Posted by: Gregoryno6 | February 10, 2018

Knowing what the news doesn’t tell you is half the battle.

Headline in The West Australian:

Renewed calls for congestion tax as Perth commuters desert train and bus networks.

Perth commuters are continuing to desert the city’s train and bus networks, prompting fresh calls for a congestion tax to make car driving less attractive.

The latest public transport patronage figures show more than two million fewer journeys last year compared with 2016, down to just over 140 million.

I’ve seen a drop in numbers on my daily commute bus route, but I’ve been using that bus for ten years and the drop in numbers was obvious at least five years ago. I’d attribute that to new alternative routes that stick to the main roads rather than meander through the back streets.

Also, as a public transport user, I wouldn’t say my travel times have increased much – which is what I’d expect if there were more people commuting solo in their car.

But the blatant omission from this story is the rising cost of public transport usage. Fares have risen about ten percent every year for the last three or four years. Transperth patrons are beginning to feel like an easy target for greedy governments. Just like smokers – or even motorists!

Call me cynical, but this has the whiff of a softening-up exercise.

 

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