Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Third Rail Line through Beecroft/Cheltenham

The BCCT found a document saying a fourth unwired (ie diesel hauled freight) line was being planned for the future. In response to a query asking whether this was true, Transport for NSW responded as follows:

I can confirm the Epping to Thornleigh Third Track Project is only for the construction of a third electrified track.

The provision of four tracks (for shared freight and passenger use and/or four tracks for dedicated freight and passenger use) was considered in the State Significant Infrastructure Application Support Document (page 16, section 3.4.1). However as you’d be aware, these were just two of a number of alternate options discounted during the options development and assessment phase because they did not meet the function requirements specified for freight option or additional costs were not justified based on the benefit provided.

The design of our project will seek where practicable not to preclude any potential future projects within the rail corridor, and this design is undertaken in consultation with the rail operator (RailCorp). This is standard practice with modern rail infrastructure projects to ensure that any future impacts on the community and rail passengers are minimised.

If you have any other questions or comments please let me know.

Kind regards

Kelly Potts
Public Affairs Officer
Transport Projects
Transport for NSW

Self evidently the "Epping to Thornleigh Third Track Project" is concerned only with the third rail. However this reply seems to leave the option open to add the fourth rail at a later date, perhaps titled the "Epping to Thornleigh Fourth Track Project" in a few years time. We are trying to get a definitive denial of this possibility, but I doubt we will be given one that we can trust. "No carbon tax during my government", said someone a year or so ago.

Bear this possible future development in mind when you consider the long term impact of the present Epping to Thornleigh Third Track Project.

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