Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Tue Aug 20, 2013 9:19 am

Daniel wrote:Actually Lichfield Street/Colombo Street (the site of the bus interchange?) would be an ideal location.


Its moving:
Click to view full size

pete wrote:Rolleston is realistically the southern limit. Not much commuter traffic from.burnham and even less from Ashburton i would have thought. Also large former yard area and a platform and shelter still exist at Rolleston, nothing exists at Burnham.

the northern terminus should be Rangioa I would have thought, for similar reasons. And it needs to be remembered that the ex Auvkland SA's are limited to short journeys, due to having no toilets on board.


To start off I think it would be best if it was started with regular services to Rolleston and with peck-hour services to Rangioa. This limits likelihood of kiwirail freaking out.

pete wrote:As for central terminus, any commuter line must serve the growing commercial hub if Addington, which be missed with any deviation from Riccarton or Papanui towards the CBD. Although, I still don't see the CBD being a big destination ever again. And the new stadium will be reasonably close to the now empty site of the old central.station, and of course there will be new tram tracks going from the cbd towards the polytech. Surely be better to extend these to the stadium, the bus station and a rail interchange rather than extend a rail branch into the Cbd. (not with heritage trams of course).


Having two bus stations in Christchurch was madness, I don't think most people would be happy to go through that experience again.

My idea was to have the train station and the bus station diagonally across the road from each other, with an above street crossing.

There is also this idea which is a mix of Daniel's and my idea:
Click to view full size
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:27 pm

Back to the ADK DMUs, Could they be mechanical cannibalised? Take the best 4 and use them on the Lyttelton line, but scrap the worst 5 for parts.

This would only be short term and last 4 would be sent to the National Rail Museum once funds for New DMUs were available. Once there, they would retire to a 7Km weekend rail shuttle to the museum.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby Daniel » Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:37 pm

pete wrote:Rolleston is realistically the southern limit. Not much commuter traffic from.burnham and even less from Ashburton i would have thought. Also large former yard area and a platform and shelter still exist at Rolleston, nothing exists at Burnham.
Yeah Rolleston would be the western/southern limit for the first couple of decades. Burnham would be one of those long-term possibilites after 20-30 years when growth in Rolleston would also spur growth at Burnham.

Ashburton should eventually have a totally seperate peak-time express commuter service, and it would also be a long-term thing after 15-20 years once the integrated rail and bus system in Christchurch is well-established and living in Ashburton and commuting to Christchurch for work by PT could be convenient.
pete wrote:the northern terminus should be Rangioa I would have thought, for similar reasons. And it needs to be remembered that the ex Auvkland SA's are limited to short journeys, due to having no toilets on board.
Yup. Anything north of Rangiora would be for the VERY long-term. Because as things stand it's not likely that a rail service could compete with driving for price and transit times for a long time.
pete wrote:As for central terminus, any commuter line must serve the growing commercial hub if Addington, which be missed with any deviation from Riccarton or Papanui towards the CBD. Although, I still don't see the CBD being a big destination ever again. And the new stadium will be reasonably close to the now empty site of the old central.station, and of course there will be new tram tracks going from the cbd towards the polytech. Surely be better to extend these to the stadium, the bus station and a rail interchange rather than extend a rail branch into the Cbd. (not with heritage trams of course).
If the CBD of Christchurch becomes Addington then it's all even easier! Just the short chord to reinstate and build a triangular terminus (which they might have had to build anyway).

What was missing (and why rail failed) previously in Chirstchurch was all because the terminus' were too far from most of the CBD to be convenient. That ~600m to Lichfield street (without big wide Moorhouse avenue to cross) makes a big difference to a form of commuting that includes a fair bit of walking. The Moorhouse avenue stations were just too far away, and once the trams went and cheap oil and automobiles came available the commuter rail service in Christchurch was never going to last
MacRiada wrote:
Daniel wrote:Actually Lichfield Street/Colombo Street (the site of the bus interchange?) would be an ideal location.


