A sixty metre long petition demanding the Victorian Government revisit its transport policy was today presented to the Victorian Government.

Mayors and Councillors from seven of Melbourne’s eastern suburban Councils – who represent about a quarter of Melbourne’s population – gathered on the Parliaments steps today to send a message to the Victorian Government that transport needs in the east are not being met.

Presenting the monster petition to the Minister for Transport, Martin Pakula, Eastern Transport Coalition Chairperson Cr Samantha Dunn said that Eastern suburbs residents have been neglected by Government for too long.

“It’s time this government looked seriously at providing sustainable transport options right across Melbourne rather than focussing on a few key electorates,” Cr Dunn said.

 “The Eastern Transport Coalition represents seven councils in the East whose residents are crying out for more public transport. The petition we’re presenting today has over 13,000 signatures, each one of them a demand of Government to end the neglect,” she said.

 Cr Dunn said that the ETC petition called on Victorian Government to address the significant gaps in the provision of and planning for public transport in Greater Dandenong, Knox, Manningham, Maroondah, Monash, Whitehorse, and Yarra Ranges.

The petition seeks commitments from the Government to modify the plan to include:

1. A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Rowville,
2. A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Doncaster
3. A greater commitment to the extension of the Metro rail tunnel from Domain to Caulfield,
4. A full and public feasibility study for an increase in capacity on the Belgrave/Lilydale and Glen Waverly lines,
5. Improved facilities for passengers, particularly at interchanges located in central activity districts – Ringwood, Dandenong and Box Hill,
6. Fully accessible public transport facilities and vehicles Cr Dunn said that there was still time for this government to make a commitment to Melbourne’s east.

“This election year provides a perfect opportunity for this government to show that it is listening to the million or so residents east of Warrigal road who are forced to drive their cars to work because they have few viable alternatives,” Cr Dunn said.

Cr Dunn thanked the Minister for Transport for receiving the petition.

“We’re pleased that all sides of Parliament are interested in our issues. Now it’s important that today’s gesture from the Victorian Government results in action,” she said.