March 21, 2011
Residents in NSW don’t believe transport in their local area will improve after the election according to the latest TOPS survey from Sydney University.
The Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies-Interfleet Transport Opinion Survey (TOPS) reveals 14 percent Australians see infrastructure as one of the highest priority issues in Australia today.
Seven percent of Australians nominated transport.
However, predictably, half those polled in the March quarter say the biggest priority issue for transport in Australia is improvement to public transport, with the highest level of support coming from Victoria.
With an election around the corner, the survey shows NSW residents are not confident transport in their local area will improve.
More than three quarters of NSW residents think transport in their local area will be the same or worse in a year.
“As NSW looks almost certain to move to a new era with a change in government, the absence of increased optimism about NSW’s increasingly squeezed transport systems, means significant challenges for a new government,” says Institute Director Professor David Hensher.
“This has pattern has remained fairly constant since the first survey was published last March,” Professor Hensher says.
“Transport debate during the campaign has rarely digressed beyond which rail project to build first or freeway extensions, which appears not to inspire much confidence from the public.
“However the coalition’s announcement about Bus Rapid Transit will hopefully start to change this.”
The survey also shows an increase in NSW residents who think states are the branch of government most responsible for transport in Australia.
“Sixty four per cent of NSW residents think the state is most responsible for transport, compared with 57 per cent last quarter,” Professor Hensher says.
“We saw a similar level in Victoria before that state’s elections late last year.”
Despite the NSW result, the TOPS index of Australians’ confidence in transport in their local area has increased from the base of 100 in March last year.
Professor Hensher attributes this to the perceived stability of transport outside of Sydney and Melbourne.
The first national survey to measure transport opinions on a regular basis, TOPS is a reliable indicator of Australians’ ongoing confidence about transport in their local area and transport in Australia.
The Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies at the University of Sydney Business School conducts research in transport, logistics and supply chain management.
Interfleet Technology is one of the world’s leading rail consultancy groups providing strategic, operational, management and technical services to the international rail industry.