SOUTH Gippsland Shire Council conducted a community consultation on public transport services for South Gippsland in partnership with South and West Gippsland Transport Group (SWGTG).
And the results are in. Public transport, or the lack of it in South Gippsland, and Bass Coast for that matter. is a big issue.
The consultation involved nearly 200 people and as a result, Council and SWGTG are advocating for:
1. Four additional services running week days (Monday to Friday) between South Gippsland and Melbourne. This increase will assist people of all ages with accessing employment, education, medical appointments, as well as social and cultural activities.
2. Two additional services on weekends (Saturday and Sunday) between South Gippsland and Melbourne, with the focus being on a later bus service that allows people to spend a longer period of time at their destination and go out for sporting and cultural events.
3. Two additional services daily (Monday to Sunday) between Wonthaggi and Traralgon with a focus on both earlier and later additional services to allow people to take up work and educational opportunities in towns served by this route. This will also benefit people needing to access medical services in the Wonthaggi and Latrobe Valley areas.
4. A local bus service for Leongatha and Korumburra of at least four services per day that aligns with the enhanced north/south and east/west trunk routes. These services will particularly benefit young people needing to access post compulsory educational services, as well as older people and those without private transport to access medical services and town centre facilities.
5. Investigation of the potential for a flexi bus service for the coastal areas of South Gippsland, particularly during peak tourist periods from December to Easter.
It should be noted, says SWGTG that South Gippsland has no local bus services and they believe the area is highly discriminated against.
“Our major priority is to have South Gippsland treated fairly like similar sized areas and given adequate local, cross regional and Melbourne services.”
Also on the wish list
The South Gippsland Shire and SWGTG is also seeking an Integrated Transport Plan for South West Gippsland
“The absence of an integrated transport plan for South-Eastern region of Melbourne and of South West Gippsland will condemn it to continued declining transport accessibility to Melbourne. The Monash and Burnley Tunnel cannot cope with the rapidly expanding population. We are seeking a commitment for the development of an integrated transport strategy to ensure the sustainability and prosperity of the people, businesses and communities of the South-Eastern region of Melbourne and of South West Gippsland and guaranteed equitable, adequate and affordable transport accessibility to Melbourne within 20 years.”
Study on return of rail freight and passenger services to southern Gippsland
They are also seeking a commitment from the new State Government to:
• Conduct an initial feasibility study for creating a rail loop (SERL Loop) from Cranbourne around to Pakenham.
• Upgrade feasibility study and cost benefit analysis for the return of rail to Leongatha with its potential to service the expanding state strategic deposits of sand and quarry rock material in South Gippsland and the proposed Airport.