Boss for a day: The results
Bus drivers were recently asked to submit their ideas to Bus Express for how to improve STA bus services in Sydney.
Drivers were asked what they would do if they were the “boss for the day” and we were flooded with excellent, practical ideas.
The key things that drivers focused on in their responses were easing city congestion, improving the use of transit lanes, simplifying fares, improving buses and bus stops, increasing services and consulting more effectively with drivers.
A summary of these suggestions is below and will form the basis of a submission in the RTBU’s latest policy document and contribution to the NSW Long Term Transport Master Plan.
Ease City Congestion
– Ease congestion at Wynyard by:
* Blocking car access to Grosvenor and York streets at peak times and feeding cars into the city centre via the Cahill Express, Western Distributer or China town;
* Diverting through buses to central to a bus lane on George St;
* Use Jamison St as a termination point for special buses in and out of the city.
– Limit car access generally to the CBD
– Ease bus traffic itself by:
* Terminating in-bound bus services at the fringe of the city with interchanges connecting commuters to one regularly running shuttle bus within the city such as the 555; or by
* Building a bus terminus in the CBD to stop buses congregating on already busy streets and facilitate easy interchange with other modes of transport.
– Better policing of transit and bus lanes.
– Increase bus lane operation times
– Give powers for STA to book and remove illegally parked vehicles.
– Increase the number of bus lanes – e.g. King St/City Rd
– Introduce T3 lanes during weekends along arterial roads.
– Paint curbs yellow along bus lanes to mark them clearly
– Remove cash fares or simplify ticketing by:
– Looking at potential new technology and strategies for ticketing, e.g. smartphone technology for ticketing
– Removing charges for pensioners and school children
– Introducing one standard fare no matter how far, or where a commuter is travelling
– Stop using bendy-buses, which can be unwieldy and increase congestion, and start using double decker buses.
– Put lights on the “give way” signs when buses are pulling out.
– Provide more services to facilitate easier movement around the city e.g. West Ryde to Macquarie Centre.
– Stop using timetabled bus services and start running buses every 5/10/15 minutes depending on what is needed.
Improve Bus Stops
– Build bus shelters along all Metro routes that could be funded by an advertiser
– Remove underutilised bus stops and ensure bus stops are at convenient locations – not just after traffic lights.
– Ensure new signs, power poles, trees are moved away from the curb along major roads so they do not impede buses.
– Install destination information at all bus stops along major roads.
Consult with bus drivers
– Require management and office staff to spend one 8-hour shift with a driver to help them understand the work driver do every day and the general feeling towards the service from the public.
– Surveying and talking to both drivers and passengers regularly about what is working on the network and what isn’t.
– Ensure any changes to the system are discussed with drivers before they are implemented.