made up of rail travel will increase from 10 per cent to 18 per cent over the next 30 years. Heavy rail will get bigger and the system needs to get better."

International Association of Public Transport executive director Peter Moore:

"Buses will have a crucial role because they're so adaptable. It takes 10 years to build a rail system but you can put a bus in tomorrow, assuming you've got the vehicle. The key is giving it priority. If you put a bus service on George Street it could work as well as a light rail system if you gave it the necessary priority."

Bret Walker, SC, Special Commission of Inquiry into Sydney Ferries Corporation, 2007:

"Sydney Ferries Corporation's patronage is largely static because [it] is presently unable to enhance its services. Catching the ferry is a healthy way to travel. In fact, 40.8 per cent of commuters walk from home to the ferry wharf and 68.9 per cent of commuters walk from the wharf to their destination."

Peter Newman, Professor of Sustainability, the Curtin University Sustainability Policy Institute (commenting on a Brookings study showing a 4 per cent decline in car use in US cities):

"This is part of a worldwide trend. In the United States there has been a significant drop in vehicle miles travelled, which began before the fuel price rises. I am predicting reductions in car use from here on. It's the death knell for toll roads and indeed makes any new road capacity increases highly questionable."

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore:
"More people are switching to bicycles to escape crowded public transport, reduce car usage, do something for the environment and get fit. The reality is we don't have a choice. There is an urgent need for investment in sustainable urban infrastructure as we face the threat of global warming … Priority must be given to investing in green infrastructure - projects which will make our urban areas more sustainable and better equipped for the future."

According to research commissioned by Victorian transport body Metlink, reduced car use is likely to be substituted with a form of public transport or with walking. In Sydney 47 per cent of people who reduced their car use substituted that form of travel with walking. This was the highest rate among any state capital city, and was equalled only by Canberra. Seventy-one per cent of Sydneysiders surveyed said they saw their reduction in car use as a permanent change.
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There's no going back now, regardless of fuel prices. :)
Stuff on the Glenfield Station and North Junction upgrades can be found here. There are pictures in chapters 5a and 5b which show the arranagement of tracks.

Looks good. Not quite fond of noise barriers though as they block the view. Unless they are glass. Its also good how there is still provision for the SWRL even though at current it kinda does seem unlikely to happen. Hopefully to now though with that they can boost the amount of Granville trains to Glenfield during the peak as they'd have 2 tracks they could terminate on as there wouldn't be much else in the way besides the Cumberland and an odd Explorer.

The quadding goes about 650m south of Glenfield. Gonna be busy with tracks around Glenfield with upto 7 tracks across (from 3) south of the station.
And now they say that our new trains will use up too much power!!!:bash:

From The Sydney Morning Herald
Derailed: no power for new carriages
Linton Besser
March 10, 2009
THE CityRail network has insufficient electric power to run the biggest order of new trains in Australia and has been forced to spend more than $1 billion to fix the problem and to pay for other essential upgrades.

The first of more than 600 rail carriages due to begin testing in October will be restricted to one section of the rail network until a program of capital improvements is completed, some of which are running years late and over budget.

Although RailCorp was aware more power was needed for the trains, the budget for the overhaul has blown out almost seven-fold.

If too many of the trains are put into circulation at once, sections of the network will short-circuit, sources have confirmed.

In a tender last year the State Government revealed "RailCorp does not currently have an enterprise-wide change strategy for achieving business readiness to accept [public-private partnership] implementation, and this represents a major risk".

A July 2006 RailCorp investigation report revealed the power "capacity of the existing network is predicted to be exceeded in 2008". The organisation's three-year internal audit document identifies "inadequate power to run trains" as a medium level risk.

Budget papers show the power upgrade should have finished this year at a cost of $125 million, but that has been pushed to 2012 after the program hit internal difficulties and its director was replaced 18 months ago.

Almost $86 million worth of work was not done, and just seven of 30 electricity substations have been upgraded.

A statement by one of RailCorp's contractors in the project, ENOTRAC, said the project was to have cost $500 million, but a RailCorp spokesman, Metodi Jovanovski, confirmed the program would now cost $870 million. All sections of the network needed upgrading, he said. "No sectors are complete at this time."

The NSW Auditor-General revealed in a financial audit: "RailCorp will operate these new carriages on selected corridors which will firstly require the upgrade of substations and overhead wiring."

There is also nowhere for RailCorp to store the 498 carriages it intends to retire, let alone the 626 new ones. This is because the multi-million dollar stabling facility planned for the new trains at Leppington was included in the $1.36 billion South West Rail Link, which the Premier, Nathan Rees, dumped in the mini-budget in November.

One replacement facility at Auburn will not be completed before 2014, and RailCorp is now "exploring options" for another yard at Emu Plains. Mr Jovanovski said a "capacity analysis" was being undertaken.

Vital resignalling and remodelling of tracks and junctions to allow the trains smooth access to the network from a maintenance facility at Auburn is also running late. The program began in 2006 and was meant to be finished in 2011 at a cost of $25 million, but the Herald has learnt this has been adjusted to $330 million. The program will now not be complete until 2016 - three years after the last trains are meant to begin service.

The chief executive of RailCorp, Rob Mason, said the delays and budget changes were not material to the project. "RailCorp is on target to progressively deliver all the upgrade works required in time for the receipt of the new PPP trains including power supply and stabling."
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Mod, can you move the above post to cityrail whinge thread. This thread is for general public transportation and planning.
It's not a whinge though and it is related to NSW public transport. It could pretty much affect the network as a whole.

Hah! You want technologically filled trains, you need more power, otherwise it won't work.
There's going to be a new bus network for the eastern suburbs contract region, starting on April 26th. All the changes can be found here:

There's also going to be reform for the northern beaches and north western suburbs STA areas too, as well as a lot of the other contract regions run by private buses, which can be found at the main page

The new network for the Campbelltown/Liverpool region, and for the upper north shore region (Regions 14 and 15 I think?) started late last year. Would be nice to know if the services and patronage have actually improved or not.

I noticed though that there were no reforms of regions 10 and 13, which are the Veolia areas of Bankstown and Sutherland. Does anyone know if they took place already, or are they just leaving it as it is?

Anyway so what do people think? They seem ok to me, and if this is the first step to integrating and improving the different bus networks, then s all the better. Perhaps if these bus services can be improved it may (somewhat) offset the horrible planning and running of our trains.
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Myron said:
Anyway so what do people think?
Routes - not as bad as previously.

Frequencies - still shithouse.

Ticketing - still an absolute joke.

Not a high score from uncle L2, wouldn't go near most of these with a big pole :eek:hno:

Oh, and you can't have good bus services but shit rail services, or shit bus services and reasonable rail services - how are people meant to get to the station so they can use the bloody trains?
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