Saturday, December 4, 2010

88 - Lucky for some?

TransLink recently announced the P88 bus route, starting on Monday 13th December - timetable here. This frequent pre-paid route runs from Eight Mile Plains to Indooroopilly, via the South East Busway, (then via a 360 loop onto the) Captain Cook Bridge, King George Square, Roma Street, Coronation Drive, and ending up in Indooroopilly (but not in the bus station).

The announcement of this route, asks for many questions:
1) Why not just make the 111 more frequent on the South East Busway?
2) Is the bypassing of Mater Hill, South Bank, and Cultural Centre an admission that the South East Busway is near capacity in the peaks? This means South Bank will be bypassed at weekends and evenings by the P88, when that area is a popular destination.
3) Is using the congested Captain Cook Bridge (and Coronation Drive) a good idea for reliability?
4) Is an extra bus route along Coronation Drive really required, especially when there will soon be 15 minute off-peak frequency on the almost adjacent Ipswich Line?
5) Why doesn't the P88 terminate in Indooroopilly Bus Station?
6) Wouldn't consolidating city stop locations for Western Brisbane bus services be more useful for commuters? The array of different city stop locations for buses heading in the same direction, each with an infrequent service, makes TransLink's slogan of "Making travel easy" somewhat laughable!
7) Wouldn't running more peak 444's which are often full to capacity be a better use of resources (same goes for other bus routes that suffer from full buses)?
8) Will all bus stops along the P88 route have go-card top up facilities nearby?

It seems strange that a transport authority which took an agonising 7 months to extend the route 66 to RBWH (and still doesn't run enough route 66's in the uni holidays) is now adding a bus route that is leaving many commuters asking why? Politics maybe?

Update 15/12/2010

Despite TransLink taking 2 weeks to get the Passenger Information Displays (PID) correct for the route 66 when it was extended to RBWH, they have managed to stuff up the PIDs for route 88 as well. Rather than just showing Indooroopilly, the road and stop number of the destination are also shown, on just one line. Thus only those with 20/20 vision, and standing within 2m of the PID can actually read where on earth the 88 is heading.

1 comment:

  1. One strike against Route 88 is that it wastefully duplicates parts of the 111 and 444, using buses and drivers that could be deployed to cross-radial routes, increasing the latter's frequency and operating hours, connecting a lot more people with the existing trunks. For instance, if you're in Mt Gravatt East on a Saturday, you could use the 599 to Garden City, then hop on one of the numerous buses inbound from there along the SE Busway. But, because the 599 only runs once an hour (sometimes with even more than an hour's gap, with its uneven scheduling), the busway might as well only have hourly buses to the city!


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