Wednesday, May 25, 2016

"I want an express to my stationitis" spreads to Springfield Line

Springfield Central
The selfish infliction known as "I want an express to stationitis" has reportedly now spread to the Springfield Line. A petition has more than 100 signatures from Springfield commuters who obviously couldn't give two hoots to how an express service would detrimentally affect other commuters. The Springfield Line currently has a pretty good am peak service that runs every 6 to 12 minutes, and stops all stations to Brisbane, which allows Ipswich Line services to run express to Brisbane. This is fair, as Ipswich and Rosewood are much further our from Brisbane than Springfield. The Springfield Line pm peak service is OK at every 12 minutes, though once the Next Generation Rollingstock are eventually in service (sometime this century) hopefully there may be room for improvement. The Springfield Line also has a relatively fast average journey speed of 42kph. So what are the detrimental effects of running express services on the Springfield Line?
  • Running an Springfield Line express service would reduce the number of train services calling at non-served stations e.g if 50% of Springfield Line services didn't stop at Chelmer, then Chelmer commuters would have a 50% worse train service. Cue another petition. 
  • Running a Springfield Line express service would require a reduction in the frequency of Springfield Line services, otherwise the express train would catch up with an all stations train in front and trundle slowly between stations. So running faster Springfield Line trains would actually result in up to 33% less frequent Springfield Line trains. Oh dear! 
  • Running express Springfield Line services would result in uneven and irregular timetables, adding confusion to commuters (and train crew). In fact, the elimination of express services on the Ferny Grove, and the running of a more frequent all stations service in the am peak increased patronage by more than 10%. 
It should be noted that in the am peak if Springfield Line commuters change trains at Darra, they can actually get to Brisbane faster by using the Ipswich Line express services as it overtakes the Springfield Line service. BrizCommuter does agrees with the "more parking" part of the petition, and requirement for an earlier start to train services on the Springfield Line. 

In reality, if Springfield commuters want to get to work faster, then maybe they should consider living closer to their place of work in Brisbane instead of living in a satellite town in the bush. 

If you are selfish, please sign here:
Media story:


  1. Change... Trains...? What does that mean?
    In all honesty the change trains at Darra idea should be actively encouraged, as should changing at Petrie for an express train for Moreton Bay line people when that line (eventually) opens. The only impediment to the concept at Darra is the poorly conceived platform arrangements which prohibit cross platform interchange. This should not be a problem at Petrie.

  2. I think that's a bit of a cynical attitude. Inner network stations should be served by inner network services, not by making longer distance services stop all stations. Have outer network services run express through the inner network and let the inner network be served by dedicated services. Of course more trains would be needed to achieve this.

    The Kippa-Ring line will be a classic example of the current fallacies in the train network. It'll be used by those in walking distance of stations only. Anywhere else you'll be better off continuing to drive to Sandgate. From here I can drive 15 minutes and take a 35 minute long Shorncliffe service, or walk 5 minutes and take a 60 minute Kippa-Ring Service. I know which I'll do.

  3. David - the Springfield Line IS the inner network service that serves all stations. The 39 minute run from Springfield Central to Roma Street is reasonably fast given the distance. Even if there were enough trains, having three service patterns on the Ipswich/Springfield Line corridor to allow for express Springfield Line services would require a 33% reduction in Springfield Line services!

    1. I disagree that 39 minutes is acceptable. Certainly the planned 1 hour for the Kippa-Ring isn't. We should aspire to have most destinations served with less than 30 minute services. It'd take a major rethink of how the network works and a major rebuild with new rolling stock and new track, but it would be worthwhile for commuters.

    2. David - Springfield Central is almost 30km from Central by rail. The average speed from Springfield Central to Central is 42kph, which is reasonable fast for a commuter railway. If you want to get to work faster, either get a helicopter, or move closer to where you work!

  4. Why can't BCC make a rocket from Springfield to the CBD? (ala route 100)

  5. Marty - maybe because you have a train line that would be miles faster than a bus!

  6. What is the win-win scenario? For insistence, my preference is that the Gold Coast line is express from my station to my destination, but that's just a win for me. Other's preference (like express from Nerang) is a win for them but not for me. For me, I'm willing to spend the 65-70 minutes on the train each way, that's the lifestyle choice I've made. I'm not going to start a petition to make life worse for others because I chose to live on the beautiful Gold Coast.

    In my opinion the best solution would be the way very large building lifts work, with both express and non-express stops. For trains it would work this way: There are several express trains that travel past a large number of stations, and are very fast. Then there is another set of trains that stop all stations half way down the express path with terminal stops at ONE express station. This is the most efficient approach given limited physical network. For instance, express from central to Beenleigh with no stops (not even Roma St). And then a train that stops all stations from central to half way to Beenleigh. A third train stops all stations from Beenleigh to half way back to central.

    So everyone gets the benefits of express, and everyone gets the benefits of "to their station". The down side is that almost everyone must change trains, and some will have to travel away from the city to then catch the express into the city. It would absolutely be a physical and functional change throughout the entire system. But if it is the agreed best solution vertically, why isn't it the best solution horizontally?

  7. Brizcommuter, how come you are the only person who knew of yesterdays (sunday 29th) Fortitude valley go-card fuckup? I saw nothing on translink site or QR facebook site. (btw i got a $5 charge yesterday, and thought it might be a one-off)


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