18 August 2009

Stuck in Traffic

| moneypenny2612
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The busy planners at Municipal Services are now conducting the ACT Travel Survey, until October.

The goal is to understand travel patterns and plan a transport (ie, bus) system that meets the public’s travel needs. Stop laughing.

The survey is intended to record info about trips on a point-to-point basis although the survey proper doesn’t really tell you that. The cover note does, however, and includes some simple examples here. This may be useful for those travellers who damn ACTION’s inability to properly timetable connecting services – or perhaps even reasonably frequent ones for when the connection is missed…

That said, the survey questions are rather curious and probably aren’t going to record the interminable waiting time trying to get from A to C via B. Make the survey do so if you can.

Also, there are no questions about whether the traveller considers the travel times to get from A to B as crucial or even adequate. The attitudinal questions re: your key considerations when choosing to travel by bus completely ignores the frequency, directness, or convenience of the service.

Maybe I’m naive. Perhaps such considerations are irrelevant to Canberra commuting and go without saying!

Most of the questions are about the proximity of the bus stop, and (my favourite) whether the absence of showers or change facilities makes me less likely to bike than bus.

My mind boggles at what TAMS might come up with to deal with that… Public showers adjacent to public toilets?

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I started the survey but gave up part way through when it started asking about the travel of people within my household, I’m not going to get those people to come to the computer and stick answers in and I’m too lazy to guess answers. I could have just wrote BS answers, too lazy for that too.

Gungahlin Al5:34 pm 19 Aug 09

Perhaps they could collect surveys from the drivers of the stationery cars on the GDE each morning from the Barton Hwy southwards?

screaming banshee4:15 pm 19 Aug 09

So can we assume that from this survey the gov will be able to determine how many more seats they need to allocate for 35-44 year old married women that are ‘full-time other employed’ with an income of $41,600 to $51,999???

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy4:07 pm 19 Aug 09

Did the survey, and made sure to leave a comment at the end that contained the phrase “smelly poo”.

Clown Killer2:40 pm 19 Aug 09

I gave up on the survey. It had no ability to deal with any kind of real-world situation. could deal with the number of people who live in our home and was basically a pain in the butt. Another example of the Stanhope government wasting scarce resources.

How exactly do I answer for my five year old what is important to him when making his travel decision. I can say carbon emissions are not high on his agenda! Getting to school in the morning and being picked up in the afternoon are the most important aspects of the trip for him. He wouldn’t have a clue about bus frequency – being too young to travel by himself on a bus was probably a valid reason for lots of parents but wasn’t an option on the list….

If they want useful data they really need to test the survey on some ‘average’ citizens before releasing to the rest of us.

If you say you travel by car it asks you why, and the options include both the speed and infrequency of buses.

There’s no free text field because they’d just have to have someone interpreting and categorising the answers anyway, otherwise it’d be impossible to produce any kind of summary (and yes, a summary is crucial to getting the data into a form where it can actually be read and digested). So you might as well do the categorising yourself, since you’re most likely to categorise it the way you mean.

The survey doesn’t cover the inadequacy of bus shelters, or the unreliability of the bus service itself. There’s no free text field to include what you’d really like to say. And it could have the decency to pre-populate the from field with your previous answer when you’re filling out your multi-trip day.

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