The Commuters Count Summit on April 9 will be a forum for members of Parliament and the community to discuss current plans for Melbourne’s public transport network and concerns about future public transport priorities and spending.
Speakers will include Parliamentary Secretary for Transport, Gary Blackwood, Shadow Minister for Planning, Major Projects and Infrastructure, Brian Tee and Leader of the Victorian Greens Greg Barber, as well as RACV’s General Manager for Public Policy, Brian Negus and Paul Barton from Monash University.
ETC Chairperson, Cr Peter Lockwood said public transport in the east was shaping up as a key issue for the coming State Election after three out of four people in a recent survey said the delivery of rail projects needed to be accelerated and delivered sooner than the 2025-50 schedule the State Government has currently set for Melbourne Metro, Doncaster Rail and Rowville Rail.
“The aim of the summit is to generate debate about how current and future state budgets can be used to satisfy the transport needs of Melbourne and particularly the outer eastern suburbs,” Cr Lockwood said.
“To achieve a reliable, integrated and world-class public transport network for Melbourne, governments must increase their investment in rail, and public transport infrastructure generally.
“The ETC is inviting decision makers and members of the community to come together to discuss and debate the public transport issues which recent polling has shown are a key concern for people in the eastern suburbs.
“We would hope that all local members of Parliament and candidates standing at the next State Election will take this opportunity to hear from the community and take part in a discussion about the future development needs of our city.”
A recent Eastern Suburbs Transport Poll, conducted by Essential Research for the ETC, found that 64 per cent of residents rated improving and expanding public transport as a top or very high priority.
The survey of more than 1000 residents in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs also showed that a significant majority of swinging voters were more likely to vote for a party that committed to building key rail projects as well as the East West link.
Cr Lockwood urged all those with an interest in improving Melbourne’s public transport to join the discussion either at the summit which will be held on Wednesday, April 9 from 9am at the City of Greater Dandenong community facility at Springvale Reserve, Newcomen Road, Springvale, via the ETC’s Commuters Count Facebook page or the hash tag #commuterscount on Twitter.