KEY TAKEAWAYS FROM UITP TECHNICAL STUDY TOUR 2018 - BUS SYSTEM IN AUSTRALIA

UITP India Office, in collaboration with Association of State Road Transport Undertakings (ASRTU), organised the technical study tour to visit the Transport for NSW (TfNSW) in Sydney and Brisbane City Council (BCC) in Brisbane from 14-19 January 2018. The programme was supported by the UITP Australia-New Zealand Division.

Mr. Yudhvir Singh Malik, IAS, Secretary (RT&H), Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, headed the delegation of 26 members consisting of Transport Secretaries, Chief Executives and senior officials of State Road Transport Undertakings (SRTUs). The inspiring sessions and technical visits during the study tour created the perfect atmosphere for thoughtful debates and discussions and had the opportunity to raise important questions and comments on controversial issues affecting their strategic and operational tasks.

Australian Government is giving prime importance to the Public Transport which is customer focused in terms of Safety, Punctuality and Reliability thereby attracting more of its citizen to Public Transport and to minimize the private mode of Transport. Some of key takeaways of the visit are as follows:

Sydney

1.    The NSW Government has allocated AUD 41.5 Billion for the public transport infrastructure projects for the year 2016-2020.

2.    Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW) is responsible for the management of transport network in the city. The TfNSW provides public bus transport for the Sydney population of 5.25 million in the Metropolitan area with 14 Bus contracts.

3.    4000 buses with 900 Bus routes are being operated in the above contracts. The bus transport in Sydney operates 9,493,016 services with 256 million journeys at an annual cost of 1.5 billion AUD.

4.    The authority has revamped bus transport system in 2012 by introducing Bus Contracting System with following features:

a.   Tendered Contracts (private operators)

b.   Introduction of Key Performance Standards

c.    Reduction in cost to Government

d.   Improvement in all areas of service delivery

e.    Annual increases in patronage

f.     Clear focus from operator and TfNSW on performance and customer outcomes

g.   Increase in Bus fleet having Right to access and increase in fleet accessibility standard

5.    The authority incorporated well-defined KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) in the contract like:

a.   Customer Complaints per boarding

b.   Punctuality Rate – Published Time Table Trips

c.    Customer satisfaction

d.   Accessible Bus Services

6.    Road Safety Initiatives highlighting the decade of action to reduce accidents by 50%. Some key measures like bus fire mitigation program and mandating the provision of Seat Belts in buses, are the model programs adopted by Australia in curbing the accident rates.

7.    Road Occupancy License requirement is mandatory for any activity likely to impact on traffic flow, even if that activity takes place off-road.

8.    On-demand Transport program was launched in November 2016 to come up with creative new ways for people to reach their destinations quickly, safely, easily, efficiently, at a time that suits them.

Brisbane

9.    Translink is a division of the Department of Transport and Main Roads, Queensland Government with statewide responsibility for buses, trains, ferries and trams.

10.  Brisbane City Council operates one of the largest bus fleets in Australia, as well as CityCats and the CityFerry network. The council is committed to reducing congestion and improving safety and access across the city through a network-wide focus on traffic improvements to meet current and future traffic volumes along Brisbane’s road network corridors.

11.  Brisbane Busway System is good example of shifting resources from “Highway to Busway”. Total length of the busway system is 27 kms connecting suburbs, university, hospital and shopping mall with city centre. The Brisbane busway network carried over 70 million passengers annually.

12.  Translink introduced integrated ticketing in 2004 and shifted towards smart card and mobile app. Over 86% of all trips are now taken using GoCard in SEQ. The authority is procuring a new ticketing system to replace go card. The new ticketing system will be account based, which removes the fare calculation from the transit card and reader to a back-end account.

13.  The data collected from customer who travel using their go cards, which includes where and when people travel, is used by network planners to design bus routes and timetables.