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Debate: Free public transportation

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ASIA ASIA
 +*[http://www.transport.govt.nz/ourwork/Land/Documents/SGC-cost-benefit-analysis-4-March-2010.pdf COST BENEFIT ANALYSIS OF SUPERGOLD CARD FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT SCHEME]
*[http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/37257 "The case for free public transport", Green Left, Australia] *[http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/37257 "The case for free public transport", Green Left, Australia]
*[http://www.southaustralia.com/PublicTransport.aspx Adelaide's Free Transport Services, Australia] *[http://www.southaustralia.com/PublicTransport.aspx Adelaide's Free Transport Services, Australia]
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*[http://www.bic.asn.au/ozebus/img/Viclibs.pdf "A Liberal Government Plan to Improve Public Transport", The Liberal Party’s Policy and Plans for Victoria for the 2006 State Election, Australia] *[http://www.bic.asn.au/ozebus/img/Viclibs.pdf "A Liberal Government Plan to Improve Public Transport", The Liberal Party’s Policy and Plans for Victoria for the 2006 State Election, Australia]
*[http://www.carltonresidents.org.au/downloads/transport/MelbourneTransportStrategyResponse.pdf "Response to the Draft Strategy from Carlton Residents Association", Melbourne Transport Strategy, Australia] *[http://www.carltonresidents.org.au/downloads/transport/MelbourneTransportStrategyResponse.pdf "Response to the Draft Strategy from Carlton Residents Association", Melbourne Transport Strategy, Australia]
 +*[http://mps.tas.greens.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/Feb24_Free-Student-Travel_N-McKim_ATTACH.pdf Students Ride For Free]
 +
EUROPE EUROPE
 +*[http://www.bereikbaar.amsterdam.nl/live/bijlagen/bereikbaaramsterdam/documenten/2010/pr_enwebversie.pdf Parking in Amsterdam for 6 euro per 24 hours inclusive of free public transport!]
 +*[http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1124483 Møller, Berit and Thoegersen, John (2008), "Breaking Car Use Habits: The Effectiveness of a Free One-Month Travelcard", Transportation, Vol. 35, No. 3, pp. 329-345, 2008]
 +*[http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1566882 Thoegersen, John (2009), "Promoting Public Transport as a Subscription Service: Effects of a Free Month Travel Card", Transport Policy, Vol. 16, 2009]
 +*[http://homepages.ulb.ac.be/~pilannoy/Lannoy_TRpartA_2006.pdf "The impact of ‘‘free’’ public transport: The case of Brussels"]
 +*[http://www.istiee.org/te/papers/N32/03%20macharis_26-48_.pdf "Impact and assessment of “Free” Public Transport]
 +*[http://www.tekno.dk/pdf/projekter/gratis_offentlig_transport/p06_free_public_transport_summary.pdf English summary from the report: "Perspectives on implementation of free public transport - assessments and recommendations from a working group under the Danish Board of Technology", November 2006]
*[http://www.freepublictransport.org/ Scottish Socialist Party’s campaign for free public transport, UK] *[http://www.freepublictransport.org/ Scottish Socialist Party’s campaign for free public transport, UK]
*[http://www.freepublictransport.org.uk/ Campaign for Free Public Transport, UK] *[http://www.freepublictransport.org.uk/ Campaign for Free Public Transport, UK]
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AMERICAS AMERICAS
 +*[http://www.uctc.net/papers/686.pdf Jeffrey Brown, Daniel Baldwin Hess and Donald Shoup (2003), "Fare-free Public Transit at Universities", Journal of Planning Education Research, 23:69-82, 2003.
*[http://www.freepublictransports.com freepublictransports.com, USA] *[http://www.freepublictransports.com freepublictransports.com, USA]
*[http://transportehumano.wordpress.com/2009/03/11/proposta-de-subsidio-apresentada-no-ministerio-publico/ "Fund transport costs raises with fuel tax rather than fare increases", Grupo Transporte Humano, Brazil] *[http://transportehumano.wordpress.com/2009/03/11/proposta-de-subsidio-apresentada-no-ministerio-publico/ "Fund transport costs raises with fuel tax rather than fare increases", Grupo Transporte Humano, Brazil]
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*[http://fptcanada.blogspot.com/ Zero-Fare, Canada] *[http://fptcanada.blogspot.com/ Zero-Fare, Canada]
*[http://www.nnyn.org/kheelplan/kheel_plan1.html "The Free Transit Report", Nurture New York's Nature, USA] *[http://www.nnyn.org/kheelplan/kheel_plan1.html "The Free Transit Report", Nurture New York's Nature, USA]
 +
 +
 +AFRICA
 +*[http://www.transportandpublicworks.gpg.gov.za/Documents/Car-