Toll Roads in Adelaide

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News & Discussion: Toll Roads

#1 Post by Cruise » Mon Mar 26, 2007 7:57 pm

PAUL STARICK, CHIEF REPORTER
March 26, 2007 02:15am

THE State Government is being urged to consider toll roads by the group representing the nation's biggest infrastructure investors.

State Cabinet's no-tolls decree applies only for this term of government and will expire if Labor wins the 2010 election.
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia public affairs director Glenn Byres yesterday urged the Government to have "all procurement options on the table".

He questioned why the Government was allowing private investment in schools and prisons, worth a combined total of more than $730 million, but not in roads.

The group, whose board includes major banks and infrastructure firms, promotes so-called Public Private Partnerships for roads, schools, hospitals and other facilities.

"It's a model that's worked elsewhere, so why wouldn't you have all the options on the table for toll roads, just as you do with other assets you are procuring?" Mr Byres said.

He said motorists would accept tolls if these were balanced by better roads and savings in time and fuel costs.

A successful model, used by Sydney's M7, set tolls to the distance travelled.

Transport Minister Patrick Conlon said no investors had approached the State Government with a toll road proposal, primarily because traffic volumes were insufficient for a financial return.

Tenders for the biggest Private Public Partnerships yet undertaken by the State Government will be called within three months when expressions of interest will be sought for the construction of six new super schools worth $216 million and a new jail precinct near Murray Bridge worth $517 million.

Under PPPs, private investors build and maintain the asset for a set period, receiving a fee to cover their investment and risk.

The Government leases the asset and, usually, gains ownership after a set time.

Tolls were considered for the $550 million Northern Expressway between Gawler and Port Wakefield Rd but ruled out, partly because traffic volumes were deemed insufficient.

Premier Mike Rann's first act after last year's state election was to issue a "no privatisations decree" which applied "during the entire term of the re-elected Rann Labor government".

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#2 Post by shuza » Tue Mar 27, 2007 4:24 pm

Who said tolls should be enforced only suited to traffic volumes? I'm much more concerned about the quality of the roads moreso than the quantity it can handle, because really in the end all we should aim for is safe and effecient driving.

Id be happy to pay a toll that would provide for a Victor Harbor-Adelaide freeway, duplication of the Southern Expressway, a North-South freeway route - which really can only be an underground project, and a Northern arterial route, from Port Adelaide to Modbury.

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#3 Post by Aidan » Sat Apr 07, 2007 9:13 pm

shuza wrote:Who said tolls should be enforced only suited to traffic volumes? I'm much more concerned about the quality of the roads moreso than the quantity it can handle, because really in the end all we should aim for is safe and effecient driving.

Id be happy to pay a toll that would provide for a Victor Harbor-Adelaide freeway, duplication of the Southern Expressway, a North-South freeway route - which really can only be an underground project, and a Northern arterial route, from Port Adelaide to Modbury.
Why Modbury? The existing routes there from Port Adelaide don't strike me as particularly inadequate.

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#4 Post by Redback20 » Tue May 29, 2007 9:57 am

Article in the tiser today raising the topic of tolls for such as a N-S freeway, southern expressway, Victor etc.

http://www.news.com.au/adelaidenow/stor ... 36,00.html

I'm sure no-one likes tolls but the reality of traffic-choked roads in some countries is that it costs industry millions or even billions, and toll roads are generally considered in those terms, ie. of the economy. I'm not sure SA is at that point yet but it wouldn't hurt to be well prepared in terms of the transport planning process for once.

I still see this as a separate isue to public transport, which should be looked at as the desired means of getting most people to work in the future.

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#5 Post by AtD » Tue May 29, 2007 11:34 am

Redback20 wrote:I still see this as a separate isue to public transport, which should be looked at as the desired means of getting most people to work in the future.
Well, don't. A freeway network is going to detriment any possible public transport network, especially in an environment of many councils each with their own development plans.

