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Empty buses for empty suburbs

By johnboy - 20 June 2011 10

The Greens’ Caroline Le Couteur is celebrating some success for her calls that buses should run through the under construction suburbs of Molonglo to ensure new residents don’t succumb to the siren song of car ownership.

The Greens have outlined a sustainability strategy for Molonglo which includes:

– Bus-only priority routes on arterial roads to City/Barton/Russell
– Park’n’ride and Bike’n’ride facilities from day one
– Cycle highways connecting Molonglo to City/Barton/Russell
– Public transport infrastructure designed to adapt easily to potential future non-bus public transport options

“Nobody is going to wait for 6 months at a bus stop. Waiting for demand to develop in new suburbs was simply consigning residents to their cars from the outset, which sends the wrong message about the kind of suburbs we want to build.”

What’s Your opinion?


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10 Responses to
Empty buses for empty suburbs
carnardly 3:29 pm 04 Nov 11

mingling with traffic on Adelaide avenue? Croikey – are we talking about the same road? Where there’s a lane all the way from Civic to Woden that at times is as wide as a car lane? I’ve commuted along there for decades and have no reservations about risk there whatsoever.

But each to their own I guess.

mickey 2:50 pm 04 Nov 11

Gungahlin Al said :

Problem is there is never even a bus shelter installed up front.

By the time any decent infrastructure goes in, everyone has been “trained” to drive. Bus shelters, park and rides, etc need to built up front in exactly the same way that a developer has to build the roads, footpaths, parks and plant street trees. It’s a point I’ve been hammering with ACTPLA every opportunity I get – particularly with regard to DV306.

Obviously you’d have to scale up the actual bus services over time (trunk routes first, then collector services), but at least the basics are already in place.

Unfortunately, urban planners in Canberra are short-sighted. Buses come to the suburbs a good 2 years after the first residents move in.
Eg Bonner – 1st residents would have moved in in late 2009? 1st bus service to the suburb would be in mid 2012.
Connections from outer gungahlin suburbs are dodgy anyway. Half an hour to get to Gungahlin town centre – no direct services to the city or Belconnen.
How many offices are there in Gungahlin town centre at the moment? Apart from the issue of buses taking 3 times the time a car would, it is the inconvenience as well.

tidalik 2:20 pm 04 Nov 11

Great idea.

Installing bus-only lanes and direct bicycle routes from the outset would also be beneficial for the new residents.

Solidarity 12:43 pm 04 Nov 11

Are there any normal blocks avaliable in these new suburbs or is it all matchbox houses?

watto23 11:50 am 04 Nov 11

The real issue for me is time. The buses could be free, but if it takes me twice as long each way every day, why would I catch public transport.

The major town centres need to be connected by some form of rapid public transport, ie dedicated bus roads with no lights or stops between towncentres or a light rail network. Then more frequenty smaller buses in the suburbs. If the trip from say from Tuggeranong to Civic was cut to 15 minutes on public transport, I’d use it.

harvyk1 4:28 pm 20 Jun 11

Primal said :

How about running more buses through existing suburbs where the siren song has long been turned up to 11 because the bus options are lousy? Same feelgood vibe, more actual users as a result!

Couldn’t agree more… It takes me roughly 25 minutes to drive to work… If I had to catch a bus it would take nearly an hour and a half…

The problem is that Canberra is not public transport friendly – we’re very spread out, sparsely populated, with 9 different major area’s which could be counted as business districts Tuggies \ Woden \ City \ Belconnen \ Airport (Snowtown) \ Mitchell \ Fyshwick \ Parliamentary Triangle \ Russell, plus it’s common for people to live on one side of the city and yet work on the other…

If they want to increase public transport options, they would put in far more frequent feeder services to the nearest business district (prob using smaller busses), and then put in meaningful major services between them (using larger busses and is that the light rail people I hear)…

They need to make catching public transport the quick and easy thing to do, the problem is that it’s not right now, and I doubt it will ever be…

Primal 2:04 pm 20 Jun 11

How about running more buses through existing suburbs where the siren song has long been turned up to 11 because the bus options are lousy? Same feelgood vibe, more actual users as a result!

Gungahlin Al 1:06 pm 20 Jun 11

Problem is there is never even a bus shelter installed up front.

By the time any decent infrastructure goes in, everyone has been “trained” to drive. Bus shelters, park and rides, etc need to built up front in exactly the same way that a developer has to build the roads, footpaths, parks and plant street trees. It’s a point I’ve been hammering with ACTPLA every opportunity I get – particularly with regard to DV306.

Obviously you’d have to scale up the actual bus services over time (trunk routes first, then collector services), but at least the basics are already in place.

Rawhide Kid Part3 10:43 am 20 Jun 11

I recon that’s a dam good idea………

futto 10:42 am 20 Jun 11

No fan of most of these but the cycle highway idea has merit and would be relatively cheap. I don’t ride generally as I don’t want to mingle with traffic on Adelaide ave for example, so a dedicated alternative would be nice. It would also be nice to use on weekends with the family!

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