Alternative Media Group info:
UNSW LIGHTRAIL PLAN: (with media contact)
ATC STUDY: ROYAL RANDWICK RACECLUB-
Our strategy is to engage UNSW students in an information campaign via a range of social media tools which, together, form a cohesive network for discussion, involvement, and even as just a centre to keep track of the Light Rail proposal in Randwick issue. The message can be simplified into three concise points: Raising Awareness, Being Informed, and Being Engaged. The media strategy encompasses most mainstream media and social media. Our Facebook page, Twitter feed, and blog are the anchors that siphon information regarding the Light Rail proposal from all sources. Our social networking sites would garner discussion and information from all manner of social media and online forums whilst the blog would mainly be following the news and stories from mainstream television, radio, and newspapers. As these platforms are linked to each other as a single network via online linking, the strategy with these tactics is to provide a comprehensive hub of information and discussion acting as the center for engaging UNSW students in being involved in following the Light Rail proposal issue. The mobile phone application tactic serves as an augment to this hub, as it allows students to be able to access this network wherever they are and without having to have a computer with them. It would also provide valuable information such as train timetables and routes if the proposal ever gets implemented in the future. The Pecha Kucha presentation tactic act as a ‘broadcaster’ about the network as well as to generate interest about the issue in addition to all the online ‘shouting’ that is being conducted by the other tactics to get students to know about the issue and our network. It serves as the main way offline to reach out to students without which they might not be sufficiently exposed to the issue to be bothered, as online messages are too easy to ignore.
The Coalition policy, citing data from the Gold Coast light rail project, says trams can carry 10,000 passengers an hour, giving them more capacity than buses.
Randwick council, UNSW, the Australian Turf Club and three hospitals in Randwick are signing a memorandum of understanding to support the light rail extension to the east.
“Randwick council transport studies have found we are going to need a 50 per cent increase in public transport capacity in Randwick city by 2021 to effectively accommodate anticipated population and employment growth,” said the Randwick mayor, Murray Matson.
“More than 100 international cities have reintroduced light rail because they can see the benefit of moving millions of people quickly and safely for work, education and recreation.”
Light rail anyone? If it’s safe then it’s great! Of course, for the commuter student who drives it does little to change the fact that the commuter still has to drive… I suppose I am a little out of line here…? The point of the light rail is to move people more efficiently than a bus from A to B. A being the city and B of course being some location in Randwick. For the commuter who needs to bounce from Sydney Central Station to UNSW, say most commuter students who don’t drive, then Light Rail would be convenient. My only concern is that, yes it’s a safe system, and offers speedy delivery when you’re on board, but how regular is this system? I mean, bus intervals running from Central station are plentiful, and if you were a UNSW student, most buses running through Anzac Parade to any of the Easter Suburbs could get you to UNI. Why wait for the light rail when most 39_ buses take you there any and every 5 minutes??
Our wiki site: (WIKI SITE) details all the specifics regarding our campaign.. within this we have narrowed down 3 main factors that have a strong influence on the possible solutions to the problem:
1. Feasibility of the Light Rail system as compared to other modes of Public Transport
2. Convenience and Comfort
3. Cost and Effectiveness
Now, this post is merely informative. Something to wet thy lips on before we delve into the nitty gritty of this campaign. These are the three points we want to look at regarding Randwick’s new Light Rail transport system, so let’s explore them…
Data taken from http://www.lightrailtorandwick.com.au/:
Ok, so this is a lot of data to digest. The stand out data is both the student numbers who attend the University of New South Wales and also those who attend large events in Randwick (mostly because whenever an event is on there are major traffic delays and some serious re-routing for regular commuters)… So from this, light rail is beneficial for external facilities, but what of UNSW?
So, here is a little information about the Light Rail to Randwick and why we are so interested and also, to some degree, concerned…
First of all: What is the problem?
There is a general lack of awareness surrounding the issue of implementing this light rail system, even concerning the people that will be affected should this proposal be accepted or denied. This can be clearly seen by the mediocre amount of responses on the forums of the official website dedicated to this issue, http://www.lightrailtorandwick.com.au/, set up by the Randwick City Council, University of NSW, and the Australian Turf Club. There is hardly any public debate and it is also an indicator that the current efforts to provide attention and exposure to this issue are not enough.
Based on an online survey conducted by us for UNSW students, only 50% of respondents know of or have heard about the light rail proposal plan, but when asked to clarify further, only 66% of these respondents know what the plan is actually about (refer to section 2.0 in the Appendix).
To make a decision on whether to support or oppose such a proposal requires one to be informed about it. We are a group of university students from UNSW who are in support of the implementation of the Randwick light rail system and are aiming to raise awareness of the issue to university students at UNSW specifically. We do not feel that the website dedicated to the Randwick light rail system at http://www.lightrailtorandwick.com.au provides enough attention and exposure nor is it able to generate substantial public debate and participation. There is also no official outlet for participation or discussion targeted to UNSW students other than the current generic official website.
The level of community support for the light rail proposal also seems to be low, judging from the limited public forum discussion on the official website (refer to section 1.0 in the Appendix). However, as the sample size of this discussion is small (a mere 196 comments as of 11th September 2011), it is difficult to ascertain the actual consensus of the Randwick community or students from UNSW without more participation from the public. Thus, the underlying problem is that there is a lack of awareness, exposure, as well as feedback and participation, from the Randwick public and UNSW students regarding the proposal of a light rail public transport system connecting Randwick to the City.
Second: How do we feel about the implication of the Light Rail to Randwick??
As a fellow commuter driving in and out of UNSW approximately four days a week to attend my usual studies requires me to drive for almost an hour from my place of residence. Yes I live almost interstate (French’s Forest), but for me, I was pleased to hear something about Randwick aiming to improve transport to UNSW for regular commuters…. HOWEVER, and this is a BIG HOWEVER…. the Light Rail to Randwick only accommodates for a limited route to and from the campus. And by limited I mean from Flinders Street to the University. Such proposed routes would allow me to ride to campus if I needed, because the light rail therefore applies to a select few lucky who reside near Surry Hills, Moore Park or any similar near city locations.
For me, the premise of a light rail is nearly superfluous. Buses are plentiful and car traffic is already a problem. So, why eradicate one transit lane for vehicles for a light rail that wont necessarily provide better ease for commuters who must travel such a short distance……….? Something to ponder…..