Views sought on monorail demolition

By Julian Bajkowski

The New South Wales state government has called for submissions from the community and businesses in the CBD on the impact of tearing down the city’s iconic transport novelty, the monorail.

According to documents released by the government, the final monorail service will run on the last day of the financial year, June 30th 2013 with planning now underway for its removal.

“In planning for the removal work, Transport for NSW has assessed potential environmental impacts – such as traffic, transport and access; heritage, noise and vibration, visual amenity, socio-economics and sustainability – and developed measures to mitigate any potential impacts,” the documents say.

The impact on CBD businesses and traffic is likely to substantial given the Simpsonesque infrastructure runs on a heavy steel structure above major streets in the city and Darling Harbour.

City businesses were initially highly hostile to the building of the overhead line because it transported otherwise ground-based commuters and potential customers over the top of them. At the same time many businesses were disrupted while the edifice was constructed.

Now occupants in the same locations will have to endure months of demolition and deconstruction as the tracks are taken away.

Completed in 1988, just too late for bicentenary celebrations, the privately backed monorail polarised the community because it put in place new transport infrastructure that was not linked or operated by existing public transport providers.

The rollout of disconnected and disparate transport services was followed by the Sydney Light Rail.

Both Sydney’s monorail and the light rail were eventually acquired by the NSW Government, a move that effectively admitted attempts to have competing rather than integrated transport providers had been an expensive failure.

Businesses and the City of Sydney are now lobbying for the light rail to be extended further into the CBD as a way to ease bus congestion.


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0 thoughts on “Views sought on monorail demolition

  1. My husband and I believe the monorail is iconic to Sydney and on the many occassions we have been on it with internationaal visitors and school groups from the country areas it has een a wonderful experience. This monorail needs to be exyended to pass beyond the traditional loop. Inconvenience for a business for a period of time should not be the justification for progress.

  2. I rode the monorail only two weeks ago. I found it easy and accessible and a good way to get from Darling Harbour to the city. Millions of dollars in infrastructure, weeks of inconvenience to all. Leave it there, it serves a purpose and is efficient.

  3. I do not live in Sydney, or NSW, or even Australia.

    That said, how many automobiles or pedestrians will the monorail ever collide with? How many automobiles or pedestrians will the light rail ever collide with?

    I think I have made my point….

  4. Nowhere in any of the news reports on this have I seen any consideration of the people who actually use the monorail for transport (as I occasionally do). There is no practical alternative, except perhaps walking across Pyrmont Bridge (which is fine, if you have the time, it is not raining, you are young and fit etc. etc.) Why on earth would you remove a functioning transport system carrying maybe thousands of people each week, with no practical alternative to replace it, and apparently no plans to provide one? The conspiracy theorists will, no doubt, have a field day!

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