A Letter to the Age December 14 implies that V-line is about to ban bicycles on "peak hour" services. Anyone heard anything more on this? I haven't tracked down any official sources to corroborate this letter.

Biking mad

IT IS now official, V/Line intends to ban bicycles on peak services - those that arrive in the city between 7am and 9.30am, or depart the city between 4pm and 7pm - in 2008. I commute from Castlemaine to Melbourne four days a week and take my bike on the train to ride to work at the other end. During the working day I ride to meetings on my bike. A ban means that many regional commuters will be stranded and unable to get to Melbourne for work. This morning's train had three bikes in my carriage, which is under the limit for the luggage rack.
My two fellow commuters were a bike courier and someone who would have to get up two hours earlier to get to work without his bike.

I believe that clever solutions (such as retro-fitting the bike racks with hooks so that more bikes will fit into the space) are more appropriate for the encouragement of bike riding and public transport use than a blanket ban.

Eve Merton, Castlemaine


According to V-line website bicycles are discouraged from peak services, but nothing about banning them altogether.

I rang V-line and the operator suggested it was possibly a restriction on "velocity trains". Googling Velocity the yhacycling website says that "Purple & Green multi-carriage trains known as "Velocity Trains" can accommodate a few more, but usually no more than about 6."

So does anyone have an accurate idea what's going on with V-Line?

Takver

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Update from V/Line site:

Fares & conditions ~ changes from 1 January 2008

Bikes

Bicycles can be carried on V/Line train services in off peak periods.

Understanding that there is limited space on peak hour trains, bicycles will not be permitted on peak hour train services.

We advise that even on off peak train services there is limited space for bicycles.

Bicycles are generally not permitted on V/Line coach services.
Thanks Chris for the verification.
Bad news for the letter writer & others that depend on their bicycle for dual mode travel. Another backwards step for pub;ic transport.
Also sounds like Bicycle Victoria didn't oppose the peak hour bans or any longterm workable solutions. Like read what the CTC do in the UK.

Have a gander at this thread on the BV forums. Also received feedback from a PTUA contact (hi if you're reading this) that they are opposed to a outright ban. Personally I find this approach by V/Line extremely retrogressive and in no way contributes to a prime purpose of public transport: i.e.: giving people more opinions to freely travel without solely relying on private motorised transport.

I realise it's the Xmas season, but one is about to get rather boshie.
Transport Minister (even though she didn't want the portfolio)
Lynne Kosky, MP
PO Box 1047
Altona Meadows VIC 3028
Ph (03) 9360 7500
Fax (03) 9360 7654
Email: lynne.koskyATparliament.vic.gov.au


Road Minister (for good measure)
Hon. Tim Pallas, MP
Minister for Roads and Ports
Department of Infrastructure
Level 16/121 Exhibition Street,
Melbourne Vic 3000
Phone: 03 9655 6210
Fax: 03 9655 6651
Email: tim.pallasATparliament.vic.gov.au


Bicycle Victoria
PO Box 426
Collins St West, Victoria, 8007
Situated at Level 10 / 446 Collins Street,
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Phone/fax
Ph (03) 8636 8888
Fax (03) 8636 8800
Freecall 1800 639 634 (country callers)
Email: bicyclevicATbv.com.au

Connex
GPO Box 5092BB
Melbourne VIC 3001
Ph: 1 800 800 705
7 days a week, 6am - 10pm
Online contact form:
http://www.connexmelbourne.com.au/index.php?id=72#feedback


Public Transport Ombudsman (Victoria)
PO Box 538
Collins Street West VIC 8007
1800 466 865 or 8623 2111
(8.30am-5pm Monday-Friday)
TTY: 1800 809 623
Fax: 8623 2100
Email: enquiriesATptovic.com.au
www.ptovic.com.au


V/Line
Customer Relations,
Reply Paid 5343,
Melbourne VIC 3001
Phone: 1800 800 120
TTY (03) 9619 2727 available 7 days
Online contact form:
http://www.vline.com.au/about/feedback/en/2/frontFeedbackpage.aspx


Department of Infrastructure
GPO Box 2797
Melbourne Vic 3001
Tel. (03) 9655 6666
Fax. (03) 9655 6752

Public transport contacts; This page lists contact details for inquiries and feedback about public transport.
http://tinyurl.com/yvv8qc


PTUA
Ross House
247 Flinders Lane
Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: (03) 9650 7898
Fax: (03) 9650 3689
Email: officeATptua.org.au
www.ptua.org.au
A very busy Bicycle Victoria person has updated the Bicycle Victoria campaign pages

Metropolitan trains - http://www.bv.com.au/bikes-and-riding/41038/
V/Line - http://www.bv.com.au/bikes-and-riding/41039/

I disagree with the advocacy of Bicycle Victoria on this issue, but much thanks for the effort in getting basic details up on the BV site at short notice.
I disagree with the attitude, personal, professional or otherwise that some people have chosen to take on the issue. It's a slippery slope and it will become more difficult to advocate for integrated transport options. (such a bus racks, dedicated space on rolling stock etc)
unless Connex et al can derive a fee from you and micro bill you ( al la Macquarie Infrastructure Group's rorts at Airports on parking, luggage trolley and premiums on rentals to all businesses) they will not look favourably at any passenger service... only if their franchise agreement compells them will they do otherwise.. they have no wish to encourage cyclists anyway as we have the portable means to limit our dependance on their infrastructure ( read their income)... they installed a minimal number of bike lockers at stations only when compelled and will not provide any more ( again, unless compelled)... they cannot derive a further fee from you for your bike on suburban trains at this time and so you are persona non grata... take up the issue with your local member and the Minister, get mad...get very mad...forget BV it isnt capable of aligning with the needs of cyclists ( that is just their rhetoric) BV is about something else which will only make you mad, very mad at them ( but I think you can figure it out without much more help from me on BV's track record of its attitude to these matters in recent years)... BV has a multiple conflict of interest, ie: these protests are not conflicting with the needs of cyclists, but conflicting with the plans and agenda of its inner sanctum... ( there I go again)...

so its up to every one who rides a bike and needs a train journey in that riding... write, be active, be mad, make your thoughts known and soon, very soon, every rider/commuter should appear at stations all over Melb, at an appointed time and date to bring their bike onto the trains... with press coverage this should be an interesting feature for both Connex and the Govt to counter... Melbs' trains are a basket case, it wont get better before it gets a lot worse, but cyclists should not be seen as the low hanging fruit, we are part of the solution not the problem for Melb transport infrastructure, BV can't and will not see it( and would do nothing even if it did see it!)... let's make sure this Government and its franchisees have their eyes opened.
Interesting idea Roo (the bike-flooding tactic). could be worth a shot. did i read somewhere about cyclists turning up with cardboard cutout 'bikes' in the UK ofr such a protest?
Have a read of this action taken by cyclists in QLD.
Heh, Critical public transport mass... what a great idea Roo!
BV Survey (Monkey) on PT here.

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