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Light Rail Stage 1 Construction

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Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #100 on: December 19, 2018, 05:18:07 PM »
A senior manager of Metro Operations has now made it clear that Canberra has the widest width.

There are 3 widths available in the Urbos 3 family and Canberra does indeed have the widest version at 2.65m.

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #101 on: December 19, 2018, 11:37:39 PM »
One of the issues leading to the completion delay is the complex interaction between various approvals, with some  required by other approvals and accreditation. Apparently because light rail had never before been done in Canberra, the ACT had no procedure in place to issue some of the approvals involved. This apparently lead to some activities having to be put on hold while approval issue or exemption processes were put in place.

(A theoretical example illustrating the sort of issues that can arise, was my experience on moving from Queensland. I had an about to expire Queensland Flagperson licence/permit which couldn't be transferred, because at that time the ACT did not issue Flagperson licences/permits. Nor could it be renewed in Queensland as I no longer was a Queensland resident. Any national accreditation, or say an insurance policy, requiring the applicant, among other things, to demonstrate Flagpersons were in possession of such a qualification would have been stymied, leading to delay while it was sorted out. Boat licences are another example, fortunately overcome here by NSW issuing their licence to ACT residents.)

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #102 on: January 02, 2019, 01:19:57 PM »
What should be a positive light rail article, saying there are only $7m in variations, has been turned into a negative headline by the ever helpful Canberra Crimes.

https://www.canberratimes.com.au/politics/act/30-000-for-a-bird-s-eye-view-of-light-rail-20190101-p50p1w.html

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #103 on: January 02, 2019, 10:08:01 PM »
What should be a positive light rail article, saying there are only $7m in variations, has been turned into a negative headline by the ever helpful Canberra Crimes.

Hear hear. Check out the Sydney project for real issues.

Negative comments also abound in letters to the editor. Most commentators and letter writers choose to quote the whole cost and imply the entire cost could be freely transferred to non-transport needs such as health. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is also often baldly stated that buses are better/cheaper.

The problem is that non-transport benefits and non-direct cost benefits such as ride quality, are being ignored, thus  apples are being compared with oranges.

The light rail has to supply and maintain its entire system including its vehicles, right of way, all that landscaping, and, during construction,  adjustment to services. We are never told how much money will be saved from the ACT budget from acquiring fewer buses, from no longer maintaining the previous median and landscaping, from not constructing otherwise needed bus (and perhaps extra traffic) lanes along the route, nor what budget expenditure is avoided by the maintenance, upgrading, and cleaning of ACT services undertaken during construction (yes, the savings may be indirect where they accrue to the Government businesses such as ICON, which in turn benefits potential 'dividends' receivable by the Government).

Now by comparison, how much cost does Transport Canberra/ACTION attribute to ACTION for maintenance of roads used by buses? (For many suburban streets, bus use is the main heavy vehicle use which requires stronger pavement construction and accelerates deterioration. Just look carefully to see pavement deterioration/failures in progress near quite a few  stops.) Does ACTION maintain the median in Adelaide Ave between the bus lanes? Was the cost of recently provided bus lanes attributed to ACTION? Does ACTION pay fuel tax and how much is likely to be recouped from Federal Grants? What flexibility value (and flexibility has its downside of insecurity of routes) and poorer ride values are attributed? And so on.

I do not have the answers, but the point is that comparisons are complex indeed, and the local paper is letting citizens down by not addressing the pros and cons adequately, and allowing the almost complete dominance of negative letters to the editor.

Offline Toyota Camry

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #104 on: January 06, 2019, 08:35:49 PM »
It is looking like much of the electrical work for stage 1 will be need to be re-done; I am predicting an opening delayed until 2020.

With the L1 to be most likely operated using buses from April 27th, in addition to the new network, it is looking highly likely that the withdrawn Renaults at both Fyshwick and Tuggeranong will be reactivated; I am tipping that L1 will be operated exclusively with articulated and 14.5m vehicles.

https://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/act/white-elephant-fears-canberra-light-rail-network-won-t-be-certified-20181213-p50m69.html
« Last Edit: January 06, 2019, 08:38:11 PM by Toyota Camry »

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #105 on: January 06, 2019, 09:02:38 PM »
It must be the apprentice getting his kickers in a knot. Because who ever passed that info to the Canberra crimes doesnít know much.

