Sydney, it’s meant to be the hub of Australia’s economy but for a central business district (CBD) why are there so many infrastructure problems? In recent months commuters and the public in general have felt the inconvenience of what happens when transport and the Internet don’t work, as they should.
To start with there’s the transport system. Major train issues from operations to problems with new trains and existing train lines. And then there’s the airport and of course the forced upon national broadband network (NBN).
The issue with Sydney trains is that they are inconsistent, there’s not enough trains running at crucial times and to top it all off Sydney Trains has cut a further 94 services to their train schedule in an effort to make train time tables “better” and avoid a repeat of the chaos that ensued back in late January of this year. To add further insult to commuters and tax payers, the government bought trains that had break issues as per the train disaster earlier this year where the breaks failed and the train plowed into the buffer at Richmond station leaving up to 16 people injured.
Then the newest fleet of trains was deemed too big to fit through some of the existing tunnels. Yes, you heard right! The new fleet of trains being manufactured in South Korea and set to hit our train lines in 2019 are too wide to pass each other in Sydney’s tunnels according to current safety standards, so the government is dropping their safety standards and changing the legal distance required between trains. (Eye roll right?)
The level of frustration commuters are feeling is understandable, after all this is Australia’s capital (sorry Canberra) at least when it comes to the economy and business that enterprises flock to it.
To add to the transport chaos even further within the last few months our domestic and some of our international airport terminals have been affected by system malfunctions throwing the entire network into delayed chaos. The problem? Well according to the airports it was a “glitch” – sure we get that glitches happen (they happen mentally to us as if a computer isn’t going to have one) but three in a span of a few months? I smell issues!
When it comes to the roads, well they’re no better, our motor ways are currently being upgraded with more lanes because of traffic congestion (like where was the foresight when they were being planned?). If there’s an accident on the freeway well good luck getting home anytime soon and it’s not just the freeways servicing the city it’s the ones going out of the city as well.
So just as we thought that the transport issue was enough, think again. The government’s roll out of the NBN hasn’t gone as smoothly as it should have, to, add to that there are connectivity and speed issues. All whilst forcing people that have had the NBN installed in the area to connect to it and making their ADSL network redundant after a certain period of time (fair enough we want better internet- on the proviso that it actually works). For a country that prides itself on being (or at least trying to be) at the forefront of technology what’s going on? Our own Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull even called it a “calamitous train wreck”.
If Sydney wishes to keep their prestigious CBD title they are going to need to shake things up and get it right.
How? Well that’s a job for our politics and engineers to figure out- if our politicians will stop screwing their staff and the rest of the country. Why else were they elected?