Commuters using North Wollongong station “deserve better” in terms of parking, according to a transport expert.
University of Wollongong Associate Professor Philip Laird has made a submission to a NSW government inquiry into commuter car parking.
The inquiry, which is scheduled to hold hearings later this month, will look at the effectiveness of commuter car parking programs, the way locations are chosen and the potential for user-pays commuter parking.
In his submission, Prof Laird said it made sense to have express trains stopping at North Wollongong due to its proximity – via shuttle buses – to the university.
However, he suggested the infrastructure around the station needed to be improved.
“Commuters using this station certainly deserve better,” Prof Laird said in his submission.
“The last time, the NSW government outlaid money to improve parking at North Wollongong station was in time for the Sydney 2000 Olympics.”
Prof Laird said recent figures showed that more commuters used North Wollongong than Thirroul, however, the latter had more parking spaces on railway-owned land.
North Wollongong may not be getting extra parking spaces in the near future.
A Transport for NSW spokesman suggested there were public transport options available for people who want to get to the station.
“North Wollongong is currently supported by a strong local bus network with multiple routes and a shuttle service to meet the needs of the University of Wollongong,” the spokesman said.
He said Transport for NSW would continue to “monitor demand and access arrangements” at North Wollongong station.
“Projects and upgrades are planned and delivered under a prioritisation assessment framework,” the spokesman said.
“We look at current and future patronage, the needs and demographics of customers using the station and integration with transport hubs.”