The PTCBR are pleased that the ACT Government and Transport Planners have studied the 13000 pieces of feedback received through community consultation and announced changes. Todays announcement about restoring school services from 250 to around 240 dedicated school services (around 100 were proposed for Network 19) is a pragmatic decision, but one that needs to be revisited in the future as an expanded light rail and rapid bus network makes public transport quicker and more accessible for more Canberrans. Adding around 100 dedicated school bus services back in to the school network takes those buses out of the peak hour fleet, and that will have an effect on local and rapid bus service frequency in Network 19. This is not the best outcome. It would be better for parents to raise independent children, confident enough to travel on a regular bus. PTCBR hope that over time the dedicated school bus service can be reduced, with more frequent local bus services near schools. Ultimately the PTCBR understand that if its a choice between a parent driving a child to school, or using a dedicated school bus, the bus is a better option, but we hope that over time as the regular bus service improves, parents will have the confidence in their children and the bus network, to let them travel with the other 60% of school children that travel to school on a regular bus every day.
The PTCBR are holding a public meeting on 8 Aug 2018 with TCCS presenting on Network 19, Light Rail Stage One and Two. It is a good opportunity for PTCBR Members and the public to ask questions about major public transport issues in Canberra.
This announcement from TCCS Minister Meegan Fitzharris focuses on light rail and buses. It also provides funding to address any questions that the NCA and the federal inquiry into light rail, may have. The highlights of this announcement are the construction of a light rail stop in Mitchell in 2019/20, and $10 million to further advance the technical and design aspects of light rail to Woden.
The 8 Rapid Bus routes to be introduced in mid 2018 received a thumbs up from PTCBR. TCCS Minister Meegan Fitzharris today announced that in 2018 Canberra would have nine rapid transit routes. Eight would be rapid bus, and one would be light rail. The announcement was made at the opening of the new $4 million dollar Dickson bus interchange, directly across the road from the Dickson light rail stop on Northbourne Avenue.
PTCBR are pleased that the Canberra Liberals are now supporting light rail in Canberra. The benefits of light rail for residents and businesses along the light rail stage one corridor have been supported at two elections, and it is pleasing that business owners in Mitchell, and the Canberra Liberals, now support better public transport options.