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Fairfield is not a priority for Transport for NSW, as it focuses on building the Sydney Metro.
The local population has grown by 12,000 since 2011 – and Transport for NSW has provided just 400 new train services and 39 new commuter car spaces in the local government area.
Fairfield state Labor MP Guy Zangari said the government had failed to provide for Fairfield ever-expanding population.
“It’s clear the needs of our community are not a priority for this Government,” Mr Zangari said.
“Since coming into office, I have consistently called on the Government to deliver better transport services for our community; we have seen nothing but bungle after bungle in return.”
Commuters arrive at Fairfield Railway Station, Fairfield, NSW, Australia, July 14, 2017. Photographs to go with a story about overcrowding on trains due to increased population in the area. (AAP Photo/Melvyn Knipe)Mr Zangari said the Government did not understand Fairfield’s unique transport needs – as diverse as the community itself.
“We still have commuters stuck without mobility-friendly access in Carramar, Yennora, Villawood and Canley Vale,” Mr Zangari said. “The existing services often struggle to keep up with the demand.”
A Transport for NSW spokesman said the $1 billion Transport Access program had delivered more than 6000 new commuter car spaces in recent years.
Of those, Fairfield received just 39 – despite gaining 12,000 new residents.
“In 2014, the Fairfield Transport Interchange was upgraded,” the spokesman said.
“Among the benefits of this upgrade was the creation of a 60-space commuter car park to replace replaced the old 21-space car park.”
Transport for NSW is also planning a new car park near the T-way bus station in Prairiewood.
Commuters arrive at Fairfield Railway Station, Fairfield, NSW, Australia, July 14, 2017. Photographs to go with a story about overcrowding on trains due to increased population in the area. (AAP Photo/Melvyn Knipe)The NSW Government also invested more than $1.5 billion in the More Trains, More Services program.
There are now 400 extra services on the T5 Cumberland and T2 South lines – but morning peak services via Fairfield’s local stations are still overcrowded.
Three morning peak services between Campbelltown and Parramatta are above 100 per cent capacity by the time they reach Merrylands station – forcing commuters to stand.
Cabramatta state Labor MP Nick Lalich also criticised the lack of progress.
“Another budget has passed and once again, the Liberals have ignored Cabramatta,” Mr Lalich said.
“This is a slap in the face as commuters will otherwise face the reintroduction of road tolls that could cost them as much as $900 a year.”
Mr Lalich said there was no real incentive for commuters to switch to public transport.
“This lack of funding for Cabramatta is a continuation of the State Government’s ill-treatment of the residents of southwest Sydney,” Mr Lalich said.
Commuters arrive at Fairfield Railway Station, Fairfield, NSW, Australia, July 14, 2017. Photographs to go with a story about overcrowding on trains due to increased population in the area. (AAP Photo/Melvyn Knipe)TRAIN STRAINTrain strain has hit Fairfield commuters on the T5 Cumberland line.
Three early morning peak services between Campbelltown and Parramatta are over capacity by the time they reach Merrylands, forcing customers to stand.
The rush-hour crush comes as no surprise as Fairfield’s population has grown significantly by 12,000 people – from 187,766 in 2011 to 198,817 in 2016.
However, a Transport for NSW spokesman said the service was keeping pace with Fairfield’s passenger demand.
“More than 400 extra weekly services (have been) added to the T5 Cumberland and T2 South lines since 2011,” the spokesman said.
Fairfield will also benefit from more than 160 new weekend services on the T5 line.
The additional services will provide commuters with direct access to Parramatta on the weekend, as well as Leppington and Edmondson Park in Sydney’s southwest.
ALL TANGLED UPThe 2013 train timetable shake-up is still playing havoc with many southwest Sydney commuters, four years down the track.
Changes designed to “detangle the network” and improve reliability on the Inner West, South and Western Lines instead reduced citybound services for customers at several stations.
Passengers between Carramar and Berala can no longer catch trains directly to the city from Liverpool – and the alternative method through Bankstown takes up to 13 minutes longer.
Roydon Ng from the Restore Inner West Line Community Action Group.Restore the Inner West Line Community Action Group spokesman Roydon Ng said the changes had a knock-on effect for Fairfield commuters.
“Those commuters that used the route abolished in 2013 are now travelling via Fairfield – and that increases the pressure on those services,” Mr Ng said.
He said Sydney Trains needed to cater for increasing demand.
“Public transport demand is increasing constantly,” Mr Ng said.
“Every effort should be made to utilise the infrastructure that is already there, instead of compartmentalising commuters into certain sections of the train lines.”
This article first appeared on www.dailytelegraph.com.au
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