Sunday, May 9, 2021

Cross River Rail - The Dutton Park Mystery

Brisbane's Cross River Rail (CRR) project has suffered from lack of transparency, notably the lack of rail operations plan since various project changes, made the original rail operation plan impossible. Project Change 11 has just been announced (more on that later), but Project Change 10 is missing in action. Most station plans related to Dutton Park have also gone missing in action.

Can the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority (CRRDA) and Queensland Government please come clean on what is happening with Dutton Park station? Is it going to be moved to the South, onto a straight section of track? Will there be property resumptions? Or will Dutton Park station be removed completely, noting the improved access from Boggo Road/Park Road station to Princess Alexandra Hospital? Keeping the public quiet isn't the best solution.

Project Change 11 has some improvements over the layout of Moorooka Station and adjacent Clapham Stabling Yards. The additional 3rd platform at Moorooka Station is now located next to the existing platforms, and this has been enabled by a raised grade-separated track allowing trains to access Clapham Yards without conflicting movements. 

Unfortunately, it is mentioned in Project Change 11 that up to 24tph is to be operated in both directions. This pretty much confirms the failure of CRR in adding significant capacity to SE Queensland's Rail Network. Currently, the tracks through South Bank can handle 24tph, with 20tph operated due to multiple network constraints (notably turnback constraints on the Cleveland and Beenleigh Lines). Gold Coast and Beenleigh Lines will be diverted via CRR, providing up to 24tph between Yeerongpilly and Dutton Park, 12tph more than currently. However, this also needs to be shared with the future Salisbury - Beaudesert Line which is likely to require 6-8tph in the am peak. This leaves just 4-6tph additional train paths for Gold Coast and Beenleigh Line services, and only if improved infrastructure is constructed (such as additional turnback capacity). 

CRR does allow for Cleveland Line services to be enhanced, as this line will now have free rein of the tracks through South Bank. However, Cleveland Line services cannot be increased unless there is at least a partial duplication and additional turnback capacity at Manly or Lota. There is no sign of this happening any time soon. Thus at opening, Cross River Rail may only add a handful of train services from the South into Brisbane - hence the dropping of the "More Trains, More Often" slogan. Not really worth the $5.4b cost! Had the Dutton Park to Salisbury section been constructed with 4 tracks (as per the original plans for CRR) allowing for both via CRR and via South Bank services, then another dozen train services could have been added.


  1. It's very telling that a change to Dutton Park, of all of them, is what's being carefully stage managed. They really are more concerned with the NIMBY crowd and "local concerns" than delivering working infrastructure...

    All of the changes that have hobbled CRR and made it a white elephant project - no big deal! But possibly moving a train station (a crap one nobody uses) down the road - deeply controversial apparently.

  2. Hasn't 'what is going to happen to Dutton Park Station' been an ongoing question since CRR Version 1 as well?

  3. Crr is about future proofing. The north and south portals and quadruple tracks can be improved in years later. But writing a business case to have funding approved requires BS statistics. Every toll road ever built has not lived up to its projected numbers. The Dutton park to morooka section will operate in the same manner as Northgate Petrie. Bi down the middle. This will be very easily accommodate d with simple points switch at Dutton park. Like Northgate. Not really corruption or outrageous. Get a grip


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