Remote service for NT

The Northern Territory Government has committed over $1 million in funding to provide bus services

Remote service for NT
Melville Island

A $1 million bus service is set to start up on the Tiwi Islands, improving transport access and connectivity.

Northern Territory Minister for Transport Peter Chandler says the government has funded the $1 million start up, to cover the cost of three buses with up to an additional $470,000 per year for running costs.

The Tuparipiya Bus Service will operate on Melville Island each weekday, providing a regular service between Pirlangimpi, Paru, Pickertaramoor and Milikapiti.

The service will also be available to operate on the weekends when community events are scheduled and will do so in conjunction with other Tiwi organisations such as the Tiwi Islands Regional Council who will also have their ferry service operating for those events.

Operations will be based in Milikapiti and will initially be managed by Bodhi Bus, a remote area passenger bus service provider with significant experience in the operation of remote and regional bus services to top end communities.

The bus operation will consist of three Isuzu buses each with a capacity of 28 seats.

Two of these buses are Four Wheel Drives. The buses are wrapped in designs consisting of artwork from six Tiwi artists.

Chandler is extremely proud to make the announcement with his Member for Arafura Francis Xavier Kurrupuwu.

The service will initially provide five locals with employment in the bus operations with 10 people undergoing training.

"The focus of this Government is to unlock the potential of the Northern Territory by developing and investing in our communities, supporting job creation, economic development and growth," says Chandler.

Kurrupuwu says he is excited to be part of this level of commitment from the government as it introduces jobs, training and connectivity for the Tiwi Islands.

"The service will provide significant opportunity for the community to access services for employment, health, social and cultural wellbeing in addition to assisting with economic development," he says.

A workshop at the Yapilika Forestry Centre, Maxwell Creek will be utilised in the short-term whilst a new workshop and training facility are constructed at Milikapiti.

The proposed construction of the new workshop is scheduled to commence by August 2016.  

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