Sydney yesterday welcomed
trams uh, light rail services to George Street, four years after buses were shooed from the CBD thoroughfare and decades after much of the city’s original tracks were removed.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian joined NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance for a ride on the new
tramline light rail line, travelling from High Street in Randwick to Alfred Street in Circular Quay.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports punters lined the streets to watch the new service trundle past, but they’ll have to wait a few more months before that stretch of track is opened to the public in December.
Sydney's new light rail is almost here, with daytime testing now completed along the entire stretch of track from Randwick to the CBD.@GladysB and I jumped on board for today's first test run along George Street to Circular Quay. pic.twitter.com/nZE0GmjiYy— Andrew Constance MP (@AndrewConstance) August 28, 2019
The project will cost the taxpayer around $3 billion, which is nearly doubled what the government bargained for. That said, the project has been warmly received by punters, who seem pretty glad they’ll soon have decent public transport through a main CBD corridor.
Speaking to PEDESTRIAN.TV, Bendigo Tramways maintenance guru and lifelong ‘gunzel’ (Editor’s note: he’s also my brother, lol) William Adams said “the extra capacity and user friendly nature of the line will most certainly help with passenger flow, especially between the main interchanges of Central Station and Circular Quay.”
“The concept of coupling two trams together for peak hour capacity, good idea,” he added.
Woohoo, trams are finally running through the streets of Sydney again, 58 years after their demise! pic.twitter.com/eCEObJS1pP— Eddie Summerfield (@eddiesummers) August 28, 2019
Sydney light rail! pic.twitter.com/PEyMlVkXn6— BrandCulture (@BrandCultureSYD) August 28, 2019
It’s alive It’s only taken about 5 years but the Sydney Tram is getting closer to being functional.— @Georgebakhos1 (@GeorgeBakhos1) August 28, 2019
They are doing testing today pic.twitter.com/UBbUYyFXgT
The test run comes amid a long period of major Australian cities realising that trams are actually sick. South Australia has reinstalled large stretches of tram line torn up from Adelaide streets, while Melbourne remains a world-renowned tram hub.
Trams. How about ’em.
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Image: Steven Saphore / AAP