Ipswich City Council seeks to work closely with the State Government and other stakeholders to improve the provision of public transport across the region.
A new iGO Public Transport Advocacy and Action Plan (PTAAP) presented at the Growth and Infrastructure Committee this week outlines four specific actions council will focus on to initiate the delivery of the plan ahead of the city’s population more than doubling from the current 220,000 to 520,000 by 2041.
– Council’s previous commitment to develop the Strategic Business Case for the Ipswich to Springfield public transport corridor;
– A review of council’s internal development policies and standards for public transport;
– A review of parking strategy in activity centres; and
– Advocacy for a joint planning study with the State Government regarding the future development of the bus network in Ipswich.
“For the City of Ipswich to grow, thrive and enhance the quality of life of its residents and visitors, there needs to be an effective public transport system,” said council’s Infrastructure and Environment Department General Manager Charlie Dill.
“This is because public transport is not only a means to relieving traffic congestion, it also plays a significant role in supporting the economic success of a city by connecting people to jobs and services, influencing the city’s urban form and reducing isolation and social exclusion.”
“Public transport also contributes to peoples’ health by increasing physical activity and supporting sustainability.”
A review of the existing Ipswich public transport network and consultation with stakeholders and the community to date has found resident satisfaction with the network is low; 39 per cent were unhappy or very unhappy with public transport in Ipswich and 36 per cent responded as neutral.
Further, almost 50 per cent of Ipswich workers work within the Ipswich LGA but only 2 per cent of them use public transport to travel to work.
The report said the need for effective public transport is becoming increasingly urgent in Ipswich. Additionally, iGO – council’s masterplan for Ipswich’s transport future – acknowledges that the city cannot afford to build its way out of congestion by continually adding more and more road space just for cars and that there needs to be a significant shift to more sustainable transport modes.
“Consequently, iGO sets an aspirational public transport mode share of 11 per cent by 2031.”
Mr Dill said the provision, management and operation of public transport in Ipswich is the responsibility of the State Government and its public transport operators.
“Council does not seek to take over these responsibilities but rather seeks to use its local knowledge of the Ipswich community’s transport needs to advocate for public transport improvements and undertake actions to support and prioritise public transport where appropriate.”
Mr Dill said PTAAP will be used to:
• Provide consistent, evidence-based messaging about Ipswich’s public transport priorities.
• Raise awareness of the urgent need for more investment in public transport in Ipswich and for council to provide support for this where possible.
• Assist with the development and maintenance of partnerships with key public transport stakeholders.