What’s better than a $ 2 train fare? Public transport that works

The Victoria opposition recently pledged to reduce metro public transit ticket prices to $ 2 if elected, at a cost of approximately $ 1.3 billion.

The suggested savings of $ 3,600 per household per year are certainly significant enough to have an impact, but something else that could impact is a functioning, safe and operational public transit system.

If you’ve ever taken a train, bus, or tram in Victoria, you know three things are true: it won’t be on time (late or early are both fine); if it is hot, cold, hot-cold or cold-hot, everything stops working; and, in some parts of the state and even in the Melbourne metro, there is none at all.

So I thought of other tips for state governments looking to fix our ailing transportation system. Here they are, for free (this is a tip).

Related: Unlimited travel for $ 2 a day: how does the Victorian opposition public transport proposal stand?

Make it safe

As a woman using the train, I can’t count the number of times a guy has “set up his backpack” in such a way that my body is somehow involved as well. It is criminally common, it is systemic. A 2019 study found that 80% of college students reported having been the victim of sexual gestures, comments, advances, groping, or being followed on public transport in the past three years.

Being alone in the carriage is scary. Being among other people in a carriage is scary. Sure, I have a variety of anxiety disorders, but it’s common among my friends to avoid public transport if it’s dark, late, early, rainy, muggy, or far away, for personal safety reasons. Tips: Well-lit and covered platforms / shelters, lower handles, staff that don’t harass people, and a button to press when the person next to you pretends to adjust their belt but is actually attacking you.

While we’re here, some fresh air would be nice, given it all.

Make it easier

Those new, secure staff members might even accept ticket payments. They might even let you do it after you get on board, instead of realizing too late that you have no credit and being forced to stand in the rain until the next bus arrives, which could be in five minutes and never again.

Also: I am very disorganized, so I often arrive at a train station without half of the things I need. In your next engagement, consider: a clean linen vending machine, a Japanese-style bento service, an on-board bartender, office replacement passes, the breakfast I forgot to have, and a place to hire large parrots they can fill up. the place next to you instead of strangers who are sometimes clingy (see above).

Related: My therapist suggested that I speak to my inner child. I thought she was joking, but she changed everything | Anna Spargo-Ryan

Make it clean

When was the last time you visited a train station bathroom that didn’t have an empty Gatorade bottle in the bowl? Who can tell?

Make it accessible

If you have to stop a service to set up a ramp for someone’s wheelchair, it’s not accessible. If a person using a mobility aid has to climb the steps of a bus, it is not accessible. If a tram does not have audio and visual cues for the stop, it is not accessible. If it doesn’t exist, it’s not accessible.

There is no joke in this section. Make public transport equally available to everyone.

Make it Internet-enabled

One of the big complaints that emerge from all those with a vested interest is that people are not returning to CBD fast enough. Two reasons come to mind: the rising cost of living means we can no longer afford mobile data to watch our social media stories, and no one knows when their bus will arrive.

Solution: free wifi on public transport, including charging ports for our devices. Instead of working from home, we could work from train / tram / bus! Just back and forth from Hurstbridge to Flinders Street all day, sending emails and attending Teams meetings. It will be the most we have traveled to CBD / away from CBD / returning to CBD in recent years.

Make it free

This is controversial. Some of the arguments against gratuitousness include “people would buy fewer cars” and “people would use too much public transport”, which is to say that raising JobSeeker is bad because “everyone could have food to eat”.

As we suffocate in the clouds of greenhouse gas emissions, the value of public transport is becoming clearer. Making the bus, tram or train an easy first choice is good for the environment, air quality, community health, bank balances, the economic impact of flows, congestion and mobility.

This election year, instead of $ 2, make it free. Let the Victorians get on public transport so they can go to a job interview, spend time with their families, take care of a friend, or just visit a town with a great bakery.

Or, you know, implement one of these other things. We are looking forward to hearing from you.

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