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Author Topic: Tas: Light Rail  (Read 4965 times)

colinw

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Tas: Light Rail
« on: March 08, 2011, 09:10:53 AM »
The Mercury: Rail study tender awarded

Note: mangled final sentence is not a quoting error, it is present in the original article.

Quote
March 08, 2011 02.00am

ACIL Tasman has won the tender to prepare a business case for a light rail service through Hobart's northern suburbs.

Announcing the tender yesterday, Sustainable Transport Minister Nick McKim said ACIL, a national railway and urban transport economics company, would assess how much it would cost to develop and operate the rail service and the likely demand for it.

ACIL consultants are in Hobart holding discussions with key stakeholders and a business case draft report is expected by the end of June.

The company will prepare the business case in conjunction with railway engineers Hyder Consulting and environmental analysts and planners SEMF.

The last State Budget provided $350,000 for the light rail project and the contract price for the preparation of the business case is $226,699, exclusive of GST.

ACIL also will consider the broader benefits of the reintroduction of passenger rail services.

such as opportunities for urban redevelopment, reduced traffic congestion and lower carbon emissions will also be considered by ACIL.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2016, 02:18:36 PM by ozbob »

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2011, 01:46:42 PM »
The Mercury: Rail action group shunts plan

Quote

Rail Action Group spokesperson Kristy Johnston, front, demonstrates the anger of Hobart northern suburbs residents that the passenger service will terminate at Claremont under a business case study

A LIGHT rail passenger service proposed for Hobart's northern suburbs has been labelled a failure by a community group that abandoned the consultation process yesterday.

Hobart northern suburbs Rail Action Group president Ben Johnston said the group had withdrawn from the Light Rail Community Advisory Panel because the business case study had changed from its original intention.

Mr Johnston said the light rail network would only run from Mawson Place in Hobart to Claremont and would no longer include an expansion to Bridgewater and Brighton.

Mr Johnston, an engineer who studied rail in Britain, said he was annoyed the study limited the network to Claremont and the decision was based on "fundamentally flawed passenger demand analysis".

He accused Sustainable Transport Minister Nick McKim of backflipping on key election promises by supporting the adaptation.

"The analysis does not consider the community's enthusiasm, it is based on current bus patronage and will now effectively disenfranchise large and growing population centres in New Norfolk and Brighton," Mr Johnston said.

"It does make a mockery of [Mr McKim's] public espousing of light rail as a shining example of the Labor-Green sustainability credentials, and we no longer want to be a part of it."

Mr McKim said he was very disappointed that the action group had withdrawn from the panel because of differences in opinion between them and consultants developing the business case.

But he said estimates had shown patronage was likely to drop north of Claremont, and without a robust business case any attempt to seek funding support was likely to fail.

"The Department of Infrastructure and the consultants have gone through an exhaustive process to ensure that [the figures are defensible]," Mr McKim said.

Opposition sustainable transport spokesman Matthew Groom said the withdrawal of the action group made a mockery of the assessment.

Mr Groom said it also highlighted Mr McKim's inability to deliver on his "green" agenda.

"This is another example of where the Greens have sold out on their commitment to their green constituency for the sake of holding on to power," he said.

Denison independent MHR Andrew Wilkie echoed the State Opposition.

"The State Government has never wanted this outstanding light rail project and would be secretly cheering the breakdown in the process," Mr Wilkie said.

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2012, 11:22:22 AM »
The Mercury -> Praise for Hobart rail plan

Quote
June 07, 2012

TIM Fischer has ranked Hobart's northern suburbs proposed rail project in the top 10 of Australian nation building infrastructure projects.

Former deputy prime minister Mr Fischer, who is an avid rail enthusiast, will make a lively presentation in Hobart tomorrow: "Light Rail: Fast tracking Hobart's Economy".

The lunch is at midday at the Henry Jones Art Hotel with tickets available for $40. Phone 0437 967 786.

Offline #Metro

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2012, 06:42:11 PM »
Quote
Former deputy prime minister Mr Fischer, who is an avid rail enthusiast, will make a lively presentation in Hobart tomorrow: "Light Rail: Fast tracking Hobart's Economy".

