Fubway Future Busway

FUBWAY Futuristic Urban Bus WAY
"Way" gives meaning to many things including pathway, roadway, railway, etc. FUBWAY therefore is seen as an appropriate all-new name for our all-new futuristic urban transport.

Fast efficient frequent public transport, not the individual Car

Let's apply some all-Australian lateral thinking and innovation based on logic.

The Peninsular-Manly-Mosman transport link has been shown for many years to be the most congested with the slowest traffic flow in Sydney. Some $110m was listed as budgeted by government for the Spit Bridge and associated problems prior to the last election. As soon as the election is over, the government with no members elected from the Manly area has struck it off the list.

Following is a solution based on commercial and engineering logic and common sense, is self-funding and thus does not rely on the public purse. If his makes sense, please read on.

The innovation of the FUBWAY is consistent with the innovation of the ELECT-ROAD (Please see separate document) to provide our least-expensive, clean-green urban transport.



Our future has to be fast, efficient, frequent public transport, not the individual car.

Logic of Mosman Bus Subway

FUBWAY is simply described as an electrified roadway (elect-road) applicable to all roadway vehicles. These roadways can be our present everyday roads or special dedicated roadways. They are particularly applicable to underground roadways as they are non-polluting with simple infrastructure small tunnels.

When Brandfield designed the Harbour Bridge, logic prevailed; he provided for its public transport to be all-efficient, all-electric with railway lines on each side including a Northern Beaches railway as well as the North Shore railway. The Northern Beaches railway was then changed to be temporarily provided by an electric tramway system.

This electric tram system was very extensive and efficient ranging from the city to Charswood, Neutral Bay, Cremome and Tronga Wharves, Bamoral, The Spit, Manly to Dee Why. If the logic of Brandfield could only have prevailed in all the changes that have followed, we would not have the unecological, uneconomic, unfriendly polluting diesel buses burning our precious fossil liquid fuel.

Every planning decision since Bradfield has proven to have no foresight or logic and will undoubtedly inventively be changed back to be based on efficient, clean-green power of electricity. Electricity is the present only clean efficient transport motive power, and the only one suited for vehicles within tunnels.

Advantage and attraction of FUBWAY

The enormous advantages of the FUBWAY over the present-day subway or metro as proposed are:
  • The flexibility and mobility of above-ground road vehicles can be replicated underground; not by rail.
  • Space required for infrastructure and support much less.
  • Construction costs less.
  • Land acquisition costs can be much less, even be shown as an asset.
  • Capacity as a mass transit facility at least equal to rail or metro.

Stations for entrance and exit to FUBWAY

It is envisaged the FUBWAY STATIONS wi be directly below, by lift access, existing areas of people concentration such as shopping centres or established bus stops. The advantages of this are:
  • Within a shopping centre there would be a great increase in the concentration of people. Concentration of people is concentration of profit. The shopping centre thus would provide for the facility of the station, either at no charge or even provide the building cost of the station.
  • The aim of the FUBWAY is to eliminate from the existing public roads all through traffic. The existing space now occupied by the through traffic bus stops be partially dedicated to the lift space to the station below. Thus, no land acquisition cost. Next to the lift would be a local bus stop only.

Examples of Proposed Bus (Fubway) Stops

Proposed bus stops

Proposed Sub Roadway Construction and Pathway

The most economic to construct and position is twin tunnels beneath the area of the greatest concentration of people. This is to follow the present path of Military and Spit Roads and place the stations under either shopping centres or existing bus stops. The underground roadway will perform similar to the existing above-ground roadway with the ability for vehicles to pull in to a stop, or straight through as for express buses.

Proposed roadway construction and pathway

Proposed Falcon St. Interchange - Station and Development

Proposed Falcon St Interchange Station

This area of land consists almost entirely of residences that have been left behind by time, is completely isolated by traffic, leaving one wondering how our planning let it happen, and has to be a necessity development waiting to happen. It is about 10,000 square meters in area.

This area is the ideal location for the western end interchange and station of the Mosman underground transport link. From this point,the FUBWAY (ELECT-ROAD) can interchange and/or continue to all points north, west, and south, including the city.

In addition to being central to the best Sydney has to offer, the harbour, northern beaches, city, yet within a couple of hundred meters has a tennis court complex, a golf course, North Sydney Park, North Sydney Oval and shopping centres.

As the future city transport focus has to be on fast, frequent and efficient public transport and not the individual car, this is an ideal location for a transport interchange with a development to be know as THE INTERCHANGE. It would become an area of concentration of people with the recognized fact that concentration of people is potential concentration of profit.

It is envisaged a development with the area of 10,000m to include the FUBWAY station and interchange, a car parkimg station of up to 2,000 cars underground, and accommodation for the upwardly mobile above ground. This could include a hotel/motel/apartments as well as commercial areas as required.

