Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader and Transport spokesperson
It is fantastic that Hobart City Council is getting on board the push to have ferries on the Derwent River to ease traffic congestion and lower emissions in Southern Tasmania.
Congratulations to Alderman Philip Cocker and Alderman Damon Thomas for bringing this to Council as a future public transport option for greater Hobart.
The Hobart City Council is clearly willing to think laterally and strategically, look to our beautiful, blue unused ‘highway’ - the river - for solutions.
It's time for the Tasmanian government and Minister Hidding to get on board and progress the foundational work.
Hopefully, the Transport Minister will be persuaded to include a feasibility study for river transport in the upcoming State Budget because, apart from establishing a talkfest on the traffic, we haven’t heard much from him on future solutions.
We need a integrated public transport strategy for Hobart that looks beyond roads and moves towards more active and public transport, and also proposals such as light rail and ferries on the River Derwent.
This year, Hobart's traffic has been in near total gridlock at certain peak times and we must have a realistic vision for ensuring that doesn’t become the norm. Other cities use their waterways with ease and our commuters should be offered that option.
Commuters in southern Tasmania are eager for alternative transport options to ease the traffic pain, and we hope that Minister Hidding will catch their enthusiasm.