Its moving:
Click to view full size
If that's the case, then maybe the ralway spur and station can be on the East of Colombo street and Harvey Norman et al can be spared acquiring, compensating and demolishing. The Bus Station could be across Colombo Street, but personally I'd prefer to spare people having to cross a busty street and have them integrated next to each other or somehow as part of the same complex if possible.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:12 pm

Daniel wrote:
Is Mise Mac Riada wrote:Its moving:
Click to view full size
If that's the case, then maybe the ralway spur and station can be on the East of Colombo street and Harvey Norman et al can be spared acquiring, compensating and demolishing. The Bus Station could be across Colombo Street, but personally I'd prefer to spare people having to cross a busty street and have them integrated next to each other or somehow as part of the same complex if possible.


Would something like this suffice with escalators on both ends?
Click to view full size
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby Daniel » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:55 pm

MacRiada wrote:Would something like this suffice with escalators on both ends?
Click to view full size
Well yeah it would suffice, but it wouldn't be the ideal. Having to go up escalators and across the street a pedestrian overbridge is not as desirable as just walking straight across.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby john-ston » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:48 pm

eurokiwi78 wrote:Something like this?

Image


More or less.

Daniel wrote:What was missing (and why rail failed) previously in Chirstchurch was all because the terminus' were too far from most of the CBD to be convenient. That ~600m to Lichfield street (without big wide Moorhouse avenue to cross) makes a big difference to a form of commuting that includes a fair bit of walking. The Moorhouse avenue stations were just too far away, and once the trams went and cheap oil and automobiles came available the commuter rail service in Christchurch was never going to last


I don't think it was the location of the old Christchurch station, but instead the lack of service provision. Only the Lyttleton service ran to anywhere near a decent frequency (roughly once every half hour during peak and once every hour during peak). Rangiora at its height had six return services a day, and Burnham only had two (one of which was an Ashburton run), with Rolleston only having one more (the Springfield mixed). Had Rangiora say had a service schedule similar to what Lyttleton had, then perhaps Christchurch rail would have survived.

pete wrote:Although, I still don't see the CBD being a big destination ever again.


I can see the Christchurch CBD being a big destination again - it will take a few years, but business should drift back.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby royce » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:20 pm

[Quote]Royce, your reminiscences of the old station bring back.memories. At the.moment, the toilets and bike sheds are exposed, being below ground level and the station itself long demolished. They are all that are left. That station was my first workplace and it breaks my heart every to.e I pass ! Good times, good employer.[Quote]

Was that you who opened the bike shed for me.
The Lyttleton trains ran into the eastern dock. The trains had four or five wooden carriages.
I wonder what the shunters were I am thinking they were tank engines. Surely they would not have being F's. I can remember the C type engines with the slanting tenders.but I am thinking they would not have being used around the station.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:26 pm

john-ston wrote:
eurokiwi78 wrote:Something like this?

Image


More or less.


That is very close to what tram (& latter bus) route # 1 was, only it cut through Victoria square and ended at Cathedral square.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby pete » Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:53 am

Royce, I joined NZR in 1987, just after the Booz Allen report and about the time the redundancies started. At that time, the western dock was used for parcels loading, and the eastern dock was pretty much unused. The shunters at that time were of course DSC's. It was an amazing sight if you worked late, looking out the office window there the yard was choked and was just an amazing sea of movement. Those days are gone!

So too have the fortnightly pay days. The paymaster sat in.a locked room counting out pay, completing hand written pay notes. My task was then to sign for a sealed ammunition tin containing the wages for Addington workshops, over $30k. Then I signed for an unlocked box with sealed paypackets for Way and Signals. With two security guards we then dropped the tin off at the workshops, and spent most of the rest of the day at the Way and Works bar (closed!) passing over pay as the employees came in from the track. All so casual. Only 25 years ago, but all gone. The buildings, most of the workers and the antiquated cash and hand written systems.

Sorry for the deviation off topic guys!
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby pete » Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:28 am

Just while I am strolling down memory lane . . .

