Before I moved to Melbourne, I was travelling at least four hours a day (round trip) to get from home to uni and back, from central north-west to north-east.
Where I live now in Melbourne, I have a lot of privilege in terms of easy access to PT. I also have privilege in that, even when I was commuting, I can walk a decent distance in a relatively short space of time because I’m not limited by physical health overmuch.
It makes one think, though: the people who are most severely affected are those who, like me, can’t drive for whatever reason. (My reason is that I’m still learning how to.) We can’t just jump in the car and go if the PT system isn’t present.
A group in the article suggest that the electrification of the rail line to Melton needs to happen at the same time as the current Metro Tunnel works, instead of after it, because of the current capacity problems. I’d like that to happen – but I thought one of the reasons for waiting was that the current bottleneck in the City Loop needs to be resolved by the tunnel or else it’ll still be more of the same?
What’s needed are more connecting services, like buses, to bridge the gap in the meantime. It’s a question I ask when I see a new estate going up: where’s the connecting PT services?
I expect we’ll be hearing a lot more about this issue and others like it in the coming months. It is, after all, a state election year.