PT Problem of the Day: Tram priority at traffic lights

No priority at intersections for trams (or buses)

This is an all-too familiar sight across Melbourne: trams wasting up to a third of their time waiting at red lights. This has resulted in Melbourne having one of the slowest tram systems in the world.

Trams (and buses) that may be carrying 20, 50, or even 200 people should have priority over other vehicles, such as cars carrying an average 1.2 people each.

Fortunately there may be progress on the horizon. Last week and this week, Yarra Trams and VicRoads are trialling tram intersection priority along parts of route 96.

We expect it will show that with the right priority measures, tram travel can be significantly sped up, resulting in faster journeys and better fleet utilisation — meaning it’s possible to run more services, and relieve crowding. We encourage tram passengers to speak up in support.

Show your support for effective tram priority. Write to your local or daily newspaper, and contact your MP to support priority for trams.

More about PT Problem Of The Day, including how you can contribute your photos.