2014-07-27: Transdev Greenfields Changes
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Transdev Melbourne #114 (Scania K280UB, Gemilang) on a cold morning in Ringwood (28/5/2016) (Jase Robinson)

A raft of changes will take place on Transdev network took place on 27 July 2014, their first timetable change since taking over the Melbourne bus franchise in August 2013.

One could consider these changes the first stage of a more significant Greenfields network that was due for implementation by the middle of 2015 (still postponed indefinitely).

A summary of route and timetable changes:

  • 200 – new timetable
  • 201 – deleted, replaced by new 304
  • 202 – deleted, absorbed into 302
  • 203 – deleted
  • 205 – deleted
  • 207 – modified City – Doncaster Shoppingtown & operates via North Kew instead of along High St. Major frequency boosts.
  • 216 – new timetable
  • 219 – Sunshine Park & West sections deleted.
  • 220 – new timetable
  • 232 – modified route in City and now skips Port Melbourne.
  • 234 – new route Garden City – Victoria Market replacing 250/251.
  • 235 – operates to QV Market instead of Market St and no longer serves far end of Lormier St. Now runs all day 7 days.
  • 236 – new route Garden City – Victoria Market, replacing 253. Reduced weekday frequency but runs Saturdays unlike 253.
  • 237 – operates to QV Market instead of Market St and no longer serves Boeing.
  • 238 – deleted
  • 246 – Clifton Hill – La Trobe Uni section deleted to avoid duplication with 250.
  • 250 – now runs City – La Trobe Uni. Garden City section replaced by new 234.
  • 251 – now runs City – Northland. Garden City section replaced by new 234.
  • 253 – replaced by new 236.
  • 270 – Now runs Box Hill – Mitcham with modified route in North Nunawading, Mitcham – Ringwood served by new 370.
  • 271 – Modified route between Donvale & Box Hill. Later buses through Park Orchards and Saturday frequency boost.
  • 279 – new timetable
  • 281 – new timetable
  • 284 – Doncaster Park+RIde – Doncaster section deleted.
  • 285 – Doncaster Park+Ride – Doncaster section deleted.
  • 286 – deleted. 271 modified to cover Box Hill – Blackburn North section.
  • 295 – Box Hill – Doncaster Shoppingtown section deleted.
  • 302 – new City terminus. Frequency boosts.
  • 303 – deleted (later reinstated)
  • 304 – new City – Doncaster Shoppingtown route via Victoria Pde, Eastern Fwy & Belmore Rd.
  • 305 – now runs Doncaster Shoppingtown – The Pines only outside of peak times.
  • 309 – new timetable
  • 313 – deleted
  • 315 – deleted
  • 318 – trip count cut.
  • 340 – replaced by new 350
  • 350 – new City Queen St – Latrobe Uni route. No longer operates between 10:30am & 2pm.
  • 364 – new timetable online
  • 366 – replaced by new 380. Improved weekend services
  • 367 – replaced by new 380. Later finishes and improved weekend services.
  • 370 – Mitcham – Ringwood replacing 270.
  • 380 – new Ringwood – Croydon – Ringwood loop replacing 366 & 367.
  • 901 – new timetable
  • 902 – new timetable
  • 903 – new timetable
  • 905 – new timetable
  • 906 – Warrandyte – Ringwood extension removed.
  • 907 – new timetable

A full review of the changes that took place:

Routes 200, 201, 205, 207, 313 & 315

  • Services serving Johnson St, Collingwood, Kew Junction and Kilby Rd, North Kew were streamlined into a simple easy to understand high-frequency corridor consisting of Routes 200 & 207 between the City and Balwyn North, where they then branch off into separate corridors to Bulleen (200) and Doncaster Shoppingtown (207). The changes also saw 201 becoming a freeway service instead of running via Kew Junction and Johnston St (see below)
  • Weekday only Routes 203 & 205 were discontinued, with Thompsons Rd in Bulleen receiving a boosted 200 service, with all buses again operating via Kew Junction. Both variations were introduced in March 1999, the 203 offering a marginally faster trip into the inner City by skipping congested Kew Junction by operating briefly along a section of the Eastern Fwy, while 205 aimed to offer a door-to-door service to Melbourne Uni. Melbourne Uni students can continue to catch 200 or 207 a short walk away in Lygon St
  • The limited peak trips to the Russell St terminus in the City along 313 from Doncaster Park+Ride and 315 from Box Hill have been discontinued, seeing the end of departures from this terminus to the north-eastern suburbs, the traditional departure point prior to the early 1990s. Both routes traversed Kilby Rd before travelling along the freeway and Victoria Pde. Along with changes to 340 and 479, this sees the end of Russell St being a destination for City buses. Greythorn residents will experience notably extended travel times to the City, and are better off catching an outbound 207 to interchange with freeway services at Doncaster Park+Ride, or alternatively catching 284 to Box Hill, although last return services now depart just after 6pm
  • 207 services now operate via Wilsmere Rd and Kilby Rd in North Kew instead of duplicating the 48 tram service along High St. Historically, Kilby Rd was a high frequency corridor until changes to 200 in the late 1990s, so this is largely a return to previous service levels
  • Additionally, 207 services no longer operate east of Doncaster Shoppingtown to Donvale, thus avoiding duplication with the 902 and 907 SmartBus services along Doncaster Rd. A bonus is AM peak departures towards Kew now depart from the interchange at Doncaster Shoppingtown in, avoiding the need to walk down to Doncaster Junction to board these services
  • 200 & 207 were extended in the City from Melbourne Central to the Queen St/Flinders La terminus. These routes previously continued to Queen St between October 1994 and March 1999
  • Both peak and counter-peak 200 and 207 services now run at 15 minute intervals, combining to a 7-8 min headway between North Balwyn & City via Kew Junction and the City. Currently, buses on 207 are largely half-hourly with gaps in the AM peak of up to 45 mins
  • Weekday inter-peak services on 200 & 207 depart every 20 mins, or 10 mins along the inner trunk. This boosted the 207 from half hourly.
    Although the 200 & 203 provided 4 trips an hour to Bulleen, the Thompsons Rd section carries relatively low patronage as passengers typically use the faster freeway services.
    The Johnston St section has also lost two trips an hour during the day, but is not a effective downgrade as there used to be gaps of 10 or more minutes anyway due to clumsy off-sets
  • Weeknight services now run half hourly on both routes until 21:30, both dropping to 40 mins. This sees a drop on early evening outbound trips along Johnston St from 10 mins to 15 mins.
  • On weeknights the last inbound 207 ex Doncaster Shoppingtown became 45 mins later at 23:08, with City departures on 207 extended from 23:15 until 00:07. Span of service to Johnston St, Kew & Kilby Rd is largely unchanged
  • On Saturdays, daytime buses continue to run every 15 mins along the trunk, and half hourly on the branches. This sees a doubling of Saturday services on 207. Evening services on the trunk have dropped from 15 mins to 20 mins, although the 207 branch has gone from hourly to every 40 mins with the last 207 90 mins later at midnight
  • Similar service levels run on Sundays, a significant upgrade of the previous 90 min offering on the 207
  • While Route 200 previously ran a jumbled 15-30-15-30 service on Sundays to off-set against the 201 & 207 on Johnson St, an easier to remember 30 min service now applies. Sunday evening services along Johnston St & Kilby Rd are now every 20 mins instead of half hourly, 40 mins on the branches
  • 207 now runs Sunday nights, with the last bus 22:05 ex Doncaster Shoppingtown & 22:40 ex City, compared to the previous 17:56 & 18:48 finishes. The route also rises earlier on Sundays, now starting at 06:30 instead of 08:18

Routes 201, 202 & 302:

  • Services along Belmore Rd have also been overhauled. 202 shortworkings between Box Hill & East Kew have largely been extended into the City as the full length 302, while 201 services that operated between Doncaster Shoppingtown and the City via Kew Junction and Johnston St now operate as 304 via Eastern Fwy and Victoria Pde. This allows the routes to be better off-set and share common stops in the CBD. Passengers can change to the 48 tram at Harp Junction or 200/207 at either Willsmere Shops or Victoria Park to reach destinations previously served by 201. The direct connection from Belmore Rd to Kew, Collingwood & Carlton was introduced in October 1994
  • Both services now terminate at the western end of Lonsdale St. Previously 201 services terminated at Melbourne Central, while 302 operated to the bottom of Queen St, with extensions to Crown Casino at night, a feature of the 1999 network
  • Weekday peak services have been split between the 302 & 304, with a slight reduction in Box Hill trips toward the City (and vice versa in afternoons)
  • Inter-peak, a combined 15 min service is provided between the City & Mont Albert North, with 30 min services to Box Hill and Doncaster Shoppingtown. Previously, 302 only via the freeway once an hour between hourly 202 services, while 201 ran every half hour
  • Evening services on 304 conclude at 20:31 ex City and 19:43 ex Doncaster Shoppingtown, compared to the previous 20:42 & 22:08 finishes, leaving behind late night shoppers for the first time in more than 25 years. 302 however has been upgraded to run every half-hour, with the last bus departing Box Hill almost an hour later at 22:40
  • Daytime Saturday buses run every 15 min along Belmore Rd and half-hourly on the branches. Previously the three routes combined to ran a rough 20 min service, with half-hourly departures ex Box Hill (202+302) and City (201+302)
  • All Saturday evening trips now operate as 302, removing service from Doncaster Shoppingtown after 17:43 (before the centre closes at 6pm) and reducing services to one bus an hour. Previously 201 operated until midnight.
  • The former 45 min Sunday service along Belmore Rd (201 and 302 each every 90 mins) has been boosted to every 30 mins, or hourly beyond Mont Albert North
  • Three dedicated school specials operate from Koonung Secondary College to Box Hill after school, replacing former shortworkings on 202

Routes 215, 223, 273, 279, 280 to 282, 600, 922 & 923

  • The above Transdev services continue to operate to existing timetables despite the timetable changes on most services, although 279 & 281 have updated bay allocations at Box Hill and Doncaster Shoppingtown. These routes remained ripe for review in the next timetable change due to complex route structures and duplication with neighbouring services

Routes 216, 219 & 220

  • Several years of unreliable cross-town services has finally be addressed with new running times introduced
  • To provide sufficient buses to cater for the new runtimes, PM peak services departing the City on 220 towards Sunshine have been cut reduced from 7 – 8 minutes to 10 mins, along with the deletion of two 216 shortworkings to Sunshine
  • Late weeknight services on 220 in both directions have been reduced from 15 min to 20 min intervals
  • An overdue move to simplify routes and avoid duplication with 903 SmartBus, 428 & 471, saw the Sunshine Park loop and Sunshine West weekend variation on 219 removed. All buses now terminate in the Sunshine South loop.
  • Despite extensive route rationalisation in other areas served by Transdev, the poorly patronised sections of 216, 219 & 220 south of Elsternwick have not been altered with these changes

