COMING SHORTLY - CAST Statement on the 3 Billion Tunnel

We have opposed the concept and construction of the 3B
Tunnel from the time it was first proposed by Jim Soorley.

We're preparing a detailed statement to explain why we
continue to vigorously oppose the Tunnel, and why we urge
all motorists to boycott the Tunnel.

Keep checking this site for our full statement.

INFORMATION ALERT CIty Bus Stops relocated from Monday 8 March

Bus stops 56 and 57 on Queen Street near Post Office
Square will be temporarily closed from Monday 8
March to Wednesday 30 June due to streetscape
construction works.
Stop 58 will be moved by up to 20m in the direction
of travel and services from this stop will also be affected.

For full details of bus services affected and a map of
the location of the new stops, go to


We are continuing to make submissions on behalf of public transport users, cyclists and pedestrians to Translink, service providers and Government.

These are shown on the page below described as 'Submissions to Translink' together with current status and replies if any.

If you are aware of a transport service or systemic fault that needs to be rectified or improved, contact us and we'll follow up the issue with the relevant authority on your behalf.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Federal investment in sustainable transport

The Federal Government are calling for public submissions on the 2009-2010 budget. What transport initiatives would you like to see the federal government invest in during the next financial year?

Please leave a comment below which will be considered in our submission.

You can also make your own submission to:

Budget Policy Division
Department of the Treasury
Langton Crescent

Or email

You have until Friday 16 January

Sunday, November 23, 2008

CAST newsletter November

You can download our latest newsletter here

Two-wheeled motorvehicle policy

Community Action for Sustainable Transport - Draft 18.11.2008

This policy uses some strategies first developed by Motorcycling Australia.


For trips where public transport, walking and cycling are not good options people should consider using a two-wheeled motor vehicle (TWMV) rather than a car.

Switching from a car to a motorcycle, scooter or electric bike is an easy way for people to reduce congestion, greenhouse emissions and save money on fuel.

TWMVs make more efficient use of fuel, road space and parking space than a single occupant car and can play a part in the campaign to reduce congestion and climate change.

Statistics on fuel efficiency are available here

When driven below the speed limit TWMVs also pose less of a safety risk to other road users than cars, trucks and buses due to their weight.

TWMVs are a more affordable transport option than driving a single occupant car, and will also help preserve oil reserves for essential agricultural, medical and transport uses.

All levels of Government should be doing more to encourage people to switch from their car to TWMVs.

Proposed strategies

More free parking spaces for TWMVs at activity centres and public transport nodes. Parking must be safe, conveniently located and ensure pedestrian, wheelchair and cyclist access is not obstructed. Car parks should be reclaimed for TWMV parking where possible.

Inclusion of two-wheeled motor vehicles in National Road Transport policies

Reduction in registration fees for TWMVs

Provision of TWMV-only lanes on key arterial roads

Exemption from tolls on tolled roads and infrastructure for TWMVs

Mandatory TWMV parking to be included in the construction plans for new buildings

Integration of TWMVs into the planning for Public Transport projects, such as park and ride for bikes.

A national standard that restricts the speed of new TWMVs available for the general public to 120km/hr

Advertising campaigns to encourage people to switch from a car to a two-wheeled motor vehicle

Government purchase of electric bicycles for use by employees and citizens

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Reduce speeds in Brisbane CBD

Reducing speed limits on our roads is a cost effective way to save lives, improve business and encourage more people to walk and cycle.

Brisbane City Council’s proposal to reduce speeds in Brisbane’s CBD to 40km/hr should be implemented immediately, be extended to Ann and Turbot Streets, and be strongly enforced by the Queensland Police.

This policy was first proposed by the Greens in the lead up to the March Council elections and it now has the support of Liberal, Labor and the RACQ. (1)

It will literally make Brisbane more liveable. Lower speeds give road users more time to react, reduce stopping distances and reduce the severity of impact. The risk of death for pedestrians struck by a vehicle rises rapidly as vehicle speed rises above 40km/hr. (2) Road accidents cause huge amounts of physical and emotional pain and it is estimated that they cost Australia nearly $15 billion per year. (3)

Calm streets are also great for business. Slower streets give people better access to shops on both sides of the road and the relaxed atmosphere of a calm street allows cafes and other outdoor uses to flourish.

