Toxic Custard newsletter, transport

East-west traffic is not increasing

This point seems to come up for discussion online regularly, but I don't know if the information is easy to find, so I thought I'd have a go myself. There are regular claims from those pushing it that East West Link (stage one, Eastern Freeway to Citylink) is needed to prevent traffic chaos. The problem with these claims is that Vicroads arterial road volumes data shows that east-west traffic i


Do your bit for walkability: keep the footpath clear

It wasn't planned this way, but this week's posts seem to have been all about pedestrians/walking. Along with rules about not parking over footpaths (and vehicles needing to give way to pedestrians when crossing footpaths), some people seem to be unaware that there are rules about keeping vegetation clear of footpaths. Able-bodied people can duck or brush past overhanging trees, or detou


Subway into SoCross: could it be re-opened?

I had been going to write a blog post asking people what this thing is, on Little Collins Street. If one looks closely, it has City of Melbourne markings. The City of Melbourne and the Herald Sun have highlighted it overnight: it's an old entrance to the subway underneath Spencer Street, into the nearby station. At the old Spencer Street station, the main way on and off the platforms was

music, Toxic Custard newsletter

Oh oh la la: Ocean Colour Scene live

Ocean Colour Scene played last night at Max Watt's (formerly known as the HiFi bar -- I assume the current name is a pun about loud music, rather than being named after a person). As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I've wanted to see them play live for decades, but this is their first tour of Australia. The tickets were a Christmas present from Marita. We got there about 8:15... there was n

Photos from ten years ago, Toxic Custard newsletter

Old photos from February 2006

Continuing my series of ten year old photos: February 2006. (As usual, you can click through any of them to view them on Flickr, where you can see each photo at a larger size.) Kangaroos near Seymour, snapped on a break during a PTUA Planning Weekend; they used to regularly happen up there. (Originally posted here) Walking Maisie the dog at Altona Beach. Maisie is getting a little elder

Melbourne, transport

Melbourne CBD traffic light ‘upgrade’ – pedestrians lose out again

Excuse the wobbly phone footage, but I spotted this a few days ago and thought it was worth noting. (You'll miss little by muting the sound.) This is the corner of Elizabeth Street and Little Collins Street in Central Melbourne, on the eastern side of the intersection. We are looking south along Elizabeth Street. Cars come one-way from the left of the screen, heading west along Little Collin

Net, Toxic Custard newsletter, transport

Glenhuntly level crossing and the vanishing petition

Liberal Caulfield MP David Southwick has a campaign running to get the Glen Huntly level crossing grade separated. I somewhat cringe at the "Blame Labor" rhetoric, but the rest of it I agree with completely. A 2014 report by VicRoads found the Glen Huntly Rd level crossing to be of the highest priority for removal with boom gates expected to drop for 82 per cent of the morning peak between 7am



There have been rumblings for a while that some of the level crossing removals might include elevated sections, but finally we have a concrete (pardon the pun) proposal to look at: the crossings along the Dandenong line, known internally as "CD9" or the "Caulfield To Dandenong Nine". (Sounds like a music group.) It's become more popularly known as "Skyrail". The "Skyrail" name seems to have orig


How many tracks?

"Skyrail" blog coming in a day or two, but first another related issue to cover: How many tracks is best? Single track can work for very infrequent rail services, but in a suburban setting, with frequent services, causes problems. Witness the Altona Loop -- the single track (with passing loops) severely limits the number of trains that move through -- a maximum of three trains per hour in ea

Toxic Custard newsletter, transport

Build it up, tear it down: your taxes at work

You'd always hope that governments aim to minimise spending waste, and part of that is forward planning, so for instance you don't do upgrades to something that is about to be replaced. Our local station at Bentleigh has received numerous upgrades over the past year or two. Some are part of the $100 million Bayside Rail Upgrade (initiated by the Coalition in May 2013), some are part of bigger r