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Alan Joyce says no to high speed rail link

Jazz 10 October 2012 26

In a story covered on ABC online Qantas head honcho Alan Joyce has not only dismissed Canberra as a viable second airport for sydeny in the short term, but also put the sword to any notion of a fast rail link between Sydney an Canberra on.

Tim Bohm, Party President of the Bullet Train for Canberra Party and candidate for Molonglo said:

“Alan Joyce is only worried concerned about Alan Joyce, we take pride and are extremely happy to be dismissed by Alan Joyce. While Alan is stuck in the horse and buggy era countries like Sweden have recently showed that even with a smaller population they can make it happen – they are building a Bullet Train from Stockholm (pop 864000) to Linkoping (pop 104000) over a distance of 200km, and are spending around $13 billion. We can make it happen here by spending less to go further and transport more people.”

“This backward thinking is why the Bullet Train for Canberra Party exists.”


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26 Responses to Alan Joyce says no to high speed rail link
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Pirate_Biggles 1:41 pm 11 Oct 12

Pandy said :

If you went to CORE 2012 (oh you did not?-shame) you would have heard a whole bunch of train spotters say how Australia cannot justifiably build high speed rail.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to attend, I would have liked to.
Are you able to provide details of the cases they made? I have had a look at the presentations on offer at
http://core2012.org/
None of them seem to provide details on the responses however.

Stuart Biggs
Pirate Party ACT for Molonglo

Grail 1:07 pm 11 Oct 12

Alan Joyce knows that Sydney/Canberra is a cash cow for his airline. Of course he says “no” to high speed rail.

arescarti42 12:20 pm 11 Oct 12

Knows Best said :

What is it that you don’t understand about a VFT not being viable. This is just typical about those that live in Canberra……me…me …me.

You want it but you probably want is subsidized by the rest of Australia. If it was user pays would you pay more than an plane ticket to Sydney. Not likely.

Why is it that people expect train and bus systems to be financed and run entirely free of government support, but are blind to the massive subsidies that go in to the road and air systems. If plane trips to Sydney were user pays, then they’d also be extremely expensive.

Pandy 11:07 pm 10 Oct 12

Pirate_Biggles said :

Here is an interesting bit of data:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World's_busiest_passenger_air_routes
Sydney to Melbourne is #5. Of course any move to change this would impact Qantas’ bottom line.

A high speed train system Sydney-Canberra-Melbourne would put this air traffic on a much more efficient system.
A bullet train for passengers, a freight line for heavy goods, and bus/regional links to service the main hubs.
This has multiple benefits – Less air traffic, fewer trucks/buses/cars on the roads, quicker and more efficient travel, as well as freeing up a large portion of Sydney’s airports for international flights.

Even a decent high speed train system would be enough.
The wiki article on Australian High Speed Trains is surprisingly informative.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-speed_rail_in_Australia

The lack of infrastructure upgrades to keep up with changing rail technology is causing us more harm than good, and has relegated interstate rail travel to the position of last choice for Canberrans.
I wager Alan Joyce’s opinion would rapidly change if the rail links were actually decent in this country.

Stuart Biggs
Pirate Party ACT for Molonglo

If you went to CORE 2012 (oh you did not?-shame) you would have heard a whole bunch of train spotters say how Australia cannot justifiably build high speed rail.

Knows Best 10:45 pm 10 Oct 12

What is it that you don’t understand about a VFT not being viable. This is just typical about those that live in Canberra……me…me …me. You want it but you probably want is subsidized by the rest of Australia. If it was user pays would you pay more than an plane ticket to Sydney. Not likely.

HenryBG 8:05 pm 10 Oct 12

rhino said :

HenryBG said :

harvyk1 said :

Using the example of the Stockholm to Linkoping high speed rail, each man, woman and child, both tax payers and non tax payers in both cities will need to front up $13,429 to cover the cost of building it.

“I’m sorry little Timmy, your allowance money for the next 13 years will be diverted to paying for the high speed rail, I’m sure you understand”

Or, to put it another way, each man, woman and child will be up for $700 per annum to fund the train, offset by any paying passengers that might end up using it.

I wonder how much each man woman and child is currently paying, per annum, for transport costs including freight, road maintenance including snow and ice clearing and emergency response?

$700pa – the price of registering a motor vehicle – could be a good deal.

In other news, “putting optic fibre in the ground also costs lots of money : luddites vow to stick with copper”.