Another benefit of calm CBD streets is that they are safer and easier for people to cycle on. Encouraging cycling is an effective congestion reduction measure and has great economic benefits in terms of public health savings. While road accidents cost Australians billions each year it has been estimated that the economic benefits of cycling were $227 million in 2006. (4)

Council’s current proposal should be extended to include reduced speeds on Ann and Turbot Streets. Ann Street has heavy pedestrian traffic coming out of Central Railway Station and Turbot Street is currently an uninviting traffic sewer that cuts off the CBD from Spring Hill and the Roma Street precinct. Both streets offer cyclists direct connections between the CBD and the Valley, and Turbot Street is an access point to the popular Bicentennial Bikeway.

An important factor that also needs to be addressed is that the majority of pedestrian accidents in the CBD involved pedestrians crossing against the red signal. (5) This is due to traffic light patterns that provide long green signals for cars and short green signals for pedestrians travelling in the same direction. Crossing Elizabeth Street while walking along the northern side of George Street is a great example of this.

Intersections have also been designed so that pedestrians often need to use two or three different crossings just to get across one road, while vehicles only need one. Try crossing Wharf and Creek Streets when you’re walking along the Western side of Turbot Street and you’ll see what I mean. Council traffic engineers need to reprogram traffic lights to give pedestrians a fair go.

So will these simple and cost-effective changes have negative impacts on people driving in the CBD? The impact of reduced speed limits on overall trip times will be negligible. The main cause of delays for drivers on Ann, Turbot and other inner-city streets will continue to be the fact that there are too many cars on our roads. Governments can address this by shifting their overall transport priority from roads to public transport, walking and cycling.

What can you do?

To support these proposals send a letter to Council's Active Transport Chairperson Jane Prentice and CC it to your local Councillor (find their contact details here).

If you have a suggestion for improving conditions for cyclists or pedestrians you can lodge it via the Brisbane Public Transport Users Group here.

Tristan Peach is spokesperson for Community Action for Sustainable Transport

End Notes
(1) Walking Policy (March 2008), Green City Links inner-city transport plan (July 2007)
(2) Fildes, B., Oxley, J. 1998, `Long Term Consequences of Road Crashes', Measuring the Burden of Injury, Proceedings of a Conference held at Fremantle, WA 15-16 February 1996, Road Accident Prevention Research Unit, The University of Western Australia, Nedlands WA.
(3) Risbey, T., De Silva, H., Tong, A. 2007. ‘Road crash cost estimation: a proposal incorporating a decade of conceptual and empirical developments’, Staff paper, Bureau of Transport and Regional Economics, Australia.
(4) Bauman, A., Rissel, C., Garrard, J., Ker, I., Speidel, R., Fishman, E. 2008 ‘Cycling: Getting Australia Moving: barriers, facilitators and interventions to get more Australians physically active through cycling’ Cycling Promotion Fund, Melbourne.
(5) Sandy, A. 2008. ‘40km/h speed limit plan for Brisbane CBD’, Courier Mail 11/09/2008.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Alternative to Western Road Building Agenda

Video of presentation to community meeting

See the CAST alternative plan for west Brisbane and Ipswich here

Check out the Communities Against the Tunnels Website here

Government Ignoring Alternatives to the Kenmore Bypass

Main Roads have refused to consider a public transport option to address traffic congestion on Moggill Road and are proceeding with further studies for the Kenmore Bypass Road.

Their community information brochure (November 2008) states that there was considerable community opposition to the bypass, with people calling for increased public transport to be considered as an alternative option.

However Main Roads could not take this into account because they were “outside the scope of the Kenmore Bypass Planning Study”.

Thus their latest “Planning Options” study is dedicated to road solutions and will not consider whether a solution combining public transport, walking and cycling will better address the problem.