For high voltage power the depth is 750mm but can be as low as 100mm if there is concrete on top.

The article talks about the conduits being mmís from the surface but when you look at the picture you can see the top of the gutter and a pit of some sort and they are much lower than that. Certainly not 750mm but not mmís as implied. Looks to me to be at least 100mm which is all that is required if concreted.

Also going by the conduit sizes it looks like the cables are actually for the traffic lights in which case it would be low voltage anyway so 500mm deep but again can be shallower if concrete is on top.

And guess what the article says the ďpitĒ which is the wrong description has been covered by concrete. So only needs to be 100mm which it is!

As for the pits filling with water, all I can say is derrrr. No crap Sherlock. All pits fill with water. They are not water proof, only need to look at the covers to see that. They have holes in them to open them (which obviously lets in water) and they donít have water proof seals. Pits also have holes in them to let the water wick out but that takes time. It also stops then floating up if there is lots of water in the surrounding ground which also means they fill with water. Who would have thought hey?

The cables that are installed in under ground pits are designed to go in water. They will have an outer jacket, be hell filled and then contain what is normally found in an above ground cable.

All joints are done above ground in pillars (of which there are many on the light rail route) or in above ground wiring cabinets which are at every stop and they can be in the pit using water proof connectors.

Looks like a beat up by someone and the union who have an axe to grind.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #106 on: January 06, 2019, 09:05:08 PM »
Ps should say I am no sparky, but I am a licenced and experienced data communications tech with 27 years experience.

Part of the data cabling licence is knowing the rules for power depth so we can keep appropriate separation. And I have worked with outdoor data cables and pits. Only ever find a dry one if there has been no rain for weeks.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2019, 09:06:30 PM by ajw373 »

Offline Barry Drive

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #107 on: January 07, 2019, 10:00:50 AM »
It is looking like much of the electrical work for stage 1 will be need to be re-done;

https://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/act/white-elephant-fears-canberra-light-rail-network-won-t-be-certified-20181213-p50m69.html
The Canberra Times has very little credibility when it comes to reporting Light Rail/Tram matters. And using the "White Elephant" phrase in the headline doesn't help matters.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2019, 07:18:29 PM by Barry Drive »

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #108 on: January 07, 2019, 11:11:40 AM »
At least half the electrical traction supply, being from the depot to Gungahlin has been powered on. How could that be permitted if safety fundamentals have not been met? Someone suitably qualified had to test and sign off on the work before powering on took place.

I think a bookie would offer long odds on delay till 2020.
 

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #109 on: January 07, 2019, 11:20:59 AM »
With the L1 to be most likely operated using buses from April 27th, in addition to the new network, it is looking highly likely that the withdrawn Renaults at both Fyshwick and Tuggeranong will be reactivated;

Having a bunch of reactivatable buses in storage is only half of the equation. Would there be enough surplus drivers available (with long term overtime being unsuitable on OH&S grounds)?

Offline Toyota Camry

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #110 on: January 07, 2019, 12:21:27 PM »
It only takes 1 day of training to upgrade a car license to an MR licence; new drivers can be produced quickly if they are not learning a large number of routes, alternatively drivers can easily be sourced from Sydney.

Offline Sylvan Loves Buses

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #111 on: January 07, 2019, 05:25:44 PM »
I am predicting an opening delayed until 2020...

If that'll delay network '19 even further, many people including myself will be pleased.

Offline Barry Drive

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #112 on: January 08, 2019, 07:35:38 PM »
Canberra Times "walking back" prevous article:

https://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/act/non-compliant-light-rail-could-still-get-accreditation-20190107-p50pyr.html

They are still trying to push the line it's "non-compliant" without any real proof.

The statement that it may cause a risk "to contractors digging in the area, possibly in decades' time" seems to ignore that the high voltage cables are (mostly?) buried in the median between the tracks.

Offline Stan butler

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #113 on: January 08, 2019, 08:02:32 PM »
Interesting today just after the storm - I noticed the section of the tracks just outside the entrance to Epic was completely under water. Yep totally submerged by a few Centimetres.

I know I have written about this before but I got shot down for mentioning it then, but I will say it again. After a short storm, I cannot see how they can allow the train to operate with submerged tracks - even if it is only a few cms.

