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Geelong Branch Media Release


G21 and Sustainable Transport

One Step Forward, Two Back

Public transport users today welcomed the proposal from G21 (Geelong's Regional Development Strategy) to develop a plan for the region's public transport. However, they also warned that G21 lacks a true vision for environmentally friendly transport.

Spokesman for the Geelong branch of the Public Transport Users Association, Tim Petersen, said the Regional Integrated Transport Strategy could give Geelong the opportunity to have a "best practice" public transport system tailored to its needs.

A fully costed plan by internationally-recognised experts should focus on increasing public transport use and include a review of routes, service frequencies, connections, operational hours, facilities and information, Mr Petersen said.

"The City and the State Government need to pick up this proposal and run with it," Mr Petersen said.

However, Mr Petersen said the small step forward for public transport was overshadowed by G21's excessive emphasis on motorways.

"G21 was still recommending the encirclement of Geelong by freeways."

"We can't ever hope for improved public transport if we keep proposing billions of dollars of new roads. More freeways will not only make Geelong a polluted concrete jungle, they'll also suck funding and passengers away from public transport."

Mr Petersen said any future transport plans needed to involve a wider cross-section of the community than the G21 Transportation Pillar Committee, which largely prepared G21's transport policy.

"Decisions about transport affect everybody in the region, everyday. Yet the PTUA was the only non-government and non-business group on the Pillar. It is also extremely disappointing that the Pillar refused to involve any cycling groups."

"Both walking and cycling need more than token attention if they are to make a real difference to our transport patterns."

PTUA Office 9650 7898

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Last Modified: 14 November 2003