Transport and Freight Policy


1. Victoria's transport system must function on principles of ecological sustainability, equity of access, and public control of critical public transport infrastructure.

2. Climate change, peak oil, unsustainable population growth and urban sprawl make Victoria's present transport reality unsustainable.

3. We have an urgent need to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, and greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector must be reduced.

4. Road traffic is a significant contributor to the emission of greenhouse gases, toxic fumes, ultra-fine particulates and noise. It has many deleterious effects in urban areas.

5. Transport, infrastructure and land-use strategic planning must be integrated.

6. Freeway and highway construction, including toll roads, induces demand and ultimately does not solve long-term urban road congestion.

7. A greater proportion of trips should be made by walking, cycling and public transport rather than by private motor vehicle - to reduce environmental impacts, improve health and reduce road congestion, deaths and injuries.

8. Safe, convenient, affordable and accessible public transport will assist Victorians of all ages, genders, abilities, cultures, sexualities, locations and socio-economic status to live full, active and independent lives.

9. All Victorians should have access to safe public transport spaces free from discrimination and harassment.

10. Public transport funding should be prioritised above road funding.

11. Public transport should be owned and operated by government on behalf of the public.

12. Public transport agencies (including planning and service providers) must be accountable and their decision-making transparent. Agencies involved in the planning, development and provision of transport in Victoria must be consultative and participatory in their operations, publicly accountable and their decisions transparent.

13. Local communities and local governments need ongoing, substantive and meaningful opportunities and adequate resources to participate in transport decision-making.

14. A high quality state and national rail network is essential to a modern economy, and high quality public transport corridors benefit local economies.

15. The role of rail in moving freight should be significantly increased so as to reduce noise, pollution, traffic congestion and road trauma.

16. Interstate rail infrastructure must be augmented to allow fast, efficient and low cost freight movements, to and from ports and between state capitals.

17. Freight transport modes should compete fairly, and equally bear all their direct and indirect costs.

18. Freight should be transported in a manner that is environmentally responsible, and reduces risk to the public and environment to levels that are as low as reasonably practicable.


Reduced Emissions from Transport

1. The adoption of a strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from Victorian transport.

2. Ensuring all road and rail vehicles meet appropriate standards for emitting air and noise pollution by introducing periodic independent testing of vehicle exhaust emissions and road-worthiness.

Sustainable Transport Planning

3. An independent, accountable and transparent body to manage public transport, with a review of the franchise policy prior to the completion of the existing contracts.

4. Evaluating major transport proposals for social, environmental, economic and other associated benefits and costs against those of alternative transport solutions.

5. Regular performance evaluation of all transport systems, showing full costs and benefits, including capital, maintenance, social and environmental aspects of each and the financial contribution made by users of each mode.

6. Provide and maintain in-house project appraisal and modelling expertise within Infrastructure Victoria to verify and assess claimed environmental, social and economic benefits of infrastructure projects.

Maximised Public Transport Use

7. Public transport that is fully compliant with the Disability Discrimination Act (1992), and is accessible to older people.

8. Increased investment in community transport options for older people and people with a disability.

9. Co-location of commercial and community facilities at train stations.

10. Co-operating with the Federal and NSW governments to establish a high speed train service between Melbourne and Sydney, including establishing a High Speed Rail Authority, fast-tracking inter-governmental agreements and legislation, adopting a plan to secure the rail corridor and undertaking a comprehensive environmental impact statement.

11. Servicing all urban areas, including regional towns and cities, with reliable and safe public transport that keeps pace with growth in demand, with a span of hours that covers economic and social activity, and a service frequency target of seven minutes in peak hours, and fifteen minutes at other times.

12. A clear and equitable public transport fare structure that maximises public transport use.

13. The implementation of single-use tickets and removal of fees to purchase reusable stored value card (myki) to encourage one-way trips.

14. Appropriate staffing throughout the public transport system to improve passenger safety, support and amenity, ensure correct ticketing and provide assistance across the network at all times.

15. Regulation of ride-sharing services.

16. A safety campaign to protect vulnerable people from violence and harassment in public transport, taxi cabs and ride-sharing cars.

17. Integrating the commercial passenger vehicle industry with public transport systems to facilitate connections at rail, bus and tram stops.

18. Giving greater traffic signal priority to road-based public transport.

Improved Safety and Fuel Efficiency

19. Elimination of dangerous level crossings in urban areas, and review of all rail crossings in regional and rural areas to ensure all have adequate warning signage or systems.

20. Evidence-based speed limits on urban, metropolitan and rural roads in Victoria.

21. Establishing a best-practice fuel-efficiency target for the Government fleet and require all new Victorian government vehicles for personal transport to be either best-available fuel efficiency vehicles, electric vehicles, or hybrids.

22. Transitioning Victoria’s public transport system to 100% electric services powered by renewable energy sources, including bus and coach services and regional trains.

Growth of Cycling as a Transport Option

23. Accelerating construction of the Principal Bicycle Network.

24. Increasing clearly signed, designated road space for cyclists, including signalling equity and protected cycleways where demand and risk are high.

25. Giving cyclists priority over motor vehicles in high concentration zones such as schools.

26. Laws addressing driver behaviour to improve cyclist and pedestrian safety, including Minimum Passing Distance Laws.

27. Better integration of cycling with other transport options, including bicycle access to trains and secure bicycle storage at public transport stops and stations.

28. Regulation of one way or “floating” bike share schemes to encourage responsible stewardship by scheme operators, the safe storage of bicycles in public spaces, and the removal and repair of bicycles when they are no longer in use.

29. The funding and assessment of cycling and pedestrian infrastructure, independent of road construction infrastructure projects.

Sustainable Freight Transport

30. Re-establishing a central freight planning body to prioritise and develop rail freight networks and practices.

31. Using regulation and incentives to shift an increasing proportion of freight from road to rail, in cooperation with neighbouring States.

32. Significantly increasing the proportion of intra-state and inter-state freight moved by rail by standardising and upgrading the Victorian freight rail network and connecting major logistics sites by rail.

33. Adopting a Victorian logistics policy for ports and long distance freight movements prioritising rail.

34. Increasing the volume of stand-alone country rail freight services, including mixed traffic where volumes for either passenger-only or freight-only services are insufficient.

35. Implementing long term solutions to solve empty freight container movements by on-road heavy vehicles, including the use of rail options and establishing dedicated intermodal freight terminals near industrial areas.

36. Co-operating with other governments in Australia to ensure the ongoing effectiveness of the national regulatory scheme for heavy vehicle design, operation, safety and driver fatigue management.

37. Basing state road user charges for freight vehicles on axle load and road damage per kilometre, rather than a fixed registration charge.

38. Preventing further increases in truck axle loads and the physical size of road freight.

39. Preventing further coastal port development and channel deepening by focusing on increasing the movement of intra-state and inter-state freight by rail.

Roads & Road Safety

40 Improving the parlous state of country roads to reduce road trauma and deaths in regional Victoria.

41 Improving road safety through smart road network management, considering safety measures for all road users, on-road priority for public transport and safer bicycle lanes.

Alternatives to Private Car Ownership

42. Supporting the uptake of car sharing as an alternative to car ownership.

43. Regulation of one way or “floating” car share schemes to encourage responsible stewardship by scheme operators, including legal parking arrangements for share vehicles, and the removal and repair of vehicles when they are no longer in use.

44. A trial of autonomous commercial passenger vehicles to assess their safe use and their efficacy as a ride-pooling system.


Transport and Freight Policy as amended by State Council on 10th February 2018.