The frequency of regular bus services between Lilli Pilli Point and Caringbah will be greatly increased as a result of Opal data and feedback from passengers gathered during the trial of a Turn Up and Go minibus shuttle.
Transport for NSW introduced the Route 980 shuttle service in November 2019 after scrapping popular on-demand buses, which serviced a large part of Sutherland Shire.
Route 980 minibuses will be withdrawn on December 18 and improvements made to regular bus services on the route from mid-January 2021.
Transport for NSW chief operations officer Howard Collins said the Route 980 trial encouraged more people to catch public transport.
"It's clear from the trial and through customer feedback that more people will choose public transport if there are more regular bus services across the day that provide timely connections with train services at Caringbah station," Mr Collins said.
"However with limited seating capacity from using smaller buses during the trial, we need to adjust our operations by using larger buses so more customers can benefit in the long run.
"We will be boosting weekly capacity by around 30 per cent or almost 3000 additional seats.
"There will also be more off-peak services so customers have more flexibility and choice around when they travel."
Mr Collins said, from mid-January, more than 115 extra weekly services would be added to the equivalent Route 977, providing customers with more options throughout the day.
Buses will run:
- Every 15 minutes in the AM and PM peak (now every 30-60 minutes).
- Every 30 minutes in weekday off-peak periods and on Saturdays (now up to 90 minutes).
- Every hour on Sundays instead (120-150 minutes now).
There will also be extended service hours during evenings on both weekdays and weekends.
The shuttle bus trial followed five years of advocacy of high-rotation shuttle buses to shire train stations by business group ShireBiz.
ShireBiz leaders Barry Alchin and Tony Blain surveyed commuters at shire train stations and then lobbied the then Transprt Minister Gladys Berejiklian.