Photos from ten years ago: December 2007

Another instalment in my photos from ten years ago series – this time it is December 2007.

We start at Southern Cross Station looking at a very sparse main concourse.

Main concourse from Spencer Street

The only thing blocking the way was a single Christmas tree, dwarfed by the grand space – quite the contrast to today.

Down at a tram stop on Collins Street there are four things that no longer exist – a Metcard ticket machine, change machine, Telstra payphone and SmartGuide journey planner.

Metcard machine, change machine, Telstra payphone and SmartGuide journey planner at the Town Hall superstop

The Metcard ticket machine and change machine have been replaced by Myki and payment by credit cards, while the payphone and SmartGuide journey planner have been replaced by smartphones and public transport apps.

Down at Geelong I paid a visit to Gheringhap Loop, located on the standard gauge main line between Melbourne and Adelaide, where I found some grubby looking locomotives hauling their respective freight trains.

Cross at Gheringhap Loop

Both trains were led by the NR class locomotives – introduced back in 1997, but this point they were a decade old and well in need of a repaint, which owner Pacific National commenced soon after.

Gheringhap is also the junction for the broad gauge railway linking Geelong and Ballarat, which was covered with rust when I paid a visit.

How long since the broad gauge was used? Gheringhap Loop

The reason for the lack of rusted rails was the worst drought on record in southern Australia – crops across Victoria failed, which saw no grain trains to run along the line. Thankfully the drought broke a few years later, with multiple trains a day now using the line to transport export grain to the Port of Geelong.

I also headed made a visit to Ballarat by train with the Seymour Railway Heritage Centre, who ran their 1930s Spirit of Progress carriage set behind a pair of 1950s diesel locomotives.

T357 and B74 run around at Ballarat

The group still runs their train around Victoria from time to time – the most recent was November this year.

And a non train related photo

I also paid a visit to the corner of Malop and Yarra Streets in Geelong, where the expansion of Westfield Geelong was well underway.

Much of the basic structure now complete

Today this view down Yarra Street to Corio Bay is no longer possible.

Yarra Street before the skybridge blocks the view forever

Blocked by a cheap and nasty looking flyover that links the two sides of the shopping centre.

Footnote

Here you can find the rest of my ‘photos from ten years ago

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2 Responses to “Photos from ten years ago: December 2007”

  1. Andrew says:

    I’ve often wondered why the Gheringhap Loop was mentioned in certain circles often enough. Now I know. In a state such as ours without climatic extremes, there is no need to link buildings at all. I suppose there is some perceived commercial advantage.

    • Tom the first and best says:

      No temperature extremes? With regular forays into the 30s in the warmer months and temperatures in the 40s not being unheard of, I would contest that. This is even more the case in the north of the state. We also have colder winters than most of the rest of mainland Australia (although nothing like many places in North America, Europe, Antarctica, Patagonia, etc or with very high altitudes) Victoria is also very car dependent, meaning more people are less prepared for being outside building/vehicles than in a more public transport/walking/cycling place.

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