Use buses - perfect for the very hilly terrain, more than enough capacity, can run express and local patterns, buses already exist...
Negative people... have a problem for every solution.
Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members. Not affiliated with, paid by or in conspiracy with MTR/Metro.

Offline SurfRail

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2012, 10:06:19 PM »
LR is often claimed to be the saviour of local economies. Not sure how, its a project that is no different from building a road or sewer pipeline. Once the construction is over, there is no further income from the new asset. If it makes a big difference in traffic congestion, maybe, but Hobart....

A few on the Gold Coast would also seem to disagree.

Don't get me wrong, I'm pro LR in this case. Just seeing the usual comments in media.

LRT is not going to spur a massive increase in development in Hobart - the place is tiny in relative terms, economically moribund and with a different urban form to most other cities in Australia due to its size.

Compare with the Gold Coast, where numerous projects (eg Main Place at Broadbeach, Griffith Uni expansion, University Hospital, various projects in the Sundale area etc) are all predicated on the basis there will be an LRT system to deal with movement once population starts to bulk up and when they are completed.  You have towers proposed in the 50+ storey range at Main Place which only make sense with that kind of transit capacity available.  Extra development = extra population = extra revenue (patronage, property taxes and value increases, revitalisation of the streetscape etc).

somebody

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2012, 10:45:51 PM »
Quote
Former deputy prime minister Mr Fischer, who is an avid rail enthusiast, will make a lively presentation in Hobart tomorrow: "Light Rail: Fast tracking Hobart's Economy".

Use buses - perfect for the very hilly terrain, more than enough capacity, can run express and local patterns, buses already exist...
I would have thought that the terrain would make electric traction desirable.  Perhaps trolleybuses.

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2013, 01:06:33 PM »
The Mercury -> Make or break for light rail

Quote
January 19, 2013

A MEETING of supporters of the Northern Suburbs light rail next month will decide how to make the idea a reality, former Australian Greens leader Bob Brown said yesterday.

Dr Brown says he hopes to bring together an "irresistible" coalition to secure the funding for the $100 million project.

"I'm optimistic about it. We haven't had passenger rail since the 1970s. Everything has been geared towards road transport," he said.

"It takes a new leap of imagination to seize this opportunity.

"I'm hoping we will have cross-party support for this. It is looking good, we are running into a great deal of interest.

"This year is crucial. It's win it or lose it for Hobart light rail."

With TasRail freight operations soon to be shifted to the Brighton Transport Hub, the rail corridor through the city's northern suburbs will soon become available.

Dr Brown said as well as providing a service for commuters, the line could also be used to service MONA and the Derwent Entertainment Centre and it would be a boon for property values along the route.

"There are lots of cities of Hobart's size around the world who would give their eye teeth for this sort of infrastructure," he said. "The forum is not to discuss whether we should proceed. It's about how we should get it."

Hobart Northern Suburbs Rail Action Group president Ben Johnston said he was hoping the meeting would succeed in getting the project widespread backing.

"Some of our frustrations with that Tasmanian Government to date are that the project has been looked at as a transport project when it has potential much beyond that. It has potential to be a driver for economic development and for urban renewal," he said.

Sustainable Transport Minister Nick McKim, his Opposition counterpart Matt Groom and independent Denison MP Andrew Wilkie have backed the bid.

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2013, 10:37:56 AM »
The Mercury -> Rail plan gathers puff

Quote
February 7, 2013

THE push for a northern suburbs passenger train continues to gain momentum as tripartisan support for the plan grows.

The proposal is shaping up to be a key issue in upcoming federal and state elections, with Tasmanian political figures from all sides throwing their support behind the project.

Federal Denison MP Andrew Wilkie spoke in Parliament yesterday, calling on the Liberal and Labor parties to each commit $100 million to the project.

Former Australian Greens leader Bob Brown will host a meeting with 30 "civic leaders" next Friday, in the hope of forming a powerful lobby group to bolster efforts to secure federal funding for the light rail project.

