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New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

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New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby MAN 16.242 » Thu Aug 27, 2015 6:29 pm

Consultation is now underway for new bus network for Epping North and Wollert
https://getinvolved.ptv.vic.gov.au/new- ... nd-wollert

New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Three new bus routes are set to be introduced to provide more public transport options for residents living in the Epping North and Wollert areas.

The current bus Route 575 services Epping North to Thomastown with significant areas of Epping North and Wollert with no access to public transport.

To address this PTV has developed plans to replace Route 575 with a new bus network consisting of three new routes:

Route 356 Wollert East – Epping Station
Route 357 Wollert West – Thomastown
Route 358 Wollert – Epping Station
Frequency of services for all three routes is proposed to be 20 minutes in the peak on weekdays and a 40 minute frequency during the inter-peak and on weekends.

The new routes are designed to link the residential communities in Epping North and Wollert to Epping Station, Epping Plaza and Northern Hospital where there are opportunities to transfer to other public transport services.

In Thomastown, the new timetables will offer significantly improved frequencies between Epping and Thomastown with buses every 20 minutes during peak times. This will mean local residents will have more options on when they want to travel.

Epping North and Wollert residents will now get a chance to provide their feedback on the proposed new bus network to be introduced later this year. Download a copy of the maps and proposed timetables for the new bus network or ask a question on this site.

As this is a significant change to the public transport network in Epping North and Wollert, PTV is seeking the community’s feedback by Sunday, 27 September by:
dropping into one of our community information sessions

filling out the online survey here; or

by calling 1800 800 007 and letting the customer service team know you’d like to provide feedback about the proposed Epping North and Wollert bus network.

Your feedback is important to help us build a better public transport network.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby jarf » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:17 pm

More completely random route numbers. Hmm... :?
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby josh01 » Fri Aug 28, 2015 9:31 am

Im guessing dysons have these routes ???/
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Alex on the Bus » Fri Aug 28, 2015 9:36 am

josh01 wrote:Im guessing dysons have these routes ???/

Nah, they were going to get WizzBus... :P
(I would be nailed on that Dyson's will be picking up these runs.)
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Alex on the Bus » Fri Aug 28, 2015 10:28 am

Also, what on earth are The Greens going to do now that Greg Barber's automatic go-to response to every accusation that their policy outlook only extends 7 km from the GPO - proclaiming the uselessness of the 575 - is going to be dealt with?
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Matty G » Fri Aug 28, 2015 11:22 am

Yes... Dysons will be operating these services... and in some surprise news, all new buses ordered for these runs and the 560, WILL be in PTV livery. I'm guessing that the PTV wrote this into the new contracts, so there was no escaping it.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Craig » Fri Aug 28, 2015 2:55 pm

FAQs and details of the upcoming information sessions:

PTV wrote:FAQs

How was the proposed new bus network designed?
PTV regularly reviews bus networks across Victoria to ensure they meet the community’s needs. In preparing the proposed network PTV has:
> Reviewed usage of the existing service;
> Researched the demographics of Epping North and Wollert residents; and
> Worked closely with the Epping North and Wollert bus operator to develop the bus network; and
> Consulted with the City of Whittlesea and the local bus operator.

PTV aims to have most homes in Epping North and Wollert within 400-600 metres of a bus route.

How has local knowledge been incorporated and who did you consult with?
PTV receives regular feedback from customers in the Epping North, Wollert and Thomastown areas asking for better access to public transport. The main concern raised is having greater public transport coverage, and more direct and frequent services that better connect with trains.

What will the new bus network look like for Epping North and Wollert?
The current Route 575 bus from Thomastown to Epping North is to be replaced by a new bus network servicing the areas of Epping North and Wollert.

> Route 356 Wollert East – Epping Station
> Route 357 Wollert West – Thomastown
> Route 358 Wollert – Epping Station

Buses will operate every 20 minutes during peak times and every 40 minutes during off-peak times.
Buses will operate between 6am – 9pm Monday – Friday, 6.30am – 9pm Saturday and 7.30am – 9pm Sunday.
There are no other changes to buses in this area at this time.

