Sheridan Tate from Coolaroo speaking outside Gowrie Station
Fawkner residents rely on the Upfield train line as the primary public transport link into the city.
Residents and others from up and down the Upfield line attended a rally on Saturday in Bonwick Street to push for more trains, track duplication and upgrade of the Upfield line. See full report (including speeches) at the Upfield Transport Alliance: Duplicate the Upfield Line needs to be a priority says Fawkner Rally.
Sign at bus stop opposite Gowrie Station on Sydney Road
Updated 5th October: with a response from Frank Maguire MP, and response from Level Crossing Removal Authority. Update 9 October with response from Metro Trains re disability access for replacement bus service
Public Transport Victoria and Level Crossing Removal Authority have failed to explain why trains will terminate at Coburg Station instead of Gowrie Station.
Due to Level Crossing Removal activity at Camp Road trains will terminate at Coburg station from 8.30pm Thursday 26 October to the last service on Monday 30 October. A bus service from Coburg to Upfield will replace the train. This disruption will be repeated during November and December.
Unfortunately buses aren’t as friendly for wheelchair users, or for cyclists who use the train. What about people who use mobility scooters? Will they be catered for? These people are particularly negatively affected, as well as regular users of Batman, Merlynston, Fawkner and Gowrie stations.
I don’t see why trains can’t terminate at Gowrie, where there are points north of the station before the M80 bridge allowing a train to go beyond the station then come back heading to the city.
Merlynston Station (Photo: Wiki Commons)
The State Government has just handed down it’s 2013 budget. As expected, there is little for public transport, or meeting it’s own environmental election promises. Instead we see more support for brown coal which contributes to climate change, and to major road projects like initial funding for the east west link which will result in a public-private partnership and a privately managed tollroad which you and I will pay to travel on. The Metro rail tunnel and other badly needed rail network extensions have been effectively shelved by the current Government.
It hurts even more when the State Government ignores basic maintenaince and simple upgrades which benefit public transport commuters. Melbourne’s inner middle northern suburbs residents are calling out for existing station car parks to be resurfaced, at the cost of several thousand dollars, to avoid injuries such as broken ankles sustained from potholes in the gravel carpark surface.
Both local state MPs, Christine Campbell representing Pascoe Vale and Bronwyn Halfpenny representing Thomastown (which includes Fawkner), have moved motions this year in State Parliament to rezone Moreland’s northern suburbs to be entirely within public transport zone 1. This is a particular inconsistency which often affects local residents on short public transport trips in the north of the municipality.