18 August 2008

From The Age letter (15 Aug): Beware the backlash

INNER-CITY residents recognise the need for government to invest in public transport for neglected growth suburbs. Currently, two-thirds of Melbourne has no practical alternative to cars. Without investment in sustainable alternatives, more people will be left behind or burdened with larger transport costs.
Inner-city residents also recognise that apart from being unfair, Government failure to extend public transport to growth areas has caused congestion, poor air quality, poor street amenity, and extra road costs in inner areas.
The solution for all climate change-sensitive governments is to rapidly expand investment in infrastructure for public transport, cycling and walking. With fuel price increases and peak oil, inner and outer residents will inevitably rely on these modes.
Shaun Carney (Comment & Debate, 13/8) highlights the fact that "governments are made and broken in the outer suburbs". The Government can expect to face a major electoral backlash in inner and outer suburbs for failing to meet these alternative transport needs.
Jackie M. Fristacky (councillor, City of Yarra), North Carlton

Is access to public transport an issue that unites or divides inner and outer Melbourne? What do you think?


RVB said...

I would hazard a guess that outer-Melbournians would be unfamiliar with public transport and would therefore demonstrate some consternation.

I also think you'll find some Sydneysiders enraptured by our public transport. This is most likely due to their poor rail network and the spectacle of seeing trams on city streets when they're over in Melbourne.

My main concern lies what further thoughts might be formulated to how we perceive public transport. The sense of hopelessness that people from, say, Caroline Springs feel should not be used as an excuse for complacency, nor an excuse for 'giving up'. Lynne Kosky (in all her 'wisdom') might consider a happy Sydneysider as a legitimate enough excuse to resume her current activity of doing nothing.

Anonymous said...

It is certainly an issue, you only have to look at the local council elections, especially in Melton, as everyone is campaining that they will fight for an electric train line to be put in, this will be a huge election issue in the state vote as well. I just hope people will fight with their vote and vote against labor which has promised us a line for some 20 odd years and we are still waiting, it would be nice to see Melton swing at the next state election.