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Media Release

02/05/2005

Access For All on Melbourne's Tram Network

A coalition of public transport and disability advocates / groups (PTUA, DRC, VCOSS, Paraquad) call on the government and Yarra Trams to make all platform stops one-for-one replacements for existing tram stops. The introduction of platform stops making boarding possible for everyone, should not, in itself, involve any loss of the existing number of tram stop locations.

If existing stops on the network are judged superfluous because they are very close to other stops, the alliance believes any reduction in number of stops should be reviewed publicly and independently of plans to introduce platform stops accessible by all.

The coalition would particularly deplore any duplicitous efforts to reduce the overall number of stops to artificially inflate the percentage of accessible-for-all stops simply to meet Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) requirements. The DDA requires a level of 25% accessibility across the tram network by 2007 for everyone (including people with disabilities).

The level of 25% accessibility across the tram network by 2007 is achievable through the construction of a mixed number of Premium and Standard platform stops. Scaled down Standard platform stops, as opposed to the Premium platform stops, could potentially be installed at a greatly reduced cost and with significantly less disruption to the street environment in these areas. The coalition estimates that around ten Standard platform stops could be installed for the cost of one Premium platform stop.

Given the lower cost and impact of the Standard platform stops, the coalition believes there would be no reason why the implementation of DDA compliance across the tram network should involve any change to the number or location of tram stops in Melbourne.

Nor does the coalition support the claims that topography and cost are valid reasons not to build platform stops at existing stop locations.

The coalition supports Yarra Trams in moving towards its goal of Access for All and in beginning to address the needs of improved accessibility throughout the entire Melbourne tram network for the future benefit of all tram users.

Contacts:
PTUA Office 9650 7898


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Last Modified: 28 April 2005