A new car pooling scheme for residents of the Swan Hill district will reduce private transport journeys, their carbon footprint and costs.
Member for Northern Victoria, Candy Broad launched the trial scheme today, encouraging residents to register their planned trips to Bendigo or Melbourne on the Southern Mallee Transport Connections website, to increase transport options for local people.
Ms Broad said the car pool service would make better use of private transport for the benefit of everyone.
“The Swan Hill car pool service we’re launching today will not only mean people can easily access cost-effective transport to Bendigo and Melbourne, but it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions as there will be fewer private vehicles on the road,” Ms Broad said.
“I also expect it will reduce the risk of driver fatigue on the long trip to and from Melbourne.
“If the past success of the Southern Mallee Transport Connections services is anything to go by it may even result in a few new friendships as people chat on their journeys.
“The success of the Swan Hill car pool service relies on the support of the local community, so I really encourage people to register their trips – whether they’re for business or pleasure, short visits or longer stays – and check the Southern Mallee Transport Connections website when making plans and appointments in town,” she said.
The car pool service is being coordinated by the Swan Hill Community House in partnership with Southern Mallee Transport Connections. It will link people travelling to Bendigo or Melbourne for shopping, medical appointments or social opportunities to make transport easier and provide more options.
Car pool users simply need to check the website, register their trip details and Swan Hill Community House will attempt to match registered drivers with prospective passengers.
Community Development Minister Peter Batchelor said the Brumby Labor Government had committed a further $80 million dollars to extend the Transport Connections Program across Victoria.
“The Transport Connections Program has had a real and positive impact on communities, because access to local transport is a key factor in people being able to access a range of activities in their area,” Mr Batchelor said.
“This is a great example of the Brumby Labor Government working with local residents to plan and deliver innovative solutions to improve transport in their community.
“I encourage local residents to get behind the car pool initiative and make it a huge success,” he said.
For more information about Southern Mallee Transport Connections, please visit www.smtcp.com.au