Monthly Archives: August 2013

State Government’s hybrid Light Rail and bus solution for Anzac Parade congestion should work based on Randwick Council’s 2011 Study says Greens Councillor Murray Matson

Less light rail cars (lets call them trams) are needed to move passengers along Anzac Parade than the current number of buses according to the Randwick Light Rail Pre-feasibility Study of light_rail_vehicle2011 (RLRPS).

There are 133 buses per hour moving past Moore Park at peak time making it the busiest point on Anzac Parade (source page 33 RLRPS).

The Study found that it would require just 45 trams per hour to move the same number of passengers through this point. That means one tram roughly equals three buses.

This is because a tram can carry more than a standard twenty four metre long bus.  The thirty metre long trams of Luas Ireland can 256 passengers each. Standard Sydney buses carry 72 and articulated buses 115.

OK, that is what Randwick Council, the racecourse and UNSW were proposing in 2011. What’s happening now?

Well, for a start the State Government’s CBD to Kingsford light rail line will use 45 metre long vehicles and not the 30 metre vehicles looked at in the Randwick study. This gives more capacity.

Furthermore it does not seem to be the Government’s intention to replace all of the current Anzac Parade buses with light rail. This would fit with the Government’s promise to maintain existing express buses from Randwick Council’s southern areas.

Last week the Government clarified its proposal by releasing the following figures. The existing bus capacity is given as 10,000 passengers per hour, which is roughly what the Randwick Study suggested in 2011.

The Government is proposing to keep enough buses operating for 6,000 passengers and then to add to that enough light rail to provide another 9,000 per hour. This way the existing public transport carrying capacity along Anzac Parade will be boosted to a total of 15,000 per hour.

The Government is claiming that there will be “light rail services every 4-5 minutes from Randwick and Kingsford; every 2-3 minutes after merging on Anzac Parade”. Is this achievable? A 45 metre tram car should carry 300 passengers. That means that it would indeed have to run every 2 minutes along the Moore Park bit of Anzac Parade to provide the Government’s target of 9,000 passengers per hour. This seems to be achievable to me.

So unless some sort of technical problem emerges, on face value it seems that the addition of light rail plus a reduced number of bus services is the solution to congestion in both Randwick and the CBD.

Randwick City Greens Councillor Murray Matson

NSW Liqour Act review: Coles and Woolworths push for greater promotional discounting of alcohol

Coles and Woolies are under fire from Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson.

The retailers are pushing the State Government to wind back proposed promotional restrictions on alcohol discounting.

Cr Matson is putting forward a motion calling for a Randwick City Council submission to the Government’s review of the Alcohol Act.

He represents East Ward on the Council, which includes Coogee Beach were residents are wary of greater alcohol promotion initiatives.

For background see:

‘Government bows to liquor industry on discounts’, Sun Herald, 14 July, pages 1 and 4

Kingsford Smith election news – Greens to Promote New Bike Path and Light Rail Projects

Cate Faehrmann James Macdonald Alison Road Bike path 17-8-2013The site of the upgraded Alison road bike path was visited by Greens Senate candidate Cate Faehrmann at 1pm this Saturday.

She used this Greens supported initiative to highlight the positive public transport initiatives of the Greens and their candidate James Macdonald in Kingsford Smith

Ms Faehrmann outlined The Australian Greens transport policy “Sustainable Planning and Transport” to eastern suburbs bike riders at the recently upgraded Alison Road bike path.

With her was James Macdonald, Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson and local bike riding activist Mora Main.

It was Ms Main who had invited the senate candidate to Randwick in order to show how public transport enthusiasts could work with Green politicians for productive outcomes.

She gave the example of how she herself had lobbied Councillor Matson urging him to ensure that the Alison bike path upgrade was actually made wide enough to safely accommodate riders. Councillor Matson had responded by bringing her submissions to the attention of his Council to ensure that the path’s planned upgrade maximized its bike riding capacity.

The successful outcome has fired up the two Green election candidates to bring their party’s transport solutions to the attention of Kingsford Smith voters.

Kingsford Smith candidate James Macdonald wants to build on light rail and bike initiatives promoted by the Greens on Randwick City Council. He said,

“Randwick’s Green Councillors have over the years pushed for both the return of light rail to Randwick and an expansion of bike infrastructure, such as the widened bike path we stand near today. This year for example has seen Councillors Matson and Shurey putting up a motion seeking to mesh bike infrastructure into the CBD to Kingsford light rail when it is built to achieve an integrated alternative transport system.  If elected I will be seeking Federal funding for a further light rail extension from Kingsford to Marourba Junction. Along with this I will also be pushing for a feasibility study into a possible line to Green Square, either off the Randwick line or directly from the CBD.”

Ms Faehrmann quoted the Australian Greens Policy which wants “more high quality footpaths, bike paths and lanes to encourage walking, cycling and public transport use.”

“Greens in the Senate have runs on the board having secured funding for cycling infrastructure in NSW as part of the stimulus package,” she said.

“But more investment is needed if we are to provide a strong incentive for people to choose cycling over other forms of travel,” she concluded.

Kingsford Smith: James Macdonald ready as Rudd calls 2013 election

The Greens in Kingsford Smith have welcomed the announcement of the September 7th federal election.

Candidate James Macdonald said the Greens are offering a unique alternative to the “increasingly synchronized” policies of the major parties. He said on the weekend,

“The Greens have a positive and constructive vision for the nation, and we’re eager to put that to the Australian people. We stand for a sustainable and fair economy, for sanity in our refugee policy, and for fully-funded universities open to all Australians.”

“I believe that Australians are sick of the race to the bottom seen by the major parties. Whether it’s the savage cuts to sole-parent welfare or the unhinged calls to militarize the borders, there is a deeply concerning shift to appeal to the worst in human nature. I believe Australians will reject this negativity when it matters most.”

Mr Macdonald drew specific attention to his party’s calls for:

  • A national report card for development targets and building standards to promote Australia’s progress towards its ecological sustainability goals;
  • Planned investment to upgrade rail corridors between major cities and regional centres including east coast high speed rail;
  • Industrial tribunals with full powers to make orders to give effect to gender pay equity;
  • Nationally consistent industrial manslaughter laws and a minimum standard for pay, annual leave and hours of work;
  • Reform in childcare to ensure improved affordability of childcare for low and middle income families, including parents and carers who are studying;
  • A strategic plan for sustainable agriculture to deliver adequate, safe and nutritious food;
  • Re-establishment of the federal Office for the Status of Women, including its position as part of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet;
  • Urban developments to be environmentally sound, close to employment and public transport, and which should facilitate community interaction; and
  • Signing and ratifying the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage 2003.