Night Network (Melbourne)
Night Network is Melbourne's weekend overnight public transport system, which commenced operation on 1 January 2016 for a 12-month trial, which was later extended by six-months, and made permanent in April 2017. It comprises all of Melbourne's regular electric railway lines, six tram lines, 21 night bus services, and four regional coach services. The night bus services replaced the previous NightRider services, with 10 operating radial from the CBD and the remaining 11 operating from suburban railway stations.
|Owner||Public Transport Victoria|
|Number of lines||Melbourne suburban railway lines, 6 tram lines, 21 bus routes, 4 regional coaches|
|Began operation||1 January 2016|
|Operator(s)||Night Train: Metro|
Night Tram: Yarra Trams
Night Bus: Dysons, McKenzie's and Ventura
Night Coach: V/Line
In January 2014, in the lead up to the 2014 Victorian State election, the Australian Labor Party promised to commence a trial of all night public transport on weekends, dubbed Homesafe, if elected. Following the Australian Labor Party's victory, cost overruns were announced in August 2015, with the plan to cost $83.6 million, not the $50 million estimated during the election, due to increased security costs. The network was unveiled on 30 October 2015, along with its new name, Night Network, with the Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan claiming 70% of Melbourne's dwellings would be covered by Night Network.
Night Network commenced operation on 1 January 2016 on a 12-month trial basis. In its first weekend of operation 9,862 myki touch ons were recorded, representing a three-fold increase in patronage compared to the former NightRider bus system. However, this may understate patronage as it fails to account for fare evaders, those travelling in the free tram zone, and those with periodical tickets who may not have touched on. The trial was later extended until June 2017, and made permanent in April 2017.
Night Network servicesEdit
All of Melbourne's train services operated by Metro Trains Melbourne, except the Flemington Racecourse and Stony Point lines, operate as part of Night Network, servicing all metropolitan stations except for City Loop stations and Southern Cross, which close at midnight and 1am respectively. Trains operate hourly on all lines, with some lines operating as shuttles from major interchange stations.
Twenty-one night bus services, operated by Dysons, McKenzie's Tourist Services and Ventura Bus Lines, run as part of Night Network. Ten routes operate from the CBD, departing every 30 minutes, with the remaining 11 operating from metropolitan railway stations, departing every hour. Night Bus replaced NightRider bus services, which largely follow railway lines, with PTV claiming most passengers will still have access to all night public transport.
V/Line operate Night Coach services to Ballarat, Bendigo, Traralgon, and Geelong, departing Southern Cross station at approximately 2am. The coaches operate in lieu of regional trains, servicing railway stations along said routes. In October 2016, Seymour was added to the network.
Myki tickets are valid for Night Network services, with standard fares applying, while V/Line tickets are charged at off-peak rates. Authorised Officers patrol Night Network, checking for fare evasion.
- Campbell, James (19 January 2014). "Labor pledges 24-hour weekend public transport for Melbourne if it wins November election". Herald Sun. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Victorian Labor to deliver Homesafe: 24-hour weekend public transport for Melbourne". Australian Labor Party Victorian Branch. 19 January 2014. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Edwards, Jean (6 August 2015). "Multi-million-dollar cost blowout of Victoria's 24-hour weekend public transport trial". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Willingham, Richard; Carey, Adam (6 August 2015). "$30m cost blowout in 24-hour weekend public transport trial to begin in January". The Age. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Carey, Adam (30 October 2015). "All-night weekend public transport kicks off at New Year's with new name". The Age. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Minister for Public Transport (30 October 2015). "New Public Transport Night Network Unveiled". Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Night Network overview". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Willingham, Richard (8 January 2016). "10,000 use night trains, trams and buses on first weekend of 24 hour services". The Age. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
- Night network services extended Public Transport Victoria 2 August 2016
- Tomazin, Farrah (22 April 2017). "All-night public transport to keep Melbourne on the move". The Age. Retrieved 22 April 2017.
- "Night Train". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Night Tram". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Night Bus". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Night Network - all night public transport on weekends - FAQs". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- "Night Bus". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "Night Coach". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
- Seymour Coach Added to Night Network Services Public Transport Victoria 16 September 2016
- "Night Network fares and ticketing". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 21 December 2015.