Little faith in public transport

Members of the community do not expect an improvement in public transport

Australians do not believe the public transport system will improve, a major survey has revealed.

University of Sydney Business School Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies director David Hensher says consumers lack confidence, even though big money is being invested in public transport.

"Despite promises of significant investment in transport infrastructure, the public is clearly disappointed with their governments’ inability to make a noticeable difference to roads and public transport," he says.

On an index established at 100 in March 2010, public confidence in an improvement in local transport over the next year now stands at 54, down from 94 at the end of 2013.

Public confidence in an improvement in transport conditions nationwide in the next year has fallen from 104 to 56 while confidence in an improvement over the next five years has fallen since 2013 from 101 to 65 points on the TOPS index.

The most pessimistic states were South Australia and West Australia.

Respondents say they would like to ride a bike to work or school, safety worries discouraged them from doing so. About a third say they are scarred of aggressive driving behaviour, heavy traffic and a worry about the lack of safe cycling infrastructure.

"There remains a significant challenge to provide appropriate road space and education of car and truck users, so that there is a much safer environment for non-motorised modes of transport to support healthier lifestyles," Hensher says. 

This study is the only national survey to measure public opinion on transport related issues.

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