CBD tram stop plan revealed

The public has had its first look at the overall picture of CBD tram stop rationalisation thanks to the City of Melbourne.

Frustrated by being asked their views on individual tram stop changes, councillors late last year asked to see an overall plan.

The map supplied to councillors at their August 4 Future Melbourne Committee meeting shows most of the future activity will occur in William and LaTrobe streets.

Under disability access legislation, Public Transport Victoria (PTV) is obliged to convert all tram stops to “level access” standards by 2032.

Transport chair Cr Cathy Oke told the meeting there needed to be increased dialogue between PTV and the community about the network as a whole.

“It’s really important that we don’t look at stops one by one and then realise later consequences that occur upstream or downstream or different parts of the network as a result.,” Cr Oke said.

“It is important that we canvas all the issues that might arise.”

Cr Rohan Leppert said: “It’s been about 10 years since the council commissioned a helicopter view of the rationalisation of the trams and stops in the central city. It’s the first time that this sort of information has been made public for a very long time.”

Council’s engineering services manager Geoff Robinson told councillors they would continue to be briefed on tram stop locations as they were proposed. 

The public, on the other hand, will only see council’s deliberations and discussions with transport authorities if a councillor requests it be brought into a public forum.

Councillors voted to give staff decision-making powers “under delegation” based on an agreed set of assessment criteria.

“The intent is never to close out councillors from being briefed on what we are intending to do,” Mr Robinson said.

Mr Robinson said bringing the decision making into the monthly council meeting cycle would slow down the process.

Cr Stephen Mayne noted that, with much of the future tram stop changes to occur in LaTrobe St, it would be an “interesting test” of priorities.

“We have invested heavily in bike lanes and it will be an interesting test of the sharing of the confined space between through traffic, parking, bikes and trams,” Cr Mayne said.

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