Thursday, April 26, 2018

PT lobby

sadviser June 15, 2011

Community appeals for rail improvements

By Nadia Surace

HELP US HELP OUR COMMUNITY… SheppartonRAILS Community Group members, Michaela Sargeant, Jason Kelly and Michael Welk are lobbying for improved rail services to Shepparton. Photo: Alicia ZeqirLOCAL rail transport improvement activist group, SheppartonRAILS and The Adviser are appealing to readers to take the group’s new community survey in a bid to gain more services between Shepparton and Melbourne.

SheppartonRAILS spokesperson, Michaela Sergeant says the Goulburn Valley deserves a comparable rail service to other major regional areas and, the survey could help seal a deal.

“Improved transport links to Melbourne are vital for economic, business and social reasons,” Ms Sargeant said.

“Shepparton suffers not only regarding the number of services per day, but also impractical timetabling, with the first train arriving in Melbourne at 9:34am, while Bendigo, Ballarat and Traralgon each have four trains arriving in Melbourne before 9am.”

SheppartonRAILS members developed the survey to provide locals with an opportunity to have their say on the issue, and back the group’s case for improvements with statistics.

The survey asks for opinions of the current service schedule, perceptions about benefits an improved service would see for the community and satisfaction levels and frequency of train use.

After closing the survey on July 15, SheppartonRAILS will prepare a submission with its findings for Minister for Public Transport & Roads Terry Mulder.

“We have more than 1,000 responses so far so this is proving to be an issue people care about, so readers are encouraged to take the survey to help this number to grow,” Ms Sargeant said.

To complete the survey go to: www.SheppartonRAILS.com.

Ms Sargeant says readers can also forward personal experiences and frustrations relating inadequacies of local rail services to: [email protected], or write to the local Members of Parliament and Public Transport & Roads Minister, Terry Mulder.

Regional centre services to Melbourne per day:

Ballarat: 24
Bendigo: 18
Shepparton: 3
Traralgon: 18