New mega taxi rank

The City of Melbourne is trialling until the end of January a new late-night mega taxi rank on Bourke St.

On Friday and Saturday nights, a section of Bourke St between Russell St and Royal Place will become a dedicated hub for people to safely and easily catch a taxi.

Like the successful Queen St mega taxi rank, the Bourke St rank will operate from midnight until 5am.

Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said the new Bourke St rank was supported by passenger queuing controls, security marshals, CCTV cameras, regular police patrols, the Salvation Army food and coffee van and an on-site public toilet.

“This new taxi rank will provide a safe and convenient place for people to get a taxi home after a night out,” Cr Doyle said.

“Bourke St is a logical location for our newest mega taxi rank: it is one of the city’s busiest precincts and home to many licensed venues and fast-food outlets.”

At the Queen St mega taxi rank, the presence of security marshals, police and the Salvation Army has helped diffuse tensions caused by hailing and waiting for taxis on the street.

Cr Richard Foster, chair of council’s People City portfolio, said the trial of the new mega taxi rank was just one in a suite of safety initiatives outlined in the City of Melbourne Beyond the Safe City Strategy 2014-17.

“We know that safety in public places can often be increased simply by changing how a space is used, including good lighting, street activity and public amenities,” Cr Foster said.

“Our Beyond the Safe City Strategy proposes a range of preventative measures to increase safety in the city, and the introduction of mega taxi ranks is a good example of an initiative that can prevent crime from occurring in the first place.”

“Late-night transport is key to a safe city. If we can assist people to conveniently and safely get home after a night out, we can minimise late-night safety issues from arising.”

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