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Its key outcomes included

  • the review and redesign of all our publicly-contracted bus services
  • new contracts and more efficient funding models, developed in close consultation with industry
  • new long-term contracts negotiated with 106 school bus operators and eight general access operators
  • the review of routes and schedules for over 349 school bus services and 17 general access bus services
  • implementation of extensive network changes and new timetables across Tasmania
  • consultation with bus operators, stakeholders, and the public
  • financial help for those operators exiting the industry
  • installation of new bus stop infrastructure to support the new networks
  • implementation of an interim common ticketing solution across general access operators

The project delivered the Government’s election commitment to provide existing bus operators a further contract. This contract is for 5 + 5 years, as long as they meet key performance conditions and there is an ongoing need for the service.

This commitment was delivered under an approved alternative procurement process using a set of guidelines to match operators to services.

These guidelines are outlined in the Bus Services Re-Contracting Process Guidelines.

1Why were bus services reviewed?

All long term contracts for public transport bus services expired throughout 2018 and early 2019.

Under section 49(2)(a) of the Passenger Transport Services Act 2011 contracts can run for a maximum of ten years. Therefore legally the contracts couldn’t be renewed or extended.

This was an opportunity to review the school and general access bus network state-wide.

We wanted to achieve the right balance of smart route design, faster travel time, and accessible services that meet a broad range of needs.

To simplify the transition for passengers and operators, we offered short term contracts to many operators. This allowed changes to services to take effect on a single date and on a regional basis.