St George Public Transport Master Plan

The Greens of NSW have always supported a cohesive public transport system over our increasing reliance on roads and motorways. The NSW Greens Public transport policy can be found here.

The Greens are the only political party prepared to say “No” to the Baird Government’s $12 Billion “Westconnex” tollroad and the planned M6 tollroad. If the M6 goes ahead it may demolish vast chunks of Rockdale’s sports fields and green belt and irreparably damage our unique wetlands. We present an alternative, Public Transport plan to move Sydney’s residents throughout our city without a reliance on roads and cars.

Transport vision for NSW

Transport is about far more than getting from one place to another. It brings families together and links communities; it supports businesses and trade and allows access to education, employment and recreation.

NSW has suffered for too long from a lack of transport vision and planning.

  • Key major projects have been delayed time and again and cost blowouts are the norm;
  • Congestion seems at an all-time high
  • There is limited accessibility of train stations and buses for less mobile people.
  • “Bike as transport” initiatives are ad hoc and rarely planned across council borders

Transport is a climate solution

The transport sector is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollution such as dangerous fine particulate matter. In 2007 the transport sector contributed 13% of greenhouse emissions in NSW, which is equivalent to two large coal fired power stations. By getting transport planning back on track, we have an opportunity to reduce the climate change and pollution impacts from transport and to improve the efficiency of our transport network.


St George Area Short to Medium term improvements

1. Multilevel Park and ride facility at Kingsgrove, with ramps that connect to the M5 directly. This will allow commuters a last chance to get out of their cars before the tunnel to swap onto heavy rail services. The facility could also have solar panels on the roof to charge electric vehicles and ebikes at no cost to users, encouraging uptake of low carbon transport.

2. Heavy rail services must be revised/improved at key stops like Kingsgrove (to support the above Park and Ride proposal) in addition to those who lost services under the Liberal government train timetable; Kogarah, Rockdale, Mortdale and Beverly Hills. Kogarah in particular with a hospital and TAFE and increasing residential development needs more services, not less.

3. Removal of the Airport station access fee to encourage patronage, particularly for staff in that industrial area. The current Opal card discount was already on the table as a “weekly gate pass” before opal, patronage will not increase with this alone. Access fees need to be removed altogether and these stations bought back to become normal public train stations with commensurate fares. (For more detail see below)

4. Duplication of the 3km of heavy rail freight line to Port Botany to support migration of truck content to heavy rail – this could be in part paid for by proceeds of the 99 year lease of Port Botany signed by NSW govt in 2013

5. Increase frequency of the 400 bus service through the airport industrial area which is monstrously overcrowded.

6. A regular express bus service system with limited stops connecting from the Shire, through St George to the City via the airport, in addition to other routes throughout Sydney to facilitate better connection of employment hubs and residential sprawl.

7. Support of local councils in developing separated Cycleways to move bikes off road and off footpaths. Princess Highway Cooks river bridge is of immediate concern and blackspots in the Wolli Creek development amongst others.

8. Trial local council shuttle buses to move passengers to heavy rail from residential areas with little public transport currently, high frequency (no timetable) during peaks.

9. GPS tracking of local privately run bus services available through govt software that tracks and provides information on buses and their current ETAs.

10. Improved Accessibility: Wheelchair access/lifts added to Banksia, Turella, Bardwell Park and Bexley North railway stations.

Medium to Long Term goals

1. Bi-directional train signals on Sydney heavy rail lines – this would allow trains to travel either direction on all lines and would increase system flexibility, particularly when track work is undertaken or there is a problem such as a derailment or, worse case scenario, fatalities. This issue would be reliant on more signal engineers on staff at RailCorp, creating some jobs long term.

2. Traffic light prioritisation for late running bus services via their GPS positioning data – a system in use overseas and investigated here but never trialled.

3. “Bay Light Express” – a light rail service connecting Cronulla with the city through San Souci, along the M6 corridor, around Botany Bay and then past the airport, through St Peters and then on to Central where it would connect with the rest of the Sydney Light Rail network. Documents below give some idea of the history and support for this concept. ble_update_nov2001 ble_update_nov2000


Other Sydney Metropolitan Transport Priorities

Integrated transport planning

“A successful Public Transport Network Plan is not just a prioritised list of projects or lines on the map” [1]

Christie Report 2010

The Greens support the creation of a single authority, Transport Sydney, charged with establishing and implementing a long-term integrated public transport network plan for Sydney. The Greens are calling for this Authority to be given responsibilities for integrated transport planning across all transport modes and across the entire state.

A Government buy-back of the Airport Rail Link from private owners

The airport line has been underutilised simply due to the fact that it is expensive. A trip from Central to the airport costs $16.40. The two paragraphs below are from MP Mehreen Faruqi’s media release dated Feb 2014

“With only 11% of people going to the airport choosing to use the privately run line, it is time to call an end to this experiment, buyback the line before 2030 and abolish the station access fee. The station access fee is essentially a tax on workers, commuters and tourists. Around four million dollars a month will soon go straight back to the Government, out of the pockets of low income workers, such a retail workers, cleaners and hotel workers.
“This government is using the airport stations as a cash cow and is unwilling to give up the $600 million it expects to gain from this unjust tax on the people of NSW. In 2011, the Parliamentary Budget Office estimated it would cost around $400 million to completely buyback the airport line stations and bring them into public ownership. While the government is not willing to buyback the airport line stations, they are spending not much more than this on WestConnex enabling works in the area, to improve traffic flows. These works will not be required once fees are removed and patronage increases, similar to that at Mascot and Green Square stations after the removal of the access fees at those stations.

High Speed Rail for the Future

The Greens have reignited the push for High Speed Rail. The feasibility study currently being undertaken should focus on a route from Sydney to Melbourne via Canberra and from Sydney to Newcastle and to Brisbane. International examples of High Speed Rail in Spain show that its introduction will reduce airplane movements on busy routes. A HSR line between Sydney and Melbourne (Australia’s busiest air route) would cut plane noise. It would also provide residents with a modern and speedy mode of travel to Canberra and Melbourne (and eventually to Brisbane as well). The Greens see this as a major infrastructure project which is an investment in the future. Also, in helping people get to work quickly from outlying areas like Wollongong or Newcastle we can help alleviate traffic on arterial roads within Sydney and provide affordable housing options for jobs within Sydney.

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