The same approach has been taken with the Hale Street Bridge, North South Bypass Tunnel and Airport Link studies.

The terms of reference for all these projects are designed so that the pre-determined solution will always be chosen, while the community are offered the illusion of choice such as the route of the road or where traffic lights will be located.

Main Roads are not interested in taking a rational planning approach and are simply doing what they know – building roads.

The State Government Transport Departments need to be combined so that solutions for transport solutions are considered across all modes of transport.

The State Government needs to realise that continuing to prioritise road building, while slowly improving public transport is not a “balanced approach”.

They are continuing the decades of funding and policy inequity that has favoured cars and road transport.

If the State Government got serious about public transport then all these new roads and road expansions in western Brisbane would not be necessary because there would be a significant shift from car to public transport, walking and cycling.

Building more roads leads to more traffic congestion and the Kenmore Bypass is a great example of this.

The bypass will pour more traffic onto the Centenary Highway, triggering the need for it to be upgraded, and more traffic on the Centenary Highway means more traffic heading into Toowong, meaning the government then has the justification for building the Northern Link tunnel.

The alternative is simple – spend the money from all these projects on upgrading cycling facilities, bus services and train services. This means more people leave their cars at home and there is no need to build destructive road upgrades.

Contact Warren Pitt, Minister for Main Roads to let him know what you think about the Kenmore Bypass

CAST contact for this article Tristan Peach 0416-478-615

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Bridge to Brisbane Fun Run

Media release 5 September 2008

For many of the participants in this Sunday's Bridge to Brisbane fun run, it will be a case of driving their cars to the start of the race at Murarrie, or not running at all.

Translink has provided a shuttle bus leaving from Fortitude Valley at 5.00 am, and an extra train service leaving Central at 4.46 am for Murarrie station. These are the only special services that will cater for fun run participants.

However, public transport customers who live in the suburbs will have no way of joining these services, as there are just no connecting services to Central or the Valley at that time on Sunday mornings.

All other normal Sunday services operate at times which would not permit race participants to reach the start of the race in sufficient time to register and prepare for the run. [6.00am]

Isn't it about time that Translink implemented a policy of providing adequate sustainable transport services for the people of Brisbane, especially at times of special events involving many thousands of participants, who are then forced to drive their vehicles to join the events?

Contact David White 0403-871-082

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Solutions for West Brisbane

What is the road building agenda for west Brisbane, and what are the alternatives to it. This video summarises a presentation by CAST spokesperson, Tristan Peach, outlining the flaws of the current transport planning approach in West Brisbane and an alternative plan to serve the needs of the region for decades to come. Watch it here

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Petition for light rail in Brisbane

Sign a petition for light rail in Brisbane here. Be sure to spread the word to your friends, family and networks too.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Demand Go Card price cap

TransLink must make Go Card the best option

Demand a Go Card price cap! Make a submission to TransLink through the Brisbane Public Tranpsort Users Group website here or visit and follow the link from latest Go Card story.

TransLink’s current advertising slogan “Go Card at least 20% cheaper” is a false guarantee. For some people, making the switch to Go Card will be more expensive.

Compared with a daily ticket, Go Card is more expensive when making more than 2 public transport trips in one day.

Weekly paper ticket holders also get unlimited weekly travel and get far better value for money than if they were to switch to Go Card.

Go Card SHOULD NOT have financial penalties for regular public transport use!

Go Card should always be the best option for regular public transport users, otherwise people won’t use it and we won’t see the benefits of high Go Card usage, such as reduced boarding times on buses.

We demand that the Go Card fare structure be updated to include daily, weekly and monthly price capping to make it better than paper tickets. It should also provide incentive options such as off peak, and early and late peak travel.

All of this is possible with the existing technology.

The Oyster card in London, a similar product to Go Card, has long had a price guarantee that ‘Our aim is to ensure that Oyster always charges the lowest fare. Where it doesn't, we will refund the difference.’

The Go Card should provide a similar guarantee.

