Berejiklian’s light rail to be caught short in peak hour
When NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s controversial $2.1 billion CBD light rail opens in 2019, it will have 1000 more people wanting to use it than what her Transport Minister has said is its capacity.
Documents obtained under freedom of information show that in a Transport for NSW “CBD and South East Light Rail Project Benefits Realisation Plan”, dated April 2015, the document puts demand for the light rail at “14,547 morning peak one-hour demand growing at an annual rate of 1 per cent to 16,935 in 2036’’.
Yet in an answer to a question on notice from a budget estimates committee delivered last month, Transport Minister Andrew Constance said that from early 2019 light rail would have 15 services operating in each direction per hour, “meaning total hourly capacity is 13,500 in both directions”.
The Transport for NSW document also contains figures for demand “modelled for the business case” of the project — an earlier estimate — which has demand at 17,866 one-hour peak demand in 2021 growing to 22,533 in 2036.