While it looks like it’s good from a tram operations point of view, it’s also not hard to see why people such as Paul Mees see the Melbourne University tram terminus/shunting yard as poor urban design, fencing off a large section of Swanston Street. (See: Permeability.)
Happy Australia Day.
While I cringe at the “bogan display” in the supermarket selling Australian flag caps, t-shirts, capes, stubby-holders and so on, I quite like the (in comparison understated) flags that have appeared on the trams during the week.
My recollection growing up is of small flags in this position on the W-class trams, though I don’t recall if it was all the year round, or just close to Australia Day.
Even the Royal Tram was sporting a flag on Thursday:
Presumably passengers on trams with flags are not more likely to be racist, as research on cars with flags claimed last year. (If bogans and racists have claimed our flag, we should claim it back, I say.)
Less patriotic than flags was the placement of one of the big Myki stickers (placed over Metcard machines a few weeks ago) onto the outside of this tram. Perhaps the miscreant was protesting against the lack of ticket purchase and top-up on-board?
It’s been a problem for many years: how do you know which tram from the Elizabeth Street (Robert Risson) terminus will leave first?
From what I’ve seen, the information shown is pretty accurate.
Trivia: the Tram Tracker icon, Jake the bloodhound, is based on former Yarra Trams CEO Dennis Cliche’s dog Jake.
I think it was Lonely Planet that had an entry about transport in Melbourne that bemoaned the fact they are no longer the traditional wooden trams of olde but instead “pneumatic monsters”. They might have been talking about tram numbers 2001 and 2002. They are B-class trams, but with a difference.
These two were the prototypes, sometimes known (Bananas-in-Pyjamas-like) as B1 class. The other 130 are B2 class.
The two B1s have venetian blinds — which seems positively civilised. Unlike the B2s they have LED destination lights (upgraded, as far as I recall, from flap versions). They were originally built with poles, not pantographics (no regular Melbourne tram still has a pole; they’ve all been replaced by pantographs, which don’t come off the wires so easily, and don’t need changing over at the end of the line).
And unlike the others they make noticeable curious pneumatic noises as they come to a stop.
- More tramspotting — how to tell an A, B, C, D, W and Z1 and Z3 apart
From what I’ve heard, the campaign was originally quite successful, but started to wear off after a few months, so I guess they need to keep revamping it to continue to get the message across.
While I applaud Yarra Trams’ efforts to put more information on-board trams, this map threw me for a moment.
I’m used to seeing east (Box Hill) on the right, and west (Port Melbourne) on the left. This had it the other way around.
And before you say it: it wasn’t designed to match the actual orientation of the tram and the outside world, because there were copies of this map on both sides of the tram, so one was the right way around, and the other wasn’t.
Perhaps I need to just stop being such a map.square.
PS. I suspect the real reason for it being like this is they wanted the major route to be at the top.
Fake icicles on this tram stop, to advertise Mount Buller. I wonder if anybody except me even noticed.
A few minutes ago in Flinders Lane:
It was only on a whim I decided to film as I alighted the tram. The car driver was apologetic, but this ignorance of the law around giving way to passengers has gone on far too long. It’s a serious issue — just last week a girl was injured in Camberwell.
Years ago the government was talking about trialling tram cams, to catch motorists failing to give way. Nothing came of it. With video cameras now ubiquitous in mobile phones, perhaps it’s time passengers started filming it for themselves.
And a special reminder: Be careful when you alight from trams.