NSW Government neglect of rail network will lead to overcrowding and late trains

Tuesday, April 11, 2017 | Dr Mehreen Faruqi

NSW Greens MP and Transport spokesperson, Dr Mehreen Faruqi MLC, has responded to today’s NSW Auditor General’s report ‘Passenger rail punctuality’ which has stated that there is no costed infrastructure plan to deal with impending capacity issues on the existing rail network, and this failure will likely  lead to more overcrowding and later trains by 2019 (page 16).

Dr Faruqi said: “The Auditor General’s report says that there is no costed infrastructure plan to meet the existing rail networks needs and it is likely that overcrowding and late trains will increase by 2019. The Government is obsessed by its privatisation agenda and has completely dropped the ball on the Sydney Trains network which hundreds of thousands of people rely on each day.

“They have deliberately neglected the current rail system meaning that by 2019, or even earlier, we will see significant overcrowding and more late running trains. Maybe this is part of the Transport Minister’s strategy to run public transport into the ground then selling it off.

“The Government can find billions of dollars for privatising multiple public rail lines but where is the investment in the Sydney Trains network? It seems that they aren’t interested in investing in the network unless they can flog it off.

“Add to this the two train lines at Epping and Bankstown they plan to close and separate from the Sydney Trains network and the next few years are shaping up to be a disaster for commuters.

“The Bankstown line, which the Government is proposing to rip up and privatise, is amongst the best performing lines for punctuality. This shows that the privatisation agenda is driving public transport decisions which is deeply disturbing.

“It’s time that this Government stopped its ideological quest to sell off everything and start investing in public transport for public good” she concluded.