Just wondering, where did you get that 700 from? Did you divide the 13,000 by an arbitrary number of years? Why not pay it off over 40 years and it’d be even cheaper?

Borrow 13,000. Pay interest on it annually. Simple.

cross 7:09 pm 10 Oct 12

We already have a good high speed link to Sydney it’s called the airport.
Let Lindsay Fox pay for the rail link since he’s the only one who would benefit from it.

JimCharles 6:00 pm 10 Oct 12

MERC600 said :

Aren’t we a bit to far to be a second airport for Sydney. Gatwick is 45k from London, Stansted is 64, Luton is 56. Canberra is , well I dunno , but it’s certainly more that say Luton is from central London.

Birmingham is being lined up as Heathrow’s overspill with the HS2 rail network from London….just over 170km, but another 15 years to wait with many twists yet to come i think, mainly about greed and following the money.
Kuala Lumpur’s main airport is 70km outside the city, and some new Chinese airports are being built in the middle of nowhere to service cities that aren’t built yet.

rhino 4:56 pm 10 Oct 12

HenryBG said :

Postalgeek said :

MrPC said :

Everybody knows the most viable route for a high speed rail service to escape Canberra would be Canberra to Batemans Bay, not Canberra to Sydney. Maybe swing past Queanbeyan, Captains Flat and Braidwood along the way and throw in some commuter traffic.

Sydney is a dump and I don’t know why people would actually want to go there.

Absolutely correct and ridiculous to suggest otherwise, though the rail will need to branch at Bateman’s Bay as most people will want to continue their journey beyond that point.

It could link up with a speedboat network.

That would be the dream haha

HenryBG 3:06 pm 10 Oct 12

Postalgeek said :

MrPC said :

Everybody knows the most viable route for a high speed rail service to escape Canberra would be Canberra to Batemans Bay, not Canberra to Sydney. Maybe swing past Queanbeyan, Captains Flat and Braidwood along the way and throw in some commuter traffic.

Sydney is a dump and I don’t know why people would actually want to go there.

Absolutely correct and ridiculous to suggest otherwise, though the rail will need to branch at Bateman’s Bay as most people will want to continue their journey beyond that point.

It could link up with a speedboat network.

rhino 2:59 pm 10 Oct 12

HenryBG said :

harvyk1 said :

Using the example of the Stockholm to Linkoping high speed rail, each man, woman and child, both tax payers and non tax payers in both cities will need to front up $13,429 to cover the cost of building it.

“I’m sorry little Timmy, your allowance money for the next 13 years will be diverted to paying for the high speed rail, I’m sure you understand”

Or, to put it another way, each man, woman and child will be up for $700 per annum to fund the train, offset by any paying passengers that might end up using it.

I wonder how much each man woman and child is currently paying, per annum, for transport costs including freight, road maintenance including snow and ice clearing and emergency response?

$700pa – the price of registering a motor vehicle – could be a good deal.

In other news, “putting optic fibre in the ground also costs lots of money : luddites vow to stick with copper”.

Just wondering, where did you get that 700 from? Did you divide the 13,000 by an arbitrary number of years? Why not pay it off over 40 years and it’d be even cheaper?

Postalgeek 2:51 pm 10 Oct 12

harvyk1 said :

Using the example of the Stockholm to Linkoping high speed rail, each man, woman and child, both tax payers and non tax payers in both cities will need to front up $13,429 to cover the cost of building it.

“I’m sorry little Timmy, your allowance money for the next 13 years will be diverted to paying for the high speed rail, I’m sure you understand”

As opposed to more than that amount spent every year on roads and associated costs?

An Australian Conservation Report found we spend 4.3 times more on roads than rail:

While $11.3 billion was spent on road construction around the country in 2008-9, $5.1 billion was given away as subsidies by the Federal Government through the Fuel Tax Credits program (2007-08)2 and more than $1 billion was spent through the Fringe Benefits Tax to encourage the private use of company cars (2008-09). These high figures starkly contrast with the $3.3 billion spent in 2008-9 on rail construction.

Certainly argue the economics of rail, but don’t forget to factor in the vast sums of money are already pouring into the road system.

Besides, people get fixated on a train that can beat an airplane.

I’d be happy with a train that could get me to the city centre inside two hours. And it would still beat most of the flights I’ve had, factoring in traveling to airport, check-in, security, waiting in the departure gate, flight time, disembarking, baggage claim, and travel from the airport. And don’t even get me started about delays.
And I could use mobile broadband at the very least.