Alas, the bus I was in at the time was still able to get through.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #114 on: January 08, 2019, 08:28:59 PM »
Canberra Times "walking back" prevous article:

https://www.canberratimes.com.au/national/act/non-compliant-light-rail-could-still-get-accreditation-20190107-p50pyr.html

They are still trying to push the line it's "non-compliant" without any real proof.

The statement that it may cause a risk "to contractors digging in the area, possibly in decades' time" seems to ignore that the high voltage cables are (mostly?) buried in the median between the tracks.

I noticed that too. Yesterday it was public safety in publically accessible locations, today the concern is contractors in the future digging up concrete.

One would hope any future contractor would dial before they dig, or maybe look at the plans which will show where the lower than usual conduits are.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #115 on: January 08, 2019, 08:34:55 PM »
Interesting today just after the storm - I noticed the section of the tracks just outside the entrance to Epic was completely under water. Yep totally submerged by a few Centimetres.

I know I have written about this before but I got shot down for mentioning it then, but I will say it again. After a short storm, I cannot see how they can allow the train to operate with submerged tracks - even if it is only a few cms.

Alas, the bus I was in at the time was still able to get through.

Not going to shoot you down in flames but curious as to why you would think submerged tracks after heavy rain is a safety risk and why it would be ok for a bus to go through similar heavy sitting water?

The way I see it the risk to steel on steel in water is slippage, but the risk of rubber on water on a road is aquaplanning. One could have a bad result the other a vehicle not moving very far.

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #116 on: January 30, 2019, 09:54:27 PM »
LRV005, under its own power, arrived yesterday, Tues 29/1/2019, at Alinga St terminus. (Ref: Canberra Metro web site and media.)
It is reported in media as the first to Alinga St under its own power, but in 'early December' an LRV (fleet number?) was towed to Alinga St..
It was further reported in media that driver training along Northbourne Ave to Alinga St would commence tomorrow, 31/1/2019. 

Offline Busnerd

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #117 on: January 31, 2019, 09:38:05 AM »
Then you've answered your own contradiction, under it's own power means it drover there itself, when it was towed, it was pulled along by the diesel unimog, hence the term it is the first one arrive under it's own power.

Offline Barry Drive

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #118 on: January 31, 2019, 10:53:17 AM »


... in 'early December' an LRV (fleet number?) was towed to Alinga St..


Did you see it towed to Alinga St? I wasn't sure one made it that far until now, and the track appeared to have been fenced off.

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #119 on: January 31, 2019, 11:39:18 AM »
Then you've answered your own contradiction, under it's own power means it drover there itself, when it was towed, it was pulled along by the diesel unimog, hence the term it is the first one arrive under it's own power.

What contradiction? Read the post again. The post reported matters published in media. The only question, in brackets and signified by a question mark, was what was the LRV fleet number of the towed/pushed LRV. Can you help with that?

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #120 on: January 31, 2019, 11:56:17 AM »

Did you see it towed to Alinga St? I wasn't sure one made it that far until now, and the track appeared to have been fenced off.

That was what the web site/media reporting said. No, I didn't see it. The nearest to Alinga St terminus I have personally seen an LRV was at Wakefield Ave late last year.

So can anyone actually confirm the veracity of the reporting? If previous patterns of testing were followed then a towed/pushed arrival would have occurred before any powered arrival.

The important aspect is the historical record. What was the date the first LRV reached Alinga St by any means? and what was its fleet number?

(Relying on the web site/media reports, the date and fleet number of first arrival of an LRV at Alinga St using its own propulsion is now known.)

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #121 on: January 31, 2019, 12:34:52 PM »
I seem to recall that 009 made it to Civic late one night under tow.

That was around the time late last year where they had one stationed near Dickson for a few weeks. If I remember 009 was the first one to make it to Dickson and the tow to Civic was part of that testing. If I recall after the test they towed it to the Wakefield Ave intersection on the Gungahlin bound track which is where it spend the day. 

As to how it made it there with the fencing in place (this is in reference to another post above) the answer is obvious, they removed the fencing for the testing!

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #122 on: February 01, 2019, 11:22:40 PM »
Took a return rte 200 trip City - Gungahlin today.

There were no LRVs to be seen, but vehicles and plant foul of the tracks were at scattered locations all along the corridor, and the overhead was safety earthed near Well Station Rd. Signage warned of use for testing at numerous points along the route.