Public transport requires high population densities to be cost effective. It can be a chicken and egg argument, sometimes the public transport causes the higher density. And this is not a problem because it's relatively easy to increase the capacity of public transport, run longer trains more frequently.

Private road transport, however, has no need for high population densities, and in fact discourages them. Freeways create more urban sprawl. Take the southern suburbs as an example after the Southern Expressway was built. There has since been a mad rush to build more and more car dependent suburbs down south, each one putting greater pressure on the road network. The low density of the suburbs makes providing a frequent, reliable public transport service cost ineffective because there's not enough people to support it.

Which leaves you with a car dependent community, and the social, economic and environmental costs of this is well documented. Car infrastructure requires an enormous amount of space. The relative high cost of maintaining a car leaves those without the means to afford one have no way to get to work. The energy required to operate a car is just... phenomenal, you're using a ton of metal to move 80kg of meat!

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#6 Post by jimmy_2486 » Tue May 29, 2007 12:39 pm

HA....I knew this would happen one day

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#7 Post by Norman » Tue May 29, 2007 2:25 pm

I think tolls on the Southern Expressway is a clever idea. While they CAN use Main South Road to get to the city (which would remain free I assume), they can fork some money out and get to the city faster.

The tolls should be placed just north of the Reynella exit/entry, because then they can't take the Expressway to Reynella and then continue to the city via Main South Road, because the exits are designed to allow continous flow only.

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#8 Post by jimmy_2486 » Tue May 29, 2007 8:08 pm

Id say only toll the southern expressway if it can provide a dual carriaged grade separated route all the way into the city, say west tce. Otherwise the southerners will whinge like hell.

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#9 Post by Norman » Tue May 29, 2007 8:18 pm

jimmy_2486 wrote:Id say only toll the southern expressway if it can provide a dual carriaged grade separated route all the way into the city, say west tce. Otherwise the southerners will whinge like hell.
What about a promise to build one after the toll is introduced? (ie Toll money will fund the dual-carriageway?

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#10 Post by jimmy_2486 » Tue May 29, 2007 9:51 pm

Yeah I see your point, but you tell someone from noarlunga to start paying 3-4 bucks everyday to get to work and back, and later on we will build your dream motorway right into the guts of the city..... i think they'll throw u out their house...hahaha

Unless there is some kinda 100% guarantee.

Build the damn thing first, and right into the city as well, then toll.

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#11 Post by jimmy_2486 » Tue May 29, 2007 9:59 pm

I mean the dumb thing is that the southern expressway was meant to relieve traffic, but it doesn't even go where the REAL traffic is.

Sure there is some traffic out in the south, but no where near as much as in the inner south.

This will face the same consequences as the M4 in Sydney is facing now, really bad congestion on the roads leading up to it!

Same goes with the south eastern freeway again, it stops at Beaumont and glen Osmond road is suffering.

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#12 Post by AG » Tue May 29, 2007 11:19 pm

jimmy_2486 wrote:I mean the dumb thing is that the southern expressway was meant to relieve traffic, but it doesn't even go where the REAL traffic is.

Sure there is some traffic out in the south, but no where near as much as in the inner south.

This will face the same consequences as the M4 in Sydney is facing now, really bad congestion on the roads leading up to it!

Same goes with the south eastern freeway again, it stops at Beaumont and glen Osmond road is suffering.
M4 is easily one of the worst designed motorways in Sydney. The eastern end links up with an already congested Parramatta Road. There was a plan some time ago to build the M4 East to link up the eastern end of the M4 with the Western Distributor via a tunnel. The F3 in northern Sydney is similar with a new link to the M2 being proposed as well.

