The Maroondah Leader has reported on the extended services provided for route 737 (Croydon to Monash University, via Boronia, Knox City and Glen Waverley) and route 664 (Chirnside to Knox City via Croydon and Bayswater).
As part of the minimum services standards introduced over the next four years services will operate to an hourly frequency to at least 9 pm seven days a week.
Eastern Transport Coalition spokesman and Maroondah councillor, Alex Makin, said the council had been advocating for improved public transport services in the region and was pleased to see “some action through increased hours of operation”.
While bus improvements are greatly needed within Maroondah and the outer east the current minimum standards are sorely inadequate:
But Cr Makin said further improvements were needed and running buses at hourly intervals would do little to encourage people to dump cars in favour of public transport.
Ultimately an hourly bus service does little to encourage people to use public transport. Research has indicated that a service frequency of at least 15 minutes are required to ensure a modal shift from cars to public transport and hence encourage public transport patronage.
“Our bus network needs to offer a level of service comparable to the tram network to ensure that public transport is a frequent, readily available and effective choice.”
With the recent increases in petrol prices, latest data from VicRoads has indicated that traffic volumes decreased greater in the inner suburbs, where public transport provides a real transport choice, compared to the outer suburbs, where the choice of frequent and readily available public transport does not readily exist. It is clear that the current improvements, while better than nothing, are doing little to actually encourage transport choice.