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Carrying a stunning price tag of A$114b, the line wouldn’t be complete until around 2060, although the primary Sydney-Melbourne leg would be running as early as 2040, following the opening of the Sydney-Canberra line in 2035. The 1,750km of dedicated high-speed track would would run down the east cost from Brisbane to Sydney, then turn inland to reach Melbourne, with a short spur line for Canberra.
Apart from the capital city stops, other stations along the route would include the Gold Coast, Casino, Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie, Taree, Newcastle, the NSW central coast, the NSW southern highlands, Wagga Wagga, Albury-Wodonga and Shepparton.
Assuming fares similar to current airfares, it’s predicted the line would grow to carry 84 million passengers per year by 2065, with two-thirds of users being business travellers. The high-speed line would steal as much as 40% of air travel on the Brisbane-Sydney-Canberra-Melbourne corridor and 60% of regional air travel. Construction of the Australian HSR line would begin after a 15 year lead-in of planning, pre-construction and procurement of necessary lands. The line includes some 144km of tunnels, almost half of that being in the Sydney basin in order to skirt the city’s development sprawl, which would cost $33bn or almost one-third of the overall price tag. First cab off the rank would be Sydney-Canberra, recommended to begin building in 2027 with first trains running in 2035. The extension to Melbourne would open five years later, with other links added in five-year intervals.
As airlines around the world face increasing competition from superfast train services for short-range travel, an Australian firm has thrown its thinking-cap into the ring with a bullet-train capable of hurtling between cities at up to 400 kilometres per hour – that's almost 250 mph in the old currency. Australian design firm Hassell has already revealed its futuristic concept for the Aussie bullet train. Hassell calls it the Australian High Speed Vehicle or A-HSV, in a nod to Australia's iconic Holden Monaro HSV high-performance car. Hassell sees the double-decker carriages adopting a modern and spacious open-plan design for passengers, along with private berths for business meetings or those who just want to work without interruption. That said, it reminds us of the spacious lounge areas, bars and even in-flight gyms originally planned for the Boeing 747 and Airbus A380 before the commercial reality of fitting a maximum number of bums on seats took hold. David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis. Yes, "because where we're going, we don't need roads!" (Doc Emmett Brown, Back to the Future).
There is little point building a line to a lower specification with slower trains, which will then need to be upgraded later at massive cost & disruption to travellers. Far better to construct the line in stages, to high speed specification, and accept lower speeds on certain 'classic' sections for a few years. I knew someone would miss the tongue-in-cheek aspect of my post, which I thought was fairly obvious from the last sentence.
Well, if you re-read my initial post, you'll see that I didn't mention Acela or it's speed; I was talking about the definition of HSR in the US in terms of speed. I agree with you that I'm reading something that wasn't in your post - and that's the 'tounge-in-cheeck' irony you were trying to achieve! I live in Melbourne CBD and worked in Sydney CBD and in the year or so that I commuted to Sydney I can honestly say that only on a handful of occasions, literally, did I make the door to door trip in less than 3 hours, and that was doing on line check in and aiming to arrive at the airport as the aircraft commenced boarding. I agree, HSR really changes the whole dynamics of travel, even comparing the time it takes vs air travel there is no real difference and the benefits that HSR would bring are immense in terms of the consttruction of the line (employment, injection of money into the economy), longer-term economic and environmental benefits, economic development of towns along the route, even lifestyle benefits because you could live in a place like Newcastle with its beaches and fresh air and affordable housing and still work in Sydney, right in the CBD, and commute between the two every day by HSR in almost as much time as it takes today to commute to Penrith by train. The shift would free up a lot more slots (already growing due to larger aircraft replacing smaller planes), thereby preventing the need for a second Sydney airport, which is estimated to cost nearly $50bn. A second airport probably won't cost that much, and even if it does, the (mostly-recoverable) cost would be borne by the private sector.
