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Today only the isolated grain lines of Eyre Peninsula remind us of the importance of mm gauge to the economic development of SA. Few realised that these lightly laid lines could not support the tonnages required to turn a profit in the future. In , the narrow gauge Port Pirie to Cockburn line, and the 56km privately run link through to Broken Hill was replaced by a standard gauge line, for the first time linking the East and West coasts of Australia - Sydney and Perth — with a single uninterrupted standard gauge line. Transferring coal from narrow gauge wagons to broad gauge wagons at Terowie Terowie, in the state's mid-north, was the first site selected to become a 'break of gauge' station on the basis that wool from the north and east could be carried via broad gauge to the processing and marketing facilities at Port Adelaide, whilst grain could be carted on the narrow gauge to Port Pirie, the nearest coastal port.

When standard gauge connected Port Pirie with Broken Hill in , triple gauge stations were created at Peterborough and Gladstone. Whilst travel for passengers was inconvenient, long distance freight traffic was onerously inefficient and this may help to explain why the road industry came to dominate transport. It is part of SA's heritage that the Government has always determined the direction and nature of economic policy and infrastructure development. From , cheaply constructed rail lines were pushed throughout the Murraylands and from on Eyre Peninsula, purely to encourage agricultural settlement.

By , the South Australian Railways system comprised nearly 5, km of railways and would only grow a few hundred more. The South Australian Railways class was the largest of the big power locomotives introduced by Commissioner Webb in the s By , through wear and tear, lack of maintenance, an ageing fleet of small locomotives and rolling stock, lightweight rail, declining revenues due to mine closures, the drain on the economy caused by the Great War, and because of many other problems, the entire South Australian Railways had decayed to the point of collapse. William Alfred Webb was appointed Commissioner for Railways that year following a proud record of achievement with several railroads in the USA.

In his seven and a half years, he rebuilt the South Australian Railways to the pre-eminent position in Australia with his motto:. Webb's program also included larger freight vehicles, new and stronger bridges, diesel railcars, expansion of the Islington Workshops, track duplication and modern depots. Conversion of narrow gauge lines to broad gauge soon began throughout the mid-north in the s, to allow the carrying of the much larger trains.

Also accomplished in the Webb era was the rebuilding of Adelaide Railway Station, road delivery vans and trucks to compete with the private sector, new administrative procedures, refreshment services, train control, the South Australian Railways Institute and the introduction of electric signalling. In Commissioner Webb introduced Model 55 rail cars, which became known as tinhares, built by the Brill Company in the US for country services where passenger numbers were too low to justify steam trains.

They were later relegated to suburban duties until their demise in A single Model 75 rail car arrived from the Brill Co. The "Barwell Bulls", as they were quickly nicknamed, mostly operated over country branch lines until October Steam engines last ran in SA in ending a remarkable history which began in at the Port Dock Station.

Passenger numbers continued to decline, but the closure of the remaining country passenger services in SA was left to Australian National Railways — even though South Australian Railways Commissioner Ron Fitch had been warning the Government for many years of the consequences of mounting financial losses. This was perhaps inevitable once the Government repealed in the Road and Railways Transport Act of , thus exposing the railways to intense competition from road transport. The Intercolonial Express, later known as the Melbourne Express, became The Overland in and still carries that name today.

It was the first direct passenger service between two states without a break of gauge.

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When opened in , the Trans-Australian Railway carried passenger services, but to travel from coast to coast meant a route via Melbourne, and included about six train changes. With completion of the east-west standard gauge project in , a new direct service became known as the Indian Pacific, but it took until before the Indian Pacific operated via Adelaide. The Ghan to Alice Springs, affectionately named after the Afghan actually Pakistani cameleers who provided much of the early transport throughout the arid interior, began on the old narrow gauge line to Oodnadatta in World Solar Challenge.

Archived from the original on 2 June Retrieved 2 June Engineers Australia. Retrieved 7 May Exploring the Stuart Highway: further than the eye can see. ISSN Lee, Nicole 1 August ABC Alice Springs. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 6 March Retrieved 5 June Additional archives: 27 June Northern Territory Library. Northern Territory Government. Archived from the original on 18 February Road infrastructure in South Australia.

Road infrastructure in Northern Territory. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. Help Learn to edit Community portal Recent changes Upload file. Download as PDF Printable version. Wikimedia Commons Wikivoyage. The highway in the far north of South Australia.

Daly Street, Darwin. Humpty Doo. Arnhem Highway. Cox Peninsula Road. Victoria Daly. Pine Creek. Kakadu Highway. Victoria Highway. Central Arnhem Road C Roper Highway B Daly Waters. Carpentaria Highway B1. Buchanan Highway C Burt Plain. Tanami Road C5. Alice Springs. Larapinta Drive.

Lasseter Highway.

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Northern Territory — South Australia border. Pastoral Unincorporated Area. Construction and maintenance of network infrastructure were consolidated into non-profit government bodies, in the case of the interstate network and the non-urban railways of New South Wales Australian Rail Track Corporation and Western Australia WestNet Rail. This was intended to provide access to new and existing players. The interstate rail network of the former Australian National Railways Commission was transferred to the newly established Australian Rail Track Corporation in The ARTC also manages under lease the interstate standard gauge rail network in New South Wales and Victoria and has rights to sell access between Kalgoorlie and Kwinana to interstate rail operators under a wholesale access agreement with the Western Australian track owner and operator, Brookfield Rail.

It also "has a working relationship with Queensland Rail about the use of the kilometres of standard gauge line between the Queensland border and Fisherman Islands.

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Other railways continue to be integrated, although access to their infrastructure is generally required under National Competition Policy principles agreed by the Federal, State and Territory governments:. Commonwealth Railways became part of the Australian National Railways Commission in , which was privatised in Although the Australian Government has considered the funding of railways owned by State Government to be a State responsibility, it has made loans to the States for gauge standardisation projects from the s to the s.

From the s to , the Australian Government has provided some grant funding to the States for rail projects. Under the Keating Government 's One Nation program :. The Northern Territory expects that this railway line will open up many mining ventures that would otherwise be uneconomic without a heavy duty rail line. See Rail transport in Australia for current Australian Government rail funding.

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In , it was proposed to combine the seven separate state rail regulators into a single regulator. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Part of a series on the. Prehistory European exploration sea European exploration land — — — — present. Main article: rail gauge in Australia.

Further information: Rail transport in Victoria and Railways in Melbourne. Further information: Queensland Rail and Rail transport in Queensland. Further information: Rail transport in Western Australia. Further information: Rail transport in South Australia.

Further information: Rail transport in Tasmania. Main article: Rail gauge in Australia. Main article: One Nation Infrastructure. Linking a Nation.


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Australian Heritage Council. Archived from the original on 29 February Archived from the original on 26 September The Iron Road www. Archived from the original on 10 March Archived from the original on 18 October Archived from the original on 29 September QR History. Queensland Rail. Archived from the original on 15 January The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 30 June Roads and Traffic Authority.

February Archived from the original PDF on 10 April Mark Bau. Archived from the original on 30 May Retrieved 5 April Rail Geelong. Marcus Wong. Retrieved 5 February Victorian Railways Resources. Andrew Waugh.

Archived from the original on 27 September The Age. Melbourne, Australia. Archived from the original on 22 July Retrieved 8 April Archived from the original on 30 October Archived from the original on 30 June Archived from the original on 12 September Archived from the original on 30 September National Rail Museum. Archived from the original on 21 April Australian Heritage Database.

Aussie Heritage. Archived from the original on 4 August Retrieved 11 April Government of Australia.


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