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Discussion in 'Other Public Transport' started by EbbwJunction1, 21 Sep 2015.
2020 seems so far away but I'm "of an age" so it'll come round soon enough....
I cannot understand why a short N Station tramway spur requires a terminus. Surely a crossover and a platform close to North Station would be sufficient, and allowing the the line able to be extended one day to say Layton and/ or one of the most popular all year round destination - Victoria Hospital.
Pleasure Beach to Bispham including 'tour de town' on a rammed tram sounds delightful. A shuttle service may be more practical.
A seaside Town Hotel on the site of Wilkinsons, Dickson Road, without a sea view? lol! There are plenty of good spots available on the Prom.
The Sands 5* Hotel - fingers crossed will be a success.
It's a strange one because the platform will be boxed in by the new hotel, which makes it difficult to extend directly.
There are still options to extend inland: through the proposed underpass or branching off a different way but neither of those are optimal cost-wise.
Obviously they're not thinking of further inland extensions for a long time (especially since it upset taxis and town centre shops), and will likely set the South Fylde Line as the next target.
I am not sure that the extension has been designed to "future proof" any further plans, if I'm honest. As you say @seasidersfan the costs of going from North would make any extension unlikely to be accepted. I cannot see the Fylde line being transferred or tram-train'd either. It has been looked at before, it surely is a non-starter.
Definitely not a non-starter. It's been identified as an ambition in local planning policies and studies have concluded it's commercially viable. New housing and buisness development along that line plus increasing passengers and revenue growth will surely further improve the business case. A lot of public support too.
Two options I suppose
a) a tram (not a tram train) to Kirkham, replacing the train service, closure of Blackpool South
b) a tram-train to the east end of Lytham alongside the existing train service
Both would require a tramway connection from Starr Gate and redoubling the railway as far as Lytham. Option b probably the better one as there is commuter/school traffic along the line to Preston, but this would require a separate fleet, not just an add-on to the Flexity 2 fleet. The long-awaited Sheffield tram-train may tell us something!
Not sure why you are saying a tram-train unless you are planning to continue the railway service from Preston to Blackpool South. I would have thought conversion of the Blackpool South line to a tramway with an interchange at Kirkham with through ticketing. How about making the connection with the promenade trams at Waterloo Road? Did trams not make this connection in the old days? I have not been to Blackpool South for a number of years but Google Street View does appear to show an area where the road and railway levels can be connected.
Or option 'C':
Connect the tramway to the line at Pleasure Beach Station (Starr Gate may not be possible because of a new housing estate being in the way). Fully convert to double-track tramway between Blackpool Pleasure Beach and St Anne's on the Sea. Single line tramway between St Anne's and Lytham, retaining the existing railway between St Anne's and Kirkham.
This was the preferred tram option at the last round of studies for the following reasons:
-Retaining a direct rail service into Lytham and St Anne's is crucial to the local tourism industry. Not as important to keep the railway north of here because those areas will soon be served by trams from Blackpool North and significant shifts away from those stations (SQU-BPS) can be expected due to proximity to existing tramway.
-Extension to Kirkham and full tram conversion would be more optimal for passengers, but the business case is severely hurt by the miles of fields between Lytham and Kirkham. Trams work best in urban environments such as the (mostly) continuous corridor between Blackpool and Lytham. This option doesn't rule out extension to Kirkham (or even Warton/Freckleton) at a later date if funds are available.
-Tram-trains are not needed unless extended to Kirkham/Preston due to frequent stop distribution between Lytham and Blackpool, so would have the same cost problems as above. Again not ruled out though in later phases.
-This option is very flexible and can be phased according to avaliable funding. For example, initial link to St Anne's and Lytham later.
The northern part of the Oldham Loop isn't really any more or less rural, and that works well enough.
I think extending to Kirkham has a massive advantage - it removes the need for the Preston-Blackpool South DMU entirely.
I agree. But Blackpool doesn't have either the funding pots nor the influence that TfGM does and therefore splitting into phases might be the only way.
The new extension to North Station has now been connected up with the existing tracks on Talbot Road. Great to see this finally happening!
I can't believe how long all this work is actually taking. It's only a short section of track, and costing a fortune.
It's pretty consistent with other schemes of this type... The Wolverhampton metro extension is taking longer, costing more and is actually shorter!
Is THAT what they're doing on the road? When I was there for the illuminations, I was sure they were rebuilding the whole town in some massive Docklands style regeneration project.
Not putting down tracks for a tram!!
I think many are underestimating just how much work laying a new tramline actually involves. Whilst the work to North Pier has been protracted, it hasn't been much more so than most other second generation tramways (that applies worldwide, not just to the UK).
It's not simply a case of laying down some rails and covering them in tarmac. Any utilities running underneath roads need to be diverted or strengthened to ensure that the additional weight can be sustained. In some cases this can become quite involved if it requires substantial lengths of diversions or major re-engineering of Victorian etc. structures. In the case of North Station it's also required the excavation of numerous older levels of road surface, and the removal of a not insignificant length of original tramway rails, which were simply covered over after the closure of the original North Station route from Talbot Square.
As I say, this is no different to the work done for many other modern tramways - check out some of the construction photos of, for example, Fleetwood or NET Phase 2.
Or check out some for the European tramways to see how it can be done much quicker !
If anyone talks to you about German efficiency in transport construction just say Berlin Brandenburg Airport to them. Planned to open in 2011 now expected to open in 2020. I have no idea of the cost overrun on this project.
Berlin Tempelhof Airport closed in 2008 in anticipation of the opening of the new airport which means that Berlin Tegel Airport is currently running at over capacity.
