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MiniBus Hire South Australia


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Wikipedia Guide to Adelaide South Australia

Rail services around Adelaide are provided by a mixture of private & government-owned organisations.

TransAdelaide is a corporate agency of the Government of South Australia and is contracted by the SA Office of Public Transport to operate the suburban passenger rail network. This comprises five lines from Adelaide Railway Station on North Terrace in the CBD. The State Government of South Australia retains ownership of all broad gauge lines in the suburban area, together with the Glenelg Tram.

ARTC (Australian Rail Track Corporation), an agency of the Australian federal government, owns standard gauge interstate lines heading north and south, together with the dual gauge freight-only branch from Dry Creek to Port Adelaide and Pelican Point. The ARTC lines bypass the city to the west and do not enter the CBD. The ARTC network extends from Adelaide towards Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Darwin and is used by substantial interstate freight traffic.

Freight trains are operated by a number of private operators, who have access agreements with rail network owners such as ARTC. The largest of these is Pacific National, which handles the majority of interstate traffic and has the largest locomotive fleet. Other logistics companies also operate freight trains to and from interstate destinations and within South Australia.

Australian Railroad Group (ARG) is a private consortium that owns the remaining broad-gauge lines beyond the Adelaide suburban network. These are a handful of lines used mainly to move bulk grain and stone from the Barossa Valley and mid-north region of S.A to the Port Adelaide area. ARG also operates standard gauge branches to Apamurra, Loxton and Pinnaroo (all in the Murray Mallee east of Adelaide) and an isolated narrow gauge line from Port Lincoln into Eyre Peninsula. These transport seasonal grain traffic to ports for export.

Great Southern Railway (GSR) is a private company operating long-distance passenger trains. These trains use ARTC’s standard gauge lines and run from the Keswick Rail Terminal, not from the main city station - Keswick is an industrial suburb just west of the CBD. GSR’s passenger trains are the Indian Pacific to Sydney and Perth, The Ghan to Alice Springs and Darwin and The Overland to Melbourne. The frequencies range from one to four trains per week, depending on destination. There have been no intra-state regional passenger services in South Australia since 1990.

There are several heritage related railways in South Australia run by volunteers, but none of these are based in the Adelaide area. The closest is SteamRanger at Mount Barker and Goolwa. More distant lines, well outside the Adelaide area, are the Pichi Richi Railway, Limestone Coast Railway and Yorke Peninsula Railway.

Despite the earlier geographic expansion, by 1920 the infrastructure and rolling stock of South Australia's railways had become run down, inadequate and outdated. Many of the operating practices, such as train control and signalling, were backward by the standards of the time.

However the 1920s saw substantial and expensive improvements in most facets of the SAR’s operations under the leadership of Railways Commissioner William A. Webb. Webb was an American who had substantial operational experience with US railroads, and served as Commissioner between 1922 and 1930.

During his reign, track, bridges, railway workshops, rolling stock and especially steam locomotives were all modernised and upgraded along essentially American lines. Adelaide Station was rebuilt with a very handsome sandstone building as a showpiece of the city on North Terrace. The building still stands, converted into a casino.

In 1929, one of the original broad gauge steam railways to the beach-side suburb of Glenelg was transferred to the Adelaide Municipal Tramways Trust, electrified and converted to a tramway. The Glenelg Tram line is still in operation.

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