South Coast Line

Last updated

South Coast Line
TfNSW SCO.svg
H11-scarborough.jpg
Overview
Service type Intercity rail
Locale Illawarra region, New South Wales
First service21 June 1887 (1887-06-21)
Current operator(s) NSW TrainLink
Route
Start Central, Bondi Junction
Stops45
End Bomaderry
Distance travelled166 km (103 mi)
Line(s) used Eastern Suburbs
South Coast
Port Kembla
Technical
Rolling stock NSW TrainLink H set, Endeavour railcar and T sets.
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Track owner(s) RailCorp

The South Coast Line is an intercity rail service operated by NSW TrainLink that services the Illawarra region of New South Wales, Australia. The service runs from Central, and runs the entire length of the eponymous South Coast railway line to Bomaderry. The service also runs along the Eastern Suburbs railway line at peak hours and the Port Kembla railway line to Port Kembla. It is operated with NSW TrainLink H sets and Sydney Trains T sets, with Endeavour railcars operating the service on the non-electrified line between Kiama and Bomaderry.

Regional rail, also known as local trains and stopping trains, are passenger rail services that operate between towns and cities. These trains operate with more stops over shorter distances than inter-city rail, but fewer stops and faster service than commuter rail. Regional rail services operate beyond the limits of urban areas, and either connect similarly-sized smaller cities and towns, or cities and surrounding towns, outside or at the outer rim of a suburban belt.

NSW TrainLink operator of passenger rail services in New South Wales (exclusive of the Sydney suburban network)

NSW TrainLink is an Australian brand for the medium and long distance passenger rail and coach services in New South Wales. It operates services throughout New South Wales and into the neighbouring states and territories of Victoria, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory. Train services are operated by the government's NSW Trains. Coach services are contracted to private operators. It is an agency of Transport for NSW.

Illawarra Region in New South Wales, Australia

Illawarra is a region in the Australian state of New South Wales. It is a coastal region situated immediately south of Sydney and north of the Shoalhaven or South Coast region. It encompasses the cities of Wollongong, Shellharbour and the town of Kiama.

Contents

Passenger trains first operated on the South Coast railway line in 1887, and is one of five routes on the NSW TrainLink Intercity network. The South Coast Line routes span 40 stations, across 159 km of railway. An additional 5 stations and 7 km of railway are travelled by South Coast Line trains at peak hour on the Eastern Suburbs railway line.

History

Stations

The first passenger train services on the Illawarra commenced on 21 June 1887, after the line was completed from Clifton to Wollongong, and later, North Kiama on 9 November 1887. The line was later connected to Waterfall via Helensburgh, Otford, Stanwell Park and Coalcliff the following year between July and October 1888, after delays on construction between Waterfall and Clifton. The line was further extended to Bomaderry through Kiama, opening on 2 June 1893. [1] [2]

Clifton, New South Wales Suburb of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

Clifton is a village on the coast of New South Wales, Australia, between Sydney and Wollongong. Along with nearby Coalcliff, the village began life as a coal-mining centre. It is situated on a narrow area between the sea and the Illawarra escarpment. The electrified South Coast railway line passes through, but the station at Clifton was closed in 1915.

Wollongong railway station main railway station of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

Wollongong railway station is a heritage-listed railway station on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the central business district of Wollongong. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

Bombo railway station

Bombo is a heritage-listed single-platform intercity train station located in Bombo, Municipality of Kiama, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line. The station serves NSW TrainLink trains travelling south to Kiama and north to Wollongong and Sydney. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

An American Suburban carriage passenger train approaches Austinmer station. (photograph dated 1914) Railway Station - Austinmer.jpg
An American Suburban carriage passenger train approaches Austinmer station. (photograph dated 1914)
View of Shellharbour Junction station, which opened in late 2014 Shellharbour Junction railway station platforms and concourse.jpg
View of Shellharbour Junction station, which opened in late 2014

Throughout its long history, the South Coast Line's roster of stations have changed significantly. Many stations in the Upper Illawarra had closed and new ones opened towards the first half of the 20th century. Stations such as the ones serving Clifton were closed, along with a majority of the original railway between Waterfall and Coalcliff between 1915 and 1920, replaced with a new alignment that made use of a flatter gradient and made the infamous Otford Tunnel defunct. New stations along the line that opened throughout this period included Coledale in 1902, North Wollongong in 1915, Coniston in 1916, Wombarra in 1917, and Towradgi in 1948. Further removals of stations from the line in the latter half of the 20th century included the station serving Yallah in 1974, the majority of the stations on the line between Kiama and Bomaderry, and Lilyvale in 1983. [1] Dunmore was also closed in November 2014, replaced by Shellharbour Junction, after rising commercial and residential development in Flinders and Shell Cove and their distance from Dunmore station, prompted the Government of New South Wales to build a replacement station closer to the area of urban growth. [3]

Coledale railway station

Coledale railway station is located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the seaside village of Coledale opening in July 1902. The station building was built in 1915 when the line was duplicated.