As long as the train can beat the car and offer more comfort at a price that competes with the cost of fuel to drive, it’ll be a desirable option.

c_c 2:42 pm 10 Oct 12

I haven’t looked into this much, but just speaking generally, haven’t train lines traditionally brought development to where they are laid out? And where train lines have gone defunct, the development dies off.

So yes, Canberra may not have the population density to warrant it now, but if you build a rail corridor with a one hour or better commute to Sydney, surely commuters in Sydney who already spend that kind of time commuting will come. Seems very short sighted.

Postalgeek 2:27 pm 10 Oct 12

MrPC said :

Everybody knows the most viable route for a high speed rail service to escape Canberra would be Canberra to Batemans Bay, not Canberra to Sydney. Maybe swing past Queanbeyan, Captains Flat and Braidwood along the way and throw in some commuter traffic.

Sydney is a dump and I don’t know why people would actually want to go there.

Absolutely correct and ridiculous to suggest otherwise, though the rail will need to branch at Bateman’s Bay as most people will want to continue their journey beyond that point.

HenryBG 2:23 pm 10 Oct 12

MERC600 said :

Aren’t we a bit to far to be a second airport for Sydney. Gatwick is 45k from London, Stansted is 64, Luton is 56. Canberra is , well I dunno , but it’s certainly more that say Luton is from central London.

So you haven’t used BR or the M1 much, then?

HenryBG 2:21 pm 10 Oct 12

harvyk1 said :

Using the example of the Stockholm to Linkoping high speed rail, each man, woman and child, both tax payers and non tax payers in both cities will need to front up $13,429 to cover the cost of building it.

“I’m sorry little Timmy, your allowance money for the next 13 years will be diverted to paying for the high speed rail, I’m sure you understand”

Or, to put it another way, each man, woman and child will be up for $700 per annum to fund the train, offset by any paying passengers that might end up using it.

I wonder how much each man woman and child is currently paying, per annum, for transport costs including freight, road maintenance including snow and ice clearing and emergency response?

$700pa – the price of registering a motor vehicle – could be a good deal.

In other news, “putting optic fibre in the ground also costs lots of money : luddites vow to stick with copper”.

ex-vectis 1:55 pm 10 Oct 12

While I have absolutely no time for Alan Joyce (Qantas used to be such a great airline :-()) I have to agree with him.

I asked the Bullet Train for Canberra party for some figures as, being a bit of a couch tree-hugger, I really considered voting for them. By my own very rough calculations the Bullet train would need to be able to make enough profit (after running costs) to pay about $1.1 Million per day back to the startup investment ($10 Billion).

I was really looking for details of their estimates for running costs and revenue – and where the revenue would come from. But unfortunately, nothing has come from that request.

Pirate_Biggles 1:44 pm 10 Oct 12

Here is an interesting bit of data:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World's_busiest_passenger_air_routes
Sydney to Melbourne is #5. Of course any move to change this would impact Qantas’ bottom line.

A high speed train system Sydney-Canberra-Melbourne would put this air traffic on a much more efficient system.
A bullet train for passengers, a freight line for heavy goods, and bus/regional links to service the main hubs.
This has multiple benefits – Less air traffic, fewer trucks/buses/cars on the roads, quicker and more efficient travel, as well as freeing up a large portion of Sydney’s airports for international flights.

Even a decent high speed train system would be enough.
The wiki article on Australian High Speed Trains is surprisingly informative.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-speed_rail_in_Australia

The lack of infrastructure upgrades to keep up with changing rail technology is causing us more harm than good, and has relegated interstate rail travel to the position of last choice for Canberrans.
I wager Alan Joyce’s opinion would rapidly change if the rail links were actually decent in this country.

Stuart Biggs
Pirate Party ACT for Molonglo

MERC600 1:32 pm 10 Oct 12

Aren’t we a bit to far to be a second airport for Sydney. Gatwick is 45k from London, Stansted is 64, Luton is 56. Canberra is , well I dunno , but it’s certainly more that say Luton is from central London.

harvyk1 1:25 pm 10 Oct 12

Using the example of the Stockholm to Linkoping high speed rail, each man, woman and child, both tax payers and non tax payers in both cities will need to front up $13,429 to cover the cost of building it.

“I’m sorry little Timmy, your allowance money for the next 13 years will be diverted to paying for the high speed rail, I’m sure you understand”

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