Date: June 2016
Author: Barbara Beard

The Liverpool-Parramatta T-way commenced service in February 2003. The transitway is 31 km long, has 35 T-way stations and links the Liverpool and Parramatta CBDs as well as providing transport to areas of Western Sydney not previously serviced by adequate public transport. Since the transitway opened in February 2003 patronage has increased from 9,566 passengers in the first month to 241,470 passengers in September 2007. Patronage of the transitway may not have hit usage targets in the first few years but now that petrol has passed the $1.50 per litre mark some lucky residents of Greater Western Sydney have a functioning public transport system already in place that gives them the option of leaving their car at home.

The transitway project was not completed without some controversy relating to finances, tender processes, suitability and lack of ministerial attendance at the opening (see http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/02/14/1044927802171.html ). In 2005 the Auditor-General stated “The LPT project is promising, but results to date are mixed” (p2, Auditor-General’s Report Performance Audit – Liverpool to Parramatta Bus Transitway). This appeared to be related to the patronage falling short of projections. For a copy of the Auditor-General’s report go to:

http://www.audit.nsw.gov.au/publications/reports/performance/2005/bus_transitway/bustransitway-contents.html. Whether or not projections are currently being met, there are almost 250,000 people per month who are choosing to travel the transitway, people who would need to travel by other means if the transitway were not available. 

In spite of cost blowouts and other criticisms there can be no doubt about the success of the transitway and its popularity. The graph below is based on figures provided by the State Transit Authority and illustrates how the level of patronage has consistently increased each year since the transitway opened. The monthly changes in patronage reflect the Christmas/New Year holiday period as well as the shorter Easter break and school holidays. The highest monthly patronage to date was reached in September 2007 with almost a quarter of a million passengers making use of the service in that month. The Liverpool Parramatta Bus Transitway was obviously needed and as such is a huge success with passenger numbers set to rise even further.

Source: STA, 2008

For information relating to the T-way (including links to timetables, routes and fares) go to:

http://www.t-way.nsw.gov.au/lp-home.htm

Unfortunately it has not been possible to obtain more recent data for an update of this paper (2013)