Tuesday, 13 August 2019
A new Infrastructure Australia audit released today has confirmed that more needs to be done to make transport more accessible and affordable in New South Wales.
Populations of fast-growing cities like Sydney are expected to grow by 77 per cent in the next 15 years, and with it the cost of road congestion will increase to $38.8 billion in 2031.
Similarly, the audit found public transport infrastructure will be under increased pressure, increasing the cost of crowding on public transport networks to $837 million in 2031.
NCOSS CEO, Joanna Quilty said it was important not to underestimate the impact the growing cost of transport would have on the most vulnerable in the community.
“The average Australian household spends $200 per week on running and maintaining their car, and for those on low incomes or with disabilities who rely on their car, that is a really significant cost,” Ms Quilty said.
“We are pleased the audit has found that transport accessibility is unequal, particularly for people under financial stress, with disabilities or living in the outer suburbs.
“Regional and remote communities have another hurdle to jump; not only do they face greater barriers in accessibility and cost, but the service quality is also often not up to scratch with cities.”
Ms Quilty said it was important to remember that behind the figures are real families facing disadvantage.
“There are people in the community who have to fight to meet their most basic cost of living, so it is important we plan for the future and make sure that cost of living is not unreasonable,” she said.
“Being able to afford the cost of transport, whether you own a vehicle or jump on a train is critical to seeking greater economic opportunity and building a better life.
“This is a wake-up call; we have the information about infrastructure that we need, and it is high time we acted to address transport disadvantage in NSW.”
For more information on NCOSS, go to www.ncoss.org.au
Media contact: Nick Trainor 0407 078 138