"Both sides [of government] should commit funding to it," he said.

"2013 is the year [to finalise a decision on the project] because the freight operation is going off the line and it won't stay vacant, people will quickly find alternative uses for it.

"[This lobby group] genuinely is an effort to move this campaign into a high profile, Tasmania-wants-this campaign on Canberra."

Dr Brown said a light rail development would not only improve public transport services in the northern suburbs, but boost real estate values and generate commercial activity.

The project also has the support of Greens Denison candidate Anna Reynolds, Sustainable Transport Minister Nick McKim and Liberal MP Matthew Groom.

Hobart Northern Suburbs Rail Action Group president Ben Johnston was hopeful the group could secure the funds, but wasn't convinced tripartisan political support would make it any easier.

"It's almost deja vu.

We had similar candidate [and] political support in the lead-up to the last election, but there is still no funding commitment," he said.

"But if there was a commitment to funding from Canberra, the State Government would have to come to the party, kicking and screaming potentially, because it's such a no brainer."

Support for the project continues to mount despite a recent review of the proposal that raised concerns some capital and operating costs had not been factored in.

The review acknowledged its potential benefits.

These included reliable travel times and a reduction in road congestion.

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2013, 12:50:04 PM »
The Mercury -> Track to the future

Quote
February 16, 2013

THE State Government will create a high-powered taskforce to push the case for a light rail link through the city's northern suburbs.

Sustainable Transport Minister Nick McKim yesterday told a forum of backers gathered at MONA he had ordered a new business case for the link, which he wants to put before the Federal Government's funding process by May.

But in a letter to the meeting, Mr McKim said he would be pushing for a Hobart to Glenorchy link, rather than the proposed Hobart to Bridgewater line.

Mr McKim said shortening the route would increase the cost-to-benefit ratio, which would make it easier to attract critical federal finding.

Participants at yesterday's forum released a joint statement saying light rail had the potential to transform the city and revitalise real estate development, including housing in the northern suburbs, and improve transport options along the corridor.

A delegation is expected to visit Canberra in mid-March to lobby for funding for the project.

Ben Johnston, from the Hobart Northern Suburbs Rail Action Group, believes it will cost $100 million to convert the existing rail corridor to be able to take passengers from Bridgewater to Hobart in under half an hour.

"At the moment your options are bus or car and it's slow, uncomfortable and inefficient," he said.

The state's three major political parties, as well as Denison independent Andrew Wilkie and his Labor and Green opponents at the upcoming federal action, have backed the proposal.

Mr Wilkie said the availability of the rail line gave Hobart the chance to develop a new mass transit system.

"If we do not take this opportunity, the line will quickly deteriorate and the corridor soon disappear, even though it's the obvious route for a light rail system which would take the pressure off the road network, kick start an urban renewal and connect the communities and facilities along the length of the electorate in a clean and affordable manner," Mr Wilkie said.

Liberal party sustainable transport spokesman Matt Groom said the government had dragged its feet on getting the project off the drawing board.

"We consider this to be an important project, it's one which the government needs to make sure it properly assesses," Mr Groom said.

"We are committed to ensuring the northern suburbs have better public transport options".

Dr Gary Glazebrook, from the Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology in Sydney, said the development had the potential to increase land values along the route.

"The experience from around the world is that light rail projects cause an uplift in land values along the land corridors."

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2013, 10:10:17 AM »
The Mercury -> Editorial: Light rail bid on a roll

Quote
February 18, 2013

SUPPORT for a light rail development between Hobart and the northern suburbs is gaining traction.

In a rare instance, the proposal is beyond the usual party politics, all sides of Parliament, state and federal, giving it in-principle support.

That those behind this project have managed to achieve such tripartite support is a credit to their vision and hard work.

The Hobart Northern Suburbs Rail Action Group believes it will cost $100 million to convert the existing rail corridor to be able to take passengers from Bridgewater to Hobart in under half an hour.

The existing infrastructure offers the community a rare chance to develop a new mass transit system.

