25 November 2008

Fix public transport, Brumby urged: The Age

ALMOST two thirds of Victorians are unhappy with the State Government's handling of public transport, and an equal number say new public transport should be given priority over roads.

As the Brumby Government prepares to release its multibillion-dollar transport plan next month, Victorians have sent a clear message of frustration to the Government over its handling of public transport.

A special Age/Nielsen poll found 61 per cent of people are dissatisfied with the Brumby Government on public transport — and only 27 per cent are satisfied.

Read The Age report in full

Acording to The Age, sources close to the strategy expect it to include:
¦ planning to begin on linking the Metropolitan Ring Road at Greensborough to the Eastern Freeway or EastLink;
¦ plans for the $700 million Frankston Bypass;
¦ at least 60 new trams and 40 new trains;
¦ a $200 million tram depot at Preston;
¦ a new $1 billion rail line between Werribee and Sunshine to speed up V/Line trains from Geelong; and
¦ a new toll road linking the western suburbs to the east.
A senior Government source also confirmed the $7 billion rail tunnel from Footscray to Caulfield would be included in the plan, but construction would not start until 2014.
The tunnel's first stage would take four years to build.

Where's the new rail to the North or East? Rowville, Doncaster, South Morang/Mernda shunned again? Would you be satisfied with these plans to improve public transport?


Damien said...

Extending existing lines (eg. Epping line to Whittlesea and Aurora, and Alamein to Chadstone) and building new branch lines to Rowville via Monash, and the long-overdue Doncaster/Donvale line, and the airport line etc etc should occupy the government's full and immediate attention--this could be done at a fraction of the cost of the proposed tunnels. I can already get from Caulfield to Footscray by train if I want to!What is the point of constructing a tunnel from the Eastern Freeway to the west when studies consistently show that only a fraction of traffic wants to head west from said freeway?
A longer-term solution would be the conversion of the network's lines into colour-coded, end-to-end lines that stretch from side of the city to the other without necessarily going through the CBD--just as they do in any functional mass transit system around the world. If for example the Epping and Sandringham lines were joined via a short tunnel under Punt Rd, passengers along that route on their way to the city would have to change trains once (Richmond, if coming from the south, or Clifton Hill, where a tunnel could be built into the city via Melbourne University, from the north). The time lost changing lines would be offset by frequent and fast trains running on track that is not shared with other lines, but which operate more or less independently.

Damien said...

extend existing lines, build long overdue ones--that's a good start.
Long term--reconfigure the network as end-to-end, colour-coded lines operating independently, as with any mass transit system around the world. This would require some tunnels, a lot of new rolling stock, and no small amount of courage and foresight from government and communities alike.

Rod Watson said...

It would be a disgrace if even another metre of freeway were constructed or any freeway widened. The government seems still wedded to the concept of moving vehicles rather than people. Extensions of the rail system to Doncaster East, Mernda, Aurora, Rowville [or further to Fern Tree Gully]as well as eltrification to Melton & Sunbury must be done very soon. Extensions to the tram system are also overdue. The only level crossings that need to be removed are those where rail & tram cross.
Rod Watson, public transport user, motorist & cyclist.

Anonymous said...

We have a problem now and, with another million people, we'll have a bigger problem.
For the future, extend the rail lines to the ends of the urban growth boundary.
For the present, get another 3,000 to 4,000 buses - to provide coverage and frequency

Remember that good public transport has all of the characteristics -
reasonable travel time
safe *
comfortable *
clean *
perceived value for money

(* including at train stations and bus stops)

Public transport must be in place before people move into new suburbs
(and buy that otherwise unnecessary extra car)
Start with small buses and provide bigger buses as patronage expands.

(Is there any truth in the recent article in The Age that LM John So is in Premier Brumby's pocket and Brumby is in Macquarie Bank's pocket ?)