Thursday, June 25, 2009

Transport Symposium Creates a Western Sydney Umbrella for Local Transport Action Groups

Western Sydney Transport Symposium 2009
20 June 2009

Western Sydney transport users join forces to fight for a better transport system

Over 50 individuals and representatives from community organizations from across Greater Western Sydney met in Granville today to discuss how to improve the liveability of the region.

People came from Campbelltown, Camden, East Hills, the Blue Mountains, Liverpool, Bankstown, Parramatta, Penrith and the Hills District.

The meeting expressed its grave concerns about rising petrol prices and the burden it places on people living in Western Sydney due to the long distances to travel and the inadequate public transport, walking and cycling facilities. They were also concerned about greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution.

The meeting heard tales of bus services cut, lack of bus shelters, people with prams walking on the road because of the lack of footpaths, poor or non-existing toilet facilities at transport interchanges, overcrowding and fears of using night time services. One senior citizen was forced to sit on an electrical meter box because there wasn’t a seat at a bus stop. The meeting also heard that people are forced to catch three different buses to get to hospital and health services.

Transport is an essential service for all people. Older people are voicing their concerns about their growing loss of independence.

‘This group will be able to represent transport disadvantaged people in Western Sydney and advocate for better public transport for people who live, work and study in Western Sydney" said Paul Falzon, one of the organisers.

The organizations decided to keep working together. They plan to make Western Sydney a better place to live by improving the transport and planning systems to overcome the problems of social isolation, environmental degradation and the financial burden that have become a fact of life in Western Sydney.

For more information

Bus Reform, Older People and Route 606 in Winston Hills

Many elderly folk live here in Winston Hills, -----all the people who live in woodbury Village---- also disabled people--- and the local school Winston Hills Primary has a unit for the intellectually impaired. Many of these children have to be travel trained, a task which requires a good bus service.

We depend on the buses to go to Parramatta and Castle Hill. At Parramatta we can get a train into town. The 606 used to go to Parramatta and Castle Hill. My dentist and Doctors are at Castle Hill. I could walk down to the bus shelter and get the bus.

Now I have to walk up HILLS to get to the bus to Parramatta and I am not able to walk up the many hills to Langden Road to get the T60. to Castle Hill.

Now we have THREE bus shelters in Winston Hills where NO bus picks up from. Everyone has to stand in all kinds of weather at the new bus stops with no bus shelters .

I am 74 and I have lived here since 1970. I and many other elderly folk would appreciate your help in this matter .We feel locked in. They say we should try and live independently in our own homes . I might add that I got no reply to my submission to the bus survey.

The people in the retirement village at Constitution Hill are very well catered for. They have their own Hills Bus service which goes into their village all day and late at night S8 ( I think it is called) They also have access to the 606 and the Tway buses. However all the elderly cannot afford to live in this retirement village.

Please consider us here in Winston Hills . WE REALLY NEED YOUR HELP NOW.

Kind regards

Mrs W.

Please leave a comment for Mrs W here and we can pass it on to her.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Expansion of Concession Travel Ten tickets

"From Monday, 22 June 2009, any customer who is currently entitled to use a concession single ride ticket is permitted to use a concession TravelTen for use on Sydney Buses.

This includes:

• Pensioners holding a Pensioner Concession Card (NSW, Victoria and ACT only) or a Seniors Card (or Seniors Temporary Card) from any state of Australia
• Half Fare Entitlement Card – NSW
• Indentured Apprentice/Trainee NSW Transport Concession Card
• Jobseekers with NSW Half Fare Entitlement Card for Jobseekers
• War Widow/er Concession Card (TC1) from NSW or Victoria only
• Children 4-15 years (with proof of age card)
• Holders of CityRail Transport Foil or Image
• Tertiary Students NSW Transport Concession Card (Form 204) with CityRail Transport Foil or Image
• Senior Secondary Student NSW Transport Concession Card (Form 202) with CityRail Transport Foil or Image

For details of where you can purchase your ticket and more details visit"

Friday, June 19, 2009

NSW Opposition Supports Western Sydney Projects and Community Transport

In the Budget reply speech, the Leader of the Opposition announced that they would scrap the CBD Metro project and support the development of the North West and South West rail lines. While this is the position that the Opposition has held for a while, it is good to hear them standing behind this promise and supporting these projects for the people of Western Sydney. Hopefully these are not empty promises. They depend on what the current Government does with the Metro contracts before the next election. Scrapping the Metro releases a lot of capital to invest in other ways. Liberal Party discussion of the NW and SW Rail Links and the Metro; click here.

