GCC Community Meeting

11 July 2018

Gungahlin Library

6:30 – 8:30 pm

Chair: Peter Elford (President).

Attendees: see attendance log

An Integrated Transport Network for Canberra

A network of light rail and buses designed to offer greater service coverage and frequency, seven days a week at peak and off-peak times across Canberra.

Presentation by:

Kristin Blume from Transport Canberra

Megan Oldfield from Light Rail

Duncan Edgehill from DD Transport Canberra

Ian ? from Bus Networks

The Presenters were here to consult on new network design, planned to make a better public transport system which will attract more people onto public transport. Currently only 8% of the public use it.

Gungahlin is unique in having a light rail with new journey planners and a new ticketing system.  People will not necessarily need to use their My Way card but the question remains about  how trip information will be tracked.

The aim is to make the bus network more efficient and the planners are interested in any infrastructure ideas people may have.   We know rapid routes are popular. Half of all Canberrans will eventually live within walking distance of a rapid route in the new network.  Previously the northern part of Gungahlin was not well served by public transport.   This has been addressed and it is now  planned to have bi-directional loops.

Schools network.   The majority of students are using the ordinary bus network. In the new network 30% more trips will be going past schools.. More services will provide more flexibility for students. Investments are also planned for more customer service officers at interchanges.

Rapid service will be provided by frequent buses on trunk routes.

Questions from the floor:

  • An important feature of the rapid routes is that they do have some stops on the way.   It is  not just a point-to-point service.  What is the walking distance?    As a yard-stick it is 800m to a rapid route and 500m to a local route.
  • What is the difference in walking distance for a young person and a pensioner?    We have other services that can also be utilized.  For example demand services for pensioners.
  • In using different technologies for paying fares have you thought of interstate solutions?   The ACT government is the first to move to an account based system
  • The percentage of  Gungahlin within walking distance of public transport is 20%.    80% of people do not live within walking distance and travel time is too much.    With more frequent services there will be less waiting time.
  • Is there any mechanism to ensure buses interconnect with each other? If people are  interchanging between Rapids the intent is to make transport so frequent that there will be no need to timetable it. Where we need to focus on  timetables, it is make sure they are sensible so that connections do occur.
  • I think bidirectional is superb.
  • People use Google Maps – have you set that up for new network?    It does not yet exist on Google Maps but work is being done in the background.
  • The airport has no bus routes but a lot of people work there.   Why are you not proposing direct rapid there?   We have in new rapid network from Belconnen, through Civic to the airport
  • Concerns about a student who has to take three buses in each direction to go to school.    If that person would like to provide specific details that will be welcomed.
  • In planning for a new journey planner, will there be real time feedback? That already exists.
  • With account based ticketing, is there no reason to include other account based service e.g. ride sharing?   Yes, priority will be given to bedding down transport.
  • What will be done to improve on the chaos in interchanges – what does it mean from a passenger perspective?   We need to ensure signage and ‘way finding’ is right.  And also how different routes will align and how busy the queues are.
  • Is the new network integrated or comparable with Light Rail?    Forefront of our thinking as that each time new suburb is built, is to look at when new bus services need to be installed.

Looking at implementing bus services:

  • Gungahlin to Tuggeranong service – has not been planned but if feedback indicates a demand is in place then we will explore it.  There was an election commitment. We will take that back if there is a need for a community service.
  • Crace bus services need to loop back to the marketplace.
  • Gundaroo Drive stops needed also.
  • We will be getting rid of some bus stops, including all ‘school only’ bus stops.
  • When will the Nextbus signage occur?   They will be in within four weeks.
  • When will light rail construction finish in the town centre?    The landscaping is complete, the stop is under construction. In August Capital metro is having a career expo for drivers, controllers and customer service officers.   August 16 is national rail safety week and we will have an event in Gungahlin.
  • It would it be great to have light rail over both bridges to service all parts of network.   Time will tell.
  • Bicycles – can we put bikes on Light Rail?   Four bikes per vehicle. There will be a specific area for them.
  • LR vehicles in Sydney will be mostly standing.   Will that be the case here?  There will be about 60 seats per vehicle but will expect people to stand also. Stops are future-proofed to allow for expansion. Canberra’s model is closer to that of the Gold Coast
  • Where will the Light Rail stop in Civic?   Alinga street.   The bus interchange will also be changed to better align to Light Rail and the new network.
  • What are the facilities for park and ride and kiss and ride?    There are bus ‘pull outs’ for kiss and ride.   Nothing has been developed for park and ride specifically for this project.  We will think a lot about it and whether we will pursue it. It needs integration with ticketing.  Epic park and ride will come back on line once construction is complete.
  • Frequency is every six minutes in peak time – what about other times? We will be increasing frequency for inter-peak to 15 minutes.
  • What will be done to stop ‘platooning’?    Canberra is different from Melbourne given that it is not in congestion. Light rail will have signal priority.
  • If light rail has priority does that mean buses don’t?   Buses wont run down Northbourne Ave. Where it does cross we have given consideration to the road surface.    The intersection of Flemington and Wells Station can become airborne.  There are multiple times that the contractor will touch an intersection.   We are  going through the process of finalising the work.
  • In the town centre,  are you getting a sense about what LightRail will look like?     There will be a noticeable difference to when the bus station started up. Aesthetically it looks very nice, particularly when the awnings come down.
  • Between Coles and Aldi we have a pedestrian  desire line.   Plants will grow to form a barrier.
  • What are the Light Rail operations times?   Generally 0600-2400.
  • Canberra Times said that testing started late.   Are we still on schedule?    The program is for  late 2018.  Mitchell will have a stop in stage 2.    Even if everything agreed processes, it means it would be able to commence in time for Light Rail stage 1.    The operating contract is complicated so other things need to be renegotiated.
  • Will the bus network support the Light Rail till midnight?   We are trying to get to a point where the bus network matches the Light Rail operating hours.
  • What do you have in mind to publicise how well the system works? We need to let people know it is working well and promote it.  Before it begins there will be a number of campaigns to promote the Light Rail. Once it is up and running there will be the numbers of people using it.
  • When are the Orange buses going? We are getting rid of them as quickly as we can.  There are forty buses on order and another 80 coming. By 2022 we hope to have them totally phased out.
  • Will there be a Park and Pedal site between Gungahlin and the city? I’ll take that on notice.
  • What times are the carriages doing their testing?   At the moment between Nullarbor and Gungahlin we are testing different stages and different functionalities. The next section will be Downer to Mitchell, then to Dickson.
  • What of active travel into Gungahlin terminus – paths into terminus and end of trip facilities? Will need to be examined.
  • Park and ride is not very equitable.   It does not suit part time workers.. I have sympathy for that observation. Installing boom gates would require registering car registration with My Way card
  • Closing slip lanes on Flemington Road at Mapleton Avenue would help improve traffic.  I’ll take that on notice.
  • When will night works will finish?   As soon as we can. We are transitioning more from construction to testing, which will move towards the daytime activities.

Minutes taken by Andrew Braddock

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