Blue by Colour, Bright by Nature: Ginninderry’s Free Public Transport Offering

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Story in Summary:

  • New suburbs generally don’t have access to public transport until they reach approx. 2,000 residents (expected in Strathnairn towards the end of 2023).
  • To ensure public transport was an option for the first Strathnairn residents, Ginninderry purchased two blue buses and entered into an agreement with TCCS, which operate the service.
  • Nearly 30,000 trips have been recorded since March 2020.
  • Operates seven days a week, running every 30 mins from 7 am to 7 pm with an increase in frequency to 15 minutes during weekday peak periods.

Since its launch in March 2020, the free Strathnairn to Kippax loop service has been well-used by Ginninderry residents and broader West Belconnen, with nearly 30,000 trips recorded (assuming each trip is a return trip). This service links the suburb of Strathnairn to the Kippax bus interchange, Kingsford Smith School, and Macgregor Primary School. Providing access to public transport in new communities is important, and the Strathnairn Loop service was seen as an important offering from the day residents moved in. This innovative approach, since adopted elsewhere, was a first for Canberrans, who would historically have to wait until approximately 2,000 people are living in a new greenfield community before having access to a public transport network.

The numbers show that almost 8% of Strathnairn residents use the service regularly, higher than the ACT average of just over 6%. With one-third of the usage coming from students travelling to and from local schools, introducing bus services as residents move into new suburbs helps establish public transport use and travel patterns early on.

The Strathnairn Loop operates seven days a week, running every half hour from 7 am to 7 pm, with an increase in frequency to 15 minutes during weekday peak periods. The service also connects to local schools and the broader Canberra bus network, which provides access to regular services, including the Rapid 2, connecting passengers to Belconnen, the City, and Barton.

The data shows that patronage is increasing monthly, in line with the community’s growth, indicating that actual behaviour change is occurring.

For more information on the service, including timetables and route details, visit transport.act.gov.au or call 13 22 81.

Picture: Karleen Minney, The Canberra Times

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