Will buses connect with trains at Epping and Thomastown stations?
Yes. Timetables will be optimised to improve connections from buses to trains and trains to buses at Epping and Thomastown stations.

How will passengers on Route 356 travel to Epping Plaza?
In most cases, passengers simply need to stay on the bus after it arrives at Epping Station. Most Route 356 buses arriving at Epping Station will become Route 358 buses and continue to Epping Plaza and Northern Hospital.

There will be times when the bus will wait at Epping Plaza for connecting train services. Alternatively passengers can change to other bus services such as the high frequency Route 901 SmartBus.

Have you decided where all of the bus stops will go?
With new services, there is the need for new bus stops to provide good community access to bus services within a reasonable walking distance. We aim to place bus stops approximately 400 metres apart and close to cross streets, community venues, schools and shopping precincts. In determining the location of new bus stops, PTV must consider several factors, including:

> Whether there is adequate space for pedestrians and passengers to safely access the new bus stop;
> Whether buses can easily access the new bus stop;
> Whether the new bus stop location maintains adequate visibility and lines of sight for drivers and road users;
> Whether there is adequate space for the new bus stop to include all the design features required by the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, and the VicRoads Bus Stop Guidelines 2006.

Bus stop locations are decided jointly by PTV, the City of Whittlesea, VicRoads and the bus operator to meet the above criteria and to ensure buses can operate safely for both road users and customers.

However, PTV welcomes suggestions for potential locations of bus stops in the Epping North and Wollert area. Please visit ptv.vic.gov.au or call 1800 800 007 to provide your suggestions on bus stop locations.

Following finalisation of the bus network and the locations of bus stops, PTV will notify residents and businesses in writing of the intent to build new bus stops if it is outside a house or business.

What can my feedback influence?

We will consider route and span of operating hour suggestions. We have tried to make bus routes direct to make bus travel faster, but if access to a particular area is important to you, we’d like to know.

We would also like to know about destinations that are important to you, for example, Epping Plaza. It is not practicable to provide links to every destination and interchanging to other services may be necessary.

Let us know what connections are most important to you for example, bus to train or between two buses.

PTV will be assessing all feedback from the information sessions and the online survey to determine where we might need to alter the proposed network.

How to provide your feedback?
As this is a significant change to the public transport network in Epping North and Wollert, PTV is seeking the community’s feedback.

Please provide your feedback by Sunday, 27 September 2015 by:
>>Dropping into one of our community information sessions
>>Filling out the online survey on this site; or
>>By calling 1800 800 007 and letting the customer service team know you’d like to provide feedback about the proposed Epping North and Wollert bus network.
Your feedback is important to help us build a better public transport network.

When will the changes be implemented?
Following feedback from the community, we may need to alter the proposed bus network. Subject to the feedback received we plan to implement the timetables and service changes this coming summer.

How will residents be notified of the change?
Once the bus network is finalised, information will be available on the PTV website, via the call centre and on board buses. PTV will advertise in the local paper and promotional material will also be distributed to houses in the area. To get a new timetable, you should visit ptv.vic.gov.au or call 1800 800 007 and one will be sent to your home.

What is the long term plan for Epping North and Wollert buses?
Epping North and Wollert are rapidly growing areas. PTV will continue to pursue opportunities to improve the bus network in these areas as additional funding becomes available.


PTV wrote:Key Dates

10 September 2015
Pacific Epping Shopping Plaza information session

4pm – 7pm
Pacific Epping Shopping Plaza, between BB's and Footlocker
571 – 583 High Street, Epping

12 September 2015
Eucalypt Community Market information session

10am - midday
Eucalypt Community Market
286 Epping Road, Wollert

14 September 2015
Epping Secondary College (library) information session

6pm - 8pm, Epping Secondary College (library)
10 McDonalds Road, Epping

27 September 2015
Community feedback period closes

The community feedback period will close on Sunday 27 September.


