New figures on the number of people taking public transport show that bus use is falling in Woden, Belconnen and Tuggeranong, despite an overall rise in patronage across Canberra, according to the ACT Greens.
ACT Greens Transport spokesperson Caroline Le Couteur says new Transport Canberra data obtained by the Greens from Questions on Notice confirms that while Network 19 has seen many commuters enjoy improved services, there are parts of Canberra that are worse off.
The data shows that overall public transport patronage is up by 6 per cent from the September quarter 2018 to the September quarter 2019.
While patronage from some parts of Canberra, including Weston Creek (+12%) and the light-rail serviced Gungahlin (+29%), is much higher, the number of people taking the bus from the Woden Valley (-5%), Belconnen (-2%) and Tuggeranong (-4%) has fallen.
The figures also show that most fare types are seeing more patronage, including full fare, school students and concessions, but fewer tertiary students are taking public transport.
Ms Le Couteur said that after six months of seeing how Network 19 worked for passengers, the Government needed to fix the identified problems while keeping the gains.
“Scrapping Network 19 is not the answer because areas like Weston Creek have really benefited. Instead, it is time to make changes that improve services for people in the Woden Valley, Belconnen and Tuggeranong,” she said.
During the recent sitting week, Ms Le Couteur successfully moved a Motion Amendment to force the Government to report more detailed data on patronage in Woden Valley, Belconnen and Tuggeranong, and improve patronage from these areas
“I believe that the Government needs to look more closely at why patronage from Woden Valley, Belconnen and Tuggeranong is lower and take steps to fix the problems,” Ms Le Couteur said.
Transport Minister Chris Steel said recently that the Government continued to monitor the new network and Transport Canberra had made 180 changes since its inception in April.
The Canberra Liberal have also been pushing for axed services, particularly in Tuggeranong, to be restored.