Saturday, June 26, 2010

where is our transport policy?

the monster petition finds itself of the steps of parliament

Thursday was the day the Eastern Transport Coalition's Monster Petition was delivered to parliament. As the Chairperson of the ETC I had the job of presenting the petition to Minister for Public Transport, Martin Pakula.

Me handing the monster petition over to Minister Pakula, I was pleased to see the Minister accepting the petition on behalf of the one million residents in the East.

I was joined by Mayors, Councillors and officers from the seven ETC member councils which represent over 1 million Melburnians, around a quarter of Melbourne's population.

The petition, spanning some 60 metres, is the longest petition presented to government for some time and certainly the longest this century.

It was good to see all political parties meet the ETC on the steps of parliament. It is a recognition of the importance of the issue.

In speaking on the day I talked about the neglect of one million residents in the east, I asked the government to start doing their homework into sustainable transport solutions, like the Rowville and Doncaster rail.

I asked the Minister to focus the efforts of government across all of Melbourne, and not just a few key electorates.

This election year provides a perfect opportunity for this government to show that it is listening to the million or so residents east of Warrigal road who are forced to drive their cars to work because they have few viable alternatives

The monster petition, 60 metres long and signed by over 13,500 eastern residents, is a message to government to end the neglect. I was pleased to be able to present the petition to Minister Pakula on behalf of our communities.

It is important that we see some action from government on this issue, we don't want to see the petition condemned to the bowels of parliament house to gather dust, it is time to act on behalf of those million residents in the East who are crying out for sustainable transport solutions.

It was pleasing to see that all sides of Parliament met the ETC on the steps of parliament, Minister Martin Pakula, Terry Mulder – Opposition Spokesperson on Transport and Greg Barber – Greens Spokesperson on Public Transport were all there. It's clearly an issue that is important, now let's make sure that we see action.

The petition seeks commitments from the Government to modify the Victorian Transport Plan to include:

  1. A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Rowville,
  2. A full and public feasibility study for a heavy rail line to Doncaster
  3. A greater commitment to the extension of the Metro rail tunnel from Domain to Caulfield,
  4. A full and public feasibility study for an increase in capacity on the Belgrave/Lilydale and Glen Waverly lines,
  5. Improved facilities for passengers, particularly at interchanges located in central activity districts – Ringwood, Dandenong and Box Hill,
  6. Fully accessible public transport facilities and vehicles

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