Free City Loop attracts over 1,200 boardings in first week

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Media Release: Meegan Fitzharris, MLA

Transport Canberra’s new free13619927_1626076574374051_6382776472149594452_n City Loop service has already built a fan base in its first week of operation, with more than 1,200 boardings in just five days.

“I am pleased to announce that in its first week of operation, the free City Loop recorded 1,233 boardings. This is a great result for this brand new service, and shows people want to move around our city in new ways,” Minister Fitzharris said.

“Passenger boardings were at their highest during the hours of 12 pm to 2 pm and 5 pm to 6 pm, which demonstrates people are moving around Civic more at lunchtime and in the evenings.

“The free City Loop is a convenient ‘turn up and go’ weekday service for commuters and connects with high frequency Red and Blue Rapid services and buses to the Parliamentary Triangle. The service also supports local businesses and helps Canberrans travel around popular areas in the CBD for free, including Braddon, New Acton, the Canberra Centre and ANU.

“Patronage is expected to increase further in the following weeks with the return of school and university students from their break.”

Minister Fitzharris today welcomed the Canberra Liberals’ support for a City Loop bus service, but said only Labor was committed to keeping the service free.

“The Canberra Liberals have today released their own city loop plan. It’s not free, it’s less frequent, it looks like a very long journey, and they project fewer people will actually use it than currently use our free City Loop.

“You can’t trust the Canberra Liberals on public transport. They have never had a consistent public transport position, except to tear up a contract for a project that they say we will need in 20 years.

“I’m interested in how we encourage more people to use public transport, rather than putting up barriers, which is what the Canberra Liberals plan does.

“As people become more familiar with the free City Loop service, I think it will become even more popular, and we’ve already had great feedback on the City Loop from a range of people and stakeholders, including the ANU. With more than 5,000 students living next to one of the City Loop stops, it is likely to be a very popular way to move around the CBD.

“The free City Loop service, launched on Monday 4 July 2016, links highly-frequented areas of the CBD such as the City Bus Station, Canberra Centre, Braddon precinct, Northbourne Avenue, the Australian National University and New Acton precinct.

“The launch of the free City Loop coincided with the launch of the new Transport Canberra agency, which is responsible for integrating buses with the new light rail, developing a single ticketing system and new coordinated timetabling, active travel upgrades and transport innovation.

“The City Loop is one of the ways the ACT Government is making public transport more frequent and easier to use. It’s all part of our plan to keep Canberra moving.

“The ACT Government is continuing to build an integrated, city wide transport network with a $17 million investment in the 2016-17 ACT Budget for new transport services, including $10 million for 20 new buses and a trial of electric buses,” said Minister Fitzharris.

More information about the free City Loop is available at www.transport.act.gov.au