|Expensive, infrequent, and no sign of improvement|
What do we get for this 7.5% fare rise? There will be double the number of TransLink Transit Officers in an attempt to reduce crime. However, the reality will probably be more innocent people being caught out by the go card system flaws (see last blog post). There is some public transport infrastructure spending, mostly continuation of existing projects such as Moreton Bay Rail Link and Gold Coast Rapid Transit, and Springfield Line. There is also some spending on newer projects such as Next Generation Rolling Stock, and Automatic Train Protection (? on the CityTrain network). An odd mention is $3.7m towards the Corinda to Darra 3rd track, which was assumed to be already completed. Maybe this is the missing electrification on the 4th track? There are a few bus station upgrades as well. Mayne to Ferny Grove Line track appears to be missing off the infrastructure list. There is no mention of inner city rail capacity solution enhancements. There is also no mention of funding for any planned service improvements such as the unacceptably delayed sector/stage 2 train timetables. Yes, the $100m+ spent on the Ferny Grove Line duplication is still a white elephant!
As expected road infrastructure is not exactly lacking in funding!
It is a shame that the failure of the LNP state government to implement TransLink's revolutionary bus network review is continuing to waste tax payers money on Brisbane City Council's massively inefficient bus network. Queensland Rail also continues to be Australia's least efficient rail operator (cost/km).
To conclude, despite there being a fair amount of infrastructure spending, it appears that in the 2013/14 financial year,SE Queensland commuters will be paying extortionate public transport fares for b****r all service improvements (unless you happen to live in Springfield) .
Here's what's being spent on public transport: