Sunday, February 7, 2016

Fare Free Friday?

Rather than assisting with the more sensible objectives of building Cross River Rail, and bus network reform, both Brisbane mayoral election candidates (Lord Mayor Graham Quirk and Rod Harding) have recently come out with ill-though out infrastructure plans. Just when you thought it couldn't get more silly, Labor's candidate Rod Harding has come out with another clanger - Fare Free Friday. This would allow free travel on Brisbane City Council buses, ferries, and CityCats on Friday, with go card users not touching on and off. Whilst it may win a few votes from the un-informed, here are reasons why it is a poor idea:

  • It makes a complete mockery of the Labor state governments ongoing fare review - BrizCommuter can see "panel of experts" face palming. 
  • Train passengers within Brisbane City Council area would still have to pay fares.
  • Confusion due to passengers not touching on and off only on certain modes of transport and certain bus operators (e.g. you would need to touch on and off a non-Brisbane Transport route 555 on the SE Busway, but not on a Brisbane Transport route 111 on the SE Busway).
  • Lack of go card data and thus travel statistics for the affected journeys. 
  • As passengers are in the habit of touching on and off, expect lots of fixed fares from touch ons but not offs, and no touch ons but touch offs. 
  • Issues with go card transfers as the bus segment of the journey would not be recorded. 
  • Would cause conflicts with the current "9 then free" go card cap (which for most users kicks in on Friday). 

Whilst BrizCommuter is no fan of Graham Quirk due to Brisbane City Councils' refusal to co-operate with TransLink's bus reforms, it seems that with policies like these, Rod Harding is climbing even higher up the hill of stupidity. His "fancy bus" tweets and comments when discussing rubber-tyred metros do not help his cause either.  This is more evidence that it is time for Brisbane City Council to be completely removed from anything to do with public transport.

Courier Mail article on Fare Free Friday:
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/queensland-government/brisbane-lord-mayoral-candidate-launches-fare-free-friday-for-public-transport/news-story/47236e87cc66cf4e900d95da6aa550a0

2 comments:

  1. This gimmick policy will also more than likely overload the limited resources of busses and drivers past breaking point on a Friday, thus souring passenger's opinion of Brisbane's public transport, which will be very hard to recover from.

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