The Brisbane Public Transport Users Group is an independent, not-for-profit community initiative lobbying for improved public transport. It is run through Community Action for Sustainable Transport Inc.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Ipswich PTUG August newsletter

Please make your own submissions to government about the following public transport issues.

Improved frequencies on Ipswich Train Line

In June the Transport Minister said that timetable changes to be introduced in September would “focus on the heavily patronised Ipswich line” (Quest Ipswich News 5 June, page 11). However TransLink have now said that minor timetable changes made on the 28th of July would be the last for the year. Write to the Minister and TransLink demanding higher frequency peak and off-peak services on the Ipswich line.

Make submissions to:
Minister for Transport John Mickel
3806 8513 or GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001
TransLink online or GPO Box 50 BRISBANE 4001 or 131230

More information:
Rail Back on Track page on the issue
28 July timetable

Bus connections with Riverlink shopping centre
Bus routes “504 Ipswich – Brassall” and “505 Ipswich – Tivoli” still have not been routed through Riverlink despite the close proximity of these two routes and the distance from the nearest stops being some 300 and 500 metres respectively. TransLink must make minor alterations to these routes to ensure commuters have convenient access to these new facilities.

Make submissions to:
TransLink online GPO Box 50 BRISBANE 4001 or ph. 131230
Minister for Transport John Mickel
3806 8513 or GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001
Write your local Member of Parliament - contact list

More information:
Ipswich PTUG member Alan Ward via

A better plan for West Brisbane / Ipswich
Community Action for Sustainable Transport have developed an alternative transport plan for the Ipswich/West Brisbane region, with a focus on public transport, walking, cycling and better land use planning. The plan provides a background to transport issues for the area and detailed maps of the improvements needed. Download it here

Email your feedback about the plan to:

Show your support for this plan by contacting:
Minister for Transport John Mickel
3806 8513 or GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001
Write your local Member of Parliament - contact list

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Far North Queensland Strategic Plan

Cairns Action for Sustainable Transport have made a substantial public submission on the draft Far North Queensland Strategic Plan and it is available for download here. The submission identifies the disconnection between the State Government's stated aims of achieving "sustainable transport" and their actual policies. It makes recommendations on adopting greenhouse reduction and mode share targets and also discusses the public transport needs of Far North Queensland.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Car Sharing in Paris

In Paris a massive public car sharing scheme has been proposed by the City's Mayor. 2000 cars in the central city and 2000 cars in the suburbs will be available for pick up and drop off at 700 different spots. The scheme is being targeted at young people who do not own a car to reduce their need to purchase their own.

Read the article
Clike here

CAST's current Car Share policy is:
Encourage car sharing cooperatives and companies
• Government officers to develop guidelines for setting up a car-sharing cooperatives in Brisbane
• Advertise the concept and its benefits through billboards, public seminars and radio/TV advertisements
• Subsidise the purchase of “green” vehicles for co-ops and companies
• Provide car parking spaces for registered car share vehicles at various destinations

What do you think about the Paris scheme and what do you think about our policy? Comment below

Help stop the Hale Street Bridge

The Stop the Hale Street Bridge alliance are calling on people to
write to Anna Bligh regarding the Hale Street Bridge. They believe
public opinion, and even the opinion of the Courier Mail, is turning
on this project.

The No Tunnels / Community Action for Sustainable Transport letter has
been submitted today and you can read it here

Write your own quick letter to the Premier

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Regional Development Funding Program

Federal parliament is running an 'Inquiry into a New Regional Development Funding Program'.

There are a number of public forums taking place around the country which you might be interested in:

* Cairns: Friday 25 July 2008
* Darwin: Monday 28 July 2008
* Perth: Wednesday 30 July 2008
* Launceston: Monday 4 August 2008
* Ballarat: Wednesday 6 August 2008
* Shepparton: Friday 8 August 2008
* Dubbo: Tuesday 12 August 2008
* Nowra: Thursday 14 August 2008

Please get along and show your support for major Federal public transport initiatives.

