Sunday, December 15, 2013

Adelaide Railway Station

Adelaide Railway Station is a beautiful building, with a long history. Yesterday I visited it and took a few photos around the station.

Originally built around the 1920's (an earlier original railway building was demolished to build this station), it originally had all the Adelaide metro, country South Australia and Interstate railway lines running from this station. It was a very busy place.

Since the SA Government sold off the rights to the interstate passenger and freight railway operations to the federal government (Australian National) in the 1980's, interstate services moved to a separate railway station in keswick (these days called the Adelaide Parklands Terminal), and these services were reduced dramatically to run only The Ghan (Alice Springs/Darwin), Indian Pacific (Perth, Sydney) and The Overland (Melbourne) interstate train services today. (All other SA country rail services were stopped for economic reasons)

Reflecting this change, Adelaide Railway Station emptied the top floors as staff moved to the other location and the cessation of SA country rail services, and ultimately the top floors became what is now the Adelaide Casino. The main station entrance hall is still intact, as is the platforms (heavily modified and reduced in number from it's heyday). Indeed, the platforms are now underground, allowing for the construction of the Riverside building and Convention Centre which sit over the top of the platforms today.

There used to be a train servicing facility next to the Adelaide Railway Station, but this was demolished and relocated to a brand new Dry Creek facility in Adelaide's north, to make way for the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and medical research facility now under construction. Even more buildings are planned in that area in the coming years!

As North Terrace is a busy main thoroughfare, a subway walkway tunnel exists underneath North Terrace to allow passengers to enter/exit the station on the other side of North Terrace. This entrance is shown below inside the Roma Mitchell House Building:

Here are the escalators leading down to the subway walkway to the station:

Here is the view looking up toward the entrance to the subway. This section was renovated earlier this year and looks much better than it did:

Moving along the subway walkway under North Terrace heading towards the station:

As you enter the Adelaide Railway Station, you see a beautiful entrance hall, with the recently installed escalators making life easier for passengers wanting to exit the station on this side of North Terrace to catch the tram into the city centre:

Station Kiosk is located at the entry to the subway:

Below is the Adelaide Metro card recharge and card issuing machines in the station. In Adelaide we now use a Adelaide Metro IC card which you tap next to the reader on board a train, tram or bus to validate. You recharge the card with money using one of these terminals:

Originally there used to be ticket windows here - how times have changed. Here is the Adelaide Metro card:

You can also enter the Adelaide Railway Station via a long ramp entrance from North Terrace:

As you come down the ramp you get a simple display showing the railway line schedule. Because the Noarlunga line, Tonsley line and Belair line were closed having maintenance work done this weekend (installing the new electrical cables for the new electric trains), they are not shown here:

Once in the station, it really opens up and looks stunning:

You can see the main entrance hall looking towards North Terrace, with the entrance to the platforms through the gates on the right of the photo:

Zooming in on the railway line schedule screens, clearly showing when the next train is due to depart,  and which platform to go to:

View of the entrance hall towards North Terrace entrance:

Heading towards the Riverbank (Torrens) side of the entrance hall we can see a beautiful wooden Kiosk and clock (just out of shot on the left is the station Info Centre):

Moving further along we can see some very large memorial displays for South Australian Railway workers killed in action fighting for Australia in World War I and World War II:

Next to this, in a sign of the times, empty shelves exist where public telephones used to be located in the entrance hall. Now that pretty much everyone has a mobile phone, public telephones just aren't used much these days and have been removed completely. Honestly I can't remember the last time I used one - it was a very long time ago:

Moving to the other side of the entrance hall, I found a surprise - a display of old photographs showing the history of trains and railways in Adelaide! I had to check this out:

The next photo really interested me, showing a huge number of trams in Grenfell street. So different to the scene today, where Grenfell Street is filled with buses instead of trams...

Next to this display was another war time memorial to South Australian Railway workers killed in action:

Beyond this was another display (I was so surprised by how many displays are here) of old railway memorabilia, from Adelaide Metro, Railway Museum and the Ghan (amongst others):

Zooming in we can see some of the displays:

Dinner Food menu options on an SAR journey:

Next was some Ghan memorabilia - I remember these from when I travelled on the Ghan in the mid 1980's from Adelaide to Alice Springs...must be showing my age since this is historical now!

Stamps and sealing wax presses:

Old tickets that used to be issued in Adelaide Railway Station over the years:

Even some of the old Railway cutlery and glassware is here:

Moving on, there is a simple Xmas display:

There are 2 grand entries like the one below blocked off with no signage (I assume they go to the Casino section of the station):

Finally, there is a board showing founding members and presidents of the Retired Railwayman's Club:

Overall I found the Adelaide Railway Station a fascinating building, with lots of things to look and you can really feel the history of this building, with plenty of reminders everywhere!

No comments:

Post a Comment