 Most of the work seemed to be associated with activities in access pits with some spot excavations adjacent to the track slab. It might be inferred that defect corrections is a major part of the activity seen. On the return journey several groups of workers/staff were noticed looking at/discussing things. One staffer was seen doing the time honoured measurement technique of pacing out a distance with metre (or yard?) strides between a slab side excavated hole and a point between the rails a metre or so along the track. The impression gained was of design/decision making on the spot.

Gungahlin terminus paving is at last near enough to complete, with much detail activity at en route stops. Little finishing touches are now appearing such as white hold lines at traffic (T) signals. These, being on pale concrete are delineated on the transverse edges with thinner black lines.

The pedestrian crossings are mostly arranged with a crossing offset to prevent pedestrians charging across in a straight line. Concrete paving and kerbing for these is now mostly complete, but the guide fencing is yet to be provided. Nor did I notice any provision for fencing attachment so assume fixings will be drilled during installation.

An unusual traffic signal, I have never seen anywhere before, controls the right turn lane from the South bound side of Northbourne Ave to the North side near Murdoch St.. Instead of the usual right turn arrows (R, Y, G) the signal is equipped with 'U' turn arrows - very thoughtful.

Many of the newly planted saplings have very distinct bent/leaning trunks, and I wonder will that correct itself as they grow, or intervention will be needed?

Finally, I commented a long while ago on a couple of overhead spreaders that were at staggered heights on the same support pole. The reason is now apparent. The higher spreaders are at locations where contact wire electrical sectioning equipment which need more clearance from the spreader are installed. The sectioning of the two directions are not at the same place hence only one spreader is higher at each location. No doubt this is a result of a desire to place sectioning at locations where the LRV is unlikely to stop with the pantograph pickup right at the 'dead' spot.

Overall, the finish line seems visually, to be tantalisingly close.

 

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #123 on: February 02, 2019, 09:46:32 AM »
Are they planning on having fences at the crossings? Donít recall seeing them on the plans. Whilst people can and do step over the concrete, I gather that are more to stop bikes racing through and provide a ďreminderĒ to pedestrians.

That said some of the stops could do with a fence on the back end of the platforms. McAuthur Ave being the prime example. The drop at the back is a good 500mm. And Alinga Street may well do with them along the whole block, though I see they are building a small decorative concrete wall at present.

As for the bent trees funny you mention that because yesterday afternoon on flemmington road the landscapers were installing some extra stakes on some trees to pull them back. And there is one further down that has, for some time now had a strap attached to the metal ropes pulling it back. Assuming it was done by then the theory on that one is bend it back more than straight. That said look at most gum trees and they donít grow straight anyway.

And certainly interesting how they have dug a new trench along the tracks on Flemington road and dig up the landscaping. From what Iíve seen it hasnít been spot digging (except where they did two bigger digs around stormwater connections. 

Obviously they forgot to put some service in, but have not actually seen them putting anything into the tench they have been digging. So who knows. They are pulling in fibre along that stretch too. Maybe related, but donít think so as the cable is going into pits in the centre of the track alignment not on the outside.

Offline Barry Drive

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #124 on: February 03, 2019, 01:09:29 PM »
An unusual traffic signal, I have never seen anywhere before, controls the right turn lane from the South bound side of Northbourne Ave to the North side near Murdoch St.. Instead of the usual right turn arrows (R, Y, G) the signal is equipped with 'U' turn arrows - very thoughtful.
You will also find U-turn signals on Moreshead Drive.

As for the fences - don't know if there will be permanent fences or not, but right now many crossings have temporary fences on the inside of the race. I've also noticed some crossings have little signs near the pedestrian crossing beg buttons.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #125 on: February 03, 2019, 02:08:22 PM »
U turn signals also on Majura Parkway Gungahlin bound just before Federal Hwy intersection.

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #126 on: February 03, 2019, 10:52:09 PM »
You will also find U-turn signals on Moreshead Drive.

As for the fences - don't know if there will be permanent fences or not, but right now many crossings have temporary fences on the inside of the race. I've also noticed some crossings have little signs near the pedestrian crossing beg buttons.

Must say it never crossed my mind that there wouldn't be effective barriers/fences to prevent short cuts. The temporary barriers mentioned in the quote just reinforced my expectation. OH&S aspects, particularly for LRV drivers, would also seem to mandate that steps to prevent 'short cuts' would be necessary. It did occur to me that shrubbery could be used (planted/heavy planter boxes) but i doubted that would be the case due to maintenance and assurance of effectiveness needs and discarded the thought. Time will tell.

