Sunday, 23 October 2011

Analysis of Northern Suburbs Service Changes (Part 3)

This is the third part of a two-part series, here Parts 1 and 2 are available
In this third and final part of my analysis on the service changes that Transperth will be implementing from 6th of November, I will look at the changes in place for Mirrabooka’s buses. Previous parts 1 and 2 have looked at changes on Wanneroo Rd, feeder buses from Stirling, Warwick and Whitfords train stations, Alexander Dr, and two buses from Morley, one going through Alexander Heights and Ballajura. The Transperth page for these changes is here, and a map is here.
Services from Mirrabooka Bus Station will be given huge improvements, with increases in weekday off-peak and Sunday frequency, a simpler network with after-hours combined service reduced in favour of more service on regular routes, and simplified bus times for one route. The 354’s weekday off-peak frequency will be increased to every 15 minutes, extra peak services will operate, there will be an addition Saturday trip from Mirrabooka to Perth, and it will be serviced exclusively by low-floor accessible buses. The 870 will also receive extra peak services and TUAG (quarter-hourly) off-peak services on fully accessible buses, and there will be an earlier bus from Mirrabooka and later buses from Perth. Route 370 will have some small timing adjustments on Saturdays, will operate on Sundays co-ordinated with route 354 for half-hourly service between Mirrabooka and Perth, will be served only on disability accessible buses, and will have stand changes at Mirrabooka to Stand 1 and at Wellington St station to Stand 5.
On to feeder buses, Route 365 will have major timing changes with off-peak buses every half-hour, Sunday and extra weeknight service to replace the 363, and will become a fully accessible route, the 372 will have major timetabling changes done, with off-peak frequency upgraded to every 30 minutes on accessible buses only and Route 375 will also have major timetabling amendments with services every 2 hours, again only on accessible buses. 376 buses will receive major time changes, additional weekday off-peak and Saturday daytime services every half hour, and buses on Sundays, Route 377 will have major timing changes, with off-peak frequency upgraded to every half hour, the 378 will again have major time changes and an extra trip in each direction replacing, along with the 376 some withdrawn services on route 379, the after-hours service.
The increased frequency is clearly a plus for serving this busy area, and promoting further gains in PT use, where previously few feeder buses across the metropolitan area operated every half-hour. Frequency still won’t be up to the standards on Wanneroo Rd and Alexander Dr, but this is because every 15 minutes two buses will leave, the all stops 354 and limited stop 870, and although this isn’t felt at Mirrabooka, further down the route where the 870 has made a reasonable gain on the 354, waiting times will be shorter, in some cases better than on Wanneroo Rd and Alexander Dr.
In conclusion, all the changes such as frequency increases, more service on regular routes instead of combined after-hour routes and moves to more low-floor disability accessibility buses will drive increases in PT patronage in the northern suburbs, on a frequent, simpler, fairer and more attractive bus network.

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