Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Which tunnel?

You know that feeling you get in the pit of your stomach?

Victoria's biggest public transport project has been sidelined, with just $10 million committed in the 2013-14 state budget for the Melbourne Metro rail tunnel.
The funds will go towards further planning for the multibillion-dollar project, a nine-kilometre tunnel beneath the city centre which has been identified by the state's rail planners as the only effective way to create significant new capacity on Melbourne's urban rail network...
...By contrast Victoria's other major transport project, the east-west link, has had a major breakthrough with $294 million allocated over the next two years towards starting construction. The government says the eastern section, between the Eastern Freeway and CityLink, will be built first at a cost of $6 to $8 billion and that the road will be tolled. Federal and private funding will still be required to help pay for the new road, it says.
Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/metro-rail-tunnel-in-mothballs-20130507-2j573.html#ixzz2SaLAqshI

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Return on investment

So, we want to move 100,000 people from the East into the city. Every day.

Spend $850M on rail (also taking them off the Eastern Freeway in the process so making it easier for people have have to drive for whatever reason). An extra $300M would link it to the Metro rail tunnel in Parkville.


Spend $5B to $9B on an East-West car tunnel, which would bring more cars.

Seems easy doesn't it?  Even if the $850M is concervative, you're still talking about a big difference in money, and in outcomes.

Read here - http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/doncaster-railway-line-could-be-built-for-840m-20120723-22kpg.html

Friday, July 20, 2012

Infrastructure Australia suggests a way to get funding

FREEWAYS could be sold to the private sector and converted to tollways under a radical proposal for state governments to raise money for expensive new road and rail links.
The proposal, if adopted in Victoria, could lead to major roads such as the Eastern Freeway, the West Gate Freeway and the Western Ring Road being privatised and tolled.
The proceeds of the freeway sell-offs could then be used to build infrastructure such as hospitals, the Melbourne metro rail network, the missing link of Melbourne's outer ring road, and the proposed East-West link under Melbourne's inner north.
 A spokeswoman for state Treasurer Kim Wells told The Age: ''The Victorian government stands by its position that existing roads will not be tolled.'But the proposal - contained in a report by Infrastructure Australia, the independent federal government advisory body chaired by Sir Rod Eddington - is being resisted by the Baillieu government.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Age - Drill sites give clue to future path of road tunnel

In an application to Melbourne City Council the Baillieu government is requesting approval for 13 test drilling sites in Royal Park and surrounding suburbs to plan for the multibillion-dollar project.
In an indication of its preferred route for the tunnel, maps show the drill sites run in a direct line from Alexandra Parade under the Melbourne Cemetery and Royal Park.
At the back of the indicative route the drill sites split, suggesting locations for inbound and outbound connections to CityLink in Royal Park and nearby neighbourhoods....
...The tunnel project has emerged as one of the major issues in the upcoming by-election for the state seat of Melbourne being fought between Labor and the Greens.Deputy Labor leader James Merlino said last night that Ted Baillieu ''can play charades all he likes but the simple facts are he is proposing to drill holes on an unfunded project that is unlikely to ever be built, while road congestion in Melbourne worsens''.
Greens leader Greg Barber said Labor's opposition to the tunnel was expedient and for the cost of the project Melbourne could have a ''dream public transport system''.
Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/drill-sites-give-clue-to-future-path-of-road-tunnel-20120708-21pjp.html#ixzz204oAgUIh
This is one of the key differentiators between the previous (Labor) State Government's suggestions for the East-West Tunnel, and the current (Liberal) State Government's suggestion.  It appears links from the tunnel headed into the city could be likely onto Flemington Road, or thereabouts.  Or, alternatively, that second path could be part of a continuation to eventually link up with routes in the west.

And we all know the proposed route of THAT side of East-West Link last proposal.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Herald Sun : Labor turns anti-tunnel

It appears they've listened...

LABOR leader Daniel Andrews has declared his opposition to the Baillieu Government's proposed east-west road tunnel.
The idea, which had won the backing of Federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott, would not solve Melbourne's traffic congestion, Labor said.
Mr Andrews' opposition to the project quashes what could have been a major point of difference between Labor and the Greens in the upcoming Melbourne by-election...
A spokeswoman for Mr Andrews last night said the Baillieu Government's proposal was very different to what had been mooted previously.
"This is a grand hoax that will do nothing to ease Melbourne's congestion," spokeswoman Manika Naidoo said. "We absolutely don't support it."
Ms Naidoo said the Baillieu Government's proposal would only redirect traffic congestion, not solve it.

 Read more here - http://m.news.com.au/VIC/pg/0/fi1699353.htm

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Abbot pledges to fund 30% of East-West link tunnel

So there.  He's said it.
TONY Abbott will today promise to spend $1.5 billion to kick-start the East West Link tunnel if he becomes prime minister.

The $5 billion tunnel is expected to carry 100,000 vehicles a day and transform Melbourne's transport network by providing a new cross-town route.Mr Abbott's pledge gives the green light to Victoria's most significant road project.
The announcement gives him the jump on the Gillard Government which was expected to announce funding later this year.
In an effort to boost his stocks in Victoria, Mr Abbott has promised federal money for the 18km link.
"I'm proud that an elected Coalition government in Canberra will help Ted Baillieu deliver a vital road project that will speed up the trip to and from work, that boosts productivity and means more time at home with family," Mr Abbott told the Herald Sun.
The link between Eastern Freeway and Western Ring Rd also needs money from the Victorian Government and private sector, which seems likely to mean it will be tolled.
Premier Ted Baillieu welcomed Mr Abbott's pledge.
"The Victorian Government considers the east-west link a priority project that will transform Melbourne in a way we have not seen since CityLink was completed," he said...

So where to from here?  Let them know how you feel.  Or do you want yet another road like the above to be built,  filling and choking within months, weeks or even days.

Yes, the Federal Government should fund infrastructure.  But certainly not more roads.