Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Sector 2 Train Timetables - Massive Improvement!

Queensland Rail's sector 2 train timetables have been released, for implementation on the 20th January 2014. As BrizCommuter is currently on holiday, this is just a minor review. A more in-depth review will be available in a few weeks.

TransLink's webpage for sector 2 improvements:

Good news:
  • Peak improvements on Ferny Grove Line (every 7-8 mins), Shorncliffe Line (every 15 mins), Doomben Line (every 30 mins), and Gold Coast Line (additional trains added in some 15 mins gaps). 
  • 15 minute off-peak from approx. 6am to 8pm out to Ferny Grove, Coopers Plains, Northgate, and Cannon Hill.
  • Removal of late night and Sunday am hour gaps (now every 30 mins).
  • Expansion of 15 minute "shoulder-peak" services to Airport. 
  • Airport trains to serve all stations between Bowen Hills and Eagle Junction - big surprise! 
  • 30 mins weekday daytime off-peak to Doomben, with later operating hours. 
  • Improvements to counter-peak services where possible. 
  • All Gold Coast services to serve Beenleigh, Loganlea, Altandi (instead of Coopers Plains for better bus connections), and Park Road (for UQ). 
  • More sensible express pattern on Cleveland Line (Manly to Morningside). 
Bad news:
  • No 15 minute frequency on weekends. (Note: Melbourne now has 10 mins frequency on weekends!).
  • 15 minutes off-peak services expected to Manly didn't occur. 
  • Doomben Line hourly on Saturdays (even for races traffic), and still extinct on Sundays. 
  • Debatably worse peak service for some Beenleigh Line commuters. However, some may be able to use Gold Coast express services for part of the trip to decrease journey time. 
Overall, impressive improvements! Just a shame that high fares will prevent these excellent improvements from massively increasing public transport patronage. 


  1. 8 minute frequency on the Gold Coast line is impossible to get between Beenleigh trains. I expect they'll just run late. If the Beenleigh train is delayed, it would knock on to two following Gold Coast trains. I haven't checked the evening. It would be better for these trains to run express from Helensvale and get in front of the Beenleigh train. Hmm. It's not the only way this timetable can be expected to be unreliable either. Not sure how this timetable can be achieved without utilising Park Rd platform #4.

    Service slowdowns apply on the Gold Coast line, except for some ex-Varsity Lakes services. All stations endure slowdowns on the outbound, and every station besides Varsity Lakes endures it on the inbound (2-3 mins). Beenleigh line has been slowed by 6 minutes on the outbound, 4 minutes on the inbound. Cleveland line by 1 minute outbound but sped up by 2 minutes inbound. I guess a net positive there.

    Why can't Northgate terminators extend to Shorncliffe? I didn't think the freight sidings were still in use. You can't tell me that this is needed to return more units to Mayne for maintenance.

    Pretty disappointing that the Airport Line continues to have an insane timetable. If there is a line which could benefit from an interpeak upgrade, this is it. Just move the 3 Airport bound trains after 6:30pm + add 6 more round trips. It's not that many is it?

    The timetable relies on crew swaps at some locations: Shorncliffe and Cannon Hill at least.

    Absolutely agree on your points about weekends, and raise them with weekday evenings. I'd much rather these points were addressed on one line than this scattergun approach to a mediocre upgrade - the off peak improvements occur mostly when I'm at work, and as are most other people. I say this is what is needed to get choice riders.

  2. (Update) Apparently the Gold Coast trains will pass at the Bethania third platform. Not the stuff reliability is made of, but at least its possible.


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