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Time to catch up on public transport

The report on the Senate Inquiry into Public Transport tabled today recognised a multitude of reasons why public transport is a vital part of our nations' infrastructure and that its significance will grow in the years ahead.

"The risk is that this report will join the many others in the recent past to have made similar recommendations, while governments' State and Federal carry on building obsolete infrastructure for an age that has passed," said Australian Greens Senator, Scott Ludlam.

In the 30 years to 2004 the Commonwealth spent $58 billion dollars on roads, $2.2 billion on rail, and just $1.5 billion on public transport.

"The emphasis is now swinging back to public transport, but we have five decades of catch-up ahead of us."

Trips made using public transport increased by 14.7 per cent from 2004 to 2008 in the eight capital cities.

The report recommends that any commonwealth funds made available for public transport be allocated to States and Territories with integrated, well planned transport plans.

"This is a shot across the bows for some states to urgently reassess their attitudes to public transport. There won't be any blank cheques - only states with coherent public transport plans and proposals will benefit. States that retain outdated planning policies favouring freeways over public transport will miss out."

"I hope that this report will play a role in focusing Government attention on the urgent need for a systematic re-prioritising of transport funding," Senator Ludlam said.

The full report can be found at:  


For more information or comment contact: Rachel Pemberton 0408 988 977

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