Rockdale Box. Good news (well just)
#1
Hi all,
Just came out of the meeting with Chesterton, Railcorp and some absolute hornbag blonde regarding the future of the Rockdale signalbox.
The good news is they are not planing to demolish the box which was my main worry, for now it will remain as is, pending work to clean it up.
What this work will cost and when (if) it will be carried out was not known. The indication being that it may well be done, but a more commercially viable rent would likely be the deciding factor (not that this was actually said).
The question of security for the box was then raised. Before the railfan group moved in there was regular break ins and vandal attacks. These continued for a while after move in but disappeared after the instalation of security systems and cameras.
These security systems are to be removed and upon asking if Railcorp will use their own it was suggested that transit cops go up and down the line, this being enough.
Wanna take bets on how long until it gets graffiti, broken into, burnt down?
Anyway that will be Railcorp's responsibility to answer to that and not the groups.
In the end it all came down to money, we weren't the first to be removed (apparently) and given they have launched a program to visit all properties I am guessing we wont be the last.
I personally am happy that the box is safe from 'official' demolision and am grateful to Railcorp for that assurance.
Sadly it is a source of great upset to others and a warning to anyone wanting to fork out their own time and money to a project like this.
Am a tad worried about all the years of breathing in this junk that has suddenly became a concern though :-(

Spadge
&quot;I think people should be free to engage in any sexual practices they choose; they should draw the line at goats though.&quot; <br />Elton John
All the filthy Aussie Rail info at http://locoshed.blogspot.com
Check out the Philippine Railway Historical Society. http://philippine-railways.blogspot.com
#2
I am still gravely concerned. This response from them appears to be a "damage control" statement.

The horseshit about tansitt cops is a blow-over. What they want is for the group to take away all security measures, allow the vandals to get to it & burn it down, and then "Oh, we are so sorry about your signal box - what a shame. Oh well, we have to bulldoze it down in order to make the area "safe" ".... etc.

Nope, I still maintain that vigorous campaigning to save it should continue.... if people (especially corporates) didnt lie, and dint have alterior motives, then this would be a fine response - but Im doubtful.
"You have enemies? Good! That means that you have stood up for something you believe in, at some time in your life....."
#3
Hi Rollsey,
I fully agree with you. I think they aren't expecting us to take them up on the offer to keep following up things with the box.
They certainly have another thing coming.
With MrX living across the road from the box I can't see anyhting happening that he wont know about.

Brad
&quot;I think people should be free to engage in any sexual practices they choose; they should draw the line at goats though.&quot; <br />Elton John
All the filthy Aussie Rail info at http://locoshed.blogspot.com
Check out the Philippine Railway Historical Society. http://philippine-railways.blogspot.com
#4
Railcorp wants no security so they can hire Jason Roberts.
&quot;It shocks me that Huggies has had a good idea for once in his dim-witted life!&quot; - Jason Roberts, A.T.D.B.
#5
Incredibly there has been yet another development tonight which 'MAY' lead to an offer of ridding the place of asbestos at NO cost to Railcorp.
Be interesting to see if they will accept this or whether it is ALL ABOUT THE MONEY as we suspect.
More details as they happen.
Brad
&quot;I think people should be free to engage in any sexual practices they choose; they should draw the line at goats though.&quot; <br />Elton John
All the filthy Aussie Rail info at http://locoshed.blogspot.com
Check out the Philippine Railway Historical Society. http://philippine-railways.blogspot.com
#6
Hello peoples

For the record, here is a copy of the letter sent to Railcorp today. I have edited my personal details for obvious reasons, and a similar email was sent to the heritage man at RAilcorp, although slightly less "toned" than the one below.

Cheers, Rolls.

Customer Relations Unit
Railcorp
PO Box K349
Haymarket NSW 1238

8 May 207


Dear Sir / Madam

I write with regard to the recent discussions about the demolition of the decommissioned signal box at Rockdale.

As I understand it, the decommissioned signal box in question, has been leased under some sort of agreement between a small group of individuals and Railcorp, for some time. I have also learnt that the "tenants" have bee given notice to vacate, on the grounds of an asbestos clause.

Further, I have recently been informed that a meeting between some of the concerned parties and Railcorp, has taken place in recent days, where it was discussed that the tenant supplied security systems are to be removed, and that there may be possible alternate options that could be considered for the long term well being of the structure.

Given that the above is correct, the following are my key concerns;

• The removal of tenant supplied security measures seems foolish given the rate of vandalism in the greater Sydney region, particularly to rail infrastructure. Any removal of any component of security at this site would be a welcome invitation to any manner of undesirables who may elect to trespass on Railcorp land and then set about spray painting / smashing / burning the signal box, as has been demonstrated on countless items of decommissioned rail infrastructure around the country. There is a substantial risk factor that is unnecessarily created, if such security measures are withdrawn, not only to the signal box, but also to Railcorp, as it will encourage trespassers.