The station and interchange would have pedestrian links or over Military Road to the shopping centre and existing ground level local transport to its north, and existing ground level local transport to its south.

This location is a high point of land so an above ground multi-story development would not intrude upon the views of others. There is a 10-story apartment building adjacent so it is envisaged a development of around 400 apartments/rooms could be provided. The upper level would have 360 degree views and would be ideal for restaurants, entertainment and the like.

It is envisaged this development would be the pinnacle central interchange development for the North Shore. It would not just cater to permanent residents and locals using the car park to interchange to public transport, but for country or international visitors as a central location for accommodation and car parking, then to use public transport for all points of Sydney.

The financial viability of the Mosman underground transport link would not therefore be just from the paying passengers and road toll, as there are further commercial inputs from both the interchange car park and the interchange building.

Proposed Spit Interchange - Station and Development

Proposed Spit Interchange

The Spit with its illogical low level bridge has over time gradually been degraded and split down the middle by traffic as it has become the main transport corridor to Manly and the Northern Beaches.

It is frequently reported as having the highest density and slowest traffic flow of any road in Sydney.

Apart from the low level opening bridge are a major set of traffic lights mainly to allow pedestrians to cross from one side to the other. The result is that traffic spends as much time stationary as moving, utter nonsense from a planning perspective.

The logical solution is for a high level non opening bridge separating traffic from pedestrians, thus no traffic lights, whilst giving what used to be the beautiful area of the Spit back to the people.

For earlier integrated reading please see separate document entitle SPIT BRIDGE? dated 8th March 2007.

Be eliminating the ground level domination of traffic flow through the Spit and having this magic area dedicated to leisure, recreation, boating and dining as it should be, it would become an economic powerhouse.

This area is physically and strategically natural for a substantial interchange car park for Ferry, FUBWAY and local users. This would be underground out of sight.

As this is a natural interchange area and the need is for use of public transport rather than the individual car, there should be encouragement for further travel past the spit to leave the car and take the underground FUBWAY or the ferry. For through travel by car there would be a toll.

The Spit is a natural transport hub and interchange including ferry. There is vacant land ideal for a ferry wharf that would not impose upon other buildings or views. The steep bluff of land adjacent would allow and (?) multi-story building and still be well below the skyline.

It is envisaged in return for a wharf complex building approval it would include the cost and maintenance of the ferry wharf and the pedestrian link to the interchange building. The wharf complex could include various commercial areas. This idyllic location and transport connections would be perfect for a boutique international type hotel.

The financial viability of the Mosman underground transport link would therefore not be just from teh paying passengers and road toll, as there are further commercial inputs from teh ferry wharf, interchange building and interchange car park.


Further Necessary Consideration

A traffic bottleneck just north of the Spit is the Seaforth intersection, with merging traffic from three major roads, being the Wakehurst Parkway, Spit Road and Sydney Road.

As part of these considerations there has to be constructed an over-under pass and provision for express FUBWAY.

FUBWAY Vehicles

Fossil liquid fuels to power motor vehicles are a limited resource, and are already running out. Supply and demand for this limited resource has resulted in a three times price increase in recent years with an inevitable further doubling in price in the near future to $3 per litre.

A century ago the logic of our innovators and designers saw electricity energy as the best for our urban transport systems. We then for a while lost the plot. A century later the logic is still the same. Electricity is still the cheapest, cleanest, most environmentally friendly power source.

Electricity as an energy source, apart from being able to collect it for immediate use and not have to carry it and its weight around in a fuel tank, is far more suitable for motive power than the internal combustion engine. Al good comparison is the engine size of a hybrid diesel/electric bus is about 35%, 45% smaller and up to 50% more fue efficient than that for a straight diesel bus. To collect and power from direct electricity only with no diesel generator is 40% more efficient again.

For practical purposes, however, the initial FUBWAY buses will be the hybrid diesel/electric with the simple addition for connection to the ELECT-ROAD, essential for pollution free within tunnels. This provides for the best of both worlds; diesel/electric and the ultimate electric only as required.

If a lesson is learnt from the failure of the Sydney Cross City and Epping motor vehicle tunnels is they are dead. We have voted by our feet (our driving preferences) and our conscience; we don not want them. The leaves the next transport options of METRO and FUBWAY.

FUBWAY Principle and Logic

<div style="text-align: center">The FUBWAY is a Futuristic innovation for Future Urban Technology ISTIC.
It therefore is FUTISTIC.

The FUBWAY is an innovation and technology of its time.

The FUBWAY when implemented will immeasurably advance urban design and living standards at a greatly reduced cost compared to those technologies of today still being pushed by our present governments.

Australia was built on the the innovation of many starting from and including the first fleet on the 26th January 1788. The organisation, management and success of the first fleet under Captain Phillip was an innovated feat of its day.