A growing band of heavyweights from transport, business and community groups is behind the project.

At a forum held to discuss the issue last week, participants said light rail had the potential to transform the city and revitalise real estate development, including housing in the northern suburbs, and improve transport options along the corridor.

A delegation is expected to go to Canberra next month to lobby for funding.

MONA owner David Walsh supports the Hobart to Bridgewater light rail link.

Arguing it is a matter of social justice, Walsh said a rail service would give Bridgewater and Gagebrook residents a convenient, cost-effective transport link to CBD services. With 20 per cent unemployment in the two northern suburbs, Walsh wants a rail service to give "rights-denied" communities access to the city.

It would remove the "tyranny of distance" and isolation, which has cruelly disadvantaged Brighton communities dislocated from infrastructure and services.

However, Greens leader Nick McKim says he will push for a Hobart to Glenorchy link rather than to Bridgewater, mindful the shortened route would increase the cost-to-benefit ratio, which would make it easier to attract critical federal funding for the project.

Disappointing, but pragmatic.

It will be a tough ask to get the money needed for the project.

While the timing couldn't be better in a political sense, as we head towards the September 14 federal election where aspiring MPs and political parties will woo voters with inspiring projects, the cost will be prohibitive.

The case for the rail line will have to be watertight.

However, given the broad support for the project, and the high calibre of some of those involved, it has real potential to be a game changer for Hobart, just as MONA has been.

colinw

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2014, 11:34:50 AM »
The Mercury -> History repeats as tram tracks through town centre

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2015, 02:23:05 PM »
Andrew Wilkie --> Pressure builds on Tasmanian Government to deliver light rail
Half baked projects, have long term consequences ...
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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2016, 02:19:53 PM »
Hobart Light Rail Back in Focus after Infrastructure Tasmania’s Report

>> http://www.australianetworknews.com/hobart-light-rail-back-focus-infrastructure-tasmanias-report/

Quote
The prospects for the revival of the stalled Hobart light rail service project are looking bright. This is despite the initial assessment of the project as an economically unviable one. It was crucial in offering connecting to the northern suburbs. The government’s changed thinking came after a fresh evaluation of the Hobart light rail by Infrastructure Tasmania.

Tasmania’s Infrastructure Minister Rene Hidding said the government is ready to work with Glenorchy and Hobart City councils in taking the project forward for the future, reports ABC News. The Hobart Northern Suburbs Rail Action Group welcomed the minister’s statement. It appreciated the new emphasis given to benefits from land use.

“These land use benefits have not been considered in previous light rail studies and will bolster the economic case,” president Ben Johnston said.

“A small operating subsidy for light rail may be required but this is normal and needs to be considered in light of the enormous socio-economic benefits and avoided costs of road upgrades,” the lobby group said.

According to initial estimates, the Hobart light rail would incur a capital cost of AU$100 million. But concerns on “significant operational losses” had blocked the final nod on the project. However, the government has indicated that it recognises the project’s long term potential. It will be keen to “preserve the rail corridor from Hobart to Granton.”

The minister said the government can work with the city councils of Glenorchy and Hobart City on matters such as land use, zoning and development of the rail corridor. The mayors of Hobart and Glenorchy had been canvassing hard for the Hobart Light Rail Project as a strategic infrastructure. Hobart mayor Sue Hickey expressed happiness that the corridor has been kept open for the future, reports Mercury News.

Agreeing that the economics may not stack up at the moment, Hickey said addressing the mounting congestion from the northern suburbs should be a priority. Glenorchy mayor Kristie Johnston said, “it is not a yes to light rail tomorrow, but it is a positive step in the right direction.”

In 2013, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) had undertaken a strategic assessment of the Hobart light rail proposal.  It saw merit in the project and pointed to the increasing car dependency in Hobart’s ‘suburban sprawl.’ That trend was affecting the socially disadvantaged and aged segments of the population. The PwC said light rail services can be a good option. Light rail is better as a high quality, faster public transport option and will also support better land use in the northern suburbs.
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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2016, 08:50:12 AM »
Mercury --> Turnbull talks up city deal for Hobart during Tassie visit

Quote
PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull is keen to negotiate a “city deal” for Hobart, which could help facilitate a light rail system and modern public transport network.

