A ROADMAP for the future of Brisbane's public transport is set out in a new State Government-Brisbane City Council strategy, Connecting Brisbane, which was released last week and aims to deliver a modern, high-frequency mass transit system for the city.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure and Planning Jackie Trad, who joined Lord Mayor Graham Quirk to launch the strategy, said that it centres on the vital and complementary Cross River Rail and Brisbane Metro projects.
"We are bringing together the vision of the Palaszczuk Government and Brisbane City Council in a strategy that will lay the foundation for us to transform transport and tackle congestion in Brisbane and the wider region, as well as drive economic growth," Ms Trad said.
"It is a blueprint that will free up the bottlenecks and increase mobility around the region through two cornerstone public transport projects – Cross River Rail and Brisbane Metro.
"This will create a system of high-quality, affordable and connected public transport that will also deliver jobs and grow our economy as our region grows.
"Together these projects will redesign the public transport system to allow faster, more frequent transit through better integration of rail, metro and the busway network.
"It will transform Brisbane from having a radial network, with buses and trains making journeys into the city centre, to an integrated 'turn up and go' high-frequency with improved connections and reduced duplication.
"This strategy also shows how Cross River Rail and Metro will provide the long term backbone for the next wave of medium and long term infrastructure projects to improve transport for the whole of South East Queensland.
"But to realise this opportunity, first we need to ensure both Cross River Rail and Metro are delivered – we simply must solve the choke points at Merivale Bridge and Victoria Bridge that are strangling our network."
Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said the recently-released business case for Brisbane Metro confirms the project is a cost-effective solution that unlocks the potential of the existing busway infrastructure and lays the foundation for future growth.
"Right now, buses carry two of every three public transport patrons in Brisbane. Our existing bus infrastructure is already at capacity in a number of areas and cannot cope with the continued forecast growth of our city," he said.
"Brisbane Metro will provide significant benefits for both the city and the region, complementing the Cross River Rail project and existing heavy rail services.
"Connecting Brisbane shows how Brisbane Metro will be part of a long term plan for a broader metro network as extensions are made to the busway network and will be integrated with Cross River Rail and other existing rail.
"The proposed modern, high-frequency mass transit system will connect people to where they want to go and at the times they want to travel."
The reforms will pave the way for future extension and improvement of the network, particularly in linking the identified growth corridors and areas.
More information is available from the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning website at <http://dilgp.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/connecting-brisbane.html>.