Also, links to PDF documents:
Proposed new bus network for Epping North and Wollert fact sheet (2.22 MB) (pdf) - https://getinvolved.ptv.vic.gov.au/new- ... 3/download
Proposed new bus network for Epping North and Wollert map and frequency document (2.12 MB) (pdf) - https://getinvolved.ptv.vic.gov.au/new- ... 1/download
Existing bus network map and frequency document (1.09 MB) (pdf) - https://getinvolved.ptv.vic.gov.au/new- ... 2/download

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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Craig » Fri Aug 28, 2015 3:56 pm

Some thoughts on the new network:

The through-routing of 356 & 357 at Epping Station is a good solution, which will avoid over-saturation of buses between Epping Station, Epping Plaza and Northern Hospital. Hopefully some care is taken to reduce waits when layovers are balanced with train connections, similar to successful attempts recently in Wyndham with 498/181 and 170/151.

I do wonder if 356 provides enough coverage to the estates east of Epping Rd. Perhaps instead of the short stub on Hayston Bvd, it would be better to operate the length of Maserati Dr as well?

Disappointing that the 358 won't continue onto Craigieburn, about 10 minutes beyond the Wollert terminus. Not only would Wollert residents appreciate the connivence of a bus to nearby Craigieburn, there would also be demand from Craigieburn residents wishing to access Northern Hospital, Epping Plaza and the Epping Campus of Melbourne Polytechnic, along with other destinations on the South Morang line. PTV's official line is that the connection will have to wait until there is further residential development along Craigieburn Rd East.

A Wollert resident will have the option of a 15 min drive to Craigieburn Central, or a trip of over an hour catching the 358 to Epping, 901 to Roxburgh Park, train to Craigeburn then finally the 535 or 537 bus up Craigieburn Rd. While Dom Sita is unlikely to let a Dysons service enter his Craigieburn empire, PTV could at least ensure timed connections at Craigieburn Station for travel to Craigieburn Central.

Indeed BusVic called for the "transit corridor" reservation through the estate to as part of a Bus Rapid Transit busway to Craigieburn prior to the 2010 election, including in their Bus Solutions newsletter. 5 years on, we are only now seeing some moderate upgrades to bus services.

The upgrade to the southern half of 575 to Thomastown, with the more frequent 357 along Edgars Rd & Main St is more than welcome. Buses only run hourly during the AM peak on this section of the 575, and 40 - 45 mins at other times. Other than offering a poor link to Epping from West Lalor, this corridor was once served by the more frequent 554/557 loop, but services were relocated to Gillwell Rd in recent years to provide coverage in the growing Mosaic Estate.

In terms of the broader Epping network, the upcoming changes would present a good opportunity to implement the 2007-2008 Whittlesea Bus Review recommendation for Route 556, which suggested the Derby Dr loop be discontinued. Almost all residents are within 400m of the 577 on Findon Rd or 901 SmartBus on McDonalds Rd.

Removing the detour would cut around 15 minutes from the trip (the 556 is timed for an extraordinary 20 mins from Epping Plaza to Epping Station), and also allow the 555 & 556 frequency to be boosted from 22 mins to 20 mins. The 577 could also be boosted to 20 mins interpeak to compensate (as it is, the 20 min peak service on 577 currently extends until after 10:30am).

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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby RailwayBus » Sat Aug 29, 2015 1:17 am

jarf wrote:More completely random route numbers. Hmm... :?


They are different, but they are certainly not random as there is reasoning behind it. If still in doubt, look back at the recent new network in Wyndham for a precedent.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Richard1207 » Sat Aug 29, 2015 1:41 pm

Craig wrote:
In terms of the broader Epping network, the upcoming changes would present a good opportunity to implement the 2007-2008 Whittlesea Bus Review recommendation for Route 556, which suggested the Derby Dr loop be discontinued. Almost all residents are within 400m of the 577 on Findon Rd or 901 SmartBus on McDonalds Rd.

Removing the detour would cut around 15 minutes from the trip (the 556 is timed for an extraordinary 20 mins from Epping Plaza to Epping Station), and also allow the 555 & 556 frequency to be boosted from 22 mins to 20 mins. The 577 could also be boosted to 20 mins interpeak to compensate (as it is, the 20 min peak service on 577 currently extends until after 10:30am).

