Friday, February 6, 2015

ACT Government Light Rail Master Plan update for Dec 2014

The ACT Government have been working away on a territory wide light rail master plan. In December 2014, ACT Planning Minister Mick Gentleman released this 'update'.

What is the Light Rail Master Plan aiming to do? From the December update:

The Light Rail Master Plan will identify light rail corridors as part of future long-
term transport network planning, where light rail and buses together could
offer a sustainable transport solution that delivers improvements across the city.

This will integrate modern, efficient and reliable light rail and buses with the
promotion of active travel that encourages people to walk and cycle.

The development of a Light Rail Master Plan is underpinned by Transport for
Canberra and the ACT Planning Strategy, which plan for Canberra’s continued
development into the future as a liveable and connected city. Light rail can also
make a significant contribution to our climate change strategy (AP2). As with all
public transport that encourages walking as part of its use, light rail will contribute
to the ACT’s Healthy Weight Initative.

The Light Rail Master Plan will:

•identify major transport corridors and hubs for future expansion of the light
rail network
•encourage development along major transport corridors and in key centres
consistent with the ACT Planning Strategy and Transport for Canberra (see map
on previous page)
•preserve transport corridors to ensure future delivery of an efficient light rail system
•integrate light rail and buses together to form the future public transport network.

It also provides a map of Canberra with indicative light rail/mass transit routes.

It shows quite a wide network, all the way to Lanyon in the south, and stretching to the main town centres, Russell, the Airport and Queanbeyan.

This is in line with the mass transit  routes recommended in the 2031 transport for Canberra Plan.

Of greater interest is that it is a step away from the hub and spoke network favoured by ACT Transport planners, where the transport network extends from Civic to the Town Centres. By showing links to Kippax and Lanyon, it is a clear sign of new thinking - that public transport should extend to where people live, and take them to where they work.

The ABC reported on the Light Rail Master Plan update here.

ABC TV Canberra also carried a report:

For more frequent updates on Capital Metro and light rail related news, please visit our Facebook page 'Light Rail for Canberra'.  

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