More info at:
<http://www.aph. committee/ itrdlg/regionald evelopment/>

Don’t miss the bus, Mr Rudd - CAST Media Release 16.07.08

Reducing the fuel excise and Federal investment in roads will not make travel affordable.

This is the message coming from a coalition of more than 20 transport and environmental groups who have signed off on an open letter to PM Kevin Rudd (Click here), urging the Federal government to invest heavily in public transport to reduce the impacts of rising petrol prices.

“The Federal government’s urban transport priority must be to create a public transport system that takes people where they need to go, when they need to be there. More than anything else we need better alternatives to the car,” said Tristan Peach, spokesperson for Community Action for Sustainable Transport QLD (CAST).

“Providing better public transport for people in Ipswich, the Gold Coast, Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast means they will spend less on fuel, and households may not have to own a second or third car,” said Mr Peach.

“The Federal government are mad to be pouring money into the Northern Link tunnel and the Ipswich Motorway at a time when driving is becoming even more expensive,” said Mr Peach.

“This money should go into assisting the state government to duplicate and extend rail lines, provide increased public transport frequencies, more cross-city and outer suburban bus services and substantial lengths of dedicated cycling and walking infrastructure. These are the priorities,” said Mr Peach.

“A weekly ticket for unlimited public transport travel within 30km of the Brisbane CBD costs $40. Now that is affordable travel. We just need a public transport system that meets the needs of more people so they can benefit from these huge savings,” said Mr Peach.

Cairns Action for Sustainable Transport and Queensland Conservation Council also endorsed the open letter.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Ipswich PTUG news

Ipswich public transport users group newsletter
27 May 2008
An initiative of Community Action for Sustainable Transport Inc. PO Box 1260 Fortitude Valley 4006 ph 0416 478 615

Please forward to others who may be interested

A. Support our member’s ideas on public transport
Call for government support of the City Link Bus service
Call for improvements to Ipswich to Brisbane train service
Lack of Car Parking at Dinmore Railway Station

B. Western Brisbane Transport Network Investigation

A. Support our member’s ideas on public transport
Contact us if you would like your issue in the next edition

Submission 1 – Call for government support of the City Link Bus service
This service is currently privately operated by Southern Cross Transit and provides the only public transport for the communities of North Tivoli, Chuwar, Karalee, Barellan Point, Karana Downs and Anstead. It runs between Ipswich Transit Centre and Indooroopilly Shopping centre, servicing Karalee Shops, Karalee School, Karana Downs Shops and the Anstead store. Unless the service can receive government support it will cease to operate at the end of 2010 or earlier.

Make submissions to:
TransLink GPO Box 50 BRISBANE 4001 or ph. 131230
Minister for Transport John Mickel 3806 8513 GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001

For more information:
City Link timetable:
City Link map:
TransLink south-west bus network map:$file/070321_map_network_SouthWest.pdf

Submission 2 – Call for improvements to Ipswich to Brisbane train service
Trains should stop all stations from Ipswich to Darra and then at Indooroopliy, Toowong and Roma Street. An across the platform connection at Darra would be made to an all stations train between Darra, Brisbane and Shorncliffe. This Shorncliffe train would follow the Ipswich-Brisbane train by a few minutes, minimising changeover time. Shorncliffe to Darra trains would operate a few minutes ahead of the Brisbane-Ipswich trains, stopping at all stations.

Make submissions to:
TransLink GPO Box 50 BRISBANE 4001 or ph. 131230
Minister for Transport John Mickel 3806 8513 GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001

Submission 3 – Lack of Car Parking at Dinmore Railway Station
The lack of car parking at Dinmore Railway Station shows that government needs to stop delaying essential improvements to our transport system. The station’s proximity to the off-ramps of the Cunningham and Warrego Highway makes it a key location for park-and-ride commuters on the western line. A temporary solution to increase parking needs to be implemented while commuters wait for the 230 delayed car parking spaces. There is a significant amount of Queensland Rail land around the station which could be fenced off and laid with gravel to create a temporary parking lot. Also, the 500 and 501 buses that service the station run at hourly frequencies, which is inadequate for busy commuters, and should be improved. Finally, improved walking and cycling access will give people living close by a healthy option to get to the train.

