Too much empty track

WITH membership reading like a who’s who of Australia’s toll road financing and construction industry, the Transport and Tourism Forum’s focus on trying to build our way out of congestion is unsurprising (“Brumby hits the road on crisis”, August 17).

Vague references to “key infrastructure projects, such as the proposed east-west tunnel” is code for more toll roads creating more traffic and more pollution.

The conspicuous absence of rail extensions to Doncaster, Rowville and other areas lacking competitive alternatives to car travel is revealing.

Cities around the world are waking up to (a) the fact that roads create traffic, and (b) the need to use transport capacity wisely, not just keep adding to it blindly at great expense to taxpayers and motorists.

This is why we’re pleased that Premier Brumby has accepted our recommendation for a review of Melbourne’s train system.

With many sections of track under-used, it’s far from clear that we’re getting world’s best practice in the management of our rail network.

Daniel Bowen is president, Public Transport Users Association, Melbourne
Published in the Herald Sun, 21/8/2007, p17