Tuesday, February 15, 2011

More Inner Northern Busway woes

Only a few weeks ago BrizCommuter posted this blog post, detailing the severe overcrowding occurring on the Inner Northern Busway due to lack of route 66 services outside of the main university semesters. The post was updated twice, with more reports and observations of overcrowding occurring outbound from the CBD in the am peak, and inbound to the CBD in the pm peak.

This morning one of BrizCommuter's work colleagues reported a disgraceful 35 minute wait to board a bus from Roma Street to RCH Herston between 7:30 and 8:05am. Multiple buses passed by, already full to capacity, and could not take on any passengers. A few empty out of service buses also passed through Roma Street during this period. Apparently large numbers of passengers remained on the platform at Roma Street after BrizCommuter's source boarded, as that bus filled to capacity as well.

Why can't TransLink run anywhere near enough buses to cope with the the number of passengers? Do TransLink not realise that huge numbers of passengers still use the Inner Northern Busway outside of university semester? If TransLink do not fix this situation, it will continue to discourage the use of the Inner Northern Busway and connecting public transport services. The Inner Northern Busway's reputation has already been severely tarnished by the chronic overcrowding caused by the 7 month delay in extending the route 66 to RBWH.

Slightly changing the subject, page 19 of mX newspaper on 15/02/2011 had a "What's the most annoying thing about Brisbane" section. All 3 people interviewed gave trains or public transport as their response. BrizCommuter is not surprised by this piece of quality journalism.

Update 16/02/2011

BrizCommuter was unfortunate enough to have to use the Inner Northern Busway this afternoon between RBWH and Mater Hill at 3:15pm. As expected, the 66 bus filled up to capacity at QUT KG, leaving behind passengers there, and at Normanby. TransLink - leaving commuters, students, tourists, and school children behind at bus stops since 2003!

Update 24/02/2011

The Courier Mail's website has run a story about the overcrowding on the Inner Northern Busway, in particular the 66. The article claims that adults have been kicked off route 66 buses by drivers as they are not allowed to leave children waiting alone at bus stops. BrizCommuter has observed both children and adults being left behind by buses on almost every journey on the Inner Northern Busway in the last few weeks. Lets hope that pressure from the Rail Bus and Tram Union forces TransLink to improve the currently overcrowded bus service on the Inner Northern Busway, especially addressing the lack of 66 buses out of university semester time. In the meantime, RBWH and RCH hospital workers continue to be delayed getting to work as they cannot board buses at Roma Street during the morning peak.


  1. Some credit is needed: It seems Brisbane's Northern Busway is somewhat a victim of its own success. Compare that to the performance of the brand spanking but empty and now bankrupt road tunnel just down the road!

    But you're right, something needs to be done. Does Translink charge more to use buses in peak periods? Because that's another solution - charge more for peak buses to encourage people to travel in off peak periods.

    It's really no different from time-of-use road pricing, except that it's much easier to implement on PT because you already have the electronic ticketing systems installed.

    I think it's important to consider alternatives to just running more buses, which can be very very expensive.

  2. There are already different peak and off-peak fares. Many of the passengers on the route 66 are students and hospital shift workers - they want to travel on public transport at times suitable to them, not at quieter or cheaper times.


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