Thank you Barry Drive and AJW373 for info on specific 'U' turn traffic lights. Just shows how little I happen to use those roads, but will look for them if I happen to go past. Any others?

Finally, something I forgot to mention in the report on the trip to Gungahlin.
A few days ago there was a letter to the Canberra Times editor about the desirability of the LRV corridor as a cycling path. Didn't take long, at the Barton Highway junction I saw a southbound cyclist happily headed south in the corridor.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #127 on: February 04, 2019, 07:33:14 AM »
Iíve had a bit of a closer look at the plans. It seems most/all side platforms stops will have fences on the back end from platform end to the bottom of the pedestrian ramp.

https://www.nca.gov.au/sites/default/files/consultation/ARCHITECTURAL%20DRAWNGS%20-%20ELOUERA%20STREET%20STOP%20-%20Stage%201%20Light%20Rail%20-%20Stops%20and%20Mid-Block%20Crossings.pdf


But pedestrian crossing wonít have fences on the foot high walls. Just some skate board treatment, which I suspect are the groves that are in the walls.

As mentioned people stepping over then wonít be the reason for them being there. But would think at some intersections, Barry drive for example fencing will be a better way to control the pedestrians.

  https://www.nca.gov.au/sites/default/files/consultation/MID-BLOCK%20CROSSING%20-%20DETAIL%20%28PLAN%20and%20SECTION%29%20-%20%20Stage%201%20Light%20Rail%20-%20Stops%20and%20Mid-Block%20Crossings_0.pdf



Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #128 on: February 05, 2019, 12:01:21 AM »
Mon 4/2/19 update.
LRV 2 was stationary (with pantagraph up) at N bound side at Alinga St terminal at lunchtime. An hour later it was stationary at Dickson Interchange. At this time an un-numbered LRV was moving S towards the Swinden St stop.

No other LRV seen, and corridor N of depot was safety earthed with vehicles and plant foul of the tracks, mainly between Nullabor Ave and Gungahlin. (Safety earthing I think is a conductor clipped to overhead contact wire and to the rail thus causing a short circuit and breaker opening should electric current be applied to the contact wire.)

Offline triumph

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #129 on: February 15, 2019, 11:55:25 PM »
Noted today.
LRV 006 & 009 active mid afternoon in section Nullabor Ave to Gungahlin.
Road work (pavement finishing).
Drainage activity.
Lanscape watering by water lorry equipped with spray and escorted by traffic safety vehicle at rear. Probably a daily activity.
Ticket validators have been installed at Gungahlin and in progress at other stops. The Gungahlin validators seem to be plentifully located.
Temporary signs blue disc with 'BRAKING POINT'; and black discs with white 'T'. These signs have been in use as long as LRVs have been operating. Presumably for obvious reasons, but any subtle nuances?

Offline Barry Drive

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #130 on: February 18, 2019, 12:13:35 PM »
Platform validators have been installed down to Nullarbor Av. For the island platforms, there appear to be 4 in total - 2 at the entrance and another 2 on the platform.

Work was going on today to replace some of the concrete covers over the electrical pits along Flemington Road.

There also seemed to be some (more) track rectification work outside the depot.

Night testing will occur this week, reportedly to check the operation of the traffic lights.

Offline ajw373

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Re: Light Rail Stage 1 Construction
« Reply #131 on: Yesterday at 07:56:13 AM »
There also seemed to be some (more) track rectification work outside the depot.

Drove past the depot yesterday arvo and some serious re-work going in there, must be taking advantage of the lull in testing for a few days. They had what seemed to be big tents, or at the least a big fence with white plastic on it around the track outside the depot and just inside, with a lot of concrete dust going everywhere.

Not sure what is wrong with that area but it seems like the concrete has been reworked everyday now for the past 6 months. Lots of (minor) concrete work going on between the depot and Gungahlin too.

Also pleasing to see the final layer of road surface going down on flemmington road between the waste transfer station and Well Station Drive. Not sure why they didn't start that at the Lysaght Road intersection as the whole stretch from there needs doing. As well as south the depot and again to the Federal Highway.

Also noticed a few stops now have the ticket machines installed.