North Wollongong railway station

North Wollongong railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the Northern Wollongong suburb of North Wollongong, opening on 19 July 1915. It is the primary station for the University of Wollongong.

Coniston railway station, New South Wales

Coniston is an intercity train station located in Coniston, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line. The station serves NSW TrainLink trains travelling south to Port Kembla or Kiama and north to Wollongong and Sydney.

While the railway network at Port Kembla was built in 1916, stations and passenger trains servicing the surrounding suburbs did not operate until 5 January 1920, when the Port Kembla railway station was opened. A station at Cringila was added to the Port Kembla commuter branch in 1926, along with one at Port Kembla North, a decade later, in 1936. A railway station for workers at Port Kembla, named Lysaghts, after the nearby Lysaght steel plant, was also opened in 1938. [1]

Port Kembla, New South Wales Suburb of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

Port Kembla is a suburb of Wollongong 8 km south of the CBD and part of the Illawarra region of New South Wales. The suburb comprises a seaport, industrial complex, a small harbour foreshore nature reserve, and a small commercial sector. It is situated on the tip of Red Point, first European sighting by Captain James Cook in 1770. The name "Kembla" is Aboriginal word meaning "plenty [of] wild fowl".

Port Kembla railway station

Port Kembla is a single-platform intercity train terminal located in Port Kembla, Australia, on the South Coast railway line's Port Kembla branch. The station serves NSW TrainLink trains travelling north to Wollongong and Sydney. The station also serves as a stabling location for South Coast line trains.

Cringila railway station

Cringila is an intercity train station located in Cringila, Australia, on the South Coast railway line's Port Kembla branch. The station serves NSW TrainLink trains travelling south to Port Kembla and north to Wollongong and Sydney.

Services and rolling stock

Services were originally operated with locomotive-hauled trains and, later, Diesel railcars, prior to the electrification of the South Coast railway line. The line was electrified to Helensburgh in 1984, with the suburban Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line service occasionally extending its service past the terminus at Waterfall to Helensburgh during peak hours, a practice that the current Sydney Trains Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line service still follows today. Electrification extended to Wollongong the following year. Despite the newly installed electrification, diesel sets and locomotive-hauled trains still operated along the line from Kiama all the way past Wollongong to Sydney, including the South Coast Daylight Express , until 1991. [4] Electrification of the South Coast railway line was further extended to Dapto in 1993 and, finally, to Kiama in 2001. The railway between Kiama and Bomaderry is the only part of the line that remains non-electrified, operated by New South Wales Endeavour railcars since their introduction in 1994.

Locomotive Railway vehicle

A locomotive or engine is a rail transport vehicle that provides the motive power for a train. If a locomotive is capable of carrying a payload, it is usually rather referred to as multiple units, motor coaches, railcars or power cars; the use of these self-propelled vehicles is increasingly common for passenger trains, but rare for freight.

Helensburgh railway station

Helensburgh railway station is a heritage-listed railway station located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the town of Helensburgh. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line rail service in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

The Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line is a commuter railway line in the eastern and southern suburbs of Sydney and is a part of the Sydney Trains network. The line was constructed in the 1880s to Wollongong to take advantage of agricultural and mining potentials in the Illawarra area. In March 1926 it became the first railway in New South Wales to run electric train services.

The electrified rolling stock of the South Coast Line began with V set intercity trains. There were later accompanied by Tangaras when they were introduced into the CityRail network in 1988. Originally, the Tangaras that ran on the South Coast Line were different variations of T sets known as G sets. G sets differed from T sets in that they had reversible seats, toilets, fresh water dispensers and luggage racks. In late 2005, it was discovered that a majority of the V set rolling stock operating on the South Coast Line were suffering from corrosion in their underframes. More G sets were introduced onto the South Coast Line to compensate, and eventually became the standard rolling stock on the South Coast Line after V sets ceased operating on the service. From January 2012, V sets ceased operating South Coast services. In 2009, however, after the introduction of OSCARs onto the intercity CityRail network, All G sets were recalled for conversion into T sets. The OSCAR fleet effectively replaced the G set rolling stock and, since 2010, standard Sydney Trains T sets, owned by NSW TrainLink, have been operating services to Port Kembla.

