Islanders to save millions in Translink coup

Southern Moreton Bay islanders will save millions of dollars in travel costs a year under a
deal struck today by Redland City Council and the State Government.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams and Assistant Minister for Public Transport Steve
Minnikin said successful negotiations to link the SMBI to the Translink network would
deliver huge savings and social benefits to islanders who used water taxis, buses and
trains from 1 July 2013.

“Based on 2013 fares the annual savings on a variety of travel options for SMBI residents
will potentially range from over $200 for a single student to up to $6000 for a family of
four,” Cr Williams said.

“The savings from this agreement will be in the millions of dollars.

“This is fantastic news for islanders. The extension of GoCard for travel to and from the
islands is long overdue and deserved recognition that island residents should be able to
access the same public transport concessions as the rest of South-East Queensland.

“GoCard travel will be at least 30% cheaper than the cost of a paper ticket, all travel is
free after the ninth paid GoCard journey in a seven-day period and islanders can save
another 20% by opting for off-peak travel.

“One of the greatest outcomes of our negotiation is free travel for island residents
between the SMBI, giving greater access to facilities, schools and services at no cost to
the traveller.”

The Go Card service will be trialled for two-and-a-half years from 1 July 2013 until 1
January 2016.

Council at a special general meeting today (Monday 17 December) formally endorsed
the trial agreement and a SMBI ratepayer contribution of approximately $88 towards the
cost of the service in 2013-14.

“For this very small investment residents will get not just savings on travel costs but
better employment opportunities and access to facilities and services on the mainland or
other islands,” Cr Williams said.

“A working adult commuting daily to work from SMBI to Weinam Ck can expect to save
over $1000 a year.

“A single adult working in Brisbane’s CBD will potentially save close to $2000 a year.

“GoCard will have significant social and economic benefits for nearly 7,000 people living
on the islands, reducing barriers to social isolation, particularly for the elderly and those
on limited incomes who can now travel free between the islands to visit friends and

“This is very welcome news and I am delighted the State Government has acknowledged
the travel cost disadvantage long experienced by island residents.

“This announcement has come after long and intensive lobbying by myself and Council
and has only been possible in the end after Council agreed to a SMBI community
contribution towards the cost of the service.”

Assistant Minster for Public Transport Steve Minnikin said he was delighted Redland City
Council and the State government have been able to reach an agreement that will mean
cheaper travel for the residents of Redlands.

“For the first time go card equipment and technology will be available for passengers on
Bay Island Ferries integrating the islands into south-east Queensland public transport,”
Mr Minnikin said.

“Visitors and residents can take advantage of GoCard discounts, including free travel
after nine weekly journeys.”

An estimated 100,000 SMBI passenger ferry trips are taken each month, including 1750
return trips a day. In addition, there are a total of 10,000 bus trips through Weinam Creek
each month using Translink.