The innovation and development of Australia from Macarthur's wool development to Professor Green's solar cells are innovations of world renown. In the middle was our Snowy Mountains Scheme or engineering excellence resulting in the Snowy Mountains Authority being sought after around the world.

These were Nation Building Innovations of and for great benefit to Australia.

The innovation of the FUBWAY is the present-day Australian Nation Builder.

The Power of the People is requested for your collective input in these innovations. Initial contact email: hugh.walker at optusnet.com.au

Comparison of Future Transport

[[ REPEATS SOME TEXT FROM ABOVE: If a lesson is learnt from the failure of the Sydney Cross City and Epping motor vehicle tunnels is they are dead. We have voted by our feet (our driving preferences) and our conscience; we don not want them. The leaves the next transport options of METRO and FUBWAY. ]]

Fast Efficient Frequent Public Transport. Not the Individual Car

This leaves the next transport options of METRO and FUBWAY.

The following table is presented to readily see the comparison of these two and the clear advantages of the FUBWAY over the METRO.

Research for the economic data presented here was taken from the public domain. However, the experience of the presenter of this paper is much more of the mechanical, electrical, engineering background than the economic.

Therefore, this is an appeal for all thinking people, including politicians, who aspire to the ultimate of a sustainable clean and green urban affordable environment to participate. A government innovative grant would be in order and totally appropriate.

Initial contact; please email hugh.walker at optusnet.com.au

Construction cost below ground From international data available average cost of twin tunnel metro is about $92m per kilometre. No established data to draw from. However, because of similarity to metro but with somewhat less infrastructure, estimated cost is about $85m per kilometre.
Construction cost above ground Very expensive and disruptive to existing infrastructure due to steel railway and overhead wiring gantries. Unfriendly to existing roads and neighbourhoods. Comparatively, very inexpensive as no steel rails and overhead wiring are needed. Designed to be integrated with and into existing roads. Homogenous, friendly and sbservient to suburbia.
Size and cost of carriages 45 to 60 seating depending upon size and arrangement. Average const. $3.2m each. 45 to 60 seating as for metro upon arrangement as standard bus at $0.55m, or articulated bus at $0.75m each. this is about one-fifth the cost of METRO.
Flexibility Very inflexible. Railways are not designed to readily turn corners or change grade. Cannot readily change sizes to meet loading demands by varying number of carriages. The whole train must continue from start to finish which is very inefficient. Has the flexibility of any regular road vehicle and readily climbs hills of standard road grades. FUBWAY carriages have the flexibility to operate as individual vehicles or join together on the fly to form a multi-carriage train. Train carriages can be dispatched to individual destinations along the way.
Manoeuverability Not manoeuverable. Large distances needed between trains. Large space required for marshaling yards, stowage and maintenance, etc. Large costly stations required. Infinitely manoeuverable as any individual road vehicle. Very conservative of space upon the road, and at bus stops and stations. Need little space for stowage and maintenance.
Speed Varying by required specification from 80 to 120 k/h. Normally up to 80 k/h but no reason the inter city bus specification of 120 k/h cannot be provided.

From the above is clear evidence from applying engineering and commercial logic for the provision of transport services to the public, return on invested capital, the choice has to be the FUBWAY. This study applies specifically to the Peninsular-Manly-Mosman Transportation Solution but the logic equally applies to all transport, wherever in the world it may be.


The economics for the project is unique as income will be from several sources, not just one being a paying passenger or from a road toll as normally the case. In addition, construction costs by the design criteria are the least possible and by comparison minimal.


The ongoing income and funding for the FUBWAY ELECT-ROAD would be by a road toll of say $2 to $3 for through road travel, as well as a per passenger fare loading of say $1 to $2 for the public transport.In addition, there would be income from the Spit Interchange building and car park, and the Falcon Interchange building and car park.

Construction Costs

A very good report and budget costing by The Warren Centre for Advanced Engineering of Sydney University, in 2005 included for two two-lane road tunnels from the Warringah Expressway to the Spit, then to join a high-level Spit Bridge, was $651m. It was assessed this could be self-funded without government support from a road toll of $3.5 per vehicle trip.

Road tunnels with all the necessary infrastructure, finishes, lighting, ventilation, etc are always comparatively very expensive compared to, say, electric railway tunnels which are much smaller tunnels and with minimal infrastructure. The FUBWAY tunnel needs even less infrastructure than an electric railway tunnel.

This proposal is similar to The Warren Centre proposal but with very much simpler two single railway-type tunnels.

The current international budget figures for railway (metro) tunnel construction is $92m per kilometre for twin tunnels. For 4.25 kilometres of tunnel as required this is about $391m plus the Spit Bridge at $95m, for a total of $486m.

The premise also is that a single track railway type tunnel has the capacity to move at least as many or more people than the dual roadway motor vehicle tunnel.