Instead of having to crawl out to Badgery's Creek in nigmarish Sydney traffic, the HSR would link CBD to CBD. Not to mention the savings made by not building that second Sydney airport (or even more airports for Melbourne and Brisbane, or expanding Canberra airport). It doesn't change the inconvenient fact that the 114 billion will never be seen again, and no government would like that. People seem to be labouring under the impression that the airlines will cooperate and meekly shut down all these air routes, and let the government lose money shuttling them. Clearly I cannot shake you from your delusions, but it needs to be stressed again and again that both Europe and Japan have the population density to support such a network; China has the sheer size of cities to make it work. To top it off, legislating out Golden Triangle flights is anti-competitive and bordering on a police state. There are more effective ways to convey passngers between Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Brisbane.
As for your claim that capping the number of slots available to domestic airlines is anti- competitive, then we are already engaging in your definition of a "police state" (which is a touch hyperbolic).
We all have opinions but because someone's opinion is different it doesn't make it delusional! As I said, the report has suggested that for eve $1 spent on the line, a national benefit of $2.50 could result. I'd like to the company that gets paid the millions of $$$ to do the feasability study everytime the government needs an election fairy tale story. Can't agree, I downloaded the report expecting to see a lot of PR fluff but this thing is chock full of detail. Although I believe this entire thing is a non-starter, I can agree with the idea that CBR should be on the SYD-MEL main line. It's my view that there is really no need for the Sydney to Melbourne, Brisbane or Newcastle high speed rail network.
However, I believe that Sydney's 'second airport' should just be a heavily upgraded Canberra Airport, with a high speed rail link between the two cities.
Well to put the 45 years time frame in perspective, the shinkansen in Japan has been running now for 49 years, and has been evolving ever since it started. Look at the track, and it's standard gauge track - nothing special, except that the Japanese have been prepared to invest money in it. And what do we have? We need bold, visionary, positive and decisive actions implemented, similar to how the controversial new biker laws and ridiculous carbon tax were boldly put in place.
WeekendNotes is a free email newsletter which reviews fun and interesting things to do in your town or city. The original railway route of the South Coast travelled through these tunnels before its closure in 1915 (now relocated) due to health issues of trains passengers. To note*- The Preservation of these tunnels is a high priority for local groups such as The Helensburgh and District Historical Society, so please do not disturb the remnants of each site.This article will guide you through three tunnels. It is difficult to trek by foot because people must venture through shrubs and past a swamp to get to the Northern end. Before you cross the first creek, a cutting is seen to the right where it makes way for the Northern portal of the Cawley tunnel.
Robert Hails, a coal miner at Helensburgh's Metropolitan Colliery, was tragically killed by a train in 1895 as he walked through the tunnel on his way home from work.
Helensburgh Tunnel is among one of the shortest tunnels in the alignment, spanning a length of 80 metres.
There may have been an explanation to this experience but I wonder if it might be more than just a coincidence. The Helensburgh tunnel on the Old Illawarra alignment is very easy to access by car and by train. There are few remains of the old station left but the platform is still preserved as are the posts that supported the station sign. Upon entering the site, a information plaque tells visitors a bit about the history of the site and the old station.

Today the other end has been blocked off and the tunnel has turned into a 'lake' where water eventually reaches the roof of the tunnel at the farthest end due to the falling grade.
So if you decide to pay a visit, I recommend wearing shoes or boots as areas of the old railway station are prone to surfaces of wet mud and water.
Once you have explored, you may be interested to see what else there is to do around the local area. Or you might enjoy a nice lunch at several eateries nearby such as The Palm Cafe, The Red Nectar, or at Scarborough Hotel.
1 of 122, Jess a€?Slambi Laupera€™ Fletcher from the City Sirens will be up against Karen a€?Razza Makazza€™ Galea from the Missfits in Ipswicha€™s first roller derby bout on Sunday.
3 of 122, Mariah Carew was named winner of the senior section of the Bundy Icon Model Search 2011.
