Commuters urge government to change rail decision

From left, shadow transport minister Jodi McKay, Minto commuter Azad Hossain and Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chanthivong at Glenfield Station. Picture: Jess Layt

From left, shadow transport minister Jodi McKay, Minto commuter Azad Hossain and Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chanthivong at Glenfield Station. Picture: Jess Layt

Campbelltown commuters and politicians are calling on the state government to abandon plans for changes to the T2 and T5 train lines.

Under the government’s More Trains, More Services for South West Sydney plan direct services from Campbelltown to Parramatta and Blacktown will cease to exist with passengers forced to change at Glenfield.

All T5 Cumberland line and T2 South Line services will start and end at Leppington Station from late 2017.

Minto commuter Azad Hossain has launched a petition to premier Gladys Berejiklian to continue the direct service from Campbelltown to Parramatta which has already gained more than 100 signatures.

“I’ve been travelling for 10 years to my work at Parramatta and because of this government decision we’ll have to take more time to get to work and return home,” he said.

“This is not a good decision – our community is against this decision and we want it to be reversed.”

Mr Hossain said the planned changes were lacking support in the Macarthur region and would greatly impact the journeys of many commuters.

Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chanthivong (Labor) has backed Mr Hossain’s calls and says it is frustrating for commuters.

“There has been no timetable given yet, so no one can plan,” he said.

“Azad’s petition has hundreds of supporters who all want to get this fixed.

“The government’s proposed cutting of services from Campbelltown to Parramatta will create a lot of inconvenience for our local residents, which is unfair and unjustified.

“Azad is living proof why the cuts to the service area a bad idea.”

Campbelltown MP Greg Warren (Labor) has also been a vocal critic of the planned changes and has garnered support from residents in his electorate.

He first spoke to the Advertiser about the issue in March and cited overcrowding on the city-bound trains commuters would be forced to take to change at Glenfield as a major concern.

“This is not fair on Campbelltown rail commuters,” he said.

“The Berejiklian government needs to address this issue.

“They are as transparent as a brick wall.”

Greg Warren at Campbelltown Station. Picture: Chris Lane

Greg Warren at Campbelltown Station. Picture: Chris Lane

Mr Warren said the government’s implementation timeframe of ‘the end of the year’ was not clear enough.

Shadow minister for transport Jodi McKay agreed.

“Transport minister [Andrew Constance], please listen to the people of this area,” she said.

“Be honest about what’s happening, because people like Azad need to plan.

“People in south west Sydney already spend enough time catching trains to get to work. Any cut in service which makes public transport less accessible is simply not good enough.”

Transport Minister Andrew Constance has been contacted for comment.

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