I haven't been online here in a long time, but yesterday I had a brain wave (or a brain fart) that I thought ought to be shared somewhere.

It involves the old White Bay container terminal, CBD traffic congestion, and light rail.

My passing thought was to ban private vehicles from the CBD, and turn White Bay into a humungous car park and light rail interchange. Traffic across the Anzac Bridge could then be restricted to buses, light rail, taxis, bona fide commercial vehicles and Harbour Bridge/City Tunnel traffic.

It's not a utopian concept because it would still involve people driving as far as White Bay. However it would at least oblige many thousands of people to get out of their cars for ar least part of the trip. Perhaps it would be inconvenient enough to cause a great many people to question the point of driving that far.

Just my $0.02.

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Dont want the buggers all driving through Leichhardt to get there though. Bad enough now, people drive in from all over ( or some just drive a few hundred metres) and park in Robert St, Lilyfield Rd, Railway Pde,  etc and catch the bus or tram in.

Latest example of this misguided thinking is Leichhardt Councils traffic cttee decision to close a section of Brenan St near the light rail station, to stop a dangerous (to pedestrians and cyclists) left turn off Catherine St, which is good, but then to use the road space for more parking for commuters on the light rail. Hope the Council rejects the car park idea and puts in a nice bike parking facility. Write to your local councillor please!

and to get back on topic, White Bay is going to be off limits for some years because of the relocation of the Exhibition Centre during rebuilding of Darling Harbour, not to mention Sydney Ports not allowing any access on their road in to the Cruise Terminal, now being built. One of these days they will figure out what to do with the old power station. Then there might be some new access roads etc.

There's been on and off talks about re-opening the Glebe Island Bridge to foot and bike traffic, which presumably would be affected by any plans for White Bay... apropos of not much.

Thinking of what the congestion charge has done for London, and taking into account the geography here... why not that approach?

Love to see the old bridge open to bikes and feet, but Sydney Ports is opposing any access from James Craig Drive or their new Port Road. The old bridge access road is built up rather high above the dock land. Would require a long ramp down on the north side to dock level and then come back underneath the access road, through a tunnel, to James CraigDrive. Currently the tunnel is locked off by Sydney Ports. Can come down the path from the Digger on the AB cycleway, but by that stage you might as well continue on across the AB.

What proportion of people driving across Anzac Bridge have the CBD as their origin/destination? I imagine it's fairly small - 20%? 10%?

I'd prefer that White Bay be filled with stuff - housing, shops, entertainment, parks etc., and that there be zero parking for motor vehicles there. Better to add to the existing stock of non-car-centric stuff than cater to those who habitually drive. Let them stew in their congestion while we build a parallel world.
@Colin. Yes that would be wonderful. It would be utopian. And we both know it would never happen

My view is that car drivers will not, en masse, decide to abandon their cars overnight. It has been, and will continue to be, a long gradual process driven (no pun intended) by cost, congestion, and general inconvenience.

Locking private vehicles out of the CBD would be part of that process.

Anyway, I completely forgot about the new cruise ship terminal and the other works in process, so that's the end of my little pipe-dream about White Bay.
I'm more optimistic. Living in Darlinghurst/Kings Cross I'm already living in this "utopia" (more or less). Aside from the CBD it is by far the highest density area in Australia, has almost zero parking, and it has the most expensive real estate. That's not a coincidence. The money is there to be made by developers willing to replicate this proven success.
Here is what some architects came up with last year

Isn't fairly clear from the exact alignment of the Anzac Bridge and its approaches on the western side, and Victoria Road west of Robert Street, that the RMS (within which beats the heart of the still undead RTA) believes it will soon own the White Bay power station, and will be able to build six or perhaps eight sparkling traffic lanes straight through it? I don't exactly love the White Bay power station in its present condition as a hulking ruin, but I'd rather that than another fatuous piece of urban motorway.

This idea reminds me the New Jersey turnpike full of buses going backwards and forwards between a car park in New Jersey and Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York. Its an option.

So long as the cars were helicoptered in so they didn't need to get in or out on local roads.

Im thinking though that if a congestion tax was brought in people would actually park at their local train station rather than going all the way in to White Bay - only a few would do that.

And the areas around train stations would then be blighted by car parks instead of the attractive stuff that would make people want to live near the station, and so it would reduce the number of people willing/able to catch the train. Bike parking at stations is OK because it requires one tenth of the space as car parking, and so is compatible with the sort of density that is required for a train station to have a sufficient catchment of people to make the station worthwhile, or even profitable.


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