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THE PROPOSED NEW FRitE- w MANTLE RAILWAY STATION. b tl _ - - MR. GEORGE AT THE PORT. fi: A CONFERENCE WITH COUN- b CILLORS, p 'ti The Commissioner of Railways (Mr. G N. J. George), accompanied by Mr. e VW. W. Dartnell (the Engineer for Ex- V ]sting Lines), and Mr. Ernest E. Light 1 KAssistant Engineer fo rExisting Lines), a ,visited Fremantle yesterday in connec tion with matters relating to the pro- f posed new railway station and the t approaches to the wharves. The' visiL tors were met at. Fremantle by Cra. Jones, R. H. Holmes, Nicholas, Llewel lyn, Craig. Loukes and Stevens, and t Mr. S. T. Macmillan. Town Clerk, Mr. s Tf. B. Barratt, Town Engineer, and Mr. Hodgson, the Engineer for Railway Im- c provements at Fremantle. The party first repaired to th6 re claimed portion of the Esplanade, a strip of which was required by the Rail way Department for railway purposes, in connection with the Woodman's f Point line. The Commissioner some ] time ago applied for a strip 33ft. wide r but the Council at the time thought the request out of the question. How ever, after Mr. George explained to the councillors yesterday his reasons for asking- for so much of the reclaimed I land, the councillors agreed to con- 1 eider his application favourably for 33ft. from the present railway line on condition that the Railway Department should erect a fence that would serve the purpose of enclosing the Esplanade on the sea side. Mr. George explain ed that the land 'would be ultimately required for an additional line, and said that his desire was to make pro vision for the future. After the above matter had been dealt with. Cr. Nicholas brought under the Commissioner's notice the question of the .approaches to the. wharves as contemplated 'in connection with the proposed new railway station, and mar shalling yards. Mr. George explained that in con junction with his engineers he had en deavoured to make the best possible arrangements for the statioh. He had only a year and nine months to com plete his term as Commissioner, and if he was hindered as he had been in the past. he thought they would have i another Commissioner to finish the: job. Replying to a question as to when the railway station would be started, Mr. George said it could not be for at least three months, as they had first 4 to remove the running sheds, put down sidings, and do other preliminary work. The station, however, was only a por tion of the work that was to be under taken. The station buildings alone would only cost £25,000 out of the £80,000 that was to be expended. The remainder was for the erection of goods sheds, running sheds, and the laying out of the marshalling yards. The goods shed, which it was proposed to erect, would have a cartway down the centre, and would offer every fa cility for the removal of goods. The shed would be 200 to 250 yards away from the present station, which would probably be converted into offices in connection with the goods sheds. This would be convenient for the business people, as it would save them the longer walk to the goods shed. A plan of the proposed station and works was produced by Mr. Dartnell, and spread on the grass for the in spection of the councillors. Mr. George said he had the assurance cf Mr. Kircaldy, of the New South Wales railways, that it was one of the best plans hehad ever seen. It had been prepared by the officers of the Depart ment, and it was absolutely necessary that it should be carried out in its entirety. If the marshalling yard was interfered with goods would have to 1.e carried to North Fremantle or to Subi aco and back. The plan shows that the main en trance to the station will face Market street, and that the building will extend some distance east and west along Phil limore-street. The goods shed mention ed by the Commissioner is to be near the north-west corner of the railway yards, and adjacent to Cliff-street and the wharf. From the shed to the James-street Bridge on the northern side of the station will be the marshall ing yard. with a running shed near the bridge. Thus, right from Cliff-street there will be a network of railways which makes it impossible under the plan to extend any of the streets through to the wharf as was recently proposed. Only one line will pass across Cliff-street, and that is the Jandakot railway,on which the traffic at present is comparatively light. The James-street Bridge will be enlarged in order to per mit of the laying of additional lines. The running shed is to accommodate a dozen locomotives, and will be built in such a war that it aan ha wAla-icl to ns
the exigencies of the traffic demand. Cr. Nicholas questioned whether Cliff street and the James-street Bridge would be sufficient to cope with the traf fic from the wharves, and suggested that Mouatt-street should be carried through to Victoria Quay. Mr. George said such an alteration would be impossible without spoiling the whole plan. He mentioned that the land purchased by the James Govern ment would give a splendid approach to the new station, and said that he was willing that his Department should transfer to the Council portion of the railway lands in order that they might widen and improve the alignment of Phillimore-street. The only way to provide greater access to the wharves would be by the erection of an over head bridge similar to that in William street, Perth, which would cost £58,000, but he was of opinion that the money could be spent with greater benefit to the country in many other ways. There would be only one line in Cliff-street, and it would be impossible to run a road across ten or twelve lines that would be required for shunting purposes. His intention was absolutely to carry out the scheme as shown on the plan. Cr. Nicholas said the Fremantle people must take into consideration the question of the approaches to the wharves. He suggested that the mar shalling yard might be established at Subiaco, and that the proposed running shed should be dispensed with in order to give the necessary room. After further discussion Mr. George pointed out that the plans had been in Fremantle from time to time and had been talked over. Why, he wanted to know, had the question that had been brought before him that day not been mentioned earlier? Why had it been left until the works were start ed, thereby causing him to pay off from 150 to 200 men and add them to the ranks of the unemployed? Cr. Nicholas said he had never seen the plan. He also stated that the Fremantle Council had written to Mr. George with reference to the ap proaches. but had not, so far as he was aware, received a reply. He agreed that the Depart ment's engineers who prepared the plan knew their businees, but said it was in the interests of the towri. and Port that good approaches to the wharf should be provided. He, therefore, considered he was justified in bringing pressure to bear to have other roads continued through to the wharf. Mr. George pointed out that it was absolutely necessary that the plan should be carried out in its entirety. Otherwise he would not be a party to the spending of the money, because it would be absolutely throw'ing it away, and, in his position of trust as Com missioner, he did not intend to waste it. As to the statement that the proposed engine-shed was not neces ire, !ir. George said they must have tse engine-sho and the goods sheds as tma ded othstie it would be a
waste of money to spend anything at Fremantle at all outside the station building. He did not mind their go ing on in their present styles but' he thought the station was duty and filthy, and a disgrace to the first port of calL. Cr. Jones thought the plans had been well thought out. with a view to public convenience and railway tacih ties. In closing the conference, Mr. George said: "The whole question, boil ed down, is this: We must have con veniences to do the work. If you consider it is not to the interests of Fremantle to have the shunting yards and sheds, let us shift them away, but if that were done I would consider any expenditure outside a station and plat form a waste of money. This scheme to lay out £80,000 is for the purpose of enabling the railway system of the. station to do its work properly. If we cannot do that, we will have to shift the facilities away from Freman tle to North Fremantle or Subiaco. If this plan had not been 'chewed' over and altered until it reached perfection do you think I would have suggested that the James Government shduld pur chase the land in Market and Philli more streetsP I think they spent 50,000 sovereigns on it." THE ALIGNMENT OF PHILLI MORE STREET. Subsequently Mr. George had a con ference with the Fremantle Tramways Board, as the result of which arrange ments were made with regard to the alignment of Phillimore-street. The street will be made much straighter than it is at present, with an average width of a chain in the vicinity of Market-street, The tramline is to be laid down the centre of the street.