Make submissions to:
TransLink GPO Box 50 BRISBANE 4001 or ph. 131230
Minister for Transport John Mickel 3806 8513 GPO Box 2644 BRISBANE QLD 4001
Sate Member for Bundamba Jo-Ann Miller PO Box 122 GOODNA QLD 4300 phone : (07) 3288 3737 Fax : (07) 3818 1613

B. Western Brisbane Transport Network Investigation
Queensland Transport is currently conducting a study into possible options for improvements to transport in the western Brisbane area during the period up to 2026.

There are 17 options described by QT in this study. Most of these options involve new roads or roadways, but option No's 8,9,10 and 12, 13, and 14 do involve public or active transport infrastructure or proposals in one form or another.

For all of the details on this study, go to and use the tabs and links to find out more, in particular "What Is Being Considered" and "Community Involvement".

Note well that "western" Brisbane for the purposes of the Study does NOT just include what most people would define as the Western suburbs of Brisbane. The Study includes options involving suburbs as far apart as Samford, Bracken Ridge, Kedron, Everton Park and Albany Creek as well as the southern and western suburbs.

The decisions arising out of this Study will almost certainly affect YOU directly unless you live in Redland Shire or the far eastern suburbs, and the future of urban transport and many suburbs and communities WILL BE determined by actions which are likely to come out of this study.

Note that all submissions whether they are in writing or online must be made by 31 MAY - that's at the end of this week.

We urge EVERYONE to make a submission before the deadline. CAST will be making a submission to this Study. If you are a financial CAST member, you can contribute to the
design and content of our submission.

Contact us using this email address or phone us using the contact numbers on our blog if you have contributions or points to make:
and we'll contact you individually.

While the public information sessions organised as part of this Study have now concluded, you can still see the hardcopy versions at various libraries this week. Details are on the Study's website.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

CAST Statement on Airport Link - coming next week

The State Government issued several statements on Monday
19 May stating that it had approved a tender by BrisConnect to
construct the Airport Link tunnel, the Windsor to Kedron busway,
and a flyover at the Airport roundabout.
The announcements gave very limited details of the financial, design
and environmental components of the proposed contract.
The Courier Mail has not provided full and accurate details of the
contract or the approved design.
Local residents whose homes or properties are or may be affected
in any number of ways, have not yet been provided with the information
that they are seeking, and to which they are entitled.
Likewise, CAST has not been given any reliable information.
We understand that an "information centre" will be established by
BrisConnect either today [Thursday] or tomorrow. As soon as
we know when and where this will be happening, we will report to you.
When CAST has been given access to all of the financial, design,
environmental and construction information, and the impacts on
both the local and general community, we will issue a formal
statement on the benefits [or otherwise], impacts and effects of the
proposed works.
We expect to issue this statement next week.

For the CAST committee
David and Tristan

Monday, May 19, 2008

Airport Link - Road to Nowhere

No doubt most of you have heard or read the media versions of today's disastrous public announcements.

Actually there were, in the usual style of Anna Blight's exuberance with public monies, no less than six media releases extolling the virtues of sinking billions of dollars of taxes into more roads and tunnels, and how great life will be in the Sunshine State when $4,800 million is spent to save some motorists 15 minutes of travelling time.

To assist you to locate this flood of fantastic foolishness, here is the link to what was said -
http://www.cabinet. MMS/StatementSea rch.aspx? tog_id=5
and type "Airport Link" in the search field. All the statements were issued today.

Of course, in the course of one of the darkest days in the history of this State, there was strangely no mention of the fact that the price of a barrel of oil has increased by more than 30% in just the last 20 months, or of the fact that there is just no substitute for aviation fuel.

So, even if travellers are going to the airport via Airport Link in electric cars in 10 years, how many of them are going to be able to afford the $2000 airfare in today's prices to Sydney?