I couldn't agree more. Buses going to Epping Plaza usually wait for up to 10 minutes at Epping Station on weekdays, so it actually takes about 30 minutes from the time the bus arrives at Epping Station to the time it arrives at Epping Plaza. That's a trip that should take no longer than 5 minutes.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby krustyklo » Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:51 pm

In terms of the broader Epping network, the upcoming changes would present a good opportunity to implement the 2007-2008 Whittlesea Bus Review recommendation for Route 556, which suggested the Derby Dr loop be discontinued. Almost all residents are within 400m of the 577 on Findon Rd or 901 SmartBus on McDonalds Rd.


The other suggestion from the reviews that would also solve your Craigieburn problem would be to route the 566 to Epping instead of Lalor, then to Craigieburn - along the proposed 357 route would probably be direct enough, or via the 358 if Epping Plaza was considered important enough.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Craig » Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:00 pm

krustyklo wrote:The other suggestion from the reviews that would also solve your Craigieburn problem would be to route the 566 to Epping instead of Lalor, then to Craigieburn - along the proposed 357 route would probably be direct enough, or via the 358 if Epping Plaza was considered important enough.


I'd consider both Epping Plaza and Northern Hospital are very important places for a Greensborough - Epping - Craigieburn route to serve.

There is also the small issue that Eaststone Ave currently doesn't extend to Craigieburn Rd East yet, ruling out 357 for now.

But you are right, that would create a fantastic cross-suburban route for the Northern suburbs, giving Craigieburn residents access to RMIT Bundoora and the connecting tram to La Trobe, among other destinations. Full marks for the suggestion!

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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby krustyklo » Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:04 am

I'd consider both Epping Plaza and Northern Hospital are very important places for a Greensborough - Epping - Craigieburn route to serve.


I'd agree.

There is also the small issue that Eaststone Ave currently doesn't extend to Craigieburn Rd East yet, ruling out 357 for now.


Presumably it will eventually and it looked more direct. There are precedents for temporarily deviated bus routes awaiting road network changes. Not quite the same, but when the 565 first started in July 1986, it operated to a modified route for at least a month or two due to Plenty River Drive being closed whilst the Ring Road bridge was built.

Full marks for the suggestion!


I can't take the credit for the suggestion, it was in the Whittlesea Bus Review. I don't have the Hume one to compare.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby V981 » Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:48 am

Alex on the Bus wrote:Also, what on earth are The Greens going to do now that Greg Barber's automatic go-to response to every accusation that their policy outlook only extends 7 km from the GPO - proclaiming the uselessness of the 575 - is going to be dealt with?


Mate......you can't take anything the Greens does or says seriously. These guys wouldn't know one end of a bus to another. The standard response from anybody who has at least half a brain, every time the Greens make public comment, is to simply roll your eyes and grunt, then move on.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby krustyklo » Sat Sep 05, 2015 8:43 pm

Mate......you can't take anything the Greens does or says seriously. These guys wouldn't know one end of a bus to another. The standard response from anybody who has at least half a brain, every time the Greens make public comment, is to simply roll your eyes and grunt, then move on.


A tad harsh, but I don't disagree that bus based public transport is a very poor cousin compared to rail based solutions in their policies. I'd rather an upgraded bus route achievable within a couple of years and subsequently building up usage that may eventually justify a tram, than a proposal for a tram that will take much longer to plan and implement at multiples of the cost.

In addition, I'd agree that their policies are very inner-suburban-centric, but given that they are the seats the Greens feel they are likely to win I guess I understand that and the subsequent emphasis on "fixing" tram routes and building heavy rail to everywhere proposed in the 1969 MMTB Transport Plan and any other recent popular suggestion that will not get built for decades if at all (*cough* Airport Rail Link (either of the airports) *cough*). It does make it difficult to know who to vote for... the blue bastards who promise public transport and don't deliver, the green bastards who have no interest in any suburb near where I live, or the red bastards who do seem to deliver some stuff for marginal seats, but good luck if you're in a safe red area. Not to mention their recent intervention in the train strike when they should just back off and let Metro and the RTBU fight it out.

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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby burrumbus » Sun Sep 06, 2015 8:47 am

Your last line Krustyklo-how apt !!!
Unfortunately politicians of all colours tend to go for big ticket projects when in many cases simple inexpensive projects would achieve much more.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby krustyklo » Sun Sep 06, 2015 9:58 pm

Unfortunately politicians of all colours tend to go for big ticket projects when in many cases simple inexpensive projects would achieve much more.