Route 232, 235, 237 & 238

  • The previous complex network of services between City and Fishermans Bend, Port Melbourne & Garden City has been simplified with several network changes.
  • 232 services to North Altona now exit the City via Collins St, serving Southern Cross Station. Flinders St had been one of many sources of late running, with no adjustment made when the King St overpass was demolished in 2005
  • All 232 trips now operate via the express variant bypassing Port Melbourne. Williamstown Rd continues to be served by an upgraded 235. Run times on 232 have also been updated to improve service reliability over the congested West Gate Bridge
  • 232 now operates slightly later on weekends, finishing at 19:50 Saturdays & 19:20 Sundays, instead of stopping by 18:00
  • 238 loop service along Lorimer & Salmon Sts before extending to Bay St, Port Melbourne and has been removed. This service only operated during the off-peak and at night.
  • The 238 stop at South Wharf Shopping Centre is no longer be served. Although used by a handful of shoppers, the interpeak deviation in the centre added several minutes to through journeys due to waiting for traffic light changes.
  • 235 now runs all day to compensate for the removal of 238, although services now finish around 9pm instead of midnight.
  • 235 & 237 now operate to Queen Victoria Market instead of the somewhat ‘temporary’ terminus at Market St, introduced in 2008 when National services were removed from Flinders St to avoid traffic congestion. The majority of passengers using these routes arrive the City by train, so it’s unclear the value in extending them through the City when it would be more logical to terminate them at Southern Cross
  • At the Fishermans Bend end, 235 no longer operates to the western end of Lormier St, while 237 no longer operates to the terminus at the Boeing Gate in Wharf Rd, giving both routes clearly defined termini and saving excessive kilometres
  • To compensate for the removal of 232 & 238 from Williamstown Rd and Salmon St, and address overcrowding, 235 have received a number of service upgrades. Outbound AM peak services now operate every 12 mins (formerly every 20 mins), while inbound services in the PM peak now depart every 15 mins (instead of 30 mins). Inter-peak services have been introduced, every 20 mins
  • On Weekends, 235 now runs every 40 mins on Saturdays and hourly Sundays. Previously, only two return trips ran Saturdays catering for a handful of factory workers. The service levels would appear to compensate for the removal of 232 on Williamstown Rd, as it remains to see if there will be sufficient demand in Fishermans Bend to justify full weekend services, as locals and those attending VFL matches are walking distance to the nearby light rail & 234
  • Peak services on 237 for Fishermans Bend workers now operate every 15 mins instead of every 25 mins, which should elevate overcrowding.
  • Buses now operate into the City before 10am (at half hour intervals), providing residents at the Yarra’s Edge estate in Docklands a useable public transport service on their doorstep for the first time
  • 237 remains half-hourly off-peak, a more sensible option for the industrial area along Lorimer St than the combined 15 min 237-238 offering

Routes 234, 236, 246, 250, 251, 253 & 340

  • The unsolvable riddle of trying to off-set 250 (Garden City – City – La Trobe Uni) with overlapping sections of 246, 251, 253 & 340 across various segments has been answered by making a number of changes to simplify the network
  • The weekday extension of 246 between Clifton Hill & La Trobe Uni has been deleted after nearly 20 years. Passengers wishing to travel in this section can change to the 250 at Clifton Hill, while La Trobe students can also interchange to 86 or 350
  • 250 & 251 have been split in the CBD, with the northern half terminating at Flinders La/Queen St
  • Garden City – City services now operate as 234, terminating at Queen Victoria Market.
  • 253 service has been renumbered 236, and terminates at Queen Victoria Market rather than continuing to North Carlton. The service now skips the Bay St shops, operating along the full length of Pickles St
  • 340 has reverted back to 350, and now operates to Flinders La/Queen St rather than terminating at the bottom of Russell St near Federation Square
  • 234 operates every 10 mins peak, 15 mins off-peak, 20 mins weeknights, 15 mins Saturday daytime, 20 mins Sundays & 30 mins weekend evenings, generally matching the previous 250/251 corridor through Port Melbourne
  • 236 operates every 40 – 45 mins, a downgrade on the previous half-hourly 253. Hourly Saturday services have been introduced however.
  • Weekday daytime services on 250/251 now operate every 20 mins each, combining to form at 10 min corridor between Thornbury & City. Formerly services ran every half hour or 15 mins combined. The upgrade compensates for the removal of the 246 north of Clifton Hill (previously combined with 250 to provide an average 15 min service) and 253 along Rathdowne St (average 10 min combined service). The frequencies also provide a better peak service along 251 on Victoria Rd into East Preston & Northland
  • Weeknight services on the combined section now run every 15 mins until 10pm (instead of 8pm), with services on 251 extending by over an hour. As a result however, evening trips on 250 now operate half-hourly instead of every 20 mins
  • Saturday daytime services continue to operate every 15 mins to Thornbury and half-hourly beyond, and every 30 mins on 250 at night. Services on 251 now extend to after 7pm instead of finishing around 5pm – 5:30pm. The late night trip on 250 leaving the City around 12:40am has been cancelled, with the last bus now at midnight
  • Sunday daytime services continue to operate every 20 mins to Thornbury and 40 mins beyond and every 40 mins on 250 at night
  • 350 services no longer operate between 10:30 & 14:00, although shoulder services run every 20 mins instead of every 30 mins & are generous enough to cater for 1100 classes & those wishing to leave uni at 1400. Trips are off-set with the 20 min frequency on 250 through West Heidelberg and continue to provide a faster trip via Eastern Fwy than the 250 via Clifton Hill

