John Sutton, Mayoral and Ward 4 candidate, speaks about the various transport issues in Newcastle including cycleways, congestion and access to public transport.
Therese Doyle Greens Candidate Ward 2
Adamstown Railway Crossing
Riding around Ward 2 on my bicycle is great fun most of the time. However, it’s a different story on the main roads. When I ride over the railway bridges either side of Broadmeadow station I feel like I’m taking my life into my hands. Bring on proper cycleways now! And let’s start teaching motorists to have regard for cyclists sharing the road.
The bus service to Hamilton and Kotara is pretty good; for Adamstown, Merewether and Broadmeadow it’s pretty bad. Council needs to advocate for better services to these areas.
I spent half an hour with a friend at Adamstown railway crossing on Saturday afternoon, just to while away a beautiful sunny Newcastle afternoon. The first thing to say about this level crossing is that it shouldn’t be there. There is not one level crossing left in Sydney and there hasn’t been for 30 years. So, why does this busy road still have one?
During the ½ hour we were there the gates closed four times. The first two were for passenger trains and the boom gates went up and down quite efficiently. It was another story with the second two coal trains. Each was approximately 1.5 km long. Before each of these trains arrived the gate bells gave two false alarms. Then, when the booms finally came down and traffic was stopped, the trains took 3 minutes each to pass, extending each closure to about 4 minutes. By the time the gates opened each time, there was a very long line of traffic waiting to pass through.
All in all, there’s plenty of work to be done pressing for better public transport in Newcastle. Where the council can make a significant difference is for cycleways. I’ll certainly be pushing that little barrow when I am a councillor.
“Retention of the heavy rail line from Newcastle to Maitland is vital to me, allowing me to travel to work by train everyday saving around 4 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year (as calculated on the myRTA DriveGreen website)”.
Graham Whittall, Hamilton Resident