The other interesting thing mentioned by the Opposition Leader was the fact that they would double the budget in the Community Transport Program. This is something Community Transport providers have been asking for for a long time. Compared to the huge infrastructure spends being promised, it only requires an increase of $3.9m to double the size of this program and this will benefit many disadvantaged people all over NSW. $3.9m represents about 1/800th of the increased money committed to transport infrastructure projects in the budget or 1/1000th of the transport services budget; a very small amount in the context of the transport budget. See the Liberal Party commentary on Community Transport; click here.

It was interesting that the Government has, by creating the idea of the 'Transport Super Department', taken the Liberal Policy and taken it one step further by including Roads.

NSW Budget Has Huge Increase in Transport Infrastructure Spending

Click here to see the Budget described by the Minister.

The NSW budget brought into the parliament this week has a huge 68% increase in infrastructure spending on transport projects. It includes commitments for replacement and new buses for the STA and the private bus service operators including for Western Sydney; especially the North West. It also includes new train carriages and the maintainence facilities for them, some work on Glenfield Station as "Stage 1" of the South West Rail Link and the, previously announced, additional car parks; again largely in Western Sydney. While this spending has mostly been announced already it is still a huge spend on lots of important infrastructure which will improve transport outcomes for people in Western Sydney.

Unfortunately the CBD Metro is a huge part of the budget this year ($580m) and is projected for $4.9b over the next few years to build the project. As mentioned in previous blog entries, this isn't a great outcome for Western Sydney. The $91m study for the West Metro is also included and would be a good start to the Sydney Metro. This is part of the Stimulus Package money provided by the Commonwealth.

The other big ticket item, announced in the weeks before the budget, is the creation of the new transport 'Super Department" which will take in Roads, Trains, Buses, Taxis, Ferrys, Ticketing, Planning and Regulation. This plan has great potential to help create an integrated transport system by facilitating the creation of an integrated ticket and coordinated ticket pricing. It also has the potential to help create a better land-use planning and transport system which can aim to create more sustainable outcomes for the city and better liveability outcomes for the people. A lot depends however, on the implementation of this idea and the leadship provided.

The main disapointments was the lack of funding for the proposed light rail projects in the inner west, because, from a Western Sydney perspective, this has the potential to reduce the need for the CBD Metro and is something people in the city want. The other disappointment was the lack of support for Community Transport. We would like to see more money in the Community Transport Program which is designed to reduce transport disadvantage. This program has not increased for many years and needs to be doubled to help ameliorate the problems created by the Bus Network Review. We would also like to see more money in the Easy Access rail station upgrade program to double the number of stations made accessible each year. The current program upgrades five stations per year.

Monday, June 15, 2009

'Bus Driver Dumps Kids' Story

Here is the link to the Daily Telegraph story about the bus that left a group of school children at the shopping centre in Blacktown, instead of taking them home, because he was "running late". Daily Telegraph June 11th

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Parramatta Ferry

The NSW Government will deliver a ferry service for commuters between Parramatta and the CBD.

From the Minister's Press Release (click here for the full release):

An Expression of Interest process did not identify a proposal from the private sector to meet the Government and commuter’s needs, so the NSW Government has stepped in to deliver the service.

"This means people living and working in Parramatta will be able to catch a ferry directly to the city during peak hour," Mr Rees said.

"It will be an hourly service operating from 7am to 7pm weekdays and 8am to 6pm on weekends.

"The Ministry of Transport and Sydney Ferries are working closely together and I expect to see the new commuter ferry service between Parramatta and the CBD in operation for passengers by the end of the year."

Travel Pass For Western Sydney

For many years I have thought a Western Travelpass should be available for less than a Purple. At least covering Macarthur to Granville, Emu Plains, and Richmond by rail and a wide variety of connecting buses. Could be good for coming election.


Please leave a comment for Eric by clicking on the comment link below.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Dear Western Sydney Public Transport Users,

I am conducting research as part of my requirements for my bachelor's degree, in cooperation between the Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies at the University of Sydney and Twente University (The Netherlands). The research focuses on policies intended to persuade car drivers to use public transport more frequently. The centrepiece of the research is a survey to investigate individuals' reactions to different policies.

A link to the survey is below -- I would appreciate it greatly if you would be willing to participate. The survey consists of 12 multiple choice questions and can be filled in within five minutes.

Please feel free to forward this information onto others who live and/or work in the Sydney area.

Click here to go to the survey

Thank you in advance,

Srdjan Timotijevic
Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies Intern
Twente University (The Netherlands)