NSW TrainLink V set class of electric multiple unit operating in New South Wales, Australia

The V sets are a class of Australian electric multiple unit operated by NSW TrainLink in New South Wales. These stainless steel double deck trains operate on Interurban services on the Main Western line to Lithgow and Main Northern line to Newcastle.

Sydney Trains T set class of electric multiple unit operating in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

The Tangara is a class of electric multiple unit operated by Sydney Trains in Sydney, Australia. The Tangaras were delivered between 1988 and 1995, and are third-generation trains.

CityRail operated the rail network of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

CityRail was an Australian passenger train operator with services in and around Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong, the three largest cities in New South Wales as well as some rail replacement bus services. It was established in January 1989 and abolished in June 2013 when it was superseded by Sydney Trains and NSW TrainLink.

In 2017, it was revealed that the Liberal state government had reviewed a 3.6 billion dollar tunnel between Thirroul and Waterfall that could reduce travel time between Sydney and Wollongong by 22 minutes, but that rail improvements were being sidetracked in favour of improving and extending the nearby Princes Motorway. [5]

Incidents

On 20 December 1994, an accident involving two empty S sets occurred during a shunting procedure at Waterfall. One of the trains jack-knifed onto the platform, demolishing the concrete pedestrian bridge. No injuries or casualties, however, were reported. [6] On the morning of 31 January 2003, an intercity Tangara en route to Port Kembla derailed at high speed between Waterfall and Helensburgh, resulting in the deaths of seven people and injury of forty. [7] The accident was the third major accident resulting in fatalities on the CityRail network in 13 years, after the Cowan rail accident in 1990 and Glenbrook rail accident in 1999.

On 24 November 2011, a Pacific National coal train derailed near Clifton, causing the suspension of South Coast Line services between Waterfall and Thirroul. Services were resumed four days later, after the derailed train was removed from the tracks. [8] The train had derailed immediately after coming out of the Clifton tunnel, with the front eight clearing the tunnel and derailing, and the rear twelve carriages remaining inside the tunnel. The Office of Transport Safety Investigations found that the cause of the derailment was a broken axle. [9]

Services

Sydney Trains H22 OSCAR.jpg
Sydney Trains Tangara (cropped).jpg
Endeavour railcar at Newcastle railway station, NSW.JPG
The rolling stock of the South Coast Line: OSCARs (left), Tangaras (centre), and Endeavours (right).

NSW TrainLink South Coast Line services typically commence from Platform 14 at Central, but since the construction of the Sydney Metro Project is taking place at Central station, platforms 13, 14 and 15 will be fenced off and no longer usable for trains. So the South Coast Line trains have started to depart from platform 4 or platform 11 instead, though, peak hour services can commence from Bondi Junction and Martin Place on the Eastern Suburbs railway line, and stop at Central at Platform 25. South Coast Line trains pass through most of the stations on the suburban section of the South Coast railway line, and usually only stop at Redfern (to and from Bondi Junction only), Wolli Creek, Hurstville, Sutherland and Waterfall, though services to and from Thirroul and Port Kembla also make additional stops at Sydenham, Loftus, Engadine and Heathcote. The most common Central to Kiama services, operated by NSW TrainLink H sets (OSCARs), bypass most of the stations on the line, while all-stations services operate between Waterfall and Port Kembla and Thirroul and Port Kembla with NSW TrainLink-owned Sydney Trains T sets (Tangaras). All Central to Kiama services make stops at all stations between North Wollongong and Kiama, with the exception of the request stop Kembla Grange. Express services also exist between Bondi Junction and Wollongong, and Bondi Junction and Dapto. Shuttle train services between Kiama and Bomaderry are operated by Diesel-engined New South Wales Endeavour railcars, due to the line not being electrified past Kiama. [10]


Stopping Patterns

Weekday Peak Hours There are no set stopping patterns for peak hours, however every 20 minutes a service operates between Bondi Junction all stations to Central (Platforms 24/25), Redfern (Platform 11/12), Wolli Creek, Hurstville and the South Coast.

