Victoria Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder
Popular Monash Uni Bus Celebrates One Year On The Road
Victor P Taffa
The popular Route 601 express bus from Huntingdale station to Monash University has this week celebrated its one year anniversary, and will be ready for even more passengers when semester two begins next week.
Visiting Monash University’s Clayton campus today, Parliamentary Secretary for Public Transport Edward O’Donohue said that although it had only been operating for a year, Route 601 was already one of the most popular bus routes in Melbourne.
“Route 601 has quickly become one of the most popular bus routes in Melbourne, carrying up to 22,000 passengers a week last semester.” Mr. O’Donohue said.
“Recent surveys show that since we introduced Route 601 a year ago, bus patronage has more than doubled on the Huntingdale to Monash corridor. So this new bus route hasn’t just added extra bus services for existing passengers; it’s actually attracted thousands of new passengers to catch the bus.”
Mr. O’Donohue said that although bus passenger numbers had more than doubled between Huntingdale and Monash University, there was still room for more people on the buses.
“In April we added an extra vehicle to this bus route to cater for expected patronage growth, meaning that there are now four buses operating continuously over this 2.5 km stretch between the station and the university.”
“Our surveys show that although there is a spike in passenger numbers just before 9:00 am and just after 5:00 pm, the majority of buses have surplus capacity, so there is still room for more people to jump on board as word spreads that the bus is a convenient transport option.”
Mr. O’Donohue said that the data also revealed the bus was not only being used by students.
“Passenger surveys also show that around 10 % of trips are in the counter-peak direction, which suggests that it’s not just university students and staff using the bus; it is also becoming a popular option for local residents who want to connect with trains to commute to the City.
Mr. O’Donohue said that the new Route 601 bus was popular enough during its trial period that the Coalition Government had decided to make it a permanent bus route.
“I am pleased that following a successful trial period, we have been able to ensure Route 601 is here to stay, with $5.5 Million allocated to the bus route in the 2012-13 State Budget.” Mr. O’ Donohue said.
Member for South Eastern Metropolitan Region and Parliamentary Secretary for Education Inga Peulich said that Route 601 had helped to address a real transport need in the local community.
“It’s clear that the bus is so popular because it’s the most frequent and direct public transport option for students travelling from Huntingdale Station to Monash University, with services approximately every four minutes during semester time.”
“I invite students to leave their cars at home and to jump on board the Route 601 bus when semester two begins.” Ms. Peulich said.