Knox Transit Link: 163 buses gone missing

A study completed by the The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has revealed gaping holes and long waits exist on the Knox Transit Link. Only 16 percent of tram services are met by a connecting bus service timed within two minutes, while 163 tram services per a week have no connecting bus at all.

“Outer east residents have been lied to and deceived over the Knox Transit Link,” said PTUA outer east convenor Jeremy Lunn, “We were promised that this bus service would be just as good as a tram all the way to Knox, but it’s far from it.

“There are long waits and gaping holes in this service. Some buses leave just before the next tram is due to arrive and vice-versa.

“While Knox O-Zone is bustling with life in evenings, every bus to Vermont South misses each tram. Passengers are generally left waiting 15 minutes for the next tram.”

Mr Lunn said that the last three tram services on Friday and Saturday nights also lack a connecting bus service, leaving passengers to wait over five hours for the next bus.

“It shows that the Department of Transport can’t be trusted to manage public transport services in Victoria. The Public Transport Development Authority must to be established without delay.

“The authority has to be headed by someone who isn’t part of the existing failed system. It would be unacceptable if the new public transport authority were lead by a current hack from the Victorian bureaucracy.

“We were promised a seamless connection between trams and buses. We were told that bus timetables would be synchronised with the tram timetables.” [1]

“Overcoming these problems would be a simple achievement for the Baillieu Government. If they can’t fix the bus, they’ll have to extend the tram.

“Patronage on this inadequate service definitely shouldn’t be used when assessing the need for extending the tram. Nobody should be expected to put up with this flawed arrangement.

“Ultimately the 75 tram has to be extended to Knox, but in the mean time the Knox Transit Link must be fixed without delay. With decent public transport management that shouldn’t be a problem.” Mr Lunn concluded.

APPENDIX

Summary of problems

  • Buses scheduled to leave in as little as one minute before a tram is scheduled to arrive.
  • Buses arrive just mere minutes after a tram has left, leaving passengers with a long wait until the next.
  • No connecting bus for late night trams on Friday and Saturday nights.
  • Poor co-ordination on the whole.
  • Not a seamless service as originally promised.

Facts and Figures

Longest wait: 5 hours and 23 minutes (returning to Knox on a Saturday night)

Tram services without connecting a bus: 163 serivces / week
Waiting time of ten minutes or more: 281 services / week
Waiting time of five minutes or more: 846 services / week
Waiting time of three minutes or more: 1116 services / week
Connections within two minutes: 16.36%
Total number of tram services: 1357 services / week

Evening service from Knox (example)

Dep. Knox (bus) Arr. Vermont South (bus) Dep. Vermont South (tram) Wait (mins)
8:39 8:46 9:02 16
8:57 9:04 9:22 18
9:20 9:27 9:42 15
9:40 9:47 10:02 15

Full timetable comparison available on request.

Footnotes

[1] April 26, 2004

“[Minister for Transport] Mr Batchelor said that another major component of the project was the introduction of more frequent bus services between Vermont South and Knox Shopping Centre.

‘Bus timetables will be synchronised with tram timetables to ensure a seamless journey for passengers,’ he said.”

June 8, 2004

“Peter Lockwood, Member for Bayswater, emphasised that the improvements to the bus services were a major component of the project.

‘Every tram will be met by a bus to Knox City, nearly doubling the current frequency of the Route 732 bus between Vermont South and Knox City,’ Mr Lockwood said.

‘This will ensure that the benefits of the extended tram line are passed on to those further to the east.'”

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