Weekday Off-Peak

Weekends

Stations

New South Wales metropolitan rail area, with the South Coast Line highlighted in blue New South Wales metropolitan rail area, with South Coast railway line highlighted.svg
New South Wales metropolitan rail area, with the South Coast Line highlighted in blue
NameCode
[11]
Distance from
Central
Travel Time
[ab 1]
RailwaySuburbs servicedConnecting Services
Bondi Junction – Waterfall (Suburban section)
Bondi Junction BJN6.7 kmdep. Eastern Suburbs Bondi Junction, Woollahra
T4
Edgecliff ECL4.8 km3 minEdgecliff, Darling Point
T4
Kings Cross KSX3.4 km3 minKings Cross, Rushcutters Bay
T4
Martin Place MPC2.1 km2 minSydney
T4
Town Hall THL1.1 km3 minSydney
Central SBO0.0 km3 minSydney, Strawberry Hills,
Ultimo, Surry Hills
Redfern RDF1.3 km2 minRedfern, Waterloo, Darlington
Wolli Creek WOC7.3 km8 min South Coast Wolli Creek, Arncliffe
T4
T8
Hurstville HVL14.8 km15 minHurstville, Hurstville South
T4
Sutherland SLD24.6 km10 minSutherland
T4
Waterfall WFL38.7 km12 minWaterfall
T4
Waterfall – Coniston
Helensburgh HSB46.3 km9 minSouth CoastHelensburgh, Lilyvale
Otford OTF54.6 km6 minOtford, Stanwell Tops
Stanwell Park SWP56.0 km4 minStanwell Park
Coalcliff CCF59.3 km6 minCoalcliff
Scarborough SWP62.5 km5 minScarborough, Clifton
Wombarra WMJ64.4 km3 minWombarra
Coledale COL66.2 km3 minColedale
Austinmer AUR68.6 km3 minAustinmer
Thirroul TRL70.2 km2 minThirroul
Bulli BUI72.2 km2 minBulli
Woonona WOJ74.0 km2 minWoonona
Bellambi BLM75.6 km2 minBellambi, Russell Vale
Corrimal CIM77.0 km1 minCorrimal, East Corrimal
Towradgi TOW78.0 km1 minTowradgi, Tarrawanna
Fairy Meadow FMW79.4 km2 minFairy Meadow
North Wollongong NHW81.3 km3 minNorth Wollongong, Gwynneville,
Mount Ousley
Wollongong WOL82.9 km4 minWollongong TfNSW C.svg Wollongong – Bundanoon Coach
Coniston CNI84.1 km2 minConiston
Coniston – Port Kembla (Port Kembla branch)
Lysaghts LYS86.3 km3 minPort Kembla
Cringila CRG87.7 km2 minCringila
Port Kembla North PBN88.8 km2 minWarrawong
Port Kembla PKM90.2 km3 minPort Kembla
Coniston – Kiama
Unanderra UDR88.3 km5 minSouth CoastUnanderra
Kembla Grange KGG91.6 km3 minKembla Grange
Dapto DAP95.1 km5 minDapto, Horsley TfNSW C.svg Wollongong – Bundanoon Coach
Albion Park ALP103.3 km~9 minAlbion Park Rail TfNSW C.svg Wollongong – Bundanoon Coach
Oak Flats OAF105.5 km3 minOak Flats, Blackbutt, Shellharbour
Shellharbour Junction 108.9 km4 minCroom, Flinders, Shell Cove
Minnamurra MUR113.4 km5 minMinnamurra
Bombo BMB117.6 km5 minKiama Downs
Kiama KAM119.2 km3 minKiama
Kiama – Bomaderry (Non-electric service)
Gerringong GOG128.6 km9 minSouth CoastGerringong
Berry BRY140.8 km9 minBerry
Bomaderry BOM153.4 km9 minBomaderry, Nowra
  1. The time taken for a train to reach the station from the previous stop. Based on the current South Coast Line timetable, effective 20 October 2013. [10]

Patronage

The following table shows the patronage of each line of the NSW TrainLink Intercity network for the year ending 30 June 2018, based on Opal tap on and tap off data. [12]

2017-18 NSW TrainLink Intercity patronage by line
10168000
South Coast Line
19441000
926000
9851000
1059000

Related Research Articles

South Coast railway line, New South Wales railway line in New South Wales, Australia

The South Coast railway line is a commuter and goods railway line in New South Wales, Australia. Beginning at the Illawarra Junction, the line primarily services the Illawarra and South Coast regions of New South Wales, and connects Sydney and Nowra through Wollongong and Kiama.

