For a Better Brisbane

Brisbane’s public transport fleet

Many of your correspondent’s posts are public transport related. Here is some basic information about Brisbane’s public transport fleet.

Brisbane City Council Buses: is an excellent site detailing the makes, models and capacities of Brisbane Transport buses in Brisbane. Please note that this is the site of an enthusiast, and it is not an official Brisbane City Council website.

Brisbane City Council Ferries (CityCat): BCC ferries and CityCat operations are privatised to TransdevTSL. Information about the ferry fleet can be found at their website

Queensland Rail CityTrains: QR CityTrains are operated by Queensland Rail. Information about their fleet is listed here

Brisbane Trams: Unfortunately no longer with us, the Brisbane Tramway Museum at Ferny Grove has information about the former fleet.

A useful source of information about “ballpark” costs and capacities of various modes can be found in Appendix D of the Lord Mayor’s Mass Transit Report (2007)

A word about vehicle capacity and line capacity. The capacity of a vehicle is the number of seated passengers plus the number of standing passengers at a comfortable density. Under exceptional circumstances, vehicles may fit more people than published (for example, full trains after a rugby match) because people pack in more closely under these conditions than they normally would.

Theoretical line capacity can be found if the frequency is known. For example, a bus every 5 minutes means sixty minutes divided by five equals twelve services an hour. If there are eighty seats on the bus then eighty times twelve gives nine hundred and sixty passengers per direction per hour. In the real world, buses never quite fill up and there are all sorts of obstacles and delays so that the practical capacity is usually lower than the theoretical one.

For a really hardcore explanation, see “Urban Transit- Operations, Planning and Economics” by Vukan R. Vuchic (2005). This book is unofficially known as the “International Public Transport Bible”. A warning though, it is not an easy read and is highly technical. University libraries are the place to find this book.


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May 1, 2010 at 8:11 pm

Posted in Public Transport

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