Thursday, April 7, 2016

Cross River Rail - Back On Track?

Brisbane's urgently required Cross River Rail has a painful history of not being funded, and being used as a political football. After a 4 year delay due to the ALP Newman government's BaT-ty idea, the ALP Palaszczuk government has now announced Cross River Rail Mk3.

The route of Cross River Rail Mk3

Detailed information is currently lacking. However, based on available information, what are the good, middling, and unknown aspects of the latest $5.2b version of Cross River Rail?

  • The return of a station of Park Road / Boggo Road. The lack of this was the BaT tunnel's achilles heel, as it provides essential interchange between the Cleveland Line, existing lines, Cross River Rail, and the Eastern Busway. 
  • Station at Exhibition. 
  • No unnecessary bus tunnel - SE busway congestion can be resolved by bus network reform instead. 
  • Connections with existing rail network at both ends - though this alone only allows for small network capacity increases. 
  • Based on the much reviewed route via Park Rd, Woollongabba, Albert St, Roma St, Exhibition. 
  • Setting up of statutory authority for delivery. 
  • Federal funding is likely to be a hot topic as ALP Bill Shorten has promised funding. 
  • Alignment moved back from George St to Albert St. One block further away from the casino, but probably overall better placed to serve a larger area. Not sure of reason for change.
  • Have connections for a future Trouts Rd (Northwestern Transportation Corridor) been incorporated into the design? This line is essential for large scale increased in capacity from the North. 
  • With a tunnel portal around Dutton Park, how will capacity be significantly increased from the South? Significant track enhancements are required between the portal and Beenleigh. Will this be included in the $5.2b funding?
  • What changes will be made around Mayne junction to increase capacity from the North?
  • How will this be funded?
And finally...
  • Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is refusing to partially fund Cross River Rail, claiming that Brisbane City Council do not fund rail. Just a second, Quirky, your metro idea is rail isn't it? With Graham Quirk wanting to build the Brisbane Metro which is likely to have a poor/fraudulent business case vs excellent past business cases for Cross River Rail, it appears that Graham Quirk does not have Brisbane's interests at heart and is playing destructive political games
  • Bob Katter and Rob Pyne are throwing their toys out of his pram over more funding for Brisbane. Hmmm, Mt Isa and Cairns probably need a bit of a population increase before they get a metro system. Unless they want a metro for kangaroos and cattle?

Cross River Rail website:
BrizCommuter Rail Capacity Study:

1 comment:

  1. My frustration is that CRR Mk1 would have been completed this year if wasn’t for petty political rivalries.


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