Libs South Barwon loss highlights lack of transport vision

The Liberals’ failure to win South Barwon highlights the party’s lack of a broad vision for public transport throughout the electorate, the Public Transport Users Association said today.

Geelong branch convener Paul Westcott said transport was a key issue with the electorate, given high petrol prices and increasing concern over climate change.

He said the Liberal Party needed to make a clear case for change to wrest Geelong’s most marginal seat from Labor, but failed to present voters with a comprehensive alternative vision for public transport.

Mr Westcott said that despite the Liberals’ promise to build a new station at Grovedale, their policy was silent on developing an overall public transport network that would serve the majority of voters.

“The proposed Grovedale Station, although worthwhile, would not by itself provide a significant number of people with high quality public transport within walking distance of their homes.”

Mr Westcott congratulated the Labor Government on its return to office, although he said Labor’s election commitments would mean mixed results for public transport users across the Geelong region.

He said Labor’s promise of significantly cheaper fares for Bellarine Peninsula bus users and train travellers to Melbourne is very welcome.

“However, the clear challenge for the re-elected Bracks Government is to revamp the bus network, and upgrade the frequency of bus and train services.”

Mr Westcott also said the continued support for the Greens also reflected voters’ desire for more sustainable transport policies and widespread improvements to public transport.

Contact the PTUA