They really don’t like talking about this stuff, but if you’ve been wondering what your future train service might look like, check this:
This map is based on an appendix tucked-away in the Rowville rail study documents, and shows a proposed operating plan once Regional Rail Link and a handful of other minor (already pledged) changes are made.
Note the fine print however: it’ll only happen if funding is made available.
Overall it looks pretty good. Most stations seem set to get 10 minute services outside peak (and better during peak). Those that miss out are primarily on lines with single track, which just emphasises how important duplication is (though they could be more bold and run frequent trains at least on the duplicated sections).
What the government needs to do is recognise that this type of plan for frequent services across the city, all day every day, would make a huge difference to the mobility of Melburnians.
In fact along with upgrades to connecting buses and trams, it’s the best weapon we have for keeping the city moving in the face of increasing traffic congestion.
And it doesn’t take major multi-billion-dollar (unfunded) infrastructure to do it. It’s all possible with the network and fleet we have now… all it requires is some more drivers and maintenance.
(Level crossings clogging up may become more of a problem at peak times if grade separation doesn’t happen in more places, but the bigger difference to train services would be at off-peak times. Trains every 10 minutes won’t paralyse a suburb with a level crossing.)
- Age article: Glimpse of train service in 2021 emerges (Is it just me, or do many of the comments on the article appear to miss the point?)
- PTUA: Hidden rail plan uncovered: Some lines to miss out on frequent all-day services