McGill's & Alexander Dennis
South East Transport Changes from 2 December
Featured Bus Route – October 2018
DATE FOR THE DIARY - 25th November - Finchley Bus Running Day
Alexander Dennis & Lothian
Buses on Parade
The non-Inner West bus routes to be privatised
Leeds Considering Hydrogen Powered Buses
New CEO for First Group & Results for Six Months to September 2018
Alexander Dennis at Euro Bus Expo 2018
One of the simplest bus routes in the public transport maze
that is Melbourne’s outer east is Route 680. It runs between the last two
stations on the Lilydale line, serving residential areas east of it. The
stations are a fair distance apart so few homes in the area are within walking
distance of the train. A route map is below.
The area map shows the 680 in relation to other routes and
stations. Its unique coverage is the residential area around Lakeview Dr. The
western portion near Mooroolbark overlaps the catchment of Telebus Area 3. And
around Lilydale there are overlaps with Route 663 and the almost entirely
duplicative 673 (described previously). The 680 operates in the seat of Evelyn, held by Bridget Vallence MP.
Route 680, like almost all bus routes in the Outer East has
seen minimal change in the last decade or two. Before that services chopped and changed quite a bit with the route number at one time being used for a Ringwood to Lilydale service. Although a fair distance from
Melbourne the outer east is not considered a growth area to the extent that
areas a similar distance to the west, north and south-east are.
Route 680 is slightly quieter than average, attracting 18
passenger boardings per hour on a regular weekday. This below average performance can be
attributable to low population density (the outer east typically has blocks
twice the size of new growth areas), demographics (parts of the outer east have
an older population skew that makes fewer trips), and factors such as car
ownership (higher in the outer east than some other areas). Aspects of the service and network, such as
operating hours and overlaps with other routes, may depress patronage.
On the other hand the presence of a TAFE near one end of the
route and the existence of reasonably strong termini at both ends (in this case
train stations and local shops) make it more productive than other local routes
such as the 663 (15 boardings/bus hr) and 673 (1 boarding / bus hr). Student
patronage Is also important for the 680 with non-school day patronage dropping
by a third to 12 boardings per hour.
This high dependence on students is typical of a limited-hours bus route
operating in a fringe area with high car ownership. In contrast bus routes with long operating
hours and higher frequencies attract a more diverse passenger base and hardly
drop in usage during school holidays.
Route 680 operates only on weekdays. As it common around
Lilydale and Mooroolbark it missed out on the minimum standards upgrades
implemented about ten years ago in most Melbourne suburbs. Consequently it has
no weekend service. Weekday service runs from 6am with a 7 or 8pm finish. This
means that it only barely covers the evening peak period especially for those
coming from Melbourne CBD or beyond. Services are roughly every 30 minutes
during peaks and hourly interpeak. The
timetables are below (click for a better view).
What would you do with the 680? Does it deserve a service
upgrade? Does it need to have other services overlapping parts of it? Or are
there routing changes that would improve its catchment population? Please leave
your thoughts below if you have any ideas.
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This item was written by Peter Parker http://www.melbourneontransit.blogspot.com
This article first appeared on melbourneontransit.blogspot.com
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