A SEVEN-DAY bus timetable and increased frequency of bus services on both suburban and main transport corridors are the centrepiece of a new Transport for Canberra Strategy, launched yesterday by Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher and Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell.
"The Transport for Canberra Strategy demonstrates how the ACT Labor Government intends to meet the challenges of a growing city and deliver major improvements in the way Canberrans get around our city in a sustainable way," the Chief Minister said.
"The key aims of this document are to reduce congestion on our roads and increase patronage on public transport networks to reduce carbon emissions and become a more sustainable city into the future."
"A new seven-day timetable structure that moves away from the weekday/weekend timetable and has a consistent and reliable bus network that can be trusted every day of the week is crucial to building community confidence and therefore increasing patronage on public transport," Mr Corbell said.
"We also need to ensure that buses operating within this timetable structure will be frequent enough that people can get around the city in a timely and efficient way and also integrate quickly between regular suburban services to buses that transit between town and group centres."
According to the government, the key features of the Transport for Canberra Strategy include:
- 15 minute frequency public transport on the Frequent Network;
- 30 minute frequency public transport services within a 5-10 minute walk of everyone by 2021;
- Public transport infrastructure: transit ways, stations, park and ride and mass transit options like light rail or rapid bus transit;
- Cycling and walking supported by a more compact city through integration of transport and land use planning;
- Increasing public transport, walking and cycling to 23 per cent of work trips by 2016; and
- Ring roads for traffic that integrate with central road corridors for public transport.
The government has announced consultation on five new potential sites for bike and ride facilities across Canberra as well as six new potential sites for park and ride facilities.
Ms Gallagher said that the ACT Government had listened to the views of the community throughout the consultation period of the draft Transport for Canberra Strategy.
Mr Corbell said it was important to note that this was a long term strategy which would be rolled out progressively over the next 6 to 8 years, ensuring that all measures were implemented properly and holistically.
"Further future investments will also be required and the government will evaluate funding to roll out the features of this strategy in future budgets," he said.