Mr Turnbull, who visited Hobart yesterday for the first time since the Federal Election, told the Mercury of his vision for improved amenity, livability and housing affordability for the state’s capital.

“We’re very open, in fact enthusiastic, about talking about it. We are taking a very different approach to previous governments, both Coalition and Labor,’’ Mr Turnbull said.

“My view is we need to have ‘city deals’ like we do with Launceston — and we could readily do one with Hobart.

Under its Smart Cities Plan, the Government has a $7.5 million city deal with Launceston and another $100 million deal with Townsville.

Mr Turnbull said a city deal for Hobart would co-ordinate all investment.

It would then deliver a fully-integrated outcome for the city, he said.

“We work out what we want to achieve and that is going to be about improved amenity, livability, housing affordability and improved access to jobs, education and recreation,” Mr Turnbull said.

“The investment in urban infrastructure that makes a city more liveable is not a luxury. Cities are economic assets, it attracts tourism, it attracts businesses to establish here. One of Australia’s great assets is that we have some of the most liveable cities in the world.”

Mr Turnbull said he was aware of the plans by the University of Tasmania (UTAS) to expand into the CBD, particularly its push for a $400 million STEM centre, and the potential of the $300 million redevelopment of Macquarie Point.

He said light rail had the advantage of allowing passengers to hop on and hop off along the journey and he was aware of the work by sustainability expert Professor Peter Newman for a link between Macquarie Point and Glenorchy along the old train line.

“It (light rail) enables you to bring communities together in a way you can’t really do with alternative forms of transport — a very good example being the Gold Coast light rail,” he said.

In an interview which focused on the future of state and the lesson learned since the disastrous July 2 election result, the Prime Minister also acknowledged the requirement for more federal attention on Tasmania’s health needs.

He said Labor’s so-called “Mediscare” campaign cut through in Tasmania more than other states and contributed to the loss of the seats of the “three amigos” in Bass, Braddon and Lyons.

But he also said it was the duty of the government to win the trust of the people in the key area of health, which was identified by the Mercury as the No. 1 issue important to Tasmanians in the lead-up to the federal poll.

“I think it was quite clear that our policies supported the economic growth in Tasmania, but the Medicare campaign was extremely effective in those three seats,” he said.

“It was an outrageous lie, it was about as dishonest as a political campaign could be right up to the point of sending older and more vulnerable Australians text messages which purported to come from Medicare itself, which owing to a loophole in the law is not an offence.

“We need to address this vulnerability and restore the trust, especially the people targeted by Labor in the campaign.”

He said a lack of assurance among people about the Liberals’ commitment to public health had provided a base for the success of the scare campaign.

The Liberals suffered a swing of nearly 10 per cent in the Bass electorate.

Earlier Mr Turnbull said that the Liberals had to be more engaged with the people they represented.

He also conceded that legislation for the same-sex marriage plebiscite was unlikely to pass the Senate next week.

And he confirmed the Federal Government would introduce legislation next week banning people from Manus Island and Nauru from ever coming to Australia.

“The Bill will be introduced into the House next week and it is a critically strong part of the message we send to people smugglers,” he said.

Mr Turnbull was also greeted by more than 100 people protesting against the Government’s refugee policies when he attended an afternoon function at City Hall in Hobart.

He will give the keynote address at the Liberal Party state council in Launceston today.
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Offline verbatim9

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2016, 12:40:08 PM »
Hobart Light Rail receives huge public support -->
http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/exclusive-polling-shows-strong-support-for-light-rail-in-hobarts-northern-suburbs/news-story/af742f7a44e865c7b584151e66e7ea6e

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Re: Tas: Light Rail
« Reply #15 on: October 31, 2017, 01:42:10 PM »
https://twitter.com/RailExpressNews/status/925202775574581248
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