Yes, sadly there are more perceived votes in ribbon cutting than incremental improvements. Possibly the politicians are right. However, I think there are diminishing returns to that approach. One of the biggest sways on my voting patterns in terms of projects are the fact that the supposedly free market Liberal Party seem to be going through an interventionist stage and picking really bad winners. To a point I prefer to set price signals and leave it to the market, although I accept this doesn't work for everything.

The other policies that have swayed my voting, especially now I live in a marginal electorate, are the Labour bus improvements of the 2000s from the initial MoTC improvements where buses no longer shut down at 7pm on weekdays, ran hourly on weekends until the shops shut, and didn't run at all on Sundays (In my area at the time that was a big improvement, with minimal announcement surprisingly) - to the big ticket Smartbus which was a genuinely big improvement, and clearly a successful one based on ridership patronage, as well as the fact that the 902 and 903 was carrying good loads from day 1, and still does. Even though the 901 patronage is not as good, I suspect it still largely covers it's costs much of the time as the times I've used it at varying times and days between Epping and Blackburn, there's usually at least a few people on it with a fair bit of turnover throughout the journey between Epping and The Pines, with much larger numbers using it between there and Blackburn once the 286 was deleted. I suspect it will be a slow but steady grower as people discover how quickly it gets from Blackburn to Greensborough and Greensborough to South Morang / Epping, especially if the Yan Yean Rd duplication makes allowance for bus priority at least in peak hour. This has certainly been a factor in job hunting for someone I know who lives near the 901, and has enabled them to look at jobs in the north around South Morang and Doreen.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Heihachi_73 » Tue Sep 08, 2015 4:43 pm

krustyklo wrote:MoTC improvements where buses no longer shut down at 7pm on weekdays, ran hourly on weekends until the shops shut, and didn't run at all on Sundays


As a resident in the eastern suburbs, I can only wish that was the case.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby krustyklo » Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:18 pm

As a resident in the eastern suburbs, I can only wish that was the case.

What, you want the buses to finish early on weekdays, finish on Saturdays when the shops shut, and not run at all on Sunday?

Assuming you actually meant that eastern suburbs services are still stuck in the 80s, may I respectfully suggest you look at a timetable from that period and compare it to now. I'm not sure which part of the eastern suburbs you live in but, compared to the north, the eastern suburbs have done alright for a long time.

Using the route 700 as an example, the 1987 timetable has buses running every 20 minutes on a Saturday morning, every 30 minutes on Saturday afternoon and then hourly until 11pm, with hourly services on Sunday between 9am and 7pm. The closest route that comes to that level of service in that period is the 508 which was much closer to the city. Later timetables throughout the 90s are similar.

Moving further out, lets take the services around Ringwood / Lilydale. The 2001 timetable has services running every 20 minutes on the 664 until 6.50pm from Knox City on Saturday, and hourly on Sundays until the 6.34pm from Waverley Gardens; every 40 minutes on Saturday on the 670 until the 7pm from Ringwood; every 40 minutes until the 7.05pm from Waverley Gardens on the 691 on Saturday, and an hourly service on Sunday until the 6.34pm from Waverley Gardens, and even Sunday services between Lilydale and Warburton until the 7.05pm from Lilydale; and Lilydale and Healesville until the last bus on Saturday at 7pm and Sunday at 7.20pm.

All of this BEFORE MoTC.

Oop North, the only Sunday buses I am aware of north of Bell St were the 2 buses on Sundays to Whittlesea. I am not aware of any other Sunday service or post Saturday shopping past the 90s after the cuts when Jeff got in until MoTC.

By way of comparison, the566 timetable from 1997 shows a very limited service past 6.30pm between the Bundoora tram terminus and Lalor station, and early finish on Saturday and nothing on Sunday. The 571 which was the only cross country route north of the 566 was not operated under the Met fare system and operated weekday shopping hours and Saturday morning. The next major route south was the 513 whichin 1996 ran to reasonable frequencies and on Sundays but is nowhere near as far out as Ringwood.

