Friday, October 14, 2011

TransLink Network Plan 2011/12 - Huge Disappointment!

Infrequency to continue!
The previous 15% fare rises were met with a rather minimal (but great sounding) 300,000ish extra seats per week on public transport. Going by TransLink's 2011 network plan, the next 15% fare rise will be met with even less impressive service improvements.
Warning - reading the TransLink 2011 Network Plan may lead to commuter depression:
After 18 pages of waffle, only 1 page is devoted to improvements in 2011/12. No numbers of seats have yet been promised this year, making BrizCommuter think that commuters may be getting even less value for money from the 15% fare rise in January 2012. Here is the disappointing list of service "improvements":

  • New train timetables on Ferny Grove, Shorncliffe, Airport, Doomben, Gold Coast, Beenleigh, and Cleveland Lines will probably NOT include 15 minute off-peak services originally planned for 2010. This is despite 15 min off-peak services being common place in Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney, and the success of every 15 minute bus routes in Brisbane. BrizCommuter's sources have even warned not to expect much in the way of overall improvements to peak services either. 
  • More than 125 new buses on the TransLink network. Can a few more be used on the overcrowded Inner Norther Busway? 30 minute waits to board a bus at Roma Street in the am peak is not good enough!
  • Regional review of bus services to meet new train timetable i.e. expect retimed, not extra services. 
  • New cross-town strategic bus routes servicing Number 1 Airport Drive, Garden City, UQ lakes, and the NorthWest Corridor. The former two have already had their service implemented, the latter two's services may be interesting. 
  • High frequency network upgrades to services in Carindale, Buranda, Aspley, NorthWest Corridor.  The former two have already has their upgrade (actually they already had a high frequency service), and will the latter be the same as the above mentioned cross town route?
  • Recast and optimisation of bus services in the inner-North to utilise the opening of Stage One of the Northern Busway, once complete. Will this solve Inner Northern Busway overcrowding, or make it even worse?
  • Infrastructure improvements include the Northern Busway from RBWH to Kedron, a few more bus stations, park'n'rides, and station refurbishments. 
The mediocrity that is public transport in Brisbane sadly appears to be set to continue as the cost of using public transport rises yet again.

Update 04/11/2011

According to this article on the Brisbane Times website, the extra weekly seat target for this financial year is 310,000 seats, the same as last year. Already around half of these seats have been delivered, not leaving much for the phase 2 rail timetables and Northern Busway opening if they fall into this financial year.

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