As I look back on posts from this time last year, the main project at the time was the ever expanding empire.
Twelve months ago
I believe that the layout has reached its physical limits in size at this present time and present location, the last year has increased the layout area by at least fifty per cent, along with more operational scope and with a more cohesive narrative. The concept of a depot has been a successful inclusion. Operationally, the layout performs excellently, track issues and bugs have been resolved during the year.
On the technical side, the DCC control and interface with JMRI that delivers wifi capability is also at the level required/exceeded at this time.
This leads to the coming year, this year will be about finishing off the layout with details, such as lights and trolley wire, at the moment all of the structures for the layout are in the final process of being built and/or illuminated. Then Victoria Street will be complete*.
Then the further expansion of DCC conversion/improvement of operational rollingstock will be considered.
I think with this layout, I have avoided the most common error of taking on too much, too soon. It started off as a modular micro layout that has gently expanded over time. I haven't fallen into the trap of buying a shed load of wood, track and structures then slapping it together in a hurry, only to find that I hate it, pull it all up, throw most of it out, then only to repeat the process again, nor have I been seduced into the latest offerings from competing manufacturers of Austrailan prototypes, scorch a hole in the credit card, and then have boxes upon boxes of rollingstock with nothing for it to run on.
As a bloke with a missus and young kids, like most, I don't have the time or the resources to engage in the fore mentioned issues in the above paragraph, any modelling time is precious and it would be pointless to frustrate oneself in the pursuit of 'happiness', remember we all should model for relaxation, gratification and entertainment.
I started Victoria Street as a re entry into model railways/tramways for something quiet to do when my oldest child was born, as opposed to blasting out classic Australian pub rock at 140dB, that was over seven years ago, the tramway modelling and the micro layout option was due to the available real estate issued at the time. So my secret to this ongoing saga, is to think twice, do once, enjoy your work, then think twice again.
Here is something I thought would never appear on Victoria Street when I first started.
The oldest with 'her' tram, cutting notches at the ammo factory on wifi.
The eye and lippy war paint come from a monster high doll tart up kit, as I say, it is her tram.
(Mehano mech under a Manner promotional tram fitted with a NCE D13SRJ decoder with led lights)
From under the wires, in the same space as a toy hospital for reassembling dismembered Barbie dolls,
*Is a layout ever finished?