Adjournment Matters No 1020
59 Parliament First Session
Asked: 25 November 2020


MR ONDARCHIE — To ask the Minister for Employment (for the Minister for Public Transport): 

My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Public Transport and it concerns the tram 86 route in Northern Metropolitan Region. Recently I invited South Morang residents to complete my community survey, and I wish to thank all those residents who returned the survey with some really good feedback. There has been significant growth in South Morang and Mill Park. In fact postcode 3752, South Morang, was deemed to be the fastest growing postcode in Australia for a period of time. But the tram 86 route still ends at RMIT in Bundoora. I have spoken about this tramline a number of times in this place in the past regarding extension of the tramline, and also I asked the Minister for Police and Emergency Services to ensure PSOs on tram 86 as well, particularly after the tragic passing of Aiia Maasarwe. Those PSOs are still not on the 86 tram.

There were many responses to my survey that asked when the tramline will be extended along Plenty Road to make it up to Mill Park and to South Morang. I understand the government have undertaken a feasibility study into that tramline extension, so the action I seek from the minister is to release to me the feasibility study so we can have a look at it and I can better inform my constituents about the probability of that tramline being extended all the way to South Morang.

Answered: 2 February 2021

Mr CARROLL (Niddrie—Minister for Public Transport, Minister for Roads and Road Safety):

A feasibility study found extending the line from the existing terminus 4.3 kilometres to South Morang station was not economically viable at this time based on forecast patronage. The analysis found none of the options for extending the line would be viable for at least the next 30 years because of forecast low patronage. The study found patronage would be affected by low dwelling and population density along the route compared to other tram corridors in Melbourne.

The study recommended protecting the tram corridor along Plenty Road for an extension in the longer term. It also said other opportunities to enhance public transport in the region should be prioritised, including improving interchanges and stops, pedestrian access and bus services, which we are looking at closely.

The Suburban Rail Loop will change how La Trobe University and its surrounding area grows, and the assumptions that underpinned the feasibility study may need to be reconsidered as the Suburban Rail Loop is further developed and we realise its positive impacts. Going forward, connecting local public transport will be considered as part of the Suburban Rail Loop project.