Brisbane residents ditch public transport and get back in their cars
  Richard Youl

The decline in Perth comes as a surprise.

Perhaps PT use is not so much determined by the quality of its service but rather the ease (or lack of it in places like Sydney) of driving that are the main deciding factor.


Brisbane residents ditch public transport and get back in their cars
Ruth McCosker13 May 2018 — 10:31pm
By Ruth McCoskerUpdatedfirst published 11 May 2018 — 4:48pm
Brisbane residents are getting off public transport and back into cars, with 72 per cent of people going to work by car.
Compared to other Australian capital cities, Brisbane was one of only two that had a decline in public transport usage to get to work between 2011 and 2016, with Perth being the other.

Public transport usage by capital city. Key: LGA - local government area; UCL - urban centre/locality
Photo: Brisbane City Council
Brisbane City Council’s infrastructure committee reviewed Brisbane’s commuting habits and compared them with other capital cities following the recent release of the 2016 Australian Bureau of Statistics Census data.
A council spokesman said the downward trend with public transport usage could be due to service interruptions on rail lines or fare escalation between 2011 and 2016.
“Sydney benefited from quite a fair bit of surgery to their rail network and also a lot of urban consolidation, and to a lesser extent Melbourne,” he said.
According to ABS, in Brisbane, 20.2 per cent of people travelled to work by public transport in 2011 compared to 18.6 per cent in 2016.
Public transport was mainly used along the Northgate, Ferny Grove and Oxley rail corridors as well as the south-east region, Waterworks Road and Chermside bus corridors.
In 2016, 72.2 per cent of Brisbane residents used a car to get to work compared with 70.3 per cent in 2011.

Car commuting by capital city
Photo: Brisbane City Council
Compared with other capital cities, Brisbane was the second-least reliant on cars, with more car travel than Sydney but less than Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide.
Both Melbourne and Sydney had a decline in car transport between the last two census data collections while Brisbane had an increase.
Brisbane is still a car-dominated city for journeys to work, except for the inner city.

Brisbane is a car-dominated city for journeys to work, with the red area on the map denoting car travel.
Photo: Brisbane City Council
For cycling, the data showed more Brisbane residents jumped on a bike to get to work than any other capital city with 2.1 per cent of residents travelling by bike in 2016 compared to 1.9 per cent in 2011.
Sydney had an increase in bicycle use between 2011 and 2016, but still, less than 1 per cent of Sydney residents travel to work by bike.
Melbourne also had an increase in cycling but is yet to reach the same percentage of commuters travelling by bike that Brisbane has.

A small per cent of people travel to work by bike in each of Australia's capital cities.
Photo: Brisbane City Council
The council spokesman said there were certainly significant differences in travel behaviour trends between the capital cities.
“As we expected, Brisbane local government area really does perform pretty well compared to other capital cities,” he said.
“Brisbane is generally between the top two cities, Sydney and Melbourne, and performing better than Adelaide and Perth.”
The next census will be conducted in August 2021.
Ruth McCosker is an urban affairs reporter at the Brisbane Times, with a special interest in Brisbane City Council

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