Blue Mountains Commuters and Transport Users Association


Reference Port Botany Development.

Date 28th March 2004

To The Major Development Assessment Branch
Department of Infrastructure Planning and Natural Resources
Lee Street

To whom it may concern.

It probably will be asked why is this Association concerned with this project a distance from the location of Port Botany, I wit) endeavour to address this for a number of reasons these being.

  • The Rail network across the Mountains already has a component of freight, coal, wheat (sometimes) cement, oil and containers. The Association has no objection to this. the curfew operates satisfactorily and we can always be contacted on these matters,
  • The Rail Network can be improved with bidirectional signalling-.
  • The Community was asked the following in the Blue Mountains Our Future Plan in 2001. “How can the rail system be made more attractive for freight taking the pressure of the Great Western Highway as a freight road.” This became “More freight on Rail”
  • The plan also highlighted the following” Environmental issues of having a major highway and heavy trucks route passing through natural heritage areas and sensitive catchments

On behalf of the Association I submit the following for consideration.

  • We agree in principle that there should be improved Port facilities at Port Botany without taking the facilities out of Sydney Harbour and that fatalities are maintained as the future is an unknown quantity and distribution facility will be needed in the future and all options should be remain open, The freight Link to Rozelle Bay is a necessity yes it can be shared with Light Rail if required.
  • The Authority should aim for a greater share of freight from Port Botany as mixing B doubles with cars is not a wise decision for two reasons.
    1. The Health standards of drivers do not match the standards as that is now required by rail operators.
    2. No figures are available as to how many semitrailers are withdrawn from service as the result of B Double replacement?
  • The NSW Government has announced the result of the Unsworth Inquiry which indicates greater use of road system with the potential of bus use thus placing a potential risk to the users. The number of multiple accidents on the Motorways is increasing even with the present population. Should this be considered?
  • The shifting of freight to Newcastle and Port Kembla is not satisfactory as the rail system has capacity problems even now and places an extra cost on the freight whether it be rail or road.
  • Another interesting aspect is Will the Port be capable of handling the proposed 100.000 tonne ships on the drawing board quote” Ships Monthly February 2004 Page 30 handling 7000 — 1200 containers” What Ports could handle these ships?
  • Another question” Are we looking at growth till 2020 what happens after 2020 will Sydney have space in reserve for expansion? (The magazine ATN Feb04 mentions this in part page 19.)
  • All predictions appear to based on present oil prices any research been done based on higher oil prices etc thus requiring higher rail usage?
  • The Association is aware of the use of Yennora as a freight transfer terminal, has the St Marys location been considered for freight interchange?
  • Does the authority have accurate survey figures on the distribution of freight in Sydney in order to match the freight movement at present with rail or truck. (It is of interest ATN Magazine Jan 04 page 22 “Vehicles deliver into our stores and go back empty. So 50% efficiency” Does this happen with terminals at present?) Loaded container in Loaded Containers Out?
  • The carnage of hazardous goods should be a priority as the risk potential of fire etc has been higher on the road system.

On behalf of the Association I submit this for consideration yes the Association is supportive of freight on rail as it has the potential of reducing the cost of passenger rail access and contributes to improved environment conditions.

Yours sincerely
Paul Trevaskis