"What is a Timing Loop" I hear you ask. If you didn't ask that question, then "What are those T signs beside the track for" would have to be the other most popular question. The really short answer is that they are an important part of the train protection system on the Regional Fast Rail lines in Victoria...
Rail yards have existed at Batman Hill / Spencer Street / Southern Cross since the first railways were opened. Bank Sidings. Centre Yard. Railmotor Depot. Through Suburbans. Layby Sidings. Sound like gibberish to you? Then this diagram will lay it all out for you.
The 'Geelong Flyer' was the first officially named train to operate on the Victorian Railways. The first run of the train from Melbourne to Geelong operated on May 3 1926.
In the late 1970s / early 1980s VicRail moved into the petroleum business, entering into a joint venture with a number of local oil companies to build operate an oil pipeline between the Altona, to a tank farm beside the North East Railway at Somerton, the pipeline continuing to Tullamarine Airport. The railways became involved with grand plans to revitalise oil distribution across South Eastern Australia, but it came to naught - the pipeline was sold to private interests and only carries jet fuel to the airport, and since 2008 no fuel has been carried by rail in Victoria.
Regional Rail Link is the new set of tracks from Southern Cross Station, running through Sunshine, Tarneit and meeting the Geelong Line at West Werribee. The first plans were released June 2009 for the Deer Park - Werribee section, in July 2010 the Southern Cross - Deer Park alignment was released. As of late 2010 the first set of maps have disappeared from the Department of Transport website. My question is why? An accidental omission, or does someone have something to hide?