Routes 270, 271, 286, 303 & 370

  • 286 (Box Hill – The Pines) has been abolished to remove duplication along Blackburn Rd with the 901 SmartBus, with Box Hill passengers having to change to train or modified 271 at Blackburn. Although this is a major service reduction, 901 generally offers the same or enhanced service levels on Blackburn Rd in comparison to those were available in 2010 prior to it’s introduction. The failure to remove the 286 at the same time the 901 was introduced and 304 upgraded to the 906 SmartBus in 2010 was in many ways an oversight
  • Peak hour service 303 (City – North Ringwood) have was also axed (then reinstated some 10 weeks later). Although only offering four return trips, the service was a popular alternative for those living in North Blackburn & Park Orchards, avoiding the need to transfer to a train service and commute within a hour.
    A number of complaints were made on twitter and in local media regarding it’s demise. Passengers must now take a connecting bus to the nearest station, adding 10 – 15 mins travel time.
    An official suggestion for Park Orchards locals to transfer to the 907 at Donvale was misguided, as journeys will be up to half-hour longer than the old 303 due to poor connections, with trains the best option
  • As a result of the deletion of these two services, alternations have been made to 270 & 271. 270 is now the sole service through Kerrimuir & terminates at Mitcham, with a new 370 service operating between Mitcham & Ringwood
  • Route alternations to 271 see buses now operating along Whitehorse Rd to Blackburn in lieu of 286, operating in both directions along the full length of Junction Rd (with 270 no longer zig-zagging off Springfield Rd) and skipping Tunstall Square & Roy St in Donvale, with passengers required to change to 902 or 907
  • On weekdays 270 has been upgraded to run 10 – 15 mins in peaks, maintaining service levels on the combined section, with off-peak services every 20 mins (previously 15 or 30 mins either side of Springvale Rd). 270 now runs at night in leiu of the 271, every half hour
  • Saturday services on 270 operate every half hour, maintaining the previous combined service level, while Sunday buses operate every hour, replacing the two-hourly offering on 271 between Box Hill & North Nunawading
  • 271 services operate every 20 mins during school peaks and half-hourly during the day, while weeknight services through Park Orchards have been extended by two hours until 22:45
  • Saturday services on 271 now operate every 30 mins instead of hourly, although continue to finish by 6pm. North Ringwood & Park Orchards remain without Sunday services, while Sunday services have effectively been removed along Junction Rd & Whitehorse Rd
  • The new 370 offering largely maintains existing service levels of the old 270, every 30 mins on weekdays until 7pm & hourly Saturdays until 6pm

Routes 284 & 285:

  • 284 from Box Hill & 285 from Camberwell now terminate at Doncaster Park+Ride, with passengers for Doncaster Shoppingtown required to transfer to a connecting 280/282, 207 or 907 service to reach Doncaster Shoppingtown. The return trip is more problematic, as 907 services depart from Doncaster Junction instead of within the Doncaster Shoppingtown Interchange. The change, which is said to remove duplication, is bizarre given Doncaster Shoppingtown is just over 5 minutes down the road, with doubt as to wether a tangible operating saving is being achieved
  • These routes, previously operated by Quinces as 615 or 731 were traditionally focused on the North Balwyn tram terminus, prior to being altered to serve Doncaster Shoppingtown in 1998
  • Direct services along High St to Doncaster Shoppingtown, and from Lower Templestowe & Macedon Square to Camberwell have also gone, which was the emphasis for a previous route change to 285 around ten years ago
  • Previous school deviations on 285 to Marcellin College & Strathcona Girls School have been replaced by dedicated school services
  • Weekday off-peak services on 284 have dropped from half-hourly to every 45 mins, while 285 now operates every 45 mins instead of hourly
  • The last weekday 284 departure from Box Hill is around an hour earlier at 18:05. Coupled with the deletion of the 315 City service & traditional early finish of neighbouring 612, passengers are forced to walk from east-west routes if finishing in the City much after 5pm
  • 285 runs slightly later, with the last departure ex Camberwell at 18:25 instead of 18:04
  • Hourly Saturday services now operate on 285, reinstating Saturday service along Balwyn Rd for the first time since 1991

Route 295:

  • Services now operate solely between The Pines & Doncaster Shoppingtown, with passengers forced to transfer to 281, 293 or SmartBus 903 at Doncaster Shoppingtown to reach Box Hill, On weekdays passengers may also walk to the near-by 279 (the Templestowe branch doesn’t run weekends). Coupled with the removal of 286, this leaves much of Doncaster East without a direct connection to Box Hill
  • The change has lead further downgrade to services along the Station St and Tram Rd corridor, which until 2010 was also served by 293. It would have been wise to hold off the change until 2015 when 903 is set to gain more frequent off-peak and weekend services
  • Sunday services on 295 now operate hourly instead of every 120 mins

Route 305

  • Services on 305 now only operate between Doncaster Shoppingtown & City before 10am inbound and between 3:30pm & 7pm outbound. Previously 305 operated to City all day weekdays (supplemented by shortworkings on George St), and to Bulleen on weekends, where timetabled connections were offered to SmartBus 905. Although Doncaster Shoppingtown is a key destination for local travel, a need for a City connection is critical for the route to remain successful. A direct link to Box Hill via 289 was previously removed from George St in late 2008
  • Weekend services are timetabled to meet 207 services for City travel, albeit via the slower Kew Junction route. On weekdays however there is no clear connections, with passengers having to choose between the 207 via Kew Junction, 304 via Belmore Rd, or taking a short walk to Doncaster Junction where they can board SmartBus 907. A brief look at various timetables & connection times suggests 907 is the fastest option despite the walk, although it is noted that outbound connections between 907 & 305 at night can up to 24 minutes (after allowing for a 5 min walk), which shows little thought has been put into connections
  • Passengers on Thompsons Rd wishing to travel to Doncaster Shoppingtown must change to the 903, although connections are not timetabled or guaranteed. Manningham Rd travellers wishing to reach the City can do likewise, or alternatively travel via Heidelberg Station on 903 then train
  • A number of additional early morning trips now operate outbound along George St to The Pines daily, allowing access to The Pines prior to 9am for the first time
  • Weeknight buses now run every half hour instead of the hourly City trips. The shortworkings allow passengers at Doncaster Shoppingtown on weeknights much easier access to buses home – previously 305 bypassed the centre after 17:30, and any potential passengers had to walk almost a kilometre to board the bus on George St
  • School peak extensions to/from Warrandyte have been deleted, with affected students having to change between 906 & 305 at The Pines. There is also no longer a one-seat ride from Lower Templestowe to secondary schools to the east, with some students forced to either transfer twice or take indirect options with a single change

Route 309

  • Revised timings, with the last departure from the City now at 17:55 instead of 18:10, unsuitable those finishing work around 6pm
  • Despite the removal of off-peak services on 908 between Doncaster Park+Ride & City (see below), services on 309 continue to operate to City all day, providing an hourly one-seat ride along High St
  • With the changes to 302 & removal of 303, 309 becomes the only freeway service to the Doncaster region departing Queen St, although 350 freeway services now depart here

Route 318

  • Return trips have been reduced from six to four
  • Final bus departs the City at 17:41 instead of 17:57

Route 364

  • Yet another change has been made to Warrandyte terminus – after being truncated from Doncaster Shoppingtown to Warrandyte Bridge in October 2010, buses were extended from back to the roundabout at Harris Gully Rd in August 2011 to allow easier transfers to SmartBus 906. Services now extend a further 250m to the more logical terminus of Warrandyte Reserve & Skate Park, located opposite West End S.C. and Goldfields Plaza
  • Morning peak services running out of Doncaster Depot no longer depart Deep Creek, instead starting at Warrandyte Reserve. The extension now only operates for Warrandyte High bell times
  • To compensate for the deletion of thrice daily 906 extension to Ringwood, additional trips now depart Warrandyte during the PM peak
  • Weekend departures ex Ringwood have been extended by 40 mins, with last bus now at 21:02
  • Trips have been retimed to avoid long layovers at Warrandyte – previously weekend buses had 55 min gaps between trips, resulting in unnecessary dead-running to other locations. The former timetable was largely written around connections with the 906, and although these remain possible under the new timetable, times are also better suited to train connections at Ringwood

Routes 366, 367 & 380

  • Ringwood – Croydon services 366 & 367 have merged together to form a loop service known as 380. This is a throw-back to how the routes operated during the 1980s. The only clear benefits would appear to a single seat option from Croydon Hills to Maroondah Hospital, as the numerous secondary schools along the route are generally served already by more direct school buses operated by Ventura Lilydale (formerly Invicta)
  • The Ringwood East half picks up weeknight trips, extending service from 19:32 to 22:15pm ex Ringwood and from 19:51 to 23:09 ex Croydon. Croydon Hills residents can no longer get home on 23:33 departure ex Croydon, with last buses leaving Ringwood at 22:45 & Croydon at 22:34
  • Saturday services have been reduced from 50 to 60 mins to offer a clockface timetable. Buses now run until 9pm, instead of finishing at 6pm
  • Sunday services run every hour instead of every 2 hours, with service introduced between Maroondah Hospital & Croydon on the eastern half
  • Dedicated school specials have been added to serve Norwood Secondary College and Tintern Grammar, replacing former peak extras. Selected trips continue to divert via Aquinas College

Routes 901, 902 & 903

  • Orbital SmartBus services 901, 902 & 903 received updated timetables with new running times. This was the first timetable change for these routes since 2010, with existing timetables overdue for review. Routes 901 & 902 were still operating the same timetables from the day they began.
  • Minor reductions have been made to peak services between Heidleberg & Mentone on the 903, although longer gaps elsewhere on the route of appear to have been avoided compared to the old timetable
  • Weekday span of service has been reduced in many segments, with changes the first buses and last buses of up to 40 minutes. It appears that Transdev has interpreted the service specifications more harshly compared to Ventura & Grenda’s, when ideally the routes would operate similar service spans to trains and trams (and therefore services need to be extended by an hour earlier and later, not trunciated)

Routes 905, 906, 907 & 908

  • The four Doncaster Area Rapid Transit SmartBuses have also received their first timetable change since being introduced four years ago, with revisions to run times. Some minor reductions to peak services have also occurred on 905, reducing peak frequencies along busy Thompsons Rd
  • As per the orbitals, span has also been reined-in, with first City departures & last City arrivals now around half-hour earlier than previously, more closely reflecting service levels of other modes, eliminating excessive service levels such as midnight departures from Warrandyte
  • 906 no longer extends to Ringwood during peak periods, replaced by additional 364 trips. This extension dates back to the previous 304 and observations suggest very few made use of the through journey to reach Warranwood

908 services no longer operate into the CBD outside of peak times, with passengers forced to change at Donaster Park+Ride onto a connecting 907 service. Reports from the first Sunday of operation suggest that heavy loading is now an issue on 907 services down the Eastern Freeway, with weekend frequencies from Doncaster