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Newcastle rail line rumours abound

Apr 29, 2014News

With rumours surrounding the closure of the Newcastle line to make way for light rail gaining momentum of late, the Loco Division sought urgent talks with local sitting Liberal Minister, Tim Owens, to discuss the issue.

After three attempts to meet with the Minister, a contingent of five representatives finally got a hearing for around 20 minutes in his office in March.

Rumours have the line closed in September / October this year for three years from Broadmeadow to allow the truncating and light rail to be implemented.

Unfortunately the meeting with the Minister failed to shed any real light on the issue, with many of the Loco Division’s questions being referred to the Transport Minister or dismissed as issues which hadn’t been decided on yet.

The meeting with the local member was in stark contrast to a more recent forum with the Shadow Minister for Transport, Penny Sharpe and local Labor candidate Jenny Atcheison.

The two held a forum with a range of stakeholders to discuss the line closure as well as other transport issues in the Hunter and seemed concerned about the impact the Government’s proposals would have on public transport in the region.

A number of other interested organistations were at the forum, including some private bus operators who were very concerned about the impact the line closure will have on the bus terminus at Newcastle station.

The Loco Division will endeavour to keep members updated on information about the proposed rail closure as it comes to hand.