Easily the best railway books I have ever read are West of the Divide and Rails through the Rata. They are mostly 1950s and 1960s and are series of shortish accounts about life on the railways on the Midland line. Brilliantly edited and riviting.

but to get back on topic. Daniel, you are right. Moorhouse Ave is a pretty significant barrier to a rail station near the old site. On reflection, that probably kills my idea. It would be good though to take this opportunity to somehow integrate the tram lines into the inner city transport system, but as light rail, not heritage trams.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby john-ston » Wed Aug 21, 2013 6:58 pm

MacRiada wrote:That is very close to what tram (& latter bus) route # 1 was, only it cut through Victoria square and ended at Cathedral square.


Indeed, as I understand it, the Papanui Road route (which started as a steam tram in 1880) was built primarily because Christchurch Station was not convenient for passengers - at one point, the timetable was designed that a tram would meet a train going north.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby Daniel » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:30 pm

pete wrote: Moorhouse Ave is a pretty significant barrier to a rail station near the old site. On reflection, that probably kills my idea. It would be good though to take this opportunity to somehow integrate the tram lines into the inner city transport system, but as light rail, not heritage trams.
Personally I'd solve it by;
1) Replace the Moorhouse avenue overbridge over Colombo street with a new overbridge/culvert that is longer and wider, covering all east-west lanes and removing any intersection between Colombo Street and Moorhouse Avenue and making Colombo Street only for traffic to/from Sydenham.
2) Make sure said new overbridge/culvert also has underpass for a new rail spur in parallel with Colombo Street.
Then the busy, wide Moorhouse avenue corridor need no longer be a barrier to rail penetration of Christchurch's CBD.

Initially I thought the new spur should be to the west of Colombo Street. However, now Google map has an updated satelite image showing all of the post-earthquake demolitions I've changed my mind to the more demolished Eastern side. Surely nobody much will miss that ugly old Ford dealership on St Asaph Street?
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby royce » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:34 pm

pete wrote:Royce, I joined NZR in 1987, just after the Booz Allen report and about the time the redundancies started. At that time, the western dock was used for parcels loading, and the eastern dock was pretty much unused. The shunters at that time were of course DSC's. It was an amazing sight if you worked late, looking out the office window there the yard was choked and was just an amazing sea of movement. Those days are gone!

So too have the fortnightly pay days. The paymaster sat in.a locked room counting out pay, completing hand written pay notes. My task was then to sign for a sealed ammunition tin containing the wages for Addington workshops, over $30k. Then I signed for an unlocked box with sealed paypackets for Way and Signals. With two security guards we then dropped the tin off at the workshops, and spent most of the rest of the day at thie Way and Works bar (closed!) passing over pay as the employees came in from the track. All so casual. Only 25 years ago, but all gone. The buildings, most of the workers and the antiquated cash and hand written systems.

Sorry for the deviation off topic guys!

Well I had left Christchurch in the early eighties. I can remember riding my bike home from Hagley park after playing cricket past the Addington workshop at knock off time. The siren sounded and a flood of workers poured out the gate walking and bikes. I think this would have been about 1964.
Anyway fast forward to 2013. Its only about forty years. I suggested to my brother who still lives there that maybe they should look at shifting the CDB out to lower Riccarton Addington area. He didn't agree. However I am thinking that a station at Riccarton road connected by buses running between the Airport, university and the square could be a starting point for a rail system consisting of railcars running between Rolleston and Rangiora. However I have not being on the ground since the quake. I wouldn't think the Lyttleton line would be a starter. Maybe at a latter date
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:53 am

pete wrote:It would be good though to take this opportunity to somehow integrate the tram lines into the inner city transport system, but as light rail, not heritage trams.


I am to the view that light rail/tram systems only work if they are supplementary to a heavy rail system.

Therefore they should work as an optional last mile service, along with battery electric shuttle buses for less patronised services. When I say optional, I mean the transfer should not be required to get into the heart of the city, much like what the Britomart to wynyard quarter light rail line/tram line is meant to have been like.

