In today’s Question Time, Abigail highlighted community concerns about the issue of accessibility at Tempe Station. (Update: The ramp at Tempe station has been retained!)
Ms ABIGAIL BOYD (12:34): My question is directed to Minister Harwin, representing the Minister for Transport and Roads. An unexpected benefit of the refurbishment work by Sydney Trains to the stairs of Tempe railway station has been the opening of direct at-level access from Griffiths Street, making platform 4 fully accessible and allowing people with mobility issues or with prams or carts to easily access stations to the south, including the lifts at Wolli Creek station. However, Sydney Trains has advised that upon completion of the refurbishment work the access from Griffiths Street will be closed, despite the residents of Tempe, supported by the Inner West Council, requesting it to be retained. Will the Minister for Transport and Roads act to maintain the improved accessibility of Tempe station by directing Sydney Trains to retain the at-level access from Griffiths Street?
The Hon. DON HARWIN (Special Minister of State, Minister for the Public Service and Employee Relations, Aboriginal Affairs, and the Arts, and Vice-President of the Executive Council) (12:35): I thank Ms Abigail Boyd for her detailed question about Tempe railway station and in particular about the easier access upgrade program across a number of railway stations, as she mentioned. At present 57 per cent of our suburban and intercity stations are wheelchair accessible. While that is 57 per cent of stations it in fact covers 90 per cent of overall patronage in accessing those stations, which is good. I am delighted there are many more stations that are now accessible than there were eight to 10 years ago. There are 53 more wheelchair accessible stations than there were in 2011. At the moment 54 projects are progressing to planning activities. As Ms Abigail Boyd mentioned, Tempe is one of those where work is underway. The member raised some specific matters which I have not got in front of me but which I am hoping I will have some more details on before the end of question time. If not, I will obtain an answer as quickly as I possibly can.