Otford railway station, New South Wales

Otford railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the village of Otford opening on 3 October 1888. Two refuge sidings existed north of the station until removed in the 1980s.

Stanwell Park railway station

Stanwell Park railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the seaside village of Stanwell Park opening on 23 December 1901, relocating to its current location on 10 October 1920.

Woonona railway station

Woonona railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the northern Wollongong suburb of Woonona opening on 25 August 1919.

Gerringong railway station

Gerringong is a single-platform intercity train station located in Gerringong, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line. The station serves NSW TrainLink diesel multiple unit trains travelling south to Bomaderry and north to Kiama. Early morning and late night services to the station are provided by train replacement bus services. In the past, the station precinct also catered to freight trains carrying dairy products.

Dapto railway station

Dapto is an intercity train station located in Dapto, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line.

Kembla Grange railway station

Kembla Grange is a single-platform intercity train station located in Kembla Grange, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line. The station serves NSW TrainLink trains travelling south to Kiama and north to Wollongong and Sydney. The station ranked equal last for patronage on the metropolitan network in 2012, and was one of 23 on the metropolitan rail network to record an average of fewer than one passenger per day in 2014.

Unanderra railway station

Unanderra is an intercity train station located in Unanderra, New South Wales, Australia, on the South Coast railway line.

Coalcliff railway station

Coalcliff railway station is located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the seaside village of Coalcliff opening in August 1920. A yard exists south of the station for the Illawarra Coke Company's Coalcliff Cokeworks. Although rail transport had ceased some time prior, the cokeworks remained open until mid-2013. A passing loop to the east of the station remains in use. South of the station the double line becomes single to pass through Coalcliff Tunnel.

Wombarra railway station

Wombarra railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the village of Wombarra opening on 12 February 1917 as Brown's Ridge.

Thirroul railway station

Thirroul railway station is a heritage-listed railway station on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the northern Wollongong suburb of Thirroul. It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 2 April 1999.

Bellambi railway station

Bellambi railway station is located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the northern Wollongong suburb of Bellambi opening in 1889.

Corrimal railway station

Corrimal railway station is located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the Northern Wollongong suburb of Corrimal opening on 21 June 1887.

Towradgi railway station

Towradgi railway station is located on the Illawarra line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the northern Wollongong suburb of Towradgi opening on 18 December 1948.

Fairy Meadow railway station

Fairy Meadow railway station is located on the South Coast railway line in New South Wales, Australia. It serves the northern Wollongong suburb of Fairy Meadow opening in 1887 as Cramsville. It was renamed Para-meadow on 3 October 1888, Balgownie on 13 December 1909 and Faiy Meadow in January 1956.

References

  1. 1 2 3 Bozier, Rolfe. "South Coast Line". NSWrail.net. Retrieved 18 May 2015.
  2. Oakes, John (2009) [2003]. Sydney's Forgotten Illawarra Railways (2nd rev. ed.). Sydney: Australian Railway Historical Society, NSW Division. pp. 11, 12, 23, 24, 26, 54–56, 60, 73, 79–85. ISBN   978-0-9805106-6-9.
  3. Humphries, Glen (6 November 2014). "New Shellharbour Junction set to open". Illawarra Mercury . Fairfax Regional Media . Retrieved 18 May 2015.
  4. Cooke, David (1984). Railmotors and XPTs. Sydney: Australian Railway Historical Society, NSW Division. ISBN   0 909650 23 3.
  5. Robertson, James; O'Sullivan, Matt (27 June 2017). "Minister's answer undercut by cabinet documents on Sydney-Wollongong rail tunnel". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 June 2017.
  6. "Waterfall Collision Puts Focus on Procedures". Railway Digest: 6. February 1995.
  7. "Special Commission of Inquiry into the Waterfall Rail Accident; Final Report Volume 1; January 2005; The Honourable Peter Aloysius McInerney QC" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 June 2008. Retrieved 26 December 2012.
  8. "Train services return after derailment". ABC News Australia . Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 28 November 2011. Retrieved 18 May 2015.
  9. "Rail Safety Investigation Report – Derailment of Pacific National Service MC92" (PDF). New South Wales Office of Transport Safety Investigations. Retrieved 18 May 2015.
  10. 1 2 "South Coast line timetable". Transport for NSW.
  11. Bozier, Rolfe. "New South Wales Railways: NSW Station Codes". Archived from the original on 13 June 2002. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  12. "Train Patronage - Monthly Figures". Transport for NSW. Retrieved 14 September 2018.