Thursday, August 29, 2013

Brisbane - Australia's least liveable state capital

Brisbane - more liveable than Mumbai! 
The annual world liveability league table, by Economist Intelligence Unit, has recently been published for 2013. Brisbane is at 20th in the table behind Melbourne (1st), Adelaide (5th), Sydney (7th), and Perth (9th). Auckland, which unlike Brisbane is successfully implementing it's revolutionary bus network changes is 10th. Clearly in denial, Campbell Newman labelled the results a "sick joke".

So, apart from shops that close at 5:30pm, worse restaurants than Damascus (140th), and lack of culture, why has Brisbane fared so badly compared to its peers? Poor public transport of course!

  • World's 2nd highest bus fares, 3rd highest train fares. Most expensive fares in Australia, which are deterring public transport use. 
  • Grossly inefficient, generally infrequent, and confusing bus network. This was compounded by the failure of Queensland government and Brisbane City Council to implement TransLink's bus network review. 
  • Laughably infrequent train system, both during peak and off-peak. 
  • Poor connectivity between bus and train networks. 
  • Failure of successive governments to develop the train network to cope with demand - e.g. failure to implement required additional tracks, Cross River Rail, improved signalling, new trains, and timetable improvements. 
It should be noted that for example, two public transport journeys in Melbourne on a Sunday will be nearly half the cost than in Brisbane, and with trains running 3 times more frequently in Melbourne! 

In addition to poor public transport in SE Queensland, there is also a big issue with uncontrolled urban sprawl (e.g. Ripley Valley, Flagstone, Yarrabilba) adding to the inefficient road and rail transport network. It is clear that Brisbane's relatively poor liveability (against its peers) is due to the failure of successive governments when it comes to implementing an frequent, affordable, and efficient public transport network. 

Economist article:
Courier Mail story:

1 comment:

  1. I hard to take public transport recently to go the CBD from Logan city. I was shocked at how appauling the options were. Trains and buses were equally as bad - both taking about 1hour 10 minutes, and both running only every 30 minutes. Plus they cost $9.50 each way. Even more laughable is that I found out that public transport is subsidised by nearly 70%. To the $9.50 trip actually costs about $30.

    There is no way a peak-hour journey, with incredible efficiency gained from mass computers costs $30 per person. Transport in SE QLD is just begging to be privatized. Its the only way to rid-itself of the absolute non-sense and waste.


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