Saturday, April 13, 2024

City of Ryde slams ‘fancy bus stop’ interchange

The City of Ryde has expressed its bitter disappointment with Transport for NSW’s plans for a bus interchange in Macquarie Park’s university precinct, describing it as nothing more than a “fancy bus stop”.

The Macquarie Park Interchange and Precinct upgrade was first announced in 2017, during the Bennelong by-election, as a Commonwealth and State Government initiative to improve the efficiency of bus services and providing a public plaza for a Macquarie Park town centre.

As part of the project, the City of Ryde has been committed to developing a proposal which would see improvements made to the town centre for the fast-growing community of Macquarie Park, as well as Transport for NSW (TfNSW) bus interchange.

The new town centre would consist of a public plaza and would be built where Herring Road meets Waterloo Road.

It would provide a ‘traffic-free’ pedestrian link to the two metro station entrances and still include the major components of the TfNSW bus interchange, as well as direct access to Macquarie Shopping Centre and Macquarie University. Buses would enter and exit the interchange on Herring Road from Talavera Road.

TfNSW, however, notified the City of Ryde last week that it was progressing with its own plans for the bus interchange, one that does not include a public plaza and would instead just see the installation of bus ‘only’ lanes on Herring Road and no dedicated space for Macquarie Park’s rapidly growing community.

City of Ryde Mayor, Jerome Laxale, said the option being pursued by TfNSW was completely inadequate for the community of Macquarie Park and the City of Ryde.

“This is no bus interchange; it is just a fancy bus stop,” Mayor Laxale said.

“This promise by the Federal and State governments was a once in a generation opportunity to build a public square in the centre of Macquarie Park, as well as addressing the lack of open space in this growing CBD.

“Macquarie Park will be Australia’s fourth largest CBD by 2030 yet is the only major CBD that does not have a public plaza that provides pedestrian access to key public transport routes and a place for the community.

“I call on Transport Minister Andrew Constance, Member for Ryde, Victor Dominello and Member for Bennelong, John Alexander to intervene, stop the TfNSW proposal and back Council’s plan which would give Macquarie Park an improved town centre, a much-needed public plaza and upgrades to the existing bus interchange.”

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