4 of 122, Sergeant Dallas Leven of Grafton highway patrol said results from a recent police blitz on drink driving suggested many Clarence Valley drivers were still ignoring the risks of driving under the influence of alcohol. 5 of 122, Students Byron Roberts, Jordan Barnham and Jack Baker-Sime hope to hold special Banana Festival performances. 6 of 122, Paul Zanuso, the father of Nathan Zanuso who was killed in an accident on the Pacific Highway last year near Ulmarra, places a cross on the side of the road at the site of the crash. 7 of 122, Liam MacPhail, Rory MacPhail and Tom Swift from Cudgen SLSC in training ahead of the junior NSW Surf Life Saving Championships at Kingscliff. 11 of 122, Jimmy Armstrong, Brandon Zysk and TJ Esau familiarise themselves with the beer goggles and standard drink measures. 12 of 122, MOUNTING UP: Volunteers walk beside a pile of debris removed from flood damaged houses in Fairfield. 14 of 122, Going off: Fireworks explode over Main Beach, Yamba, as part of the Pacific Hotela€™s New Yeara€™s fireworks.
15 of 122, Brian Gold is a big kid at heart and loves turning his Currimundi home into a Christmas wonderland.
16 of 122, WINNING RIDE: Brett Cross doesna€™t look too comfortable but he scored enough points to share victory on Saturday in the open bull ride. 17 of 122, Bernice Welch and her grand-daughter Sophie Johnson attending the QT Adopt-a-Family movie screening where movie-goers were asked to bring a can of food.
18 of 122, Paul Jones from the Grafton SES freeing a Willy Wagtail from the Vent on top of Gon' Fishin.
19 of 122, Carols by Candlelight events will fill the region with Christmas spirit this weekend.
26 of 122, Australian working dog rescue foster carer Sandra Ward of Bundamba with Cherry (left) and her cat Norton. 27 of 122, Coffs Harbour's Chris Hales gets the chop for charity after agreeing to shave off his 30cm mane, snowy beard and moustache to raise almost $5000 for beyondblue. 28 of 122, Cameron Grant of Inspired Youth Performing Arts performs his fire twirling moves for the crowd at the North Coast National Exhibition 2010 in Lismore. 29 of 122, Tickled pink Cancer Council volunteers Kathy Derrett and Meg Oa€™Hara in the mood to mark Pink Ribbon Day. 30 of 122, MasterChef contestant Aaron Harvie and Natalie Miller celebrate their marriage on Mr Harviea€™s mothera€™s property at Teven last month. 32 of 122, Striking pose: Zane Melton and Alicia Marcy will dance together for the last time at their annual concert next Saturday.
33 of 122, Phil Rettkea€™s time exposure photo of the final F-111 dump-and-burn over Bundamba on Saturday night. 34 of 122, David Halliwell is taking part in 1200km bike ride to raise funds for Brisbane and Sydneya€™s Royal Childrena€™s hospitals. 35 of 122, Haoyan Kotis releases 17 doves as a last Hervey Bay goodbye at yesterdaya€™s memorial service for her husband.
37 of 122, To celebrate the arrival of the finalists in this yeara€™s Archibald Prize, Coffs Harbour locals were invited to come as their favourite portrait. 38 of 122, SENIOR CONSTABLE Nick Dixon prepares to lead the procession at the police remembrance day service at the Christchurch Cathedral in Grafton. 39 of 122, Matt Geronimi from this yeara€™s So You Think You Can Dance series on Channel 10 came to the BOK dance school in Pottsville. 40 of 122, Kulangoor farmer Kelvin Yarrow has made headlines after blocking roads on his farm with tractors to stop workers from the Northern Network Alliance from entering the property.
41 of 122, The congregation came out in force to bless the new St Matthewa€™s Anglican Church in Dunoon, after the original was destroyed in a freak tornado. 44 of 122, TAKE THE PLUNGE: Warm weather prompts Shaynne Ford to shed her winter coat and explore the depths of what Gladstone has to offer.
45 of 122, Amazing atmospheric sight: Reader and dedicated storm-chaser Chris McFerran sent us this stunning snap of a rare pileus cap cloud from earlier in the week. 46 of 122, Big stretch: Karlee Maguire (purple), Emily Rowles (blue) and Alycia Keane (grey) limber up as a special dance course at Tweed is taking placements for next year.
