'Rail line on right track'

PUBLIC transport authority Robert Dow has backed TransLink figures that show the Ipswich rail line is busier but less crowded.

TransLink acting CEO Matt Longland this week said Queensland Rail data showed the new timetable that started on June 6 was driving a positive change for its train customers.

Mr Longland said passenger numbers were counted in August and September and the data shows a 6.8% growth in morning peak train boardings and a 4.1% growth in afternoon peak use, compared to last year.

"Some of the most significant growth occurred on our two busiest lines during the morning peak period with Ipswich/Richlands line growing by 7.3% and the Caboolture line by 9.9%," Mr Longland said.

"On one hand we are seeing growth, yet both these busy lines have more than halved the number of crowded services as a result of the 11 additional peak services on the Ipswich/Richlands line and eight additional peak services on the Caboolture line."

However, opposition transport spokesman Scott Emerson said the figures were unreliable because TransLink changed the way it measured train patronage.

Mr Dow, of public transport lobby group Rail Back on Track, said the method had changed but the figures were more reliable.

"We think what TransLink has done is absolutely valid and it shows the Ipswich line is busier," Mr Dow said.

"The situation is that from when the Go Card started being used, they have been getting more accurate data than when they were using paper tickets," Mr Dow said.

"The Ipswich line is still a bit congested but the Ipswich people are very happy and that's the feedback we're getting because of the express services in peak hour. The Ipswich line is doing pretty well."



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