Goulburn Roundhouse

Article

January 22, 2022

Goulburn Roundhouse is a circular locomotive shed inaugurated in 1918 and closed in 1986, located in Goulburn, New South Wales, Australia. Since the 1990s, the locomotive shed has been part of the Goulburn Rail Heritage Center. The locomotive shed was built in connection with the expansion of the railway between Goulburn and Cootamundra to double track. At the inauguration, the Goulburn Roundhouse was one of two locomotives in Goulburn and had 42 tracks served by a 75-foot (22.86-meter) turntable. The two locomotives were in use at the same time until 1936 when the first was closed in order to save money during the Great Depression. During the time both were in use, the first locomotive depot, Goulburn North, was responsible for all heavy maintenance and for the passenger train locomotive. The new locomotive depot, South Goulburn, was responsible for the freight train locomotives and easier maintenance of these. During the 1930s, the Goulburn Roundhouse was adapted for the operation of new larger locomotives, the liter D57, among other things, a new turntable of 90 feet (approximately 27.4 meters) was installed. The depot was refurbished several times during the 1940s. During the 1950s, adaptation for diesel operation began at the same time as additional infrastructure for steam operation was built. Diesel operation broke through in the 1960s to completely replace steam operation after 1971. This meant a reduction in the amount of work at Goulburn, to keep the employees busy, the depot began to engage in car repair. The equipment for steam operation was phased out during the 1970s and part of the locomotive shed was demolished. In 1986, the railway authority developed plans to safeguard jobs in rural areas. On the other hand, the state wanted to cut operating costs. This resulted in the depot being closed in July 1986. In 1990, the railway authority entered into an agreement with the municipality of Goulburn to rent out the locomotive shed, which led to the establishment of the Goulburn Rail Heritage Center. The facility has been included in the State Heritage Register since 1999.

Background

The railway comes to Goulburn (1846–1869)

Several traders and parliamentarians met in Sydney in January 1846 to discuss the colony's transport needs. The following month, the group decided to investigate the possibility of building a railway between Sydney and Goulburn. In April of the same year, a meeting was held in Goulburn to persuade the local traders to become involved in the planning and information production. These coincidences resulted in the formation of the Sydney Railway Company in October 1849. The company's first agreement to build the railway was signed in March 1851. As construction progressed, the company became dependent on contributions from the colony and its assets were transferred to the state September 3, 1855. Sydney Central Station and Parramatta, inaugurated on 26 September the same year. The railway to Goulburn was inaugurated in stages. The last stage, between Marulan and Goulburn, was inaugurated on May 27, 1869.

Railway around Goulburn 1869–1921

After Goulburn had been a terminus for six years, an extension of the colony's southern main line, Main South Line, to Gunning was inaugurated on November 9, 1875. The next leg, from Gunning past Yass Junction to Bowning, was inaugurated on July 3, 1876. Proposals to draw the main line through Yass was rejected by John Whitton, New South Wales' chief railway engineer, as this would have increased the railway's construction cost. The railway reached the border town of Albury on 3 February 1881 and met the Victorian Railways railway from Melbourne. Among the reasons for the construction of the railway was a request from New South Wales that goods produced in the colony be exported from Sydney instead of from towns in other colonies. During the 1870s, residents in the area around Cooma eager for a railway connection. From the junction Joppa Junction, near Goulburn, the railway to Tarago was inaugurated in 1884. This was the beginning of a railway which was inaugurated in several stages to reach Que

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