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Author Topic: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped - now to continue  (Read 2140 times)

Online ozbob

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ABC News --> Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped

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Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped

Posted 14 minutes agoFri 6 Feb 2015, 9:03am

Late-night weekend train services in Perth are to be cancelled because not enough people are using them.

The late trains are a free service departing the city on all lines at 1.00am or 1.15am, and 2.15am on Saturday and Sundays.

The last train on each line would now leave Perth about midnight on weekends, the same time as weeknights, Transperth said.

"The numbers vary considerably, seasonally and from line to line," Transperth spokesman David Hynes said.

"However we're talking about an average of around 80 passengers per train, and some are only carrying 20 to 30 passengers.

"Public transport in WA is already heavily subsidised by the State Government to the effect of about 70 per cent.

"Though journeys on these late trains are free, each passenger costs the taxpayer more than $17, significantly higher than the average train passenger subsidy."

Cutting the services would save about $6 million over the next four years, he said.

The late-night trains would cease after the Easter long weekend.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2015, 08:26:51 AM by ozbob »
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Offline SurfRail

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2015, 11:05:46 AM »
I'd say Perth is at a point where they could run hourly or better bus services to the end of each line without much trouble. 

Mandurah and Joondalup could have split stopping patterns - particularly Mandurah where you might have an express to Rockingham, then Warnbro and Mandurah, and something similar running non-stop to Joondalup at the other end of the corridor.
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Offline Gazza

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2015, 11:23:56 AM »
Exacty, no harm in a night bus, especially since its late at night along a freeway with zero traffic.

Online ozbob

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2015, 01:28:02 PM »
WA Today --> Pyjama protest organised to stop late night train service closure
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Online ozbob

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2015, 07:53:26 AM »
Twitter

Aust Railway Assoc ‏@AustRail 10 seconds ago

http://tinyurl.com/krdvxyq  Late night #Perth #train users willing to pay to keep service
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Offline Arnz

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2015, 09:05:49 AM »
An hourly bus between 1am and 4am might suffice, like on the Sydney Trains network.
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Offline SurfRail

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2015, 01:09:16 PM »
You could cover Perth's rail network with 8 bus routes - all stations to Freo, Joondalup, Midland, Thornlie and Rockingham, with express or non-stop routes to cover Rockingham to Mandurah, Joondalup to Butler and Cannington to Armadale.  There are other parts of Perth not on the rail network that would probably benefit from night buses as well (eg City to Morley to Ellenbrook, City to Kalamunda via the GE Hwy etc).  Also has the advantage of allowing you to more closely serve the night-spots, so buses to Kalamunda/Thornlie/Armadale could go via the Casino precinct.

For the time being, they could try charging normal fares and maybe running the services an hour or so later like our Beenleigh/Ipswich/Caboolture runs do.
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Offline James

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2015, 01:51:59 PM »
I say let them pay and see how popular the service is - public transport is far cheaper than catching a taxi, not to mention you don't need to wait in a line for a taxi/get hit with Uber surge pricing, so I don't see usage declining too much.
Is it really that hard to run frequent, reliable public transport?

Offline wandering_fred

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2015, 03:50:38 PM »
I would wonder how many passengers leave the CBD on some of these routes at 10:00 a.m.?  I suspect 80 might be pushing it a bit on some trains. Even when I worked in Perth, and used the bus network, I never did see any publicity on the late night service.  Another issue I see is that midnight to 5:00 a.m. is the prime track maintenance window.

How about a night out ticket.  Four adults - any after 19:00 service each way - at four times the concession rate one way.  Though to be honest the trains (and buses) don't run frequently enough after 18:00 to entertain a trip to Northbridge or Freo.

Happy wandering

Fred

Offline SurfRail

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2015, 04:57:47 PM »
One thing I do expect to happen sooner rather than later is to extend the 15 minute frequency beyond the current 7:30-ish cut-off, which while it is still 7 days a week is actually worse than the 15 minute headway on offer on part of Brisbane's system at all hours and on the inner parts until generally 8pm after the Sector 2 timetable.
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Offline 950

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2015, 05:49:50 PM »
^ You've much more confidence then I have there! I'll be surprised if before the airport train starts, we get any improvements at all other than longer trains and a really small number of Whitfords trips extended to Clarkson (and only to replace A series trains based at Claisebrook with B sets based at Nowergup). I suppose years upon years of not even any timetable changes - assuming frequencies don't go backwards like now and in 2009 - have left me a bit jaded here. Compared to the multitude of bus upgrades, there just doesn't seem to be the mood for anything more than better capacity and (often foamy) new lines.

As for these service deletions - having nothing is clearly going over the top. Perhaps they could actually get away with charging a premium on normal fares, seeing as taxis are hardly cheap and (responsible) driving is less of a competitor than at most times of day?

I am also unconvinced by their "on average" argument for deleting the services if numbers fluctuate wildly throughout the year - could they retain the trains during busier times especially when events are on (Fringe World currently), and cancel them when they are only carrying 20-30 passengers? If not then at least run buses, even losing half the patronage will have loads twice that of the most successful of the now defunct night buses, and that's only replacing the 20 passenger trains!

I wouldn't much like a mix of both though during the year - if buses can viably provide a better service than the trains (and I like SurfRail's ideas here), then use them all the time. No point in doing an inevitably bad job of replicating train services with buses, without the high quality right-of-way.

Fred: this was from a few years ago when the 4am trains were trialled. I cannot recall anything since then though.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2015, 05:58:16 PM by 950 »

Offline #Metro

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #11 on: February 10, 2015, 06:30:15 PM »
In general, if you increase the price, the amount people use falls.
Charging more will see passenger numbers fall.


There are a number of options.
First is to increase funding though taxation levels, to supply the train service as a coverage service.
Second is to charge fares for the service to the users (which will reduce demand - death spiral)
Third is to charge users, but charge them at a different point in time (i.e. Nightpass or Eventpass preloaded on to the card - this concept could be extended to games and other events when there is high demand but cash handling is too impractical)
Fourth option is to bustitute the service

Toronto operates night bus services every night to the entire city; A triumph of network planning:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Night_Network

Quote
in 2005, several routes were added so that east-west service would run on every grid street instead of alternate ones in much of the city. This has brought the Blue Night Network up to a total of 24 routes, serving 97% of the city's population within a 15-minute walk.
There is no technically 'right' option, just a menu of options.
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Offline Gazza

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #12 on: February 10, 2015, 06:57:10 PM »
Zurich works fine by having a supplementary ticket for the late night network.

Offline #Metro

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2015, 08:22:51 PM »
How much would a fare raise? If the subsidy is $17, and maybe you charged say 30% of that $5 charge, numbers would go down further (erodes benefits), subsidy per passenger would go up (due to pax fall), and no real dent in the cost to administer would be achieved.

One would have to look at the comparative cost of bustitution.
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Online ozbob

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2015, 08:26:22 AM »
ABC News --> Perth late-night trains to stay after Minister backflips on cancellation
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Offline Gazza

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Re: Late-night weekend train services in Perth to be scrapped
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2015, 01:06:32 PM »
How much would a fare raise? If the subsidy is $17, and maybe you charged say 30% of that $5 charge, numbers would go down further (erodes benefits), subsidy per passenger would go up (due to pax fall), and no real dent in the cost to administer would be achieved.

One would have to look at the comparative cost of bustitution.

Not really because late at night you don't have a choice (Other than not drinking, or an expensive taxi/ still expensive uber), and partgoers are less price sensitive.

 

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