Media Releases | 7th Jun, 2006

Community vows to fight for Rowville rail

Wednesday, 7 June 2006

Almost 100 Rowville residents this month voted to continue calling on the State and Federal Governments to improve public transport in the region.

Locals crowded the Rowville Community House on June 4 for a public meeting on public transport and to watch the documentary ‘The End of Suburbia’ – which examines the likely impacts of a global peak in oil production which include rapidly rising petrol prices.

The event was organised by the Public Transport Users Association (PTUA), Environment Victoria and the Knox Environment Society to draw attention to the need for public transport improvements in the area, including a rail extension to Rowville.

After the screening, the audience voted in favour of a series of resolutions to strengthen public transport to the area.

They committed to lobbying both the State and Federal Government and the local council for improvements to public transport, including a rail extension to Rowville.

Environment Victoria sustainable transport campaigner Louise Sales said: “There were people in the audience who had been campaigning for a Rowville rail extension since 1969. It’s time the Government provided the Rowville community with the transport options they so badly need.”

PTUA spokesperson Alex Makin said the Government’s proposed ‘Smart Bus’ won’t compete with car travel: “A rail line would get people from Rowville to the CBD in 30 minutes, compared to 55 minutes by ‘Smart Bus’ and 50 minutes driving. Only rail offers the time savings necessary to tempt people out of their cars and on to public transport.’’

Rowville residents will lobby State, Federal and local governments for:
1. A rail extension from Huntingdale to Rowville.
2. Increased service frequency and operating hours on public transport – including late at night and on weekends.
3. Increased access to public transport for young people so that they can take up educational and employment opportunities.
4. The revision of public transport fares to make them competitive with driving.
5. The removal of perverse incentives that encourage driving e.g. low taxes on petrol and the Fringe Benefits Tax statutory formula.
6. A complete redesign of bus services to provide a functioning, integrated network.
7. Improvements to the safety of public transport.