Canberra’s bus timetable is getting a shake-up with the long-awaited return to 30-minute frequencies throughout the day.
The new timetable will also see some changes to school services in time for the start of Term 4.
Transport Canberra and City Services deputy director general Ben McHugh said the return to 30-minute weekday frequencies would be running in daytime off-peak hours between 9:30 am and 3:30 pm across the network.
“There will be some minor adjustments to the first and last services to reflect improved frequency,” he said.
“We know reliable services are important to Canberrans and that our travel habits have changed in recent years. The new timetable considers all of our driver resources, post-COVID travel behaviours and the full Transport Canberra bus fleet.”
The new timetable doesn’t include changes to weekend bus or any light rail services.
It’s also been adjusted to accommodate construction projects across the city, including raising London Circuit and the CIT Woden precinct and interchange.
The more frequent services are part of a $17 million package from the 2023-24 ACT Budget to hire more drivers and improve services.
The Public Transport Association of Canberra welcomed the changes, and Transport Canberra’s commitment to restoring minimum hourly service on weekends.
But chair Ryan Hemsley said further investigation into improving services was needed.
“The minister [Chris Steel] needs to start asking questions about whether Transport Canberra is running efficiently as it could be,” he said.
“These improvements cost the budget $17 million, and we’re still worse off than we were a year ago, particularly in terms of late-night services.”
Other government commitments outlined to PTCBR included restoring late-night services cut earlier this year and restoring some peak services cut on some local routes.
Mr Hemsley urged Transport Canberra to aim even higher.
“Our 5 point plan calls for rapid buses every 10 minutes, and local peak services every 15 minutes, along with better timed connections to make for easy transfers between the two,” he said.
“There’s still a lot more work to do to get the services our growing city needs.”
The changes to the weekday bus timetable include:
- Return to increased daytime frequency of 30 minutes or sooner (previously 60 minutes) for all bus routes, except route 47
- Increased daytime frequency to 15 minutes (previously 30 minutes during daytime off-peak) for route 59 (Woden-Barton-Russell-City)
- Increased morning peak frequency to 30 minutes (previously 30-60 minutes) for routes 18 and 24
- Minor adjustments to first and last services.
The changes to school services will be:
- Timetable changes to 14 school services to better align with updated school bell times
- Route change for school service 1015 to accommodate students along Anthony Rolfe Avenue, travelling to Mother Teresa Primary School and Harrison School.
All changes will come into effect on Monday, 9 October.
For more information on the new bus timetable, including school packs, head to Transport Canberra or call 13 17 10.