What a sad day for Melbourne it will be on the night of Saturday, 16 October. That will be the final day that the Route 69 tram will come trundling down Glenferrie Road bound for Cotham Road or St Kilda, depending on your whim. According to the rather sterile announcement on the tram notice board, Yarra Trams have decided to merge routes 16 and 69 together into a new route 16, which will essentially run from Melbourne University to Kew via St Kilda, ie linking the two together in a marathon, 90 minute tram journey.
Never again will young school boys be able to giggle idiotically at the thought of "Root 69", nor will tourists be forced to keep a straight face when asking how to get the 69. A true Melbourne icon will be lost, even if the change is cosmetic.
A new era will dawn as the early tram on Sunday, 17 October rolls down Glenferrie and Balaclava Roads, the number 16 stuck on the front. Bloody globalisation... or something like that.