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Your views: on a city underground rail loop

Today, readers comment on a call to revolutionise Adelaide rail services.

Nov 09, 2023, updated Nov 09, 2023
The Transport Action Network's vision for the public transport system includes an Adelaide underground rail loop with strategically-placed stations.

The Transport Action Network's vision for the public transport system includes an Adelaide underground rail loop with strategically-placed stations.

Commenting on the story: City underground rail key to Adelaide group’s new transport vision

The suggested loop for an underground line seems relatively small and focussed on the north east of the city.

Surely a better configuration would have stations at the four parks, the main station plus one where the line crosses King William St at the south of the city. This would give everyone in the city easy access to the line, and any one travelling into the city access to all of the city. – David Rennie

The new transport vision for Adelaide (and inner regions) is a good one, but not near bold enough.

Yes, an underground city loop connecting through outskirts of CBD to key population corridors makes sense. Catering for increased capacity as our city embraces lower emissions policy is a no-brainer. Linking the city to the increasingly busy airport is a must, as is linking the CBD via outer suburbs to key tourism areas; the Port, the Adelaide Hills, the Barossa Valley, and the McLaren down the Fleurieu Peninsula to Victor Harbour.

But what else? Any vision for a new network must entail incorporation of all these things: Catering for continuing residential growth; innovative connection between all shared vehicle modes of transport from trains (light rail emphasis) to trams, cars, buses (smaller a la Perth metro), bikes and scooters; effective inclusion of walking components of each trip; improving bicycle rideability throughout our flat urban and inner regional environment; and no automatic discounting of some overhead infrastructure where tunnels don’t tick the boxes.

A new network that delivers reliable departure and arrival synchronicity such that people who cannot afford to live in the CBD but who are vital to it – police, emergency workers, teachers, nurses, caterers and cleaners – can get to and from work cheaply and efficiently.

A network that can deliver and disperse more people, more effectively must simply be more than a pipe-dream. Federal monies must be leveraged (not redirected as usual to NSW and Vic) and talented planners and engineers have to be brought in from the get go.

Great idea, get to it Adelaide! – Howard MacPherson

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This is “cloud cuckoo land” stuff. $3 billion to $5 billion for the underground loop – a figure plucked out of the air.

Adelaide simply does not have the population to support a project like this. Also, our rail network does not serve the eastern suburbs and never has and most likely never will. The Belair line wasn’t electrified, but it could have been by lowering the rail tracks about 1 metre.

We had a great tram network until 1958 then the former MTT decided buses were the go – many cities around the world have introduced trams or expanded their tram networks. Getting rid of the trams was most likely the single biggest transport planning mistake made in the history of the state (along with the one-way Southern Expressway).

And yes, we still have freight trains coming through the hills – their destinations are in the north and north west of the metro area – why hasn’t the line from Monarto to Sedan been reinstated and then extended to Truro and then to Gawler so the

Almost anything would be an improvement on the 10km money pit/bomb shelter that is the South Road tunnel project.

In fact, an upgrade, extension and standardisation of rail will see a reduction in the need for road use by both cars and freight. Unfortunately the Dept for Planning, Transport etc has a false view of future needs, based on reports by consultants who took no account of the declining use of fossil fuel. I think the government will have to overhaul the department before it will seriously address this issue. – David Inkster

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