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Public transport

Greater Newcastle Future Transport Plan

Public transport

There are opportunities to improve public transport within Greater Newcastle. We can build on the work undertaken by Newcastle Transport to make changes to the network to deliver bus routes and frequencies that meet customer needs. This includes measures to support public transport priority. We will work towards:

  • Improved integration and interchange between modes/services to enable seamless customer experience
  • Improved time of day coverage and service frequency, supporting connections to strategic centres and key destinations
  • Expanding 30 minute catchments for public transport
  • Provision of bus priority on key demand corridors, including turn up and go frequencies, to support quicker and more reliable journeys competitive with private vehicle travel
  • Bus headstart services (these are bus routes implemented in new growth areas to encourage early public transport use) to provide a public transport travel option as soon as people move into their new homes
  • Protecting corridors to enable the light rail network to extend and support population and employment growth
  • Extension of the ferry service to Newcastle Interchange and consideration of an on demand special events service to support the Newcastle Cruise Terminal
  • Deployment of on demand services across Greater Newcastle to support travel options in lower density areas as well as reduce congestion during peak periods such as events within the Hunter Valley or sporting matches at Broadmeadow
  • Investigating rail corridor infrastructure investment programs that result in faster journeys for customers – see Case Study on Faster Rail Business Case for the Sydney-Newcastle corridor
  • Station upgrades and integration between the stations and surrounding land uses are needed to support increased public transport travel
  • Supporting through appropriate services long distance travel outside the area, connecting people to cities and centres in the North Coast, Hunter, New England North West, Central West and Orana, Central Coast and Greater Sydney
  • Car share opportunities across Greater Newcastle to reduce the need for private vehicle ownership as well as support the accessibility of visitors to the region
  • Increased opportunities for park and ride at key locations to support public transport travel as well as formalising car pooling for people travelling along key corridors such as the M1 Pacific Motorway and Hunter Expressway.


Faster Rail Business Case for the Sydney – Newcastle corridor

The 2017 Federal Budget included a commitment by the Australian Government to investigate improvements to the rail connections between our cities and surrounding regional areas through $20 million in funding to support the development of up to three faster rail business cases across Australia. In March 2018 the Australian Government announced that it will provide matching funding for the development of a business case to facilitate faster passenger rail services between Sydney and Newcastle.

The business case will investigate works such as reducing track curvature, deviations and realignments, removal of level crossings, junction rearrangement and better segregation of passenger and freight services. This could result in travel times between Sydney and Newcastle being reduced from approximately 3 hours to 2 hours.

Business cases are expected to be delivered to the Australian Government in the next 12 to 18 months. They will need to demonstrate faster rail travel times through new or upgrades to the existing rail infrastructure. Completed business cases will then be considered in the context of the Australian Government’s wider infrastructure priorities and future Budgets. Any future funding commitments will take into account state and private sector financial support.

For further information, visit

Six principles for Future Transport

The Future Transport 2056 Strategy is focused on six key principles for the future of mobility in the state, which together aim to positively impact the economy, communities and environment of NSW.

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