Last time we had a look at the Midland Line, back in August this year, route alignment was completed to Otira and some other work was being planned. However it is now a priority to make progress on completing all map volumes to a basic standard over the next 12 months (calendar year 2020), which in theory means completing one volume a month.
Accordingly, the next step for the Midland Line (Volume 9) maps, which is the main line from Rolleston to Greymouth and its various branches, is to achieve this basic standard completion, which is going to be achieved by using the WMTS capability of Qgis to obtain the most up to date Linz aerial photography of the route, and aligning the main line and any other tracks visible accordingly, then filling in the other details.
Once this Basic standard has been achieved there may be time to look at filling in some other historical details that haven’t been achieved to date, such as those referred to in previous posts in this series. Since Retrolens now has good enough historical coverage of Greymouth and Hokitika, we will have a look at incorporating some of this, depending on the quality, as there are no NZR surveys of these areas available yet. Apart from other stations previously mentioned, the available coverage of Stillwater may prove suitable for mapping but it is not of a high quality and mainly has only historical interest in locating a few features.
Research has been undertaken previously for some key stations along the route such as Stillwater, Hokitika and Ross, but not Greymouth.
Ross railway station in 1948. On the left are the railway houses. At upper right is the sawmill which created much of the traffic volume at this station, with its own siding complex. It was served by a tramway that ran further south to Ianthe, which closed in 1959. There were investigations into extending the railway along this tramway route during the early 1940s.
Just one part of what is covered in Greymouth, this is the Elmer Lane roundhouse in the 1940s.