What Sydney has done with the design of some of its new motorways is ingenious and poor at the same time. They've managed to squeeze in a motorway with 2 lanes in each direction in a cutting within the space of an existing road (Eastern Distributor) and tunnelling under intersections where you couldn't even imagine one being built in the first place, yet this motorway doesn't have enough capacity to deal with large volumes of traffic. One wonders whether attempting this style of construction with a new motorway along South Road would be feasible, but with the motorway section being 3 lanes in each direction rather than 2. Then there's the issues of it linking up to the existing Southern Expressway (possibly by converting existing lanes of Main South Road to motorway standard) and also crossing the Torrens River.

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#13 Post by Norman » Wed May 30, 2007 1:33 am

Another idea is to build huge park and ride facilities at Glen Osmond, Darlington and Mawson Lakes, where the car users can switch to light rail that run express to the city... a wierd idea, but I wanted to get it out there.

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#14 Post by AtD » Wed May 30, 2007 10:59 am

normangerman wrote:Another idea is to build huge park and ride facilities at Glen Osmond, Darlington and Mawson Lakes, where the car users can switch to light rail that run express to the city... a wierd idea, but I wanted to get it out there.
I agree, altho heavy rail rather than light rail. I already leave my car at Mawson Lakes.

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#15 Post by Redback20 » Wed May 30, 2007 2:08 pm

AtD wrote:
Redback20 wrote:I still see this as a separate isue to public transport, which should be looked at as the desired means of getting most people to work in the future.
Well, don't. A freeway network is going to detriment any possible public transport network, especially in an environment of many councils each with their own development plans.

Public transport requires high population densities to be cost effective. It can be a chicken and egg argument, sometimes the public transport causes the higher density. And this is not a problem because it's relatively easy to increase the capacity of public transport, run longer trains more frequently.

Private road transport, however, has no need for high population densities, and in fact discourages them. Freeways create more urban sprawl. Take the southern suburbs as an example after the Southern Expressway was built. There has since been a mad rush to build more and more car dependent suburbs down south, each one putting greater pressure on the road network. The low density of the suburbs makes providing a frequent, reliable public transport service cost ineffective because there's not enough people to support it.

Which leaves you with a car dependent community, and the social, economic and environmental costs of this is well documented. Car infrastructure requires an enormous amount of space. The relative high cost of maintaining a car leaves those without the means to afford one have no way to get to work. The energy required to operate a car is just... phenomenal, you're using a ton of metal to move 80kg of meat!
Good post AtD and I take your points, but I still think we (will) need both. Toll freeways are generally created in urban areas not outlying ones, thats certainly the case in Melbourne and as a european this is definitely the case in all examples I know there. They help prevent gridlock generally caused by commercial cross-city traffic - which are the main payers for taking that gridlock out of their business overheads - the economic reasons I mentioned before.

In Adelaide we'd be talking about a N-S freeway and/or western ring road, right? Even the closest route would still involve a (congested) junction and link for CBD bound traffic. And the vast majority of Adelaideans wouldn't live close enough to it to warrant a detour to use it (see the A3 in Paris, or M25 london or the M6 Toll in birmingham, uk). Therefore I don't necessarily think that would make journey times into the CBD by car any quicker for the vast majority of people. Nor would the new freeway mirror any existing commuter train routes as they are all radial from CBD

Take myself living close to the Noarlunga line, never using a car for work as I work in the city... would a tolled freeway offering me no time saving be enough to tempt me out of my 25 bucks a week (equivalent) on the by then electrified express service to North Tce? Nope. And I live close to both the S expressway and main south, therefore likely N-S route. Still not tempted... no good reason to be.
However if I drove a truck to gawler or beyond every day, or was a sales exec going from N suburb - S suburb and back...the freeway/toll would be a bargain. These are the main user groups of a tolled urban freeway and none are public transport users.

An extended electrified train/tram network reaching into many more surburbs than at present (inner as well as outer) is vital to reduce Adelaide's traffic. AS WELL AS an urban freeway to enable cross-city traffic to bypass the inner suburbs & CBD. Remember we're talking about a plan covering the next 50 years not 5 ... and many european cities are like that now, or are having to be so just to keep commuters and business alike on the move.

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