“The Greens have a vision for a world-class public transport system in the nation’s capital to create more liveable communities, improve our quality of life and reduce pollution and congestion,” ACT Greens Transport spokesperson Caroline Le Couteur said today.
“To do this, we need to create a quick and reliable high-frequency public transport system that is competitive with cars. We can’t do this without making major investments in Canberra’s public transport network.
“It’s clear that as a result of the weekend bus network changes, weekend bus patronage has gone up. Across Canberra, weekend bus usage is up 27 per cent on Saturday and 39 per cent on Sunday in the past year. That’s a huge increase in patronage driven by a huge increase in the number of weekend public transport services.
“We need to make sure that everyone benefits from major investments in our public transport network. It is very positive that transport patronage in central Canberra has gone up by 12 per cent in the past year. It is not just the light rail that is responsible for this – it also speaks to bus network take-up and increased population. Northbourne Avenue now has a dedicated corridor for public transport and integration between light rail and bus.
We need to make sure that all of Canberra gets a good public transport system and it is clear that while Network 19 has seen more patronage overall, some areas have done better than others. For example, Weston Creek was the one big winner out of the bus network changes. They now have a 15-minute service between Cooleman Court and Woden – and as a result patronage is up 9%.
What’s this tells us is that by making key improvements in our public transport network, you can get people out of their cars – and onto public transport.
Yet in nearby Woden Valley and Tuggeranong, passenger figures are down five percent on weekdays. This is disappointing and the Greens will continue to encourage the Government to improve the public transport network in line with community feedback. We want to ensure that reliable services are available, seven days a week.”