Nowadays, a quick perusal of the Smartbus routes alone suggest that as far out as Stud Rd, the east has routes along Warrigal, Blackburn, Springavle and Stud Rds until midnight every night except Sunday. The 670 runs every 40 minutes until 7pm, then hourly until 9pm on Saturday, with hourly services on Sunday; the 664 has buses every 20 minutes between Croydon and Knox until 6pm then every 40 minutes then hourly until the 9.56pm from Chirnside Park on Saturday, with hourly services on Sunday until 9pm; and ditto for the 679, the 683 to Warburton, the 685 to Healesville and so on. I mean, for pity's sake, Healesville and Woori Yallock even have a NightRider!

Whilst I'm guessing your corner of the eastern suburbs may not have the frequent service on weekends and weeknights you would like, the eastern suburbs overall has hardly been the last bastion of transport poverty compared to the rest of Melbourne, actually it has done and is still doing probably better in terms of route coverage and hours of operation than much of Melbourne.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Heihachi_73 » Tue Sep 08, 2015 9:35 pm

I could only wish for the MoTC improvements to have actually been done. A number of routes already do a good enough job of running hourly, finishing early and not running on Sundays. :lol:

From the 1980s right up to the early 2000s, my suburb was Mooroolbark; not a lot has changed unfortunately; there are still no buses on Sunday, and minimal services on Saturday with hourly Telebus services finishing in the middle of the afternoon.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby jarf » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:16 pm

krustyklo wrote:Oop North, the only Sunday buses I am aware of north of Bell St were the 2 buses on Sundays to Whittlesea. I am not aware of any other Sunday service or post Saturday shopping past the 90s after the cuts when Jeff got in until MoTC.

Somewhere between those two time periods there was also the 569 which, of course, ran on Sundays only at a rather poor frequency. :wink:
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby crakening » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:50 pm

There are still a significant number of routes in even the inner northern suburbs without Sunday and usable Saturday services, even after many of the MoTC changes. As close in as Fitzroy North on the 506, and very large areas of Preston and Reservoir which are only served by routes 526 and 558 (last bus on Saturday is 12:21pm). It'd go a long way for these inner suburban areas to have some sort of usable public transport - it doesn't have to always be big ticket infrastructure to make a difference.
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Craig » Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:52 pm

Heihachi_73 wrote:From the 1980s right up to the early 2000s, my suburb was Mooroolbark; not a lot has changed unfortunately; there are still no buses on Sunday, and minimal services on Saturday with hourly Telebus services finishing in the middle of the afternoon.


There is a definite void of local bus services in the Croydon North, Wonga Park, Chirnside Park, Lilydale & Mooroolbark areas that run after 7pm or on Sundays.

While some arterial road routes in the outer east have had boosts, namely 663, 664, 670, 679, 688 & 690 as well as further afield to Warburton (683), the list of local routes overlooked for minimum standards upgrades in the area is long - 671, 672, 675, 676, 677, 680, 689, Area 1, Area 2, Area 3 & Area 4. And Healesville (685) still only has 5 trips a day on Sundays.

Closer to Melbourne, Transdev still has their work cut out to provide minimum standards across all Maroondah & Manningham residents. While most City services run excellent spans 7 days, as do the Orbitals, local routes across Ringwood North (370), Park Orchards (271), Donvale (273 & 309), Lower Templestowe (281), Greythorn (284) & Balwyn (285) generally finish after the evening peak and only run 6 days a week. 293 between Box Hill & Greensborough still only runs every 2 hours on Sundays, a service level introduced in 1994, prior to Sunday trading at the three major shopping centres it connects with.

This is not to say the upgrades in 2009 & 2010 were not a fantastic boost for these areas, and even the network changes last July saw doubling of Sunday services in Templestowe (295), Croydon Hills (380) & Maroondah Hospital (380), hopefully the stage 2 of the Greenfields program sees further improvements.

