All night public transport in Melbourne extended for six months

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The Andrews Labor Government’s hugely popular trial of all night public transport on weekends has been extended until June next year.

Premier Daniel Andrews on Aug 2 joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan and AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan to announce a six month extension to Victoria’s Night Network of trains, trams, buses and regional coaches.

All night public transport will continue to run through Summer and Autumn, ensuring people out for the night or working late continue to have access to public transport on Friday and Saturday nights, an official press release said.

It will allow services to be assessed over a full 12 month period and help organisers plan for the massive line up of events between January and June, including the Australian Open, Formula 1 Grand Prix and the Comedy Festival.

It will also ensure all night public transport is on offer for the start of next year’s footy season, so fans who have kicked on after the game can get home safer and sooner.

To promote Night Network services on offer in the lead up to footy finals, a glow-in-the-dark mural will be on display for Friday night’s clash at the MCG, and Saturday’s match at Etihad Stadium.

An average of 35,000 people use Night Network to get home safer and sooner every weekend – and more than 20 per cent of passengers are shift-workers, in hospitality, essential services or other industries operating overnight.

These workers previously had no choice but to drive or catch a cab home, or wait around for the first service in the morning. Now they can jump on one of 300 overnight train services, 250 tram services or around 500 bus and coach services to get home when their shift ends.

“People will be able to enjoy the world’s most liveable city for longer this summer, and shift workers will continue to have access to the trains, trams and buses they need to get home. Whether you’re kicking on after the footy, heading out for a show or working late on the weekend, Night Network is there to get you home safer and sooner, the premier said.

Minister for Transport Jacinta Allan added, “The six-month extension will give us a chance to properly assess the trial over a full year, and give certainty to event organisers and passengers in the lead up to the new year.”

For timetables and more information, visit ptv.vic.gov.au/night-network. (TIW)