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Route 96 Project

James Adams's picture
#1

What do people think of PTV's Route 96 Project?

http://ptv.vic.gov.au/projects/trams/route-96-project/

I was quite pleased with the recent proposals for segregation from traffic and to finish the last of the level-access stops. The trams move significantly more people than the cars along these roads, and improvements like this will only encourage greater patronage.

Of course, there has also been significant opposition. The road commuters in Brunswick are upset at the loss of pretty much all on-street parking along Nicholson Street and the reduction of car lanes north of Brunswick Road. And the St Kilda traders along Acland St are also making a lot of angry noise about the loss of car parking and through car traffic. http://haveyoursayatportphillip.net.au/tram-route-96?module=guest_book&p...

In the short-term, there may be negative side-effects, but I think it's all beneficial in the medium term and that traders and car drivers fail to see that.

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Melbman's picture

I think its a required piece of work that needs to occur on other routes also.

The prioritising of trams will help drive many to use trams if the speed of the services can be improved. At present, the reliability of such services is just not there.

I like the plans, and hope it is broadened out in coming years.

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Martin Mankowski's picture

^^ Hear Hear. Its about time we stopped using the loss of parking as an excuse not to upgrade public transport.

Route 109 is an obvious candidate to be the next cab off the rank, given that much like 96, its already grade separated a lot of the way. Hope we don't have to wait too long for others to be done. Any thoughts on what other routes should be prioritised?

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James Adams's picture

Agree with you both! The slowness of trams is what drives most people to choose their car over the tram in non-peak period. I think whether the loss of parking would be a death-knell for retailers depends on the shopping strip. Acland Street St Kilda is popular enough that the loss of parking and through traffic shouldn't cause that much difficulty, if any. But shopping strips in the mid-suburbs may not fare as well, which means PTV would have to make sure each time that new carparks are constructed nearby (I know, I hate carparks too, but our PT isn't perfect enough yet that it can completely replace the car).

The 109 is an obvious candidate, especially considering it was the last "model project" before Route 96 when Labor was in power. However, there may be issues with complete segregation along Whitehorse Road, Mont Albert given that the road regularly narrows to one lane where the superstops were constructed.

After those two, Route 48 would be my next pick. I may be biased considering I live around the corner from it, but a large portion of the line is already segregated along Bridge Road, Richmond and the route regularly runs low floor trams so would work well with accessible stops.

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johnproctor's picture

86 would make sense given existing investment along high street. Also 11 maybe.

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James Adams's picture

It would be a good pick, but I thought I heard somewhere that the 86 collaboration between PTV, Yarra Trams and Darebin Council had failed. Not sure why, but probably unreasonable businesses along the corridor.

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johnproctor's picture

Not really. The travel time savings hasn't materialised but the benefit of the stops and good will of each organisation still exists.

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James Adams's picture

I travelled down Route 86 through Northcote today. It's interesting that the path chosen was to sacrifice the left lane at tram stops in favour of superstops, meaning cars must merge into the tram lane and any future proposal to make parts of the route full time tram lane would be compromised. There appears to be two different trains of thought, compared to say the Rt96 project. I guess which application works best depends on future plans, as I don't see tram only lanes through High St Northcote any time soon.

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johnproctor's picture

High street is a shopping strip and a local road so many of the changes represent that, route 96 Nicholson street is not a shopping so would have more traffic friend,y treatments and be trying to separate trams and traffic.

High street traffic is supposed to be encouraged to use st George's road and Victoria st, station st, grange road to get north... Ad is why the high street/westgarth intersection was upgraded at the time of the works. Unfortunately that detour hasn,t really worked.

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Alastair Taylor's picture

This gives me the shits like no tomorrow.

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/traders-plan-mock-funeral-for-death-of...

Traders whinging about car parking being removed - so they're all completely dependent on having car parks out the front/near their shops? 40-50 car parks gone = about capacity for 200-250 people who could drive in and park on Acland. That's like 1-2 of the new E-Class trams worth of capacity.

What the hell is small business in these areas going to be doing in the long term when development intensifies and more foot traffic is generated?

Trees. Meet Forest. And v.v.

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Alastair Taylor's picture

Section 3 - information and data review, a v good read http://haveyoursayatportphillip.net.au/document/show/647

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

Who are these people that drive to Acland Street in St. Kilda and expect to get a car park right outside the shops???

Tram speeds in Melbourne are shit and getting worse, the government has to put it's foot down and so no more!

Vicroads and a small group of fearful local traders have held back the Iconic Melbourne tram network and the hundreds of thousands of people that use it every day (and the hundreds of thousands more who would use it if it was faster and more reliable) for far too long.

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Martin Mankowski's picture

Couldn't agree more with you both. Every time i hear this ridiculous excuse it takes all my will power not to email these groups with an expletive ridden lecture!

Lets do the math - 50 car spaces, each car capable of 5 passengers a car and staying for lets say 2 hours at a time, gives 125 potential customers per hour. The new E class trams can carry 210 passengers, at a frequency of every 10 mins (maybe more frequent after the upgrade) gives 1260 potential passengers an hour!!! And thats not counting people who walk or ride there. Are these people insane???

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gobillino's picture

Given the fact that Port Phillip Council have commissioned work that suggests that the changes will likely have a positive impact on trade, it's pretty weak of them to say nothing other than the fact that there's been insufficient community consultation!

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gobillino's picture

http://www.portphillip.vic.gov.au/november-2013-media_5222.htm

"Council commissioned studies by economics firms Charter Keck Cramer and SGS Economics and Planning to better understand the economic and business impacts of the upgrades on Acland and Fitzroy Streets.

The studies found the plans to make the tram stops more accessible to people with disabilities were also likely to lift visitor numbers and spending across St Kilda Precinct, and would provide the impetus for broader investment to enhance the lifestyle precinct. Tram route 96 is one of Melbourne’s busiest tram routes. Due to its popularity the State Government and PTV made it the first route to be upgraded to accommodate the new 33-metre low-floor trams."

This is more like it Port Phillip!

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johnproctor's picture

upgrade of Port Junction as part of Route 96 to go ahead in April as tweeted by Adam Carey...

includes dedicated Tramcar restaurant platform to avoid regular route trams being stuck behind the restaurant trams loading.

http://www.yarratrams.com.au/using-trams/service-changes/service-changes...

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johnproctor's picture

Also more info on the Blyth street terminus upgrade...

http://ptv.vic.gov.au/projects/trams/route-96-project/route-96-improveme...

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Martin Mankowski's picture
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johnproctor's picture

Unfortunately they had already done that 2 years ago and then twiddled their thumbs for 2 years before re committing to it all.
local government farce at force on this project.

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johnproctor's picture

Also port junction is happening this week! Just saw my post above 'confirming' it was happening in April 2015. Delayed twice since then. April was pushed back for network reasons and I think replanted for sept/oct but given this area is prone to flooding (overland flow not the Yarra bursting its banks) it was decided to push to summer to minimise risk of a flood event during construction.

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Alastair Taylor's picture

Here's 96, end-to-end, driver's eye view from March 2015

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