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By Madeleine Gray on August 2, 2017 in News

Not a bad way to get to work.

Even those of us not living in Bondi are well aware that getting from Bondi to the city can be a bit of a nightmare, especially in the morning. Despite the relatively small distance between the two (approximately 9 kilometres), and the fact that in regular traffic the drive only takes about 15 minutes, in morning peak hour things get a bit crazy.

ankCongestion can prolong car trips by in excess of 30 minutes, while the bus from Bondi to the north of the CBD can take up to an hour. Unsurprisingly, a number of Bondi locals, led by Siobhan O’Toole, have decided that enough is enough.

Ms. O’Toole told The Beast that not only is the bus ride interminably long, but that the only other option is “a jolting bus ride up Bondi Road with stops every 50 meters, and then descending into the train to the city (at Bondi Junction) that goes to Martin Place/Central.”

While commuters from Coogee have the option of an express bus to Chifley Plaza, which only stops 11 times and takes 29 minutes, “no such option exists for Bondi. All transport options are via Bondi Junction.”

So how to solve the problem? Adding more buses to the congestion seems unlikely to work unless other commuters stop clogging up the road with cars, and building another road to the city seems out of the question.

As such, Ms. O’Toole and her fellow Bondi residents are suggesting an alternative route for getting to the city: taking the ferry from Rose Bay. The only catch is that there are no direct buses between Bondi Beach and Rose Bay, and according to Ms. O’Toole, driving to the ferry is not feasible as “the ferry car park is full by 7am as most of the car parks are restricted to four hours.”

Apart from being a faster commute option, Ms. O’Toole was quick to remind us that speed is not the only benefit.

“The ferry ride from Rose Bay to Circular Quay is gorgeous,” she said.

“You get to enjoy the best of living in Sydney on the way to work – check out the Opera House on your way into the daily grind.

“Happiness means more productivity too, and who doesn’t smile after a boat ride?”

All action is now being directed towards lobbying Waverley Council and the NSW Government to create an express bus route between Bondi Beach and Rose Bay, with more services in the morning.

A Facebook group – ‘The Bondi to Rose Bay Ferry Bus Service’ – has been created and has just 87 members so far. It has already corresponded with local MPs Andrew Constance and Gabrielle Upton.

Additionally, Ms. O’Toole has started a Change.org petition, which shares the same name as the Facebook group. So far it has 156 signatures, and aims to reach 500 before it is sent to Constance and Upton.

“With increased development in Bondi, more options for transport need to exist,” Concludes Ms. O’Toole said.

“The buses are full as they come up Bondi Road, often not stopping from Denham Street onwards.

“It’s about creating options and providing Bondi with parity services as those provided to Coogee and Manly.”



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