There is a Coalition stooge on Jacinta Allan’s Facebook page who was making a complete fool of himself. This morning I had to block him because he was clearly showing that he was insane. He refused to believe the research that the Level Crossing Authority had done when giving the tender of the crossing removal work to the group promoting Sky Rail. That research showed that there is a main gas line near Grange Road (this is the first level crossing between Caulfield and Carnegie) that supplies a large part of inner Melbourne. Diverting that would cause a major disruption to the gas supply comparable to that of the Longford gas explosion a number of years ago (that addition is my opinion and I stand by it). Then there’s the issue of the high water table in the same area, which would inevitably cause major flooding if disrupted to the extent that a long trench into that table would cause. Constant rail disruptions whenever there is a cloud burst – which is happening more and more often these days due to climate change.
But would Damon Monopoli listen? No. As far as he’s concerned, there is no gas line and the water table issue has been over blown as there are a number of car parks that are underground as well in the same area. Obviously he’s lying about the first part, and the second part is irrelevant because no underground car park is the size of the trench required – nowhere near it! Name me one apartment car park that will fit four broad gauge rail lines for a full train length. That’s right – you can’t! Not to mention that those car parks are all under cover and the trench he wants won’t be except at the stations and where the roads go over (and even then at the station it’s not guaranteed as Gardiner, Springvale and Mitcham are a testament to).
He also claims some of the businesses under threat of the underground option support said option. Sorry – I don’t believe it; if anything because they wouldn’t have been told about the threat to their business if it went underground. Sky Rail would protect their business. It could stay where they are. The reality is (and James Marsh pointed this out) Monopoli hasn’t proven that he has spoken to either the Glen Eira council or the local businesses on any point.
Another point that Monopoli refused to address – the heritage listing of the station buildings at Carnegie and Murrumbeena. Now if the underground option was used, the buildings would have to go. No choice. Remember that there needs to be four lines for V/Line and freight. Sky Rail can be built and the buildings could stay where they are as they should in a heritage listing.
One more thing – and that’s the entire project and something called gradient. The choice needs to be made after Caulfield to go up or down. The gas main dictates that it has to go up. Now is there the distance to go from over to under between Grange Road and Koornang Road? No there’s not. It’s the same all the way along to Oakleigh. There isn’t enough distance between crucial points to alter it from over to under at any point. This is a flat area (hence the water table presence). It’s only 900 metres between Carnegie and Murrumbeena stations, and you have to take off 100 metres from platform end to the next level crossing making it 800 metres. Assuming that the up to down requirement is 50 metres, that’s a gradient of 1 to 16. Freight would struggle with that in particular, and how much extra electricity would be needed for the metro trains to make it inbound to Melbourne? Only the Velocities may be able to cope and even then would they have the distance to go from their maximum pace to stopping at Caulfield? That’s questionable – especially remembering the wear on the wheels that has only just recently been resolved.
So there is no choice. Sky Rail is the way to go. The eyesore argument is old and useless. Damon Monopoli is a Coalition stooge who opposes level crossing removal or small business and is willing to lie to do his pathetic job. And he has failed. Any assertion that the ALP lost Chisholm on July 2 because of Sky Rail is ignorant, given that the seat is on the railway line so no contribution from the south of the line (that’s Hotham) and also the only Sky Rail sector in the seat is Clayton. Carnegie and Murrumbeena are in Higgins, where there was a 1.66 percent swing AGAINST the Coalition and towards the Greens who SUPPORT Sky Rail!
More about Monopoli – he works for the ANZ Bank as a financial planner. Coalition bread and butter. And he lives more than a kilometre from the nearest station – Hughesdale. So he’s not at the coal face. Enough said.
Update – July 13: James Marsh has informed me that Monopoli claims that I have misquoted him. I deny this claim and if he wishes to counter it, he’d better comment here. My guess is that he hated being called out accurately and is whining and complaining (James didn’t provide any screenshots). He mentioned Burke Road – presumably associated with the now completed level crossing removal at Gardiner – and I can confirm that there was no gas line affected. At all. James also informed me that he linked my wrestling promo from New Age Wrestling to try and discredit me – as though I thought I was doing something real and wasn’t without knowing it. I have been involved with the local scene for 14 years. I think I would know the difference between fake and real. That attempted call out seems to show that Monopoli expects everyone to be real and doesn’t believe in escapism. Reminds me of another maniac like that. Here’s reality – Monopoli is a liar and should be ignored, or mocked. Whichever suits your fancy.