transport

SRL will be an independent line

One of the things people have been wondering is whether the Suburban Rail Loop will be an integral part of the existing suburban Metro network, or a standalone line. Melbourne's existing rail network has its origins in the 1854 line from Port Melbourne to Flinders Street (since converted to trams), but also particularly in the electrification of the 1910s and 1920s, to the standards of the

Melbourne

An early morning flight

3:30am alarm. 3:40am shower. 4:00am Left the house for a 4:30am rendezvous. By 4:45 we were in a minibus headed for our embarkation point. Time for a Sunday morning balloon flight - a Christmas present from last year from M. Hot air balloons are very much at the mercy of the weather. Our flight had been cancelled twice already due to the wintry blast of wind and rain that had be

transport

Why are pedestrian crossings so narrow?

Why is it that at most traffic lights, the crossings for pedestrians are so narrow? Even in Melbourne's CBD, where heavy pedestrian numbers are expected, most crossings are far too narrow for the number of people. It appears that technically, anybody crossing outside the lines is in breach of Road Safety Rule regulation 234 (a) - which says you can't cross a road less than 20 metres fro

transport

Train punctuality – WWJD?

Last week the government announced timetable changes, including adjustments to the Cranbourne/Pakenham line. (I'll just call it the Dandenong line for short. Almost everybody else does.) Of the roughly 265 services per weekday, 93 will be adjusted. A few will be quicker by a minute or two, but most of the 93 will be slower - most of them by 1-2 minutes, but a few by up to 5 minutes. During

transport

Protip: the Myki gate doesn’t have to close behind the previous person before you can touch your card

Update - see below At busy times, queues can form at station fare gates, especially when large numbers of people arrive from multiple trains at once. Investment in more gates and faster (Vix) readers has helped - 950 new readers are being installed in 141 stations. But it's noticeable than some people wait for the person in front of them to go through and for the gate to close before tou

Photos from ten years ago

Old photos from October 2009

Here's another in my series of old photos out of the vault from ten years ago. We went to Bendigo for a couple of days, so here are a couple of snaps from that trip. https://www.flickr.com/photos/danielbowen/3979139221/ https://www.flickr.com/photos/danielbowen/3979158311/ The only time I saw Powderfinger live was this "surprise" gig in Federation Square. (A surprise except a lot

transport

The ups and downs of escalators

It's not your imagination. Some City Loop escalators are running slower in peak hour. Normally: Fast in peak, slow off-peak Normal practice (for decades now) is to run the Loop station escalators at a reasonable clip during peak hour, and set to slow down outside peak. This is pretty annoying for many of those catching trains at off-peak times. Why slow them down outside peak? It's not c

Net, Toxic Custard newsletter

The end of Toxic Custard

Before blogging and the web, there was email and Usenet and FTP sites. Just over 29 years ago I started writing online, sending out literal undergraduate humour to mates at Monash University and beyond mostly via email, under the truly ridiculous name "Toxic Custard". It got into the student newspaper, then in 1996 it went onto the web and became the early version of this blog. Along the wa

transport

How much would trains every ten minutes cost?

One of the gaping holes in Melbourne's public transport system is the lack of an all-day every day frequent service on the backbone: the Metro suburban train network. Melbourne is one of the few cities in the world, outside North America, which doesn't have frequent all day trains. Other Australian cities are moving towards this. Perth has now trains every 15 minutes to most stations until

transport

Big changes proposed for the City Loop

A Metro (MTM) proposal has emerged for big changes to the operation of the City Loop for trains running through the Caulfield and Burnley tunnels. The page below is from a document discussing CBD station capacity implications from the introduction of the High Capacity Metro Trains. I'm told the document is genuine. It reveals that the Caulfield Loop will be required to run anti-clockwise al