Skip to content

Stay home. Save lives. www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au

Transport Services: visit Home
Close Menu

1Latest information on the Northern region bus network

A new general access bus network for the Northern region, including Launceston and surrounding towns and regions commenced on 19 January 2020.

The new and improved routes and timetables have reinvigorated the local bus network across Launceston and surrounding regions including the West Tamar, George Town, the Northern Midlands, the north east and the east coast.

The changes were finalised following an extensive community consultation period which occurred from April to June 2019.

The changes have seen more direct routes and more frequent services, and updated timetables that provide more consistent departure times, improved reliability and minimised transfer times.

These network changes balance making services smarter by providing more direct routes which reduce travel times with ensuring the services remain accessible, providing better access to employment, education and other services.

In a big win for commuters across the broader Launceston city area, a new high frequency cross-city route now links the university with Kings Meadows via Mowbray, Invermay, Inveresk, the city, Launceston General Hospital and Six Ways.

Across the region, there are now more services more often to major towns including Legana, Exeter, George Town, Perth and Bridport and improved links for the West Tamar, north east, east coast and Northern Midlands areas, as well as new Sunday services

Additionally, new trial services have been implemented in Riverside/Trevallyn and Waverley/Ravenswood to address concerns raised through the public consultation process.

Services to Mole Creek, Deloraine, Westbury and Carrick are currently on hold along with the launch of the North West network. Consultation on these proposed changes occurred in September and October 2019.

To check changes, including timetables and routes for your services please visit the Northern region bus timetables and maps page

2Public consultation process in the North

An extensive public consultation process was undertaken from April to June 2019 which sought the community’s feedback on both the Metro urban Launceston network and the Northern regional network.

As a result of this feedback some changes to refine routes and timetables were made in order to achieve the right balance between smart route design and reducing travel times while also ensuring the services remain accessible to meet a broad range of transport needs.

During the consultation process we received a total of 388 responses. Of these, 181 related to the urban Launceston network, and 207 related to the Northern regional network.

Click here to view the final Northern bus services review public consultation report. (925KB PDF)

Please note that following the release of the public consultation report, minor adjustments to some routes and timetables were required based on scheduling of bus services and to ensure timetable accuracy.

For Blackstone Heights (route 161) a decision was made to maintain the current section of the route through Neptune Drive and Glover Avenue, rather than remove it as previously proposed.

The frequency of services to Coles Bay also increased compared to what was originally proposed.

3Fares and ticketing changes in the North

Information on fares for Northern region bus service are available here.

Some regional operators - East Tamar Bus Lines (formerly Lees Coaches) and Sainty’s North East Bus Services have moved to a smart card ticketing system. More information on these ticketing changes is available here.

4Further information about the changes in the North

Northern region – towns and regions surrounding Launceston

If you require further information about changes to services in the Northern region, including services provided by Manions’ Coaches, East Tamar Bus Lines (formerly Lees Coaches), Sainty’s North East Bus Services, Tassielink and Calow’s Coaches you can contact the bus service operator directly. You can also contact the Department of State Growth for this information, as well as information about the review and consultation, using the contact information here.

Launceston network

The Metro customer service team is available to help you understand the changes to Metro services, including school services.  Please contact correspondence@metrotas.com.au or ring 13 22 01.

5Latest information on the North West and intercity bus networks

Current status (last updated 8 April 2020)

In light of Covid-19 and in order to minimise disruption to communities the decision has been made to delay implementation of the north west bus network changes which were scheduled to commence on 19 April 2020.

Planned changes to intercity services between Hobart and Launceston, and Launceston and Devonport have also been delayed.

The intention is that the north west network changes will now commence in January 2021, as this will allow any changes to school bus services to occur at the start of the 2021 school year.

Despite the delay in the rollout of the North West and Intercity bus network changes the following changes commenced on 19 April, 2020:

  • Merseylink  started operating on the transportme ticketing system, following the end of the free travel period transportme will make it easier to pay for the bus without using cash, while saving 20 per cent on normal fares and providing access to real time bus tracking on your smartphone. Visit the Ticketing page for more information on the change.

    Fare information for the Hospital Link, Sheffield and other north west bus services is available on the Fares page.
  • Merseylink started operating the seven days-a-week Hospital Link service which has previously been operated by Metro. This change has minimised change for the community until the broader North West network changes come into effect. To view the timetable visit the North West including West Coast timetables and maps page.

    Merseylink have also adopted the current Hospital Link token system which assists passengers to travel to north west hospitals on route 85.
  • Extension of Tassielink West Coast service to the North West Regional Hospital on weekdays. This change allows West Coast residents better access to and from the hospital.
  • Changes to the service also occurred in Burnie with the service to no longer stopping in Cattley Street, instead passengers can get on and off the bus in Mount Street, outside the old Advocate building. For more information on this change and to view the updated timetable visit the North West including West Coast timetables and maps page.

As the community are aware the situation with Covid-19 is rapidly evolving and we will reassess timing for rollout of the north west bus network as the situation evolves.

You can continue to refer to this page for the latest information on the status of changes to bus networks.

6Public consultation process for the North West and intercity bus networks

An extensive public consultation process was undertaken from September to October 2019 which sought the community’s feedback on both the North West bus network and intercity services (services between Devonport, Launceston and Hobart).

We would like to thank members of the community and stakeholders who provided feedback during this time. We received a total of 297 responses.

Overall, the consultation feedback showed a high level of support for proposed changes.

After listening to feedback from the community, we have made some changes to refine routes and timetables in order to achieve the right balance between smart route design and reducing travel times while also ensuring the services remain accessible to meet a broad range of transport needs.

Click here to view the final North West bus review public consultation report.

7Mole Creek to Launceston service

Following further consultation with the Mole Creek community, the Mole Creek to Launceston general access service will continue as a school days only general access service.

An easier to read timetable will be available on our website in July 2020.

8When will the North West and intercity bus networks be implemented?

The commencement of the new general access bus network for the north west region as well as intercity services between Hobart and Launceston, and Launceston and Devonport has been deferred until further notice.

You can continue to refer to this page for the latest information on the status of changes to bus networks.

A number of new bus stops across the North West region, particularly in Burnie and Devonport are required to support the new network once it is implemented. We have consulted with Councils, bus operators and adjacent land owners on the location and design of these new bus stops.

9How were the North West and intercity bus networks developed?

As part of the review of bus services State Growth has been undertaking broader community engagement including talking to the existing bus operators and local communities to work out if, and how, current services can be improved.

We have also been gathering information via our website, phone and face to face discussions for the past three years from the community on public transport in their local area.

As part of the bus services review, State Growth engaged consultants Phillip Boyle and Associates to undertake a detailed review of Devonport and Burnie urban bus networks.

The review included community workshops held in Burnie and Devonport in 2017. After the community workshops, Phillip Boyle and Associates developed a report recommending a new network. The report can be accessed here.

Following the release of the report, State Growth has undertaken further planning in conjunction with the bus operators and local councils to refine the network and develop new timetables and routes.

10Further information

If you have any questions or require further information please contact us.