By: Fabian Cotter, Photography by: Supplied: The Department of the Premier and Cabinet (DPC)

PUBLIC TRANSPORT and general commuter input is being sought by the West Australian Government this November for Perth’s Central Area Transit (CAT) bus service review, with the data used to examine whether new or expanded routes are possible, it’s reported recently.

Perth MLA John Carey and WA Transport Minister Rita Saffioti are city bus CAT fans.

With the review said to seek optimisation of the free city shuttle service, "big data" will be used to examine passenger movements across Perth CBD. Passengers are urged to have their say in digital survey and community sessions, the McGowan Government states.

Arguably an already highly successful Perth bus service run by Transperth, this will be the first major review since the ‘Green CAT’ service was introduced in 2013. It specifically targets input from the public, CAT bus users, and key stakeholders including the City of Perth.

Part of the research will include investigating demand for a night-time 'Black’ CAT, which - subject to funding - could link residential developments, hotels and entertainment areas in East and West Perth with the city centre's main entertainment districts, the Government states.

As reported, Transperth is also collaborating with the Department of Transport, which is procuring for new origin-destination information, it claims. This data can be used to see where and when people in the central business district want to travel, so the state government can investigate how best to get them there, it states.

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A new passenger counting system will be installed on all Perth CATs by March 2019 to inform the review into whether there is a case to extend or amend the existing CAT bus network, it adds.

Transperth's free high-frequency CAT buses are among the most successful and well-regarded bus services on the metropolitan network, it’s claimed.

In this year's Passenger Satisfaction Monitor (PSM) - an annual survey of more than 4,000 regular Transperth passengers - 96 per cent of the 300 Perth CAT bus passengers surveyed said they were either satisfied or very satisfied with the CBD services, it states.


Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said: "Perth's CAT bus network is a high-quality, well-regarded public transport mode that has served the city well for years."

"Whenever I get on a CAT bus it's always busy, and it's clear from the PSM results how much people appreciate the service.

"With all the new development that's taken place in Perth - from Yagan Square to the Optus Stadium and our other growing and vibrant entertainment precincts - it's important we continue to look forward to ensure we're getting the best out of these services."

Perth MLA John Carey said: "At the Perth City Summit workshops I organised last year it became clear to me that people considered the convenient CAT bus services to be one of Perth's best assets."

"Along with an overall review into the CAT bus services, the review will seek feedback about a potential night-time 'Black' CAT service linking East Perth and West Perth to the CBD, connecting our key entertainment precincts.

"I'd urge all interested parties to take part in the consultation process to help us make the best of these fantastic services," he added.


The review will use a number of methods to seek feedback, including an online community survey in the new digital hub, My Say Transport and three community consultation sessions on:

Wednesday November 7, 10am-3pm (Elizabeth Quay Bus Station InfoCentre); Thursday November 8, 12.30pm-5.30pm (Perth Busport, Yagan Square entrance); and Friday November 9, 2pm-7pm (Perth Underground Station).

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