47 of 122, Boonaha€™s a€?perfect figa€™, the central figure in a€?The Treea€™, and (above) just one of the scenes tourists will delight in when they tour the Scenic Rim region after seeing the movie. 48 of 122, Ipswich Hospital Emergency Services director Stephen Brierley is moving on after 13 years in the position. 49 of 122, NERVOUS WAIT: Nev Reeves ponders the prospect of winning $100,000 from Keno if he kicks a goal from half-way. 50 of 122, Surfing photographer Patrick Gorbunovs captured this image of a shark while surfing in the Byron Bay area.
51 of 122, Team-of-the-century member Syd Clarke, a former Nambour All Whites captain-coach, is looking forward to being inducted into the Hall of Fame. 52 of 122, Friends release 99 red balloons in memory of Anthony Hiro Nagata who died one year ago.
53 of 122, One of the baby crocs at Koorana Croc Farm during their best laying season in 10 years. 54 of 122, OFF HIS TROLLEY: Councillor Paul Tully is fuming over Woolwortha€™s trolley ruling. 55 of 122, BARGAIN: Councillor Trevor Nardi sits in one of the impounded cars which will be auctioned off tomorrow. 56 of 122, White-out: Teacher Ebany Draper with Ta€™Schani Mae Southon getting the white balloons ready. 59 of 122, Christchurch residents Neville and Lorraine Chatterton watched the quake drama unfold in their hometown on television in their Mooloolaba unit.
61 of 122, Happy birthday Dot: Grafton woman Dot Edmonds celebrated her 102nd birthday yesterday surrounded by family and friends. 62 of 122, Anne Laurich is a ballerina on Green Hills Road with Mt Maroon and Mt Barney as the backdrop and is part of the Scenic Rima€™s new tourism advertising. 63 of 122, Lights, camera, action: Saraton Theatre manager Robbie Seymour is all ready for the reopening of the historic theatre in Grafton. 64 of 122, The sun comes up over a cold campsite in Polsons Paddock at the National Music Muster. 65 of 122, Burrum Heads woman Irene Johnstone wants to be able to get mail in her letter box and shea€™s not the only one. 67 of 122, The Stewart family, Darryl, Lachlan, Angus and Fiona cremate their Maremma Draco, the fifth dog to die on their Mungar property within a couple of weeks. 68 of 122, MAYOR OVERBOARD: Cr Paul Pisasale (right) tries to balance the sinking air boat during filming for a Sunrise television segment on Wednesday. 69 of 122, Anthony Edwards is constructing a court scene out of papier-mache for the Ipswich Courthouse.

70 of 122, Steven Wallis is disgusted that someone stole Rileya€™s Kawasaki KFX50 motorbike from the shed behind their home. 71 of 122, Bill Moorhead wishes Bundaberg Regional Council had revealed accurate rate fluctuations when it sent out the rate notices.
72 of 122, a€?Tip Chicka€? Jessica Milne says council should explain its decision to terminate her contract as the popular manager of its Tin Can Bay rubbish tip. 73 of 122, Year Seven students from Brassall State School take part in the Jump Rope For Heart fundraiser for the Heart Foundation on Friday.
74 of 122, Doves are released at the end of the Vietnam Veterans Day memorial service in Hervey Bay.
77 of 122, Charter boat the Bell Cay in trouble 200km off the central Queensland coast after a severe storm capsized the boat in August 2010.
78 of 122, AGL Recue Helicopter Service held an exercise to help determine the effect on health of patients being winched into the helicopter. The NSW North Coast is where the world's largest expanse of subtropical rainforest meets mountains forged from ancient volcanoes. From unspoiled beaches to lush mountain hideaways, from the urban appeal of art galleries to concert halls, Brisbane is the perfect holiday destination. Byron Bay is famous for its beaches, rainforests and a tantalising mix of surf culture, alternative philosophies and hedonistic delights.
A holiday playground with unspoilt sandy beaches and subtropical rainforests, Coffs Harbour is home to some of NSW's best loved attractions.
White sandy beaches, fun filled theme parks, shopping, fine restaurants and a vibrant nightlife are only a few of the Gold Coast’s attractions. Grafton is renowned for its Jacaranda trees, graceful old buildings, sporting and cultural facilities and its location on the banks of the Clarence River. Port Macquarie is a water lover's paradise with surfing, swimming, fishing, whale and dolphin watching, and even camel rides.
