Federal Election Result

By: Chris Thompson

Regardless of the Coalition election victory, the future of public transport looks bright

Federal Election Result
Turnbull’s enthusiasm for public transport has changed the Liberal party’s stripes

Malcolm Turnbull has informed Sir Peter Cosgrove, Australia’s governor-general, that he and the Coalition can form a government.

What this means for public transport budgets promised during the eight-week election is still unknown, but bus industry leaders are optimistic.

As is usually the case, the Greens and the Labor party had announced fairly generous funding for various large projects, if they were given the opportunity.

Instead, the Coalition is to be tasked with Australia’s public transport projects and, under Turnbull’s leadership, the mood within the party has shifted.

Bus Industry Confederation executive director Michael Apps says Turnbull’s enthusiasm for public transport has changed the Liberal party’s stripes.

"The reality is that Labor led the way into public transport," Apps says.

"But the Liberals, under Turnbull, announced their own movement into public transport."

He says now that the three major parties are all involved, Australia has a win-win situation for public transport funding.

"It’s good that we’ve got tri-partisan agreement on PT’s role in Australia.

"They’ve all had a good start, now we just need to see them put some solid meat onto their public transport policies."

Bus Association of Victoria executive director Chris Lowe agrees, saying the focus on metropolitan areas has pushed public transport up the ladder of priorities for the major parties.

"Who’s in power now, I think, is less of a concern," Lowe says.

"Public transport in cities is really well placed, because the Greens, Liberal, and Labor all went to the last election with a ‘cities’ agenda, and that’s great."

The new government will be sworn in upon the return of the governor-general from France.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up to receive the ABC e-newsletter, digital magazine and other offers we choose to share with you straight to your inbox

You can also follow our updates by liking us on Facebook