Once the Northern rail line is double tracked, this will remove the need for the Northern part of "b" bus service, battery electric shuttle buses and later light rail would replace the Southern part of the "b" bus line. I should note that the Southern part of the "b" bus line was formerly the #1 and #2 tram lines.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby Daniel » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:31 pm

I also think that if trams are to return to Christchurch it should be after heavy rail is established. And that it should be to serve areas that are not served by heavy rail corridors and/or to replace bus routes (which should hopefuly be the same thing).
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby geoff_184 » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:38 pm

The Lyttelton suburban trains stopped running after the new road tunnel saw patronage decline. Same thing would happen to the Masterton trains if a Rimutaka road tunnel were built. You take away the advantage rail offers over driving, and patronage plummets. Dunedin was similar, with the new southern motorway killing off the Mosgiel suburban trains.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Thu Aug 22, 2013 7:58 pm

geoff_184 wrote:The Lyttelton suburban trains stopped running after the new road tunnel saw patronage decline. Same thing would happen to the Masterton trains if a Rimutaka road tunnel were built. You take away the advantage rail offers over driving, and patronage plummets. Dunedin was similar, with the new southern motorway killing off the Mosgiel suburban trains.



I agree that Lyttelton does not need a regular service, but some type of public transportation is need for the development in Woolston South.

Daniel wrote:I also think that if trams are to return to Christchurch it should be after heavy rail is established. And that it should be to serve areas that are not served by heavy rail corridors and/or to replace bus routes (which should hopefuly be the same thing).


Daniel wrote:
pete wrote: Moorhouse Ave is a pretty significant barrier to a rail station near the old site. On reflection, that probably kills my idea. It would be good though to take this opportunity to somehow integrate the tram lines into the inner city transport system, but as light rail, not heritage trams.
Personally I'd solve it by;
1) Replace the Moorhouse avenue overbridge over Colombo street with a new overbridge/culvert that is longer and wider, covering all east-west lanes and removing any intersection between Colombo Street and Moorhouse Avenue and making Colombo Street only for traffic to/from Sydenham.
2) Make sure said new overbridge/culvert also has underpass for a new rail spur in parallel with Colombo Street.
Then the busy, wide Moorhouse avenue corridor need no longer be a barrier to rail penetration of Christchurch's CBD.

Initially I thought the new spur should be to the west of Colombo Street. However, now Google map has an updated satelite image showing all of the post-earthquake demolitions I've changed my mind to the more demolished Eastern side. Surely nobody much will miss that ugly old Ford dealership on St Asaph Street?


I couldn't think of the Ford dealership you were talking about on St Asaph Street, then I remembered the one that had a workshop frontage on St Asaph.

Smith city would be the bigger problem, but they could be got on side if the deal was sweetened for them.

It should be noted that the Ford dealership's block is earmark as a park which will make up the frame. That doesn't mean the block can't be both a park and a train station! ;)

Image
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Fri Aug 23, 2013 7:32 pm

I've found a photo of the Rolleston railway station back in the day. It didn't look too bad back then, at lest better than it does now.

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

Also what should the fares be like?

The (adult) bus fare is:
Code: Select all
Fare type   Single fare   Daily maximum   Weekly maximum
Inner Zone 1      $2.30      $4.60      $23.00
Outer Zone 2      $3.30      $6.60      $33.00
Outer Zone 3      $4.20      $8.40      $42.00
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby pete » Fri Aug 23, 2013 11:27 pm

Great photos. Thank you. There used to be a full triangle at Rolleston, with a leg connecting the Midland line with the main south line. I have never seen any photos of that, or read any info as to
whether it was even used much. Its still possible to see the outline on google earth. Very strange, as cannot see it would ever have had much value.
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Re: Would a commuter railcar service work in chch?

Postby MacRiada » Sat Aug 24, 2013 10:21 am

Here are some more photos.

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Click to view full size

Inside Rangiora station:
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