Bringing better buses to Brimbank: implementing bus network reform in Melbourne

In July 2014, Public Transport Victoria (PTV) introduced a new bus network in the Brimbank area of Melbourne’s western suburbs. The network featured more direct and frequent services, better connections with trains, buses finishing later at night, Sunday services on all routes and better connections to key local destinations. This paper analyses the early patronage performance of the new network, and examines the contribution made by its service design features. The bus network was developed through an extensive analysis of demographic, patronage data, travel surveys, community consultation and advice from bus operators and local government. Available funding for bus service improvements was limited, so the design emphasised providing a cost-effective network that addressed community needs. This paper evaluates how aspects of the network design have performed relative to their intent, including increased span of hours, tailoring frequency to time of day patronage, and providing new, more direct routes. The new network saw 10% patronage growth within the first six months, relative to a 16% increment in timetabled service hours, which is significantly stronger than international short-run elasticity evidence for increased service levels. Our analysis suggests this growth can only be explained by a combination of both increased service levels and improved network design.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: 15p
  • Monograph Title: Informing transport's future through practical research: 37th Australasian Transport Research Forum, 30 September to 2 October 2015, Sydney, New South Wales

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01586967
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ITRD, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jan 14 2016 11:44AM