Friday, September 30, 2011

TransLink Annual Report - 2010/11

The TransLink Annual Report 2010/11 is now available for download from Parliament's website here. At the time of writing, the report wasn't available on TransLink's website. Here is BrizCommuter's commentary:

Page 5 - TransLink have acknowledged that their consultation process over the Ipswich FlexiLink service was not good enough, and that they will improve their public consultation process over service changes. This has been noted already in 2011 with considerable improvements to consultation processes.

Page 7 - The outline of the Network Plan for 2011/12 mentions a review of train timetables for the Cleveland, Beenleigh, Gold Coast, Doomben, Ferny Grove, and Shorncliffe Lines. However, when High Frequency Priority (HFP) network improvements are mentioned on both this page and page 64, there is only reference to bus routes. This is further evidence that we will not be seeing 15 minute off-peak train services on more rail lines in 2012. Given the extortionate train fares in SE Queensland, it will be disgusting if 15 minute off-peak train frequencies do not occur in 2012! Perth and Melbourne manage 10-20 minute off-peak train services, so why not in backwards Brisbane?

Page 9 - The TransLink train and busway network map. Seriously, it's a mess south of the river. Please redesign!

Page 10 - Strategic Plan - Toward Q2: Tomorrows Queensland. Mentioned is "Green: Reduce carbon emissions by encouraging a shift from private to public transport", and "Fair: Provide affordable transport options...". The recent 15% fare increases are resulting in the opposite to these strategies as public transport patronage has declined due to it being increasingly unaffordable.

Page 33 - The number of customer complaints has fallen slightly since 2008/9. BrizCommuter expects this is due to more commuters realising that complaining to TransLink is a fruitless exercise.

Page 34 - TransLink's worst performing Key Performance Indicators are Affordability and Reliability & Frequency. No surprises there.

Page 40 - TransLink are "Using go card to plan a better network", by methods of "Analyse patronage", "Reduce Overcrowding", and "Analyse boarding and alighting points". So why do students and commuters still suffer from full buses after full buses, particularly travelling to/from QUT Kelvin Grove (Inner Northern Busway) and UQ?

Page 46 (and surrounds) - It is good to see TransLink providing a breakdown of the 308,000 extra seats, and the cost of each service improvement. This is miles better than the porkies surrounding last years 301,000 extra seats in TransLink's Annual Report 2009/10.

Page 59 - Patronage. The number of total public transport users has dropped from 181.8m in 2009/10 to 178.6 in 2010/11. This figures is way below TransLink's target of 188m passengers. Train patronage has dropped massively from 60.9m in 2008/09, and 57.6m in 2009/10 to just 55m in 2010/11. Ferry patronage has also fallen massively for the second year in a row. TransLink are quite obviously in denial, and blame the figures on the floods and go card stats. Large decreases in patronage are still evident in Q4 (see page 60), with the floods occurring early in Q3, which discredits blaming the loss in patronage on floods. The results of the manual QR passenger count would discredit the go card stats excuse, and thus it is no surprise that TransLink have chosen not to publish these figures yet again. It is clear that 15% fare increases and lack of attractive ticketing options for frequent users is deterring the use of public transport. It is simply too expensive and forcing commuters back to using cars to get to work. This situation is a disgrace!

Page 59 (again) - Improvements. With 15% yearly fare rises you would expect a 15% service improvement? The number of vehicle service kilometres for buses increased by just 5%, and the number of vehicle service kilometres for trains increased by less than 1.8%. Commuters should be feeling rather ripped off! TransLink's excuse for the latter was the delay in implementing the new train timetables due to extended customer consultation. BrizCommuter doesn't believe this excuse given that in the 2009/10 financial year many of the service improvements did not take place until the end of Q4. Other stats include a 12.7% increase in passenger injuries on the busways. Is this due to overcrowding and full buses?

Page 69 - Increased Fixed Fares. Whilst this has been successful in reducing fare evasion, it has also added to the misery of honest commuters when the go card system doesn't work as it should. BrizCommuter has now received a $5, and a $10 fixed fare due to faulty go card readers, and is not amused by the 10 day wait to get a refund. BrizCommuter has received reports of commuters waiting even longer for refunds, and TransLink disputing refund claims. TransLink have failed to mention how much revenue they make from unclaimed fixed fares on innocent users.

Page 72 - The 15% fare increases are designed to reduce the percentage of taxpayer subsidy. For the second year running, this policy has failed, with a huge 20% increase in subsidy percentage. Again, TransLink have blamed this on the floods rather that their failing fare policies.

Page 96 - How many members of TransLink's board use public transport? Answers on a postcard to...


  1. Well written article Brizcommuter!

  2. Enough is enough with these fare rises. Next year we will be paying even more than in London, at least they have trains every 2 minutes.

  3. I laughed at the bit about TransLink's social responsibility through using recycled office stationary. It rather pales into insignificance compared to the 1,000s of commuters that have switched back to polluting cars due to high fares.

  4. That last comment is spot on! TransLink don't quite get it do they?

  5. The 15% annual fare increase has to be the worst public transport policy in Brisbane since the trams were removed !!

  6. I hate to think what will happen if I ever try to claim a refund for a fixed fare - if I even realise I've been charged it, since I hardly ever take public transport these days. I refuse to register my Go Card because I don't trust TransLink to manage the data (not that my trips are a big secret, but I'd rather things like my date of birth and mobile number not be accidentally released online). It was hard enough to change from a Student to Adult Go Card without registering, and the guy in the Transport Info Centre treated me like I was an alfoil-hat-wearing nut for not wanting to register. So an increase to $10 fixed fares is just one more reason for me to drive instead.

  7. The labor government and Translink is a disgrace. What justifies a 15% increase per year for an overcrowded, sub-standard railway system for Brisbane and the Gold Coast. At now paying over $100 per week from the Gold Coast to Brisbane I expect a bullet train with free wifi (Oh yes another Translink promise never delivered) and adequate seating. Commuters have been taken for a ride. What has been done for Gold Coast Commuters in the last 10 years? Hardly anything, apart for extra stations so now Helensvale commuters have to fight for seats, some Extra trains (Mostly for Brisbane Lines) with the same technology and a seating design so small you could classify it as a health hazard. Get your act together Queensland. Forget about fluffing around the edges wasting taxpayers money on smart state smiley faces, marketing material, revolutionary ticketing systems and unnecessary customer service. The Gold Coast line / south eastern corridor infrastructure needs URGENT attention given our rapid population growth. We are the most overcrowded line. With the Commonwealth Games looming I hope your public transport services are greatly improved before then. The world will judge you fairly. Shame Shame Shame......


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