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Sorry Simon, but hiring some office staff does not put a railway “on track”

By johnboy - 22 June 2013 25

Simon Corbell is celebrating the hiring of a project director (actually just kicking off the recruitment process FFS) which apparently justifies announcing Canberra’s light rail is now “FIRMLY ON TRACK”.

At which point the inner pedant in me comes stomping out with his big boots on to point out that a railway is “on track” (let alone firmly) the day a train is sittin on a track.

On not a moment before.

Simon has happily announced the millions being spent which will not (yet anyway) put down one single piece of track:

“The $330,000 Network Integration Study has also commenced, which investigates options for stations and stops, and the way in which the light rail service would run in relation to existing modes of personal and public transport,” he said.

Funding allocated in this year’s budget for the Capital Metro light rail project includes:

— $5 million for preliminary design studies

— $12.3 million for the establishment of the Capital Metro Agency; and,

— $1.4 million for a master planning process (which will investigate and identify issues for a future Canberra-wide light rail network)

What’s Your opinion?


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25 Responses to
Sorry Simon, but hiring some office staff does not put a railway “on track”
LSWCHP 10:02 pm 24 Jun 13

What really makes me choke is that nearly $19 million dollars will be spent “establishing the agency” and other such bogosity. I’m an engineer, and I’ve built actual pieces of good solid infrastructure that have served people well for decades for far less money than that.

It’s an obscene amount of money to spend on hand waving and bullshit, but I guess that’s how things go when you have to look after your mates.

LSWCHP 9:55 pm 24 Jun 13

bundah said :

Wow it’s ‘on track’? Talk about premature ejaculation!!!!!

I think you mean premature congratulation. 🙂

Bugle 6:24 pm 24 Jun 13

gungsuperstar said :

I’m normally a fan of big, ambitious infrastructure projects, and I like Corbell’s enthusiasm and dedication to this project.

But this has got white elephant written all over. Canberran’s don’t want to catch public transport, they only really do it when they have to. I can’t believe that a light rail will change this – the Gunghahlin-Civic route is among the worst in Canberra, and despite the fact that buses do the journey quicker, people still don’t use them.

Actually, there is a fair bit of medium density housing along the route Gungahlin route, and trams are much more convinient.

Sleaz274 5:43 pm 24 Jun 13

@davo101….more like $X,XXX

Let’s imagine an approximate $800,000,000 to build (which is just the CIty-Gungahlin) divided by population of 400,000 (which Canberra might be about the time it is built) very rough figures and made the maths simple

= $2,000 per person (without any ongoing cost – which there will be)

davo101 1:59 pm 24 Jun 13

beardedclam said :

Do you speak for Canberra? There is actually quite a bit of support for it.
How can you sign off as Canberra if your thoughts don’t correctly represent the community?

Yeah, I’d bet that “support” is like the “support” for doing something about climate change, it’s all good until someone has to pay for it. I’d like to see the results of an opinion poll along the lines of “are you in favour of building a light rail system in Canberra that will raise your rates by $XXX a year?”

beardedclam 1:14 pm 24 Jun 13

Ben_Dover said :

Dear Simon.

We don’t want a light rail thanks, so you can stop now.

Yours sincerely,

Canberra

Do you speak for Canberra? There is actually quite a bit of support for it.
How can you sign off as Canberra if your thoughts don’t correctly represent the community?

Masquara 5:22 pm 23 Jun 13

Just loved Simon Corbell’s anti car rant on 666 the other day …. stop using your free all-day parking spot in Civic, Simon, before you engage in that sort of hypocritical carry-on!

bundah 4:42 pm 23 Jun 13

Alternatively,perhaps have an epiphany and accept that the money should be spent on health eg reduce waiting times for elective surgery and in emergency rooms.One could even channel the money into improving the education system and also use a small portion of it to actually fix the broken justice system instead of blowing it on light rail FFS.

gungsuperstar 12:07 pm 23 Jun 13

I’m normally a fan of big, ambitious infrastructure projects, and I like Corbell’s enthusiasm and dedication to this project.

But this has got white elephant written all over. Canberran’s don’t want to catch public transport, they only really do it when they have to. I can’t believe that a light rail will change this – the Gunghahlin-Civic route is among the worst in Canberra, and despite the fact that buses do the journey quicker, people still don’t use them.

And when you consider how few people live within walking distance of the corridor that the light rail will likely take, you’re relying on park and ride. If I’m in my car anyway, why am I going to drive, deal with parking (which, being Canberra, will only remain free for 5 minutes) and then still have to deal with the public transport?

This is suuuuch a bad idea. Spend the money on a new stadium. Spend it cleaning up the lakes. Spend it upgrading the Action network to become something people will use – improve existing park and ride facilities, or convenience of services.

But don’t waste all this money on a duplication of services that people already don’t use.

bundah 11:58 am 23 Jun 13

Ben_Dover said :

Dear Simon.

We don’t want a light rail thanks, so you can stop now.

Yours sincerely,

Canberra

Exactly,before you really bugger things up.Oh wait you already have!

Ben_Dover 10:00 am 23 Jun 13

Dear Simon.

We don’t want a light rail thanks, so you can stop now.

Yours sincerely,

Canberra

banco 3:20 pm 22 Jun 13

justin heywood said :

“Sorry Simon, but hiring some office staff does not put a railway “on track”

Indeed. The Director’s principal role will be to generate a steady stream of press releases announcing:
-further studies
-preliminary consultations and debate about where stations will be and where lines will run
-‘artisist impressions’ mock ups and draft route maps, thus generating further no-cost positive CT press for Govco

The successful applicant’s strategic role will be to continue to generate the impression that enough is happening to keep the Greens and the light rail enthusiasts quiet while not committing Govco to anything much.

I think my cynicism can be excused. These days a press release doesn’t have to be true, it just has to be true enough.

Better they stall then waste billions building the stupid thing. At least Corbell in his heart of hearts knows the economics of it make no sense.

bundah 12:10 pm 22 Jun 13

Wow it’s ‘on track’? Talk about premature ejaculation!!!!!

justin heywood 12:09 pm 22 Jun 13

“Sorry Simon, but hiring some office staff does not put a railway “on track”

Indeed. The Director’s principal role will be to generate a steady stream of press releases announcing:
-further studies
-preliminary consultations and debate about where stations will be and where lines will run
-‘artisist impressions’ mock ups and draft route maps, thus generating further no-cost positive CT press for Govco

The successful applicant’s strategic role will be to continue to generate the impression that enough is happening to keep the Greens and the light rail enthusiasts quiet while not committing Govco to anything much.

I think my cynicism can be excused. These days a press release doesn’t have to be true, it just has to be true enough.

HiddenDragon 11:16 am 22 Jun 13

The point-to-point cameras, to ensure that the thing doesn’t go too fast, will be finished first. Once again, we are reminded of the fully staffed, perfectly functioning, patient-free hospital in Yes Minister.

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