As for the east/south-east having a somewhat better fortune prior to the rollout of minimum standards 2006, this is overstating the reality a little. In 1996, suburbs south of the Belgrave/Lilydale line beyond the tram network could only rely on catching a bus on North Rd (630), Centre Rd (703 to Monash only & 733), New St (216, 219, 600), Black Rock/Beaumaris (600), Warrigal Rd (700), Stephensons Rd (733) or Dorset Rd/Wellington Rd/Police Rd (634), plus a limited service down the Mornington Peninsula (781 & 788). It's little wonder such a car-culutre developed in suburban Melbourne.

The 1990s timetable for 888/889 is a perfect example how dire things once were - the last bus departing Glen Waverley for Springvale was once 5:41pm on a Weekday. Northbound things were better, running until 6:06pm. While parts of the north enjoyed buses every 30 or 40 mins on a Saturday until the shops shut, Springvale Rd buses only ran once a hour until 2pm then every 2 hours.

888 1998 timetable & 889 1998 timetable

Locally, other than the upgrades to 888/9, I remember the highlight of Mordialloc East, Aspendale Gardens & Chelsea Heights (708) finally getting a Saturday afternoon service in 2002 and later in 2005 being extended from 5:55pm to 7:15pm, years after these suburbs were developed.

It might be fair to say that the east were slightly ahead of the game in getting upgrades over the next decade, particularly after 2002, but these were only incremental and largely limited to key routes - plenty of routes had to the wait until 2006 or 2007 before they were extended on weeknights and Sundays, and some key routes like 800 along Princes Hwy past Ikea and Springvale Crematorium are still being overlooked. But as crakening reminds us, the east is not alone - 468, 503 & 506 would be three routes in the north that should have been upgraded in the early stages.

Moderator Mercedes, it might be time to split some of this discussion into a separate thread?

Kind Regards


Craig :-)
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby BroadGauge » Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:50 pm

Not really related to Sunday service levels, but apart from Smartbus and Transdev (ex government) services, how many routes are there that actually have any service after 9pm? It seems to be the fixed cut-off time for nearly all suburban bus services in Melbourne.

All that I can think of are the Cranbourne East Trainlink (does anybody actually use it?), some parts of the new Wyndham network and I think in Endeavour Hills as well.

Elsewhere the standard seems to be for major suburban services to finish at midnight. I was staying a night on the NSW Central Coast a few days ago and the local buses were running until midnight, and that is not exactly the most happening or cosmopolitan place around.

Seems a bit annoying that routes declared as "major" in recent changes, for example the 420 in the newish Brimbank network, still finish at 9pm as if nothing happens after then.

Would be much more useful spreading the late night services around on busy routes rather than running things like route 279 every 30 minutes until midnight, which from my experience used to almost always have nobody on it half the time at night and is criss-crossed by three different Smartbuses that also run late :twisted:
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Re: New bus network for Epping North and Wollert

Postby Heihachi_73 » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:52 am

Without venturing (pun not intended!) too far off the track for this thread, Ventura route 670 apparently finishes at roughly 9PM, but AFAIK the last bus from Ringwood back to Lilydale is after 10, having caught it before when I've missed the train (not much of a difference I guess, and considering the last bus from Lilydale is still around 9, the same bus in fact, it's probably part of the deal). Usually if you miss the train after dark you're stuck at Ringwood for half an hour, and the 380 runs once an hour so odds on you've already missed it or you've got a long wait anyway; I don't know or whether it meets up at Croydon or Ringwood, for a Lilydale or a Flinders Street, or whether it meets up with any train at all (for all it's worth, it probably leaves five or so minutes before the train gets there like a lot of other buses, including a certain 901 to Melbourne Airport). I can't understand why most buses finish between 6 and 9PM either (profits aside), trains and trams have had no trouble running that extra hour or three for the past number of decades.

Then again, I can't understand a lot of things in the corporate world - for instance banks and post offices opening at 9 and closing at 5 (or even earlier!) to make sure it's impossible for Average Joe to ever make use of them, yet also making sure they're never open on any other day either (if you're lucky, they might be open for a few hours on a Saturday while the queue is out the door and three shop lengths back, helped by that single staff member at the counter). Even shopping centres have the 9-5 disease, with all but the supermarkets (and Kmart etc.) being closed by the time most people have knocked off; not even the food court stays open.
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