Inner West Independent

All stations to nowhere

Friends of Erskineville President Darren Jenkins protesting the rail cuts. Source: Darren Jenkins


Residents of Erskineville and St Peters are outraged by government plans to cut train services on the Bankstown line.

Local community group Friends of Erskineville (FOE) have petitioned against the cuts and lobbied for increased public transport to end the overcrowding on current rail services.

Under the state government proposal, the Sydney Metro will result in single deck, driverless trains bypassing Erskineville and St Peters, currently part of the Bankstown line.

Darren Jenkins, President of FOE, said that the community and state government needed to start thinking about and address the projected doubling population that is currently forecasted.

“All reports show that the likely people who will move into the new development in the Ashmore Estate [in Erskineville] will be young professionals who mostly work in the city,” said Mr Jenkins.

“This means that the amount of people using the trains in the morning peak will increase even more.”

The government has not shown any commitment to replacing the lost train services to Erskineville and St Peters.

“The government needs to come clean about what it’s going to do and not just expect residents to take comfort with ambiguous statements,” said Mr Jenkins.

Mr Jenkins said that the Illawarra line and East Hills Express line could potentially stop at Erskineville and St Peters as an alternative, but that Transport for NSW (TfNSW) had not been clear on any proposed services.

However, a recent survey of the Illawarra and East Hills Express lines indicated that they were already at maximum capacity.

Fourteen out of 16 morning services on the Illawarra line had an average load of 132 per cent. Five out of six East Hills Express services are over 100 per cent full in the morning peak.

Friends of Erskinville has created a petition, lobbying for the guarantee of services to Erskineville and St Peters, which will be sent to the Minister for Transport.

The group is also facilitating a public meeting at Eksineville’s town hall about the rail cuts, and has invited the Transport Minister, the opposition spokesperson, Sydney Trains, the Lord Mayor and other key stakeholders

“We want a commitment from the Minister that there will be an increase in current services to end the dangerous overcrowding that’s already happening and to ensure that good services are maintained,” Mr Jenkins said.

The meeting will be held at at 8:30pm on July 14.

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