Could Less Seats Improve Train Service?


Sydney City Rail Train


Somebody somewhere has little idea on how to service train travelers for New South Wales(NSW). Minister for State Transport, Gladys Berejiklian.MP is pushing the idea of removing 16 seats from a carriage on the North Shore line, somehow thinking that squishing people into a train standing up makes for better service.

One person tells me that this idea has been hanging around for about a decade. It seems to me that there are people who never ride trains and are obviously fit and healthy people are suggesting such ideas.

Should this become the norm, 16 less seats per car. Each train has either 4, 6 or 8 cars. Should this create 80 standing spaces per car, that is a bit extra but what if you cannot stand?

I personally have to sit as I have Movement Disorders. If there comes a day where trains become standing room, I will not be riding the train and I will not be able to travel far at all. I doubt these intellectuals have even considered how such a decision could affect the disabled, the aged and pregnant women.

If such people believe that people give up seat for people who really need it, then such people really have no idea how people behave. Even back in the mid 80’s when I was constantly on/off crutches, I often had to take the 60 minute each way ride with both legs wrapped in bandages as I gripped on for dear life to the pole in the train and my crutches for if I fell, nobody would have helped me. I would have been stepped over.

If the NSW Government really wants to test this out, they should test it out on train lines that have a higher reliance on train commutering such as the Western and South Western lines where the trains fill up.

They need to go back to the drawing board.

THE chances of getting a seat on peak-hour trains have become slimmer for north shore commuters because of a State Government trial.


Aimed to increase capacity and speed up boarding and alighting, 16 seats have been removed in two carriages of one Tangara train.

The reconfiguration will mean the three-seater seat is replaced by benches or two-seaters.


Transport for NSW said the reconfigured carriages would increase capacity by up to 80 people, or about 15 per cent for the two carriages.


State Transport Minister and Willoughby MP Gladys Berejiklian said customer feedback would be monitored during and after the trial on the western and north shore lines.


“The middle seat of the three-person seat is often left empty, so we want to see if this is a better use of that space,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“We are thinking outside the box to improve customer journeys, and we’ll watch this innovative trial of one train with interest before making a decision to expand it further.”


Ms Berejiklian said past trials had shown commuters stayed near train doors because of fears they would miss their stop.


The north shore line trial is aimed to make it easier for commuters to move all the way along a carriage.


The reconfigured Tangara train will run for six weeks from early July.



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