Some bits of transport news worth noting today:
July: new services
The Herald Sun has the scoop on public transport service upgrades from late-July: Work commute eased as new train, tram, bus services announced (a very narrowly focussed headline given the upgrades benefit a lot more than 9-5 workers).
Details are still a little sketchy, but what we do know is:
- Around 4000 extra services a week
- About 200 of those are train services, including the very welcome move of making the Dandenong line run every 10 minutes during the day on weekdays (39 per day = 195 per week), and a couple of extra Frankston AM peak services (10 per week). By my count, that’s all for this time around.
- Extra V/Line services on all main lines, with the Ballarat and Bendigo lines to make use of their new tracks from Sunshine to the City. It’ll be interesting to see how much faster they are. V/Line bus changes to co-ordinate with their new train timetables.
- 3260 new bus services per week, but there’s very little detail other than that there are some major route changes in Brimbank (flagged earlier this year), Port Phillip, Manningham and Bacchus Marsh. Minor changes in other areas, and a new route in Cranbourne East.
- 471 tram services per week, with some route changes, including the long-awaited splitting of route 112 back to two routes: 11 (West Preston via Collins Street to Docklands), and 12 (St Kilda via Collins Street to Victoria Gardens). Route 78 will become full-time, which means no more evening/weekend route 79 to St Kilda — inconvenient for some, but more consistent and less confusing.
More detail, particularly of the bus upgrades, will be very welcome.
My initial impression is this is a good worthwhile upgrade package — if the government rolled something like this out each year, instead of each election cycle (sharing the love around to address upgrade needs in different areas, of course) then they’d really be kicking some goals.
I’d have to check, but I don’t recall a big increase in service kilometres being flagged in the Budget. I wonder if the government’s pushed this through to try not to look so roads-focussed. Speaking of which…
Rally this Saturday
Secondly, aiming to remind the government that they were elected on public transport promises, not to build motorways: A big rally tomorrow at 1pm, State Library.
If you feel, as I do, that billions shouldn’t be wasted building more motorways that just result in more traffic, this might be your best chance this year to make your view felt (with the possible exception of the ballot box in November). See you there!
2 hours becomes 2 hours only
This one has flown under the radar a bit: from July 1st, two hour fares become exactly two hours, rather than being rounded up to the next hour.
Hopefully this won’t result in too many people hanging around station entrances for the train to arrive before all trying to simultaneously touch-on.
Remember, if you’re planning on travelling in multiple two hour blocks across the day, it makes zero difference thanks to the daily cap. It’s only important if you were trying to squeeze all your travel in a day onto one 2 hour Myki Money fare.
One more thing
Android users: the PTV Android app is now available, to accompany the updated iOS app released a few weeks ago.
Update: The July timetable changes are now all online