Transport news: Extra services in July / Rally tomorrow / 2 hour fares

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!

Trains Not Tollroads rally flyer

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

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20 thoughts on “Transport news: Extra services in July / Rally tomorrow / 2 hour fares

  1. “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.”

    I fear you are very very misinformed about this. I challenge you to find one extra service. Just one.

  2. “…”, that’d be disappointing. The Herald Sun clearly says extras… though maybe they’ve misinterpreted the PTV info.

    What I can see is they’ve finally fixed the Frankston PM peak shoulder timetable, which at present is incredibly confusing.

  3. There is a distinction between ‘New’ and ‘Extra’. Although the word New is used to make people think that there are all these ‘extra’ services.

    I will try and be there to support you tomorrow Dan.

    I am depressed that we are yet to have any extra ‘smartbus’ routes put in place. I have been told that the 902 to Werribee will not run any time soon ‘due to lack of funds’.

    Thanks for the heads up on the 2 hour news.

  4. I’m a bit surprised though that they’ve removed the peak express trains on the Pakenham line (see http://www.metrotrains.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/MTM-TT-Booklet-Pakenham-Cranbourne-Jul2014-web.pdf) – there’s now only 2 stations past Caulfield that skipped by any services.

    I suppose it’ll spread out the loads better than running express trains that save no time anyway does. It’s good though that they’ve decided to run all trains on that line express from South Yarra – Caulfield until 10/11pm though.

  5. The only “new” element of the service is that Ballarat and Bendigo services won’t be stopping at North Melbourne.

    And Traralgon customers will have notable extensions to journey times.

    Progress…

  6. Nooooo! Dandenong trains are now Perma-express (week-days) through the MATH stations :(
    Sad face. Very disappointed.

  7. What happened to all those extra Metro trains for the west once capacity was freed up by Regional Rail Link?

  8. And when is everyone else going to get a 10 minute interpeak service? Let alone a 20 minute night service?

  9. Changing that 2 hour fare to exactly 2 hours rather than from the next hour is BS especially for those who use (infrequent) bus services. Take the 781 for example on the Mornington peninsula. Catching a bus from Mt.Martha to Frankston takes 50 mins. On a 2 hour ticket you would literally have 12 minutes to do what you need to do before needing to catch a bus back and touch off within 2 hours. You’re practically paying for a joy ride seeing as you’re probably catching the same bus that you caught into Frankston back home. I’m sure there are similar routes around the network where this change will have have the same impact (forcing people onto daily fares)

  10. At least the offpeak Dandy group trains no longer stop at Malvern on weekdays. That always ircked me.

    Shocking how we no longer have any decent express out from Caulfield. In any case, I hope they run a Dandenong or Wetall short run just ahead of any Cranbourne and Pakenham line trains, because trains on those routes would be beyond a joke capacity wise.

  11. So they’re discontinuing the 24 tram (and some others), meaning the loss of 15 services along La Trobe St. No word of increasing the 30 to compensate. The way a lot of those are packed now, that’s a bad idea. Very bad.

  12. @Ryan – as I understand it, what’s changing is the time by which your last touch on has to occur so as to be charged only for 2 hours, not that will you have to touch off within the 2 hour period. In other words, in your example, so long as after 1 July you touch on for your return journey within 2 hours (or is that 1 hr 59 minutes?) after your first touch on, it doesn’t matter that your trip isn’t completed until 50 minutes later.

  13. @Michael, good questions. RRL isn’t actually complete yet, so Geelong trains don’t use it yet. But you’d hope they’re close to being able to boost the Sunbury line at least.

    @TranzitJim, I think you need to read the timetable again. The one you linked to shows most trains still stop at Dandenong, Clayton and Caulfield.

    @gxh, @Ryan, that’s correct, the last touch-on needs to be before the 2-hour expiry to get it on the same fare.

  14. It appears that off peak service beyond Ringwood is still only every 1/2 hour. It is odd that there is an every 20 minute service on weekends but not on weekdays.

  15. MATH stations will actually have FEWER services in the PM peak.

    Hawksburn:
    Currently 834, 841, 848, 855

    to be 834, 847, 858

    It’s mind-blowing.

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