The following letter was written and published in the Maroondah Leader on the 25th of April in response Bayswater State Candidate Gordon Ashley’s proposal to relocate Ringwood Station from the heart and Ringwood and into a poorly located position near the EastLink freeway:
While it is encouraging to see independent candidate for Bayswater, Gordon Ashley’s, continued focus on the Ringwood bus and train interchange it is unfortunate that Mr. Ashley appears intent to remove public transport from the heart of Ringwood.
As Mr. Ashley should be aware passengers utilise a service to travel in the most efficient manner to their destination. The extremely well patronised bus service along Wantirna/Stud Roads connects Ringwood with Knox and Dandenong in a more direct route that any future bus services along EastLink. This is why the Public Transport Users Association and a number of local councils successfully campaigned to secure a future SmartBus along Stud and Wantirna Roads.
Ringwood Station is a prominent and extremely well patronised transport hub and while integration and accessibility require urgent improvements the basic principles are solid.
The success of Ringwood will depend on strengthening the town centre as a prominent destination in eastern Melbourne. Since Ringwood Station is prominent transport hub any moves to diminish or remove public transport from the town centre will literally drive people and therefore business from the heart of Ringwood.
Cr. Alex Makin
Outer East Branch Convenver
Public Transport Users Association
It is unfortunate that Gordon Ashley seems intent to cause grave inconvenience to public transport users and pedestrians by removing public transport and a convenient walking environment from the heart of Ringwood.