The Tourism & Transport Forum (TTF) today applauded the Baird government for agreeing to develop a combined tourism and transport strategy. The combined strategy will mean the needs of visitors to New South Wales will be core to the future of transport and infrastructure development.
Transport for NSW will lead the development of the plan first proposed by TTF in its transport agenda for Sydney, Getting Ahead of the Game, last month. Minister Berejiklian has confirmed this as part of the government’s response to TTF’s transport policy agenda.
Chief Executive Margy Osmond said “this is another common sense announcement from the Baird government that properly recognises the value of tourism to our economy. At TTF we have long argued that a plan like this has the potential to transform the visitor experience of Sydney and New South Wales, encouraging visitors to stay longer, spend more, and visit regional destinations.
“The tourism task of our public transport system is often underestimated, but it shouldn’t be. Most visitors will use some sort of public transport service during their stay, be that an iconic Sydney ferry, the 333 bus to Bondi, the Airport Rail Link or the City Circle.
“A public transport network that is legible, affordable and easy to use will contribute significantly to the overall experience of a visitor to Australia. If you think of other global cities where they do transport well – London, New York and Tokyo, for example – those well managed transport systems are considered selling points in their own right.
“Improving public transport with the visitor economy in mind will also deliver a significant benefit to regional NSW. Such a plan would seek to make visiting regional destinations such as the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast and the Hunter Valley cheaper and easier.
“It is fantastic to see the Baird government again recognise the economic potential of the tourism industry. Throughout this election the government has made a number of significant announcements that aim to foster the already strong growth in our industry. This is another welcome sign of their commitment to what is already a growth industry.
“We are calling on NSW Labor, who have so far been very quiet on tourism, to join the government in committing to the development of a tourism and transport plan for NSW.
“TTF will be releasing its own comprehensive tourism and transport plan in April.”