While solar-powered cars with a limited range are likely to be a reality within 10 years, there is no possibility of solar-powered aircraft unless science discovers how to manufacture aircraft constructed by using a substance so light it is yet to be created.

Even if such an alloy is created, the cost of its production will be prohibitive at a time when non-renewable energy will have to be rationed due to scarcity and tough restrictions on emissions.

Nuclear-powered commercial aircraft? How many will be willing to fly in one? Or live under a flightpath with the risk of a nuclear meltdown if a plane crashed?

Whichever way you look at it, Airport Link will inevitably become the Road to Nowhere. Mad Max's Highway to Hell.

And scholars will later record that today - 19 May 2008 - the biggest mistake in the history of this State was made by short-sighted dumb politicians who ultimately came to realise, probably after they retired or resigned, that wise intelligent leaders make decisions for the long-term benefit of the people rather than for short-term profit, perceived political advantage and patronage.

The really strange thing is that Minister McNamara is just about to make a statement that basically follows the line I've composed above.

More on this to come...

Survey about public transport fares

A survey of more than 100 southeast Queensland public transport users has been undertaken by David Bremner, a regular contributor to the CAST discussion group.

You can view the results of this survey, which have also been sent to government and transit operators by visiting this webpage

Congratulations to David for doing this research to better understand what people want out of our transport system

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Ipswich public transport users group

Essential improvements to public transport in Ipswich

Please send us your ideas for specific improvements that need to be made to public transport in and around Ipswich.


We will make a submission to the government on your behalf and also email the submission to our list of contacts so that more people can write in support.

Make sure you include your name, email address, contact number (optional) and postcode so your identity can be verified by the government.

Try to describe your concern and possible solution(s) as simply as possible to minimise our need for editing, and to maximise the chance of government responding to your concern.

For example:

Location: 'Stafford Heights' bus stop on 345 Buz route, inbound, 100m south of Rode / Appleby Road intersection. Stafford Heights, Brisbane.

Concern: People sitting at the first bus shelter (shelter closest to where the bus stops) have their views of approaching buses blocked by the advertising panel on the side wall of the second shelter.

This means people only see the bus when it is 20-30m away. If the bus is moving at 40-60km/per hour this does not leave people enough time to get up, identify whether it is the right bus and then hail it, particularly if they are physically impaired.

Solution: Remove the advertising panel from the second bus shelter and replace with a transparent panel.

Noteafter making your submission we will put you on our mailing list for the Ipswich group unless you advise us not to. If at any stage after joining the mailing list you want to be removed simply send an email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Do 4WDs belong in cities?

A recent public opinion survey by AAMI found that 60% of the 2380 licensed drivers surveys believed 4WDs did not belong in cities, while 33% thought driving a four wheel drive was socially unacceptable due to the greenhouse emissions. You can read the news article here. What do you think about 4WDs in our cities, and what do you think government policy should be on them?

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Family go "car(e)free" in Brisbane

An average Brisbane suburban family has decided to go car free to save money and improve their health. Not only that, they have decided to record their experiences in an online diary, which you can read regular updates on here. While some of our current political leaders tell us it's "green" to drive a 4WD everywhere it's great to see that Brisbane people are taking our social, environmental and economic challenges seriously and taking genuine action to improve the city.

Media Tuesday 4 March

State plans for Ipswich CBD and public transport interchange

Monday's announcement by the Premier, Anna Bligh, of plans by the State to take control of planning in Ipswich's CBD has been welcomed by the community transport group, Community Action for Sustainable Transport [CAST].

CAST supports the move to upgrade the railway station and bus interchange.

The existing station and interchange are failing to properly cater for the increasing demand for public transport services by the Ipswich community.

The need for better quality facilities and services for commuters has been apparent for the last five years following the explosive growth in housing and workplaces in surrounding suburbs.

CAST particularly supports the intention to construct office space to house up to 1200 State
Government workers.

We have regularly urged the State to relocate many of its Government departments from Brisbane's

CBD to suburban hubs and regional growth areas like Ipswich and Cleveland, said CAST president David White.

