Over the past few weeks we have seen several articles in the Sydney press describing the dual problems of increasing congestion on Sydney’s rail network and late running trains.
So, it’s timely to remind Pennant Hills members that the Epping to Chatswood train line will close on 30 September 2018 to allow modifications to the line and stations for the new metro line from Rouse Hill to Chatswood, which will open in 2019.
All infrastructure projects create winners and losers and commuters from Thornleigh, Pennant Hills, Beecroft, Cheltenham and Epping are the losers.
Those of us who had become used to travelling in comfort to Macquarie Park and Chatswood will now have to take a bus on the congested Epping Road. Those who travel to Sydney via the Harbour Bridge will now need to travel via Strathfield. In some ways this is a backward step to 2009 before the Epping to Chatswood line was opened.
However, much has changed since 2009. The strong growth in the Macquarie Park precinct had attracted some residents to our Shire because of the great train link to Macquarie Park, Macquarie University and Chatswood. For some time into the future these residents will experience longer commute times.
Some of us may find it more convenient to travel to Sydney via Hornsby rather than via Strathfield. In peak hours there will be four trains per hour running to Sydney via Strathfield (and four to Hornsby). Once you get to Hornsby there are 16 trains per hour running to Sydney. It pays to check timetables to see which direction gives you the best, most comfortable travel experience.
However, the Trust also looks for the silver lining in examining issues. It is possible that once the Sydney Metro line is opened with stations at Cherrybrook and Castle Hill, the commuter parking issues in streets around Pennant Hills railway station may be eased. It all depends on how many commuters who currently drive to Pennant Hills will find the Cherrybrook or Castle Hill stations more convenient. Reduced commuter parking may also impact some of our local businesses.
Whatever happens, the future will not be the same as the recent past.
The Trust is interested in hearing the good and the bad from residents whose travel is impacted by the new train/ bus arrangements. Post any comments or observations on our Facebook page (facebook.com/PennantHillsTrust) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org