I seem to end up at Schönefeld(SXF) - but then I usually take Squeezyjet from Manchester. Its better cos it has a station, even though its a bit of a walk.
Personally ive been impressed with the efficiency of the contractor and the progress of the work on what looks like massive over design. I can't get my head round why there's so much concrete and so much unrelated work to pavements and infastructure. Looking at schemes like Melbourne on YouTube the bed looks 3 times deeper and was pretty solid with the former Layton tracks before they started.
Perhaps is because consultants usually get around 5% of costs so more spend equals more revenue.
The proposed terminus where Wilko will remain till 2020 looks like a huge council cockup and should have been to the side of the station. Could be 2021 before it opens.
Aren't these incompetents ever held to account.
Schönefeld was supposed to be handed over to the military when Brandenburg opened but the latest info is that Brandemburg will not now be large enough with the increase in passengers so Schönefeld will have to still be used for civilian aircraft. These two airports are adjacent and there was always intended to be common usage of some facilities.
so the new airport wont be big enough when opened. nice one.
I have posted a picture of what was going on at the Wilkos end of the extension but not sure if a mod approved them as cant see them but they uncovered lots of old tram lines when they were didggin it up and obviously this takes time to remove and or build around.
Also at the Promenade end of Talbot road they are also building a new building there too which had to have all its utilities put in before they could even think of connecting it and whilst the council have madde a cock up with the Wilko's development they have ahd to mainly wait till the end of their main money making time of year to really get a push on with their works.
SXF/Schonefeld and BER/Brandenburg aren't just adjacent, for all practical purposes they are the same airport, given that they will share that defining feature of an airport, the runways! It is simply that the SXF terminal building (which is the only one currently usable) is some way from the BER terminal building (which can't be opened because it fails the fire safety standards) But there are plenty of airports where there are multiple terminals quite some way apart. The SXF terminal will need to remain open at least until BER Phase 2 is built (some time away given that Phase 1 is still effectively incomplete) But once Phase 1 finally opens, both it and the existing SXF terminal buildings will share the BER airport code and the SXF code will be reallocated when someone requests a new code.
This is is the history of the announcements of the expected opening dates of Brandenburg Airport EDIT I had laid these dates out in columns but that does not seem to work in uploading
Announcement Opening Dates
5 September 2006 (original) 30 October 2011
25 June 2010 3 June 2012
7 May 2012 17 March 2013
27 October 2012 27 October 2013
January 2013 on/after 2014
8 January 2014 on/after 2015
24 February 2014 on/after 2016
14 May 2014 on/after 2017
December 2014 2nd half of 2017
21 January 2017 2018
15 December 2017 October 2020
No official announcement yet but indications are that the actual opening will be in 2021
A new runway was built for Brandenburg airport and is presently being used as a second runway for Schönefeld with extended taxiing times. The 2012 opening was called off 26 days before the announced opening date although all the retail outlets were ready to open The fire escape and smoke extraction problems have been known since 2012
All the Blackpool South to Preston rail service requires is a bidirectional dynamic passing loop between Lytham and St Annes.
Andsell and Fairhaven 2 tracks and 1 operational platform, trains calling there would use track on platform side. No new platforms to build.
Why go to all the trouble and expense converting it to a slower tramway service terminating at Kirkham? (another Ormskirk Kirby)
Walking out to a windswept sand blasting promenade in Winter for a slow tram is not very inviting!
Blackpool South is a good fairly fast service (although Arriva trains / DfT are causing massive inconvenience in Blackpool, atm cancellations /RRBs -must be costing Blackpool's trade a packet)
Dr Beeching said keep Central Station, and make it a transport hub!! Blackpool Council persuaded BR to keep North Station.
1) Blackpool South isn't near the town centre and other stations don't link well with economic centres (eg Pleasure Beach Station a long walk from main entrance), effectively requiring a modal change in order to reach important areas. More people from Lytham and St Anne's travel to Blackpool than anywhere else so that's the link that should be improved and an extension of the tramway would be an easy way to do that. A link by tram to Blackpool North would offer a much wider variety of services and may become a preferred station for some people.
2) The current stations don't well serve the residential population of South Fylde, because those living between stations don't bother with the service and wouldn't even with increased frequency. Light rail would provide many more stops.
3) Accessibility. We all know the infamous 'mind the gap' phrase! Much less of an issue for trams with level boarding for wheelchairs, buggies etc.
4) It's a very well supported idea. It's being campaigned for locally and thousands of people have petitioned for it to happen. The existing tram service has 97% satisfaction.
5) Environmental impact. There are no plans to electrify the South Line even if a passing loop is pursued. Why should more diesel services be encouraged over much greener light rail, in direct opposition of both local and national policies?
6) Congestion reduction. There are only two roads between Blackpool and South Fylde which leads to congestion. A new light rail link to service key areas would reduce this for reasons given above. There are opportunities to enhance this further by providing park and ride in the Squires Gate area.
7) Reliability. Thanks to the Northern fiasco and RMT strikes even an hourly rail service has been a rarity! There's every chance that a passing loop and 30 minute frequency wouldn't be met at all times by the operator (who would have no obligation to do so anyway).
Lots more reasons but that's off the top of my head!
In Blackpool last weekend and I was surprised at how heavy the daytime loadings were. Had to stand on several occasions between Bispham/Tower. I'd have thought a 15 minute service would be more then adequate, but obviously just enough.
Personally I think there would be a strong case for a 12-minute service on weekends.
Can this be accommodated with the fleet that they currently have?