Please note, this closure has been amended. Please read media release of 29 January for up-to-date information.
The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is advising of the upcoming temporary closure of the Mile End pedestrian crossing adjacent to James Congdon Drive, Mile End.
The crossing will be closed on Monday 15 February 2016 –a month later than originally scheduled based on community feedback over the last few weeks and to allow further feedback to be received.
“We appreciate the closure inconveniences the local community, particularly those using the train station or using the path to access the adjacent parklands and travel to the city.
“Recent feedback has indicated a greater desire for further information around the crossing and why it’s taking place, and we acknowledge that some members of the community required further time to be informed of the issues involved,” an ARTC spokesperson said.
“While we recognise the importance of fully engaging the community on this matter we remain concerned of the danger pedestrians are putting themselves in at the crossing,” the spokesperson said.
“Since October 2014 we have 16 recorded reports or witnessed incidents of trespass where people are either walking behind a freight train or, unbelievably, climbing in-between the carriages. One report for example, mentioned seeing incidents on ten different occasions.”
“We believe these numbers are only the tip of the iceberg and a continuation of this behaviour means it is only a matter of time before someone gets seriously hurt or killed.”
“As train drivers are up to 1.5km away from the crossing, they have no way of knowing if any members of the public are near the train – this coupled with the potential for rail freight wagons to roll back unexpectedly and trains departing at any time is a recipe for disaster.”
ARTC is encouraging community members to use the Bakewell pedestrian underpass located under Glover Avenue and James Congdon Drive as the alternative access across the rail corridor.
“The planned Torrens Junction project in the area also means the number of times freight trains will block the Mile End pedestrian crossing is going to grow, as well as block it for longer periods – heightening concerns around behaviour,” the spokesperson said.
“The good news is that when complete the Torrens Junction project will all but remove the need for freight trains to stop and block the crossing.”
Given the nature of the track layout at Mile End it’s not operationally possible to change the stopping patterns of trains in this location or change the signalling infrastructure. An underpass or overpass has also been considered but these are also not feasible.
Freight trains currently wait at Mile End for passenger trains to pass through, before entering the rail network – this prevents delays to passenger trains, but does mean the Mile End pedestrian crossing is sometimes blocked by freight train wagons. The closure will not impact Adelaide Metro services.
The community can find out more at: https://www.artc.com.au/community/mile-end-closure/
Media Contact: Bas Bolyn, ARTC, 0477 340 658