Sunday, December 12, 2010

St Kilda and Footscray tram

A clever person recently suggested something I whole heartedly agree with, that is extending the St Kilda tram, 96, through Elwood to Elsternwick Park or even to Elsternwick Station. No doubt public transport experts will say, well, it already well served by private bus services and they would be right, but there is something about trams that creates usage, a confidence you have when something runs on rails. The present bus service does not give a connection to the city without a change to a tram or train either. To me it is just obvious it would be very successful and would pretty well follow the route of the tram line that was closed down in the sixties, or was that fifties.

Another proposal I have heard is to run a tram from Docklands to Footscray, presumably along Footscray Road, aka, Docklands Highway. While I am all for the expansion of our tram system, I am not so sure about this one. Trams work best for people to hop and off for shortish distances. They work well to deliver people from the inner suburbs to the city, but are always slower than trains. If I have a choice to travel a decent distance, the train will win every time. There certainly would not be much in the way of hop on hop off passengers along Footscray Road. It would be for commuters between Footscray and Docklands and doesn't a train do that already? No doubt it would be useful for some people, but I doubt the numbers are there, unless there is going to be substantial housing development along Footscray Road.


  1. Good idea, but please, don't terminate at Elsternwick Park. There are too many routes already that terminate in the middle of nowhere, and they mean the investment gets a poor return because the potential usage is low.

  2. Indeed. Elsternwick Station then or even Brighton Beach. What an absurd idea. BTW, just read the Scottish Transport Minister has taken ministerial responsibility and resigned. What a funny quaint old custom.

  3. Anonymous1:32 am

    Melbourne needs to improve its public transport systems period. Currently, the inner west, one of the oldest and densely populated areas would benefit with a tram route too as the current transpart is increasingly congested. I would love the ones that wer eremoved in the 70's reinstated and/or a light rail along Footscray Rd which could be the extension of the current Moonee Ponds-Footsrcay tram.

  4. Yes, the west has long being neglected. What Metro Trains has done there is outrageous. The trams were removed in the early 1960s I think. It would be good to have them back. Trouble is that when governments build train and tram lines, they become too popular, and they have to do more.