On 19/05/2017 5:48 AM,prescottt@... [TramsDownUnder] wrote: >
> I guess my next question would be why it is called "La Luna" and not
> Luna Park?
La Luna was the name of the cafe in the middle of the loop. It was built by the P&MTT after the loop was constructed, and leased out. Subsequently it was sold by the MMTB in 1937. >
> I think I finally spotted it in that aerial photo. It seems to go
> around an island of land with some buildings on it - more an "around
> the block loop"? In that case, what I find intersting is that it's not
> oriented towards the city (the major destination), which one would
> expect a terminus loop to be, but towards Carlisle Street. There was
> obviously a very specific intention in building storage capacity into
> the terminus, being in an entertainment area (the one at Caulfield
> probably had a similar intention) - but from Carlisle Street? What
> catchment does Carlisle Street pick up from that would justify such a
> piece of infrastructure at this point? Is it a coincidence that both
> of Melbourne's loops were at either end of the Balaclava Rd corridor
> with a major event/entertainment precinct at each end? I assume this
> was all done by one of the pre MMTB operators which means they had
> their own unique approach, possibly an idea picked up from Sydney?
> What year was the Balaclava Rd line and these loops built? Was there a
> direct service between Caulfield and St Kilda?
As you correctly observe, the loop serves Carlisle St. At the time of its construction, Acland St was a cable tram service coming from the city via St Kilda Rd and Fitzroy St. Here's a pic showing the area looking in the opposite direction. http://tdu.to/Aerial_StKilda_lookingSE_c1926_ErnestEbell.jpg Look how many cable tram sets are lined up in Acland St. Unfortunately no electric trams are in the pic.
The Carlisle St line linked up the P&MTT 'main line' in Glenferrie Rd with the beach and entertainment at St Kilda - a very valuable revenue earner! The line was opened in 1913 and the loop added in 1916. The large building at the bottom of today's pic is the Palais Theatre - largest number of seats of any Australian cinema I believe - and recently restored. With the Palais De Danse next door, plus Luna Park, plus the nearly St Moritz ice skating rink there was a lot of traffic to be had.
A little later, the P&MTT built another parallel line a little further south along Glenhuntly Rd - again to carry pasengers from their 'catchment' to the beach - this time at Point Ormond.
Conversion of the cable trams to electric trams largely made the Luna Park loop and the Point Ormond line redundant - at least for their original purpose.
The double track loop at Caulfield was similarly aimed at dealing with heavy loads - this time for horse racing. It's not so much that there was heavy traffic between St Kilda and Caulfield - just that two 'recreational traffic' destinations happened to be at opposite ends of that road.
Mal Rowe - recommending the P&MTT book as a good read to understand "Melbourne's Foremost Municipal Tramway"