Advocating for a direct bus trip between Altona North and Spotswood

Footscray MP Katie Hall and Public Transport Minister Ben Carroll at the recent launch of an electric bus trial across Melbourne's west. (Supplied)

By Matthew Sims

Western Metropolitan MP Catherine Cumming has asked for Public Transport Minister Ben Carroll to look into the possibility of introducing a direct bus route from Altona North to the Spotswood train station to absorb the extra demand set to arrive as a result of new residents moving into the Precinct 15 and 16 developments.

Speaking in state parliament on Tuesday, August 2, she questioned whether this is a possible option for the west bus infrastructure.

“These developments are in North Altona and South Kingsville and when completed in a couple of years will add an additional 10 000 residents to the area,” she said.

“There is currently a bus route, the 432, that runs from Yarraville through to Altona Gate shopping centre and back to Newport, and there is also the bus route 471, which is Williamstown to Altona Gate.

“With so many residents being added to this pocket, it makes sense for a bus route to be more direct and, once again, ease the pressure from Newport station and transport residents into Spotswood and the local immediate area.”

Better West secretary and Altona North resident Rowena Joske said the residents’ group was in support of implementing a direct bus route from Altona North to the Spotswood train station well before the completion of the Precinct 15 development.

“At the moment, this area is really car-dependent,” she said.

“It’s really going to create a lot of traffic in our area.

“We’d like to see frequent bus services and direct bus services.”

Ms Joske said Better West supported the Hobsons Bay Transport Planning Study (HBTPS) and the Altona North Comprehensive Development Plan (CDP)’s aims to provide improvements to public transport in and out of Altona North.

Hobsons Bay councillor Daria Kellander said the increased population in the area would lead to the need for a more direct bus service.

“It’s my personal view that a more direct bus service to neighbouring train stations will be needed in future to cater to the population growth of Precinct 15,” she said.