New Mirrabooka 960 bus route starts but not everyone impressed

The new Perth Busport's Yagan Square entrance. Photo: Andrew Ritchie
The new Perth Busport's Yagan Square entrance. Photo: Andrew Ritchie

THE new 960 bus route between Mirrabooka and Curtin University was launched yesterday to replace routes 885 and 888.

The route is a part of the State Government’s $7 million investment to improve Perth’s bus network.

It operates an all-stops service between Mirrabooka and Curtin via Alexander Drive, the Perth Busport and Victoria Park Transfer Station, with a five-minute frequency between Curtin and Edith Cowan University Mt Lawley during peak periods.

Transport Minister Bill Marmion said the high-frequency route made it easier for people to travel.

“The State Government is committed to ensuring our public transport services work smarter, make people’s lives easier and get them where they want to go without unnecessary delay,” he said.

“This is being achieved through new bus priority lanes and signalisation changes, as well as consolidating multiple bus routes into high-frequency services such as the 960.

“The 960 service was made possible by an additional State Government investment of $1.4 million in new bus lanes along Fitzgerald Street, and complements Route 970.”

However, Mirrabooka MLA Janine Freeman said Mirrabooka residents needed long-term transport needs.

“While trunk routes, like the 960, are welcome, they should not be at the expense of local suburban routes, that connect users to the places in their community that they shop, work, socialise and recreate,” she said.

“Eliminating suburban bus routes, as has happened with the replacement 960, can lose as many passengers as the trunk route gains…it’s shuffling deckchairs, not building new behaviours.

“It is really disappointing for the people of Mirrabooka that the Liberal Government broke their election promise of a rail solution as buses don’t generate the kind of long term behaviour change in passengers that heavy or light rail can.”

The 960 bus route will travel more than 1.35 million km a year.