The benefits to the community generally and to the State of decentralising its workplaces and services include substantial cost savings from reduced travelling times, and significant reductions in demands for new and costly infrastructure to cope with transport congestion caused by local workers and families having to travel long distances every day during peak hours.

The State now needs to take action to complete the Darra to Springfield line and all associated stations by 2011, and to fast-track construction of the connection between Springfield and Ipswich.

This will be essential if the new workers in the Ipswich CBD are to have fast and efficient access to their workplaces.

We do however believe that the intention to introduce a private investor to construct the new centre has the potential to increase the cost of the project unnecessarily. The State's record of success using public-private partnerships is not good.

Contact David White: 0403 871 082

Friday, February 08, 2008

Hale Street Bridge Update


by Darren Godwell, President, West End Community Association.

The State government's Co-ordinator General report on the inner-city toll-bridge at Hale Street paints a picture of an auction where the price keeps on rising well after you've made the final bid.

"For the HSL to proceed.would require an increased project budget above that of the $245 million approved by Council".

At the last council election candidate Newman made a $180 million promise to build a toll-bridge. Today Lord Mayor Newman says it'll cost $450 million.

The report's measured tone rings alarm bells - "it may be necessary for a new financial ensure the project is good 'value' and is able to service the cost of project with the toll revenues collected."

The Co-ordinator General's insight tells us City Hall is having difficulty coming to grips with another major project. Sadly, if Newman persists the end result will be either a larger subsidy from the pockets of Brisbane's ratepayers through more rates increase or a top-up from the taxpayers of Queensland. So it's either the pockets of ratepayers or the pockets of taxpayers.

"Most projects of this size in recent times have been subject to significant cost-escalation pressures...It is likely that this project was also finding significant cost pressure and difficulty of remaining within the Council-approved budget."

The Lord Mayor's new alternative is to scale-back the approaches onto the bridge.

Logically, the State government finds that "a reduction in project scope is likely to result in reduced benefits [and] the project business case will need to be revisited to ensure that the 'value' of the project is acceptable".

Here's the rub. To test for "value" and to consider its "acceptability" before the local Council election we'll need to see City Hall's "project modification report". But Council's revised report is not due until the 20th March - five days after the election.

The Co-ordinator General rightly asks are we getting 'good value' from ratepayers' monies. To figure out what's 'good value' we'll also need to know if the project works.

The independent umpire reveals that City Hall made interesting choices from the beginning: "BCC did not seek the assistance of the Coordinator-General.BCC instead undertook a voluntary assessment process. However, a 'voluntary assessment process' may not necessarily be conducted with the same robustness and rigor."

Rigor was never to bother this process. Process became a rude joke when the Mayor's staff solicited big business and interstate relatives to make submissions supporting the proposal.

The latest revelation is City Hall's obligations under the "conditional approval" by the State government. Specifically, filing an acceptable "traffic management plan" for both construction and operational stages. Including a "public transport management plan" to detail impacts on non-car commuters.

We now know City Hall has only assessed a portion of the traffic impacts. Amazingly, the Coordinator General reveals, this project is only half tested. There is no assessment of the traffic impacts on the southern end.

"BCC was not asked to and did not submit a traffic management report for the proposed southside works. I note that Main Roads do not intend to request a traffic management report for these works as, in their opinion, any impact would be on local traffic only in the immediate area."

This finding points to the Labor majority in Council who approved the project without the full information on all of the impacts.

South Brisbane Councillor Helen Abrahams is left out on a limb by not knowing the impacts on local businesses, streets, suburbs and constituents. To a lesser degree, the local State Member, Anna Bligh, is also exposed by this oversight.

The Coordinator General recommends that State government compel City Hall for a traffic management plan for the southern side. This plan is critical to making an accurate assessment. The final report may prove unpalatable reading for the people of the Gabba, Highgate Hill, South Bank, South Brisbane and West End.

Once every four years, people hold their Lord Mayor and local Councillors to account. To do this properly, in the interest of seeing public monies well spent, the people of Brisbane will need to have all the pieces, traffic and financial, on the table before the election.