Wednesday 22 March 2000 For immediate release
19,000 more seats on V/Line train services every week
Managing Director of V/Line, the principal operator of country train services, Mr Geoff Smithwick today announced the introduction of 140 extra services and 19,000 more seats a week from 10 April.
At the official launch, the Minister for Transport, Mr Peter Batchelor welcomed the introduction of the new services. "The country rail and coach network has a vital role to play in linking Victoria. The improvements announced today bring Melbourne and regional Victoria closer together and mean more seats, on more services, more often."
"The Bracks Government has a strong commitment to working with the private operators of Victorias transport system to introduce better services for the Victorian community. Todays announcement is a significant step in delivering improved services. We look forward to working closely with V/Line in the lead up to its July review of the entire V/line network to support the best outcome for all Victorians," Mr Batchelor said.
Many of the improvements meet requests from passengers for more frequent services, in particular between Melbourne and Geelong, Traralgon, Melton, Bendigo, Craigieburn and Seymour.
"We're providing extra services at peak times where we can fit them in and a more frequent service off-peak where there are currently long gaps between trains," said Mr Smithwick. "There's a limit to what we can do with our existing fleet, so these are just the first of many service improvements to come. Further improvements will follow the completion of our review of the entire V/Line network in July and the introduction of 29 new trains from 2003."
The improvements on weekdays will mean:
For the Geelong line
- A service every 20 minutes in the morning peak between Geelong and Melbourne, instead of a 45 minute gap between services
- A service every 15 minutes in the evening peak between Melbourne and Geelong, plugging gaps of 20 minutes between services
Details of the new services and new timetables will be available to passengers from 27 March. Passengers requiring further information should contact the V/Line information centre on 136 196.
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