• The matter of asbestos concerns is one that seems to me to be somewhat ambiguous. The small amount of asbestos that could be in the structure, multiplied by the number of people who habitate the area, and the periods of time that they do so, seems to me to be only a very minor risk. Previous experience in asbestos related restorations has shown that it is only when the asbestos is exposed, that it causes a significant risk. It begs the question of just how much asbestos is contained in other, more publicly significant Railcorp structures around the network, that see a 1000% greater number of people using the facilities, for more lengthier, and more frequent periods of time.

• If Rockdale Signal Box is demolished due to asbestos, then I expect that all other stations and buildings of its vintage will also be demolished? How much asbestos is present at the likes of Kings Cross, Central, Museum, and ST James stations? Would this not create a "tiger by the tail" type scenario?

• Personally, I am having a very hard time coming to terms with the reasons given so far, particularly when there seems to be a certain amount of public pressure in the Rockdale area for a number of extra car park spaces, and a general "vibe" of unappreciation for heritage structures in the rail industry.

• If Railcorp elect to go ahead and allow the destruction of this yet to be iconic, part of the Sydney rail heritage scene, then I believe it will have destroyed the only remaining ( and presentable ) signal box of its type left in Australia. I can vouch that there is none like it left anywhere in Queensland, Western Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, or South Australia. You may also be aware of the signalling upgrades taking place in the Southern Highlands - this project is likely to see the destruction of quite a number of signal boxes also, so there is no longer the chance to say that Rockdale Signal Box is only one of many ubiquitous railway landscape features.

Whilst I accept the realities of risk mitigation, modernisation and moving forward, I do believe also, that where practical to do so, heritage has its place.

I think that the people who have spent a considerable sum of their own time and money improving and maintaining the Rockdale Box, do more good than harm, and present and extremely low risk to Railcorp.

The Rockdale box has harmlessly brought many years of happiness to quite a number of people, and its destruction would create an undesirably large amount of bad will amongst the wider railway heritage community, and I am sure that there would be several media outlets who would only relish the opportunity to paint more unpleasant pictures of Railcorp.

Summarily, I ask you to please consider the points raised, and ask that Railcorp look at a slightly more broader, range of options to consider rather than take away security, and ultimately allow the box to be destroyed by vandals. The good PR this could result in for Railcorp would be a pleasant and far more satisfactory outcome for all.

I look forward to your earliest possible response.



Kind Regards
"You have enemies? Good! That means that you have stood up for something you believe in, at some time in your life....."
#7
dateline= Wrote:[cite] signaller1:[/cite]
Quote:[cite] Huggies:[/cite]Railcorp wants no security so they can hire Jason Roberts.

No don't hire Jason Roberts he'd sneeze and burn it down with his 3 nostrils

Cheers

Nate

That is the idea for Railcorp Elvis. I don't want them to hire him either.
&quot;It shocks me that Huggies has had a good idea for once in his dim-witted life!&quot; - Jason Roberts, A.T.D.B.
#8
I've been working on my letter to Failcorp today and when I have got the misses to go over it to check that it is all good I will post it here. [Image: deal.gif]
&quot;It shocks me that Huggies has had a good idea for once in his dim-witted life!&quot; - Jason Roberts, A.T.D.B.
#9
My final letter to Failcorp. I will post it on Monday.

Customer Relations Unit
Railcorp
PO Box K349
Haymarket NSW 1238

Dear Sir / Madam,

I am writing to you concerning the future of the historical decommissioned signal box at Rockdale which is currently leased by Mr seX and Mr Spadge.

Recently it has been brought to my attention that Railcorp wishes to evict the current tenants by 1 June 2007, and commence demolition of the signal box in question due to asbestos concerns. Being a Queenslander I have seen the demolition of such historical places such as the Bellvue Hotel and Cloudland so it concerns me that this piece of history could be destroyed.

As much as I share your concern over the asbestos issue I think it is very minor unless the asbestos is in danger of being disturbed. Even today buildings that are fitted with asbestos products are still in use and I'm sure that such buildings are currently still in use on the Railcorp Network. If the only way to deal with this issue is by demolition then will we see Railcorp remove all historical buildings with traces of asbestos? I feel that the demolition of the signal box in question is not the only way to solve this issue and there are many alternatives to fix the problem. I'm sure alternatives could be arranged with the current tenants to obtain a desirable outcome for all parties concerned.

It has also concern me to read that Railcorp has advised the tenants to remove all tenant installed security measures which would be a bad move for all concerned, considering attacks occurred on the signal box before such measures were installed. I personally cannot understand the reason why Railcorp would want such measures removed considering the amount of damage that would be done if this was to occur at Railway Stations on the Cityrail Network. No doubt the removal of such devices will lead to an increased chance of vandalism and arson on the Signal Box. This would no doubt lead to a faster demise for the premises.

At the moment I feel for the tenants who have put many years of hard work into this piece of history which is unlike any other in Australia. They should be praised for their efforts and it would be a shame to see all of this effort go to waste. It would no doubt create bad blood between many members of the public and Railcorp.

I hope Railcorp will reconsider its position in relation to this matter and consider the issues that I have raised in this letter.

I am looking forward to your reply.

Kind Regards,



Huggies
&quot;It shocks me that Huggies has had a good idea for once in his dim-witted life!&quot; - Jason Roberts, A.T.D.B.


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