23 January 2023

Bus timetable shake up as Canberra's kids head back to the classroom

| Claire Fenwicke
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Bus at a Canberra interchange

The ACT Government has made changes to the bus network as construction ramps up across the city. Photo: Transport Canberra.

More changes are coming to the Territory’s bus timetables as parents prepare to send their children back to school and more Canberrans head back to work.

The community’s been reminded to ‘rethink your routine’ as construction ramps up on major infrastructure projects in the north and south, with the bus timetable changing from 30 January.

Some schedules will change, while other services will be reduced.

Transport Minister Chris Steel said this construction included the delivery of light rail stage two and the CIT Woden project, as part of “future-focused” improvements for the city’s public transport network.

“As we build the transport infrastructure today that is important for Canberra’s future, there will be temporary disruption to the traffic network from the construction, whether you are commuting by car or by bus,” he said.

“We have prioritised maintaining service frequency during peak periods when most of our customers travel, which will mean Rapids continue to run at least every 15 minutes.

“Work is also underway on the new, light rail-ready, public transport interchange for CIT Woden, with a temporary bus interchange opening on Monday, 30 January, which will start operations with the new timetable.”

Rapid bus services will operate at least every 15 minutes between 7 am and 7 pm on weekdays – except Rapid 10 – with last services between 10:30 pm and 11 pm.

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Minister Steel said families preparing their kids to return to school should be aware of the new bus timetable.

It includes adjustments to some school bus services, with extra time also scheduled into bus routes that travel through the city.

The construction of both public and private infrastructure projects has also reduced some local bus services to an hourly off-peak frequency.

However, Mr Steel said more than 70 per cent of local services will still run at least every 30 minutes between 7 am and 7 pm, with the last services commencing between 10 pm and 11 pm.

He said while construction will cause traffic delays, this was about improving the city’s public transport infrastructure for the future.

“These investments will keep Canberra moving and help us to avoid future traffic gridlock issues, which creates problems in so many other cities,” Mr Steel said.

“This could mean taking public transport instead of driving, riding your bike, walking, using our city-wide e-scooter network or travelling by car outside peak times to alleviate congestion or save time and frustration on your commute.”

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Local bus route changes will include:

  • extension of route 31 into Lawson and U-turn at the roundabout until the Stockman Ave extension is completed
  • adjustments to Gungahlin routes to service schools and provide better access to the Amaroo shops
  • relocation of pick up and set down from Brierly Street, Cooleman Court, to the main stops on Parkinson Street
  • adjustments to Belconnen routes to reduce the use of the Fraser West terminus to minimise the impact on nearby residents
  • reduced bus layovers at Denman Prospect
  • adjustments for the use of the Turner bus layover.

The new timetable will be reviewed in the middle of the year.

Canberrans can find more information about the new bus timetable online.

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Its a great system when no one wants to use it.
Its a terrible system for everything else.

Time to upgrade it to technology invented in 1804.

It was previously a much better bus network overall when the Transport Minister focused on peak hour Express bus services right across this city.

Dumping the peak period Xpresso’s to instead focus an across the day Rapid (by name only) service has proven a disaster. Minister Steel continues to rob some areas of the city to pay for better public transport in other areas.

If he continues to get his way, he might one day be able to get every single bus route in Canberra to drive people all the way to Gungahlin to board the train before 5 changes to their destination.

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