Within the budget costing referred to above is a percentage for land acquisition, not necessary in our model. Tunneling our sandstone is easier than for either harder rock, or softer tunneling requiring casing, of the average cost referred to above. In addition, tunneling Sydney sandstone, the tunnel surface can be very effectively and attractively left directly as tunneled.In fact this should be made an architectural feature.

A budget cost for the FUBWAY could therefore reasonably be within the $400m to $450m mark in comparison with the motor vehicle tunnel of The Warren Centre at $652m, and move at least the same amount of passengers.

If a $651m investment is a proposition to be funded from a $3.5 per vehicle input, Einstein is not needed to see a proposition of a $450m investment being funded from, say, a $1 to $2 input per passenger from both ferry and bus, plus, say, a $2 to $3 input from each car. In addition, there is income from the two interchange buildings with car parks.

The FUBWAY has the advantage of not only bypassing traffic under Mosman as the road tunnel would do, but provides a substantial direct transport benefit for Mosman residences.

The concept of the FUBWAY ELECT-ROAD is simply an efficient electrified road that can be used by any suitable road vehicle, not just a very efficient electric type public transport bus, or bus train. The ideal is for many other than public transport vehicles to use this efficient, clean and green transport system, particularly for goods delivery. These could be restricted during public transport peak hours and be given a premium rate for use between the hours 10pm to 6am to maximise the facility and return on investment.

Fast efficient Frequent Pubic Transport, Not the Individual Car

Further Deeper Longer Vision

Western Extension

There are at least two logical extensions of the initial Falcon Interchange to Spit Interchanges section, being the western and northern extensions.

Western Section Extension

A natural extension to the Peninsular-Manly-Mosman FUBWAY is shown below.

This provides for Peninsular, Manly and Mosman passengers direct access to the existing railway and business centres at St Leonard's and North Sydney as wel as to Crows Nest and the regional schools and hospitals.

The FUBWAY would probably best be above ground crossing the Warringah Expressway to easily interface with it, then continue underground.
Western extension

Northern Section Extension (Manly Peninsular Service)

There is no justification at present for an underground or metro style transportation system within the Peninsular Northern Beaches. There is, however, as the next stage to the Mosman underground, justification for an ELECT-ROAD FUBWAY transportation system, for ecology, greenhouse gas reduction reasons alone. [[Please see the following page.]]

It is seen in addition that the efficiency of electric-only buses is the necessary justification for their deployment on the main route as shown in red. These would be express buses and leave the city or Warringah Expressway every five minutes, preferably as a coupled train for maximum efficiency. Carriages would be dropped off for heir individual destinations along the way leaving only one carriage to go all the way to the end of the run. Compare this in efficiency to a metro.

Smaller local buses (similar to the Manly Hop Skip Jump Bus) would be used as feeders to the FUBWAY as shown in orange. Estimated time from Expressway to Manly Vale is eight minutes.

The Northern Beaches FUBWAY

Below is shown the above-ground part of the fully integrated extension of the underground FUBWAY.

The red is the proposed express FUBWAY from the city to all points north to Palm Beach. These vehicles could be all-electric, totally clean and green, or a combination of all-electric and hybrid diesel/electric or liquefied natural gas/electric vehicles.

The orange are the secondary roots initially proposed to be hybrid diesel/electric or liquefied natural gas/electric vehicles.

Northern Beaches extension

Imagine boarding a multi-carriage bus train leaving the city every three to five minutes to serve the Northern Beaches. A multi-carriage train is more efficient than single vehicles.

Each carriage of the bus train could be for a different northern beach destination which would automatically split from the train to service its individual destination.

Imagine the simplification of the scheduling of such a transport service.

Imagine the enhancement and the frequency of the transport services.

Imagine the efficiency of such transport service in capital cost.

Imagine the efficiency of such a transport service in running costs. A hybrid liquefied natural gas/electric vehicle is at least 30% more efficient that the present diesel buses. All-electric buses are at least 60% more efficient than the present diesel buses, are lighter in weight and produce practically no noise at all. That is, no noise pollution.

If an all-electric vehicle's electrical energy supply is generated from a clean energy source, all would be totally emission free.

Imagine if all of Sydney could be serviced by such a transport system. Such a transport system could service the same volume of passengers at the same speed as a metro at one-third of the cost.

The present leading cities of the world now plan for their buses to be hybrid diesel/electric. New York is to have 1,800 by 2011.

Why are we so backward and behind the times?

Contact: Hugh Walker, 503/3 Colooli Rd Narrabeen, NSW 2010
Phone: (02) 99812545 Email: hugh.walker at optusnet.com.au

Created by Hugh Walker. Last Modification: Friday 18 of August, 2017 16:27:14 AEST by Hugh Walker.