To extend or not to extend? | Melbourne Free Tram Zone
The discussion around the extension of the Free Tram Zone in Melbourne continues in the media and the Victorian Parliament.
Committee for Melbourne media partner, The Age, has run a series of articles focusing on the topic. In one of the most recent articles, a survey found readers’ overwhelmingly support extension of the Free Tram Zone. This suggests that there may already be broad public support for such an extension, notwithstanding the limitations of such a survey. We were pleased to see Rob Barton MLC, table a motion in the Legislative Council to conduct an inquiry into the extension of the free tram zone – a proposal accepted by the House.
The contribution of the visitor economy to Victoria is well-recognised, with the industry designated a priority industry and sector by the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions. Committee for Melbourne has strongly advocated for the extension of the Free Tram Zone (FTZ) to five stops comprising 5 iconic cultural and sporting institutions, which attract visitors to Melbourne and Victoria. These are: the Arts Precinct, the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the Melbourne Museum and Melbourne and Olympic Parks. Such an extension will boost ‘Brand Melbourne’ as a visitor friendly destination, attracting more visitors and thus further stimulating Melbourne’s tourism and conference economy. An extension will also provide participation and accessibility benefits for the broader community to these iconic destinations.
We look forward to the results of the inquiry and will continue to advocate for the extension of the Zone as an opportunity to encourage community engagement with Melbourne’s leading cultural, arts and sporting institutions, for ‘Brand Melbourne’ and to strengthen Greater Melbourne’s visitor economy.