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Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby boronia » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:21 am

I wonder what "conservation" they will start?

Maybe some funding for the Mercury to employ a proof reader?
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby tonyp » Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:05 pm

boronia wrote:I wonder what "conservation" they will start?

Maybe some funding for the Mercury to employ a proof reader?

The Merc now has competition from News Corp's Illawarra Star, they'll have to lift their game!
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby tonyp » Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:52 am

Nothing that's really news, just stuff we already know, with the benefit of some exact patronage figures for all Wollongong buses (I've inserted annual figures):

https://www.illawarramercury.com.au/story/6307151/passenger-figures-show-how-much-wollongong-loves-the-gong-shuttle/?fbclid=IwAR1WaK_h6VbPbKXfa7VuAPQpZFxs4Fxpkrsu6EF1HaM16bQWWyFiC-P0BAI
The Gong Shuttle appears to be far and away the most popular bus route in the Illawarra, according to government figures.
Each month the average number of passengers on the free green bus is more than half that of all the other buses in the Illawarra combined.
According to Transport for NSW Opal card data, from September last year through to April, Premier Illawarra buses carried a monthly average of 346,000 passengers [4.1 million p.a.].
The monthly average for Dion's buses over the same period was 60,750 [729,000 p.a.].
In response to a question on notice from Keira MP Ryan Park, Roads and Transport Minister Andrew Constance called the shuttle "a popular service" and said it alone averaged 254,000 passengers a month [3.05 million p.a.].
As the Gong Shuttle does not require passengers to tap on and off, its passenger numbers are not included in Transport for NSW's Opal card data.
This means the Gong Shuttle monthly averages are equivalent to 62 per cent of those for all the other major bus routes in the entire Illawarra.
It's a statistic that confirms the popularity of the Gong Shuttle service and how much a part of the city it's become.
It also carries a strong indication of just how many cars are not travelling around the Wollongong CBD and surrounds because people can use the Gong Shuttle to get around.
The government had planned to introduce a fare on the Gong Shuttle in 2018, citing the need to get people off it and onto other routes to balance out the load across multiple buses.
The University of Wollongong and Wollongong City Council both saw the benefit of the shuttle and agreed to chip in $350,000 a year each for three years.
Initially the amount was viewed by government as insufficient but a rejigging of the service's timetable allowed it to run with the offered funding.
Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery said council would look to open negotiations on the Gong Shuttle deal well before it expires in 2021 to avoid another last-minute resolution.
A Transport for NSW spokesman said negotiations on any new arrangement would not start until early next year.
"As per the agreement, Transport for NSW will meet with Wollongong City Council and the University of Wollongong to discuss the current service arrangements for the Gong Shuttle and its ongoing funding around March next year," the Transport for NSW spokesman said.
The spokesman would not comment on whether Transport for NSW intended to reintroduce the option of fares on the shuttle in any negotiations.

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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby tonyp » Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:05 am

More hare-brained stuff from the halls of local government, ignoring some little gradient issues:

Illawarra Mercury, OCTOBER 21 2019 - 1:00AM
Councillor's push to link Wollongong's beach and CBD with light rail system

Kate McIlwainKate McIlwain
Latest News
Setting an example: Councillor John Dorahy says Wollongong's CBD and suburbs could benefit from light rail, like in Newcastle as pictured, or trackless trams. Picture: Marina Neil

A light rail system could run through Wollongong's main street in the coming years, connecting the beach to the CBD, if one city councillor gets his way.

Liberal councillor John Dorahy will next week ask his colleagues to support an investigation of introducing a light rail network across the Wollongong LGA, starting with a track up Crown Street from Marine Drive to the hospital.

It could also link the new communities in growing suburbs, like Yallah and West Dapto, and stretch as far south as Shellharbour to help the large commuter population there to connect to Wollongong.

"It would improve the commuter passage to and from the city, and then it would be a health and environment factor," he said. "Our city needs to become more sustainable, and there is a push towards cutting our carbon emissions, and this would be a way for us to do that."

He said it would also help to improve parking in the CBD, and boost foot traffic to struggling retailers in the mall.

Cr Dorahy will also ask for an investigation into the emerging technology of "trackless trams": electric train-like vehicles which run on streets like buses but along designated tracks to stations, like trams.

"This could help to avoid much of the disruption from construction, and the high costs of light rail," Cr Dorahy said.

According to sustainability expert Peter Newman, light rail has cost $120 million per kilometre in Sydney and more than $80 million per kilometre in Newcastle and Canberra.

In contrast, a trackless tram costs around $6-$8 million per kilometre and can be installed "over a weekend", Professor Newman says.

Next week, Cr Dorahy will ask councillors to vote in favour of an investigation into the potential costs and benefits of light rail, as well as a plan to drum up support from state and federal politicians, business leaders and other stakeholders.

Residents would be surveyed on their views about light rail and a draft plan showing the rail line, costs and a timeline would be developed. If supported, councillors would receive a briefing on the project by mid-next year, Cr Dorahy said.

Asked if he expected to receive support, Cr Dorahy said there would likely be some hesitancy, given the costs, but believed the plan could be a "game changer".

"We cannot continue to go down the pathway of 'she'll be right mate' attitude that will eventuate in a dilemma of traffic congestion requiring a review," he said.

"Get ahead of the curve is my mantra here. Other forward thinking Cities are doing it, why shouldn't the 'City of Innovation, Wollongong' do it?"
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby gld59 » Mon Oct 21, 2019 12:20 pm

tonyp wrote:
In contrast, a trackless tram costs around $6-$8 million per kilometre and can be installed "over a weekend", Professor Newman says.

On a road currently used for motor vehicle traffic, perhaps. A bit more than a weekend in a pedestrian mall with as much stuff down the middle as Crown St.
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby Merc1107 » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:26 pm

"Professor Newman Strikes Again" should be the name of that article... Is he just a die-hard proponent of this idea or is there something more going on behind the scenes?
tonyp wrote:
... which run on streets like buses but along designated tracks to stations, like trams.
Don't buses follow a fixed "line" or "track" or "route" to a station, too? :mrgreen:
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby Swift » Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:48 pm

Merc1107 wrote:
tonyp wrote:... which run on streets like buses but along designated tracks to stations, like trams.
Don't buses follow a fixed "line" or "track" or "route" to a station, too? :mrgreen:

They also pull in and out of other lanes which the trackless trams wouldn't do, making them predictable and less disruptive than buses.
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby Cazza » Mon Oct 21, 2019 5:51 pm

^... Which means that buses are more manoeuvrable and can easily avoid disruptions and traffic congestion. How is that a bad thing? Have fun trying to get a tram moving into the left lane to avoid just two cars turning right here (and potentially have to wait another whole phase of traffic lights): https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-37.853 ... 312!8i6656

Changing lanes is a legal, safe and extremely basic road manoeuvre. So I'm really not sure what your point is here...
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Re: Wollongong Rt. 55 Commenced Service & Split into 55A/C

Postby tonyp » Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:17 pm

You wouldn't design a tramway nowadays in which vehicles can get on the lines to turn right. Designs typically ensure that trams are not impeded by general traffic.
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