Transport Minister Eric Charlton today released figures which show that more than 4,000 passenger trips a day have already been recorded on the first stage of a new Transperth Circle Route bus service.
"This new service, which started on February 16, has been an overwhelming success and with patronage figures running at double the initial estimate, Transperth has brought into service additional buses to cope with the high demand during peak periods," Mr Charlton said.
"Initial surveys have also shown there is an extremely high level of passenger satisfaction which is gratifying."
Mr Charlton said the new service provided a rapid cross-suburban link between major centres and other public transport services and delivered a high-frequency service between Fremantle Train Station and Oats Street Train Station (Victoria Park).
"The service has buses running at 15-minute intervals during the week and the public has embraced the service overwhelmingly," he said.
"This massive display of support from the travelling public demonstrates that the State Government's 10-year plan for public transport development in the Perth metropolitan area is well and truly on the right track.
"By gradually upgrading services and responding to passenger needs, we will continue to erode private vehicle commuter trips across the metropolitan area. This first leg of the Circle Route has passed every test and will go close to clocking up a staggering 80,000 passenger trips in its first month."
The popularity of the new service is due to the access it provides to Fremantle Hospital, Fremantle TAFE, Notre Dame University, Murdoch University, St John of God Hospital in Murdoch, Canning College, Curtin University, Bentley TAFE and Carlisle TAFE.
The next part of the three-stage program for the Circle Route is scheduled to commence in the first half of 1999.
The second stage will run between the Morley Bus Station and the University of Western Australia. It will link the Galleria Shopping Centre, Stirling Interchange, Innaloo Shopping Centre, Edith Cowan University Churchlands Campus, Royal Perth (Rehabilitation) Hospital and Queen Elizabeth II Medical Centre.
The final stage, which will link the first two stages and complete the circle, is planned for the year 2000.
Media contact: Doug Cunningham 9321 7333