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NEW data has revealed more patrons than ever are riding the Gold Coast light rail.
An average of nearly 1 million trips a month are being taken on the trams according to figures released by the Department of Transport and Main Roads today.
In the July-September quarter, passengers took an average of 70,575 more trips per month than in the January to March quarter, bringing the total to 949,687 trips a month.
An artist’s impression of how the Gold Coast light rail line will look when it is extended to Burleigh.Transport Minister Mark Bailey said Stage 2 of the light rail, which came on line in
December, had played a big part in increasing patronage.
“Before Stage 2 opened the average monthly patronage of light rail was about 665,000 trips and to now be approaching one million passengers in a single month shows the impact of the extension,” he said.
“The three new stations which opened as part of the Stage 2 extension recorded 78,000 trips in their first month of service and have continued to record big numbers since.
Almost one million trips a month are being taken on the light rail. Picture: Jerad Williams“More than 3600 trips are taken each day from the new stations, which have contributed to a 33 per cent increase in patronage across the network.
“The Stage 2 stations passed the one million trip mark in late September.”
The figures will be seen as giving a major boost to hopes of extending the tram system further south.
Planning is well advanced for Stage 3A, which will extend the line from Broadbeach to Burleigh, while Stage 3B is expected to further extend the line down the Gold Coast Highway to the airport. Spur lines west to Robina and Varsity Lakes are also being considered.
Matt Stone Racing's Bryce Fullwood and Todd Hazelwood, co-drivers in the Pirtek Enduro Cup, ride the light rail last month. Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the trams had proven invaluable during the GC600.Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the trams had proven invaluable during the busy GC600 event, ferrying passengers in and out of the motor sports precinct
“The trams carried more than 180,000 passengers across the GC600 weekend this month, making it the busiest GC600 weekend for the system to date,” she said.
“In previous years, light rail has carried between 160,000 and 170,000 passengers during the GC600, so it’s another record.
“Major events such as the Commonwealth Games and GC600 have shown that it is an invaluable asset.”
This article first appeared on www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au
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