One of the most beautiful spots on the coast, Port Stephens combines magnificent surf beaches with the tranquil sheltered waters of the port. Promote Lower High Speed Rail now, otherwise I'll likely be dead before even the proposed Melbourne-Sydney leg gets going.
Eurostar did pretty much that for 10 years waiting for  the UK to construct their part of the High Speed rail network.
Also, I dispute your claim of a 'derisory put-down' & suggest, again, that you're reading something that's not in my post. Probably not as weather delays and short turnaround times, which are commensurate with aircraft usage and ultimately airline profitability compound problems. I just travelled from the new Luhai station (just over the border from Macau) to Guangzhou on a new Chinese fast rail service (travelling around 200kmh). The Victorian, NSW, Queensland, ACT and Federal governments should all Contribute to the cost of construction. The study has already concluded that the return on investment will be around 1%; almost all the benefit will consist of everyone else profiting from the Commonwealth squandering money. Additionally the report does not suggest spending $114bn tomorrow whereas it does suggest building incremental stages over a period of some 30 years. Sure there will be benefits, but you ignore the political risk in putting so much money in one basket.
Additional airport capacity will relieve this, and offer more slots for international services, air freight, etc.
Such a huge undertaking is very unlikely given the nature of Australia's predisposition to short term agendas. You get a feeling for how much expert work went into this, so I'm sure they were paid well but I also reckon they earned their money! The last major rail project in Australia was swapping out the board gauge North-East line (Melbourne to Albury) to standard gauge.
Even though Canberra is almost 300km away from sydney, with the high speed rail link this won't be outrageous, and will reduce the amount of time and money wasted on building another airport from scratch for Sydney. A run down system that most governments (including the likely incoming Abbot government) prefer to neglect. There is NO carbon in nuclear energy, and no future in high speed rail that does not stop or connect dwindling communities of regional centers. Follow Wilson's Creek Road over a second railway bridge and turn right into the Garrawarra State Conservation Area.
It looms behind one side of a street intersection and the Metropolitan tunnel is located opposite.
One where the stationmaster used to stay in and the other where the night officer lived in.
You won't be able to walk the whole tunnel length but you may see glow-worms in the tunnel, maybe thousands! Family friend and the service celebrant, Annette Georgiou stands beside her for encouragement.
A sparkling coastline of endless beaches offers surfing, whale-watching, frolicking dolphins and flocks of seabirds.
And a second airport will be further away from Sydney CBD and therefore any saving on ATC or weather delays would be lost by additional travel time from the airport to the CBD.
It's up to the feds to decide if they want to burn this kind of cash, and I don't think they will, and I don't think they should. And with the east coast population set to grow by millions in the coming 30 years, there will be even more demand for interstate travel.
This is the problem - the political unwillingness to put this kind of money into one big project.
Ultimately, we have lots of reasonably cheap coal, compared to oil - which will get more expensive in decades to come.
HSR doesn't negate the need for more airport capacity - not in Sydney, at least - but the intercapital transport problem HSR is supposed to solve can be solved with more airport capacity.
It doesn't make sense for them to have to go north to Sydney first then south to Melbourne if they're heading that way. The dirt road soon becomes tarred again which fords three creeks (a shallow part of the creek). Despite the long distance, passengers could still see through to the 'light at the end of the tunnel' and when the light disappeared, travellers knew a steam train was coming. With routes extending to Brisbane we provide a perfect introduction to the Queensland tropics. I agree that opening up the interior is a good idea, but many such projects have failed to meet their targets; in this case, it would be a catastrophe if it failed.
A much cheaper alternative would be to elevate a HSR track above existing infrastructure like the Hume Highway.
The train is definitely the preferred alternative for most travellers between Osaka and Tokyo. We don't need public referendums on best case decisions, because this country has brainwashed us to believe nuclear power is unsafe. I also guarantee that the Chinese will cover most of China with high speed rail for a fraction of what it will cost for this Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne service.

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