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Public Transport

Public transport - such as trains, light rail and buses - connect people with places. Using public transport enables people to fit a little more activity into their daily life by walking or cycling to stations and bus stops. It also limits the socially and environmentally negative impacts of car use.

To encourage increased public transport use and thus incidental physical activity, services need to be accessible and reliable, and host environments safe and connective. Planning of public transport services and facilities (such as location of stops and transit-supportive activities) should be considered in conjunction with land use plans and new development projects. This requires consultation between planners, engineers and public transport service providers.

Design objectives

  • To establish and promote clear and direct walking routes to public transport stops.
  • To provide attractive, safe and convenient public transport facilities, environments and services for users.

Design considerations

  • Make public transport an easy option, by planning at either end of the journey clearly signed, well-lit and direct routes for people walking and cycling to public transport stops. Be pro-active in creating routes that are safe (in terms of both road and personal safety) and attractive to a range of potential users. Bus stops should ideally be located within easy walking distance from most homes.
  • Design of roads within key strategic corridors and centres so that they assign a high priority to public transport.
  • Locate active land uses such as corner shops near public transport stops (and vice versa), and ensure stops and access routes are clearly visible from surrounding development.
  • Major public transport facilities (such as bus/rail interchanges) and even local facilities can be integrated into retail and commercial developments to form a viable and convenient mixed-use, after-hours precinct. Concentrate the highest appropriate densities of housing, employment, services and public facilites in centres within an acceptable walking distance (400 metres for bus, 800 metres for train) of major public transport nodes, such as rail stations and high frequency bus routes. 
  • Providing secure bicycle parking at public transport facilities can help make cycling more convenient.
  • Public transport stops should ideally have attractive, safe, well-lit , clean and comfortable waiting areas with adequate amounts of seating and shelter, as well as information on available services.
  • Provide access for all users, including older people and people with disabilities. This requires consideration of gradients and ramps, kerb heights, tactile tiling and signage.
  • Adopt development controls that limit car parking in locations that are accessible by public transport.
  • Provide public transport as early as possible in the land development process, to encourage use, and deter the developmnet of car-dependent communities

Key references

Additional resources

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