18 March 2012

Tonsley Train Service; Notice of Motion

I was contacted by a resident a few weeks ago as she had been having difficulty in getting a response for the state government over the cancellation of the Tonsley service and the disruption this was causing to herself and others. My understanding is that the train service has been temporarily suspended due to insufficient track space while the new hospital is being built. What she complained of was lack of any consultation from the consumers of the service and lack of care in the disruption to the lives of these people. As a result the following will be debated at Council on March 26th;

1. A letter be sent to the Minister for Transport and Infrastructure and the Minister for Transport Services with copies to local Members of Parliament (state) expressing concern at the lack of information and options provided to the community regarding the closure of the Tonsley Line train service.
2. The Ministers give consideration to adding extra carriages on the Noarlunga line to cope with the extra number of people now forced to use this alternate service.
3. The Ministers continue to keep both the City of Unley and affected residents aware of any further changes that are likely to occur.

A summary of the concerns are:

  • a lack of thought, planning and cross-departmental consultation at a time when the population is growing and the government ‘encourages’ public transport use and transit-oriented development

  • the announcements were made without any alternatives planned
    there was a long wait for the new timetables which were released on 20th February
    workers are disadvantaged and treated disrespectfully, while those wanting the train ‘after hours and on the weekend’ are serviced

  • a belief that near-city residents have more choice in public transport but this is not true – we are by-passed by express services and/or full services (the Tram is often full and does not stop).

  • the alternative arrangements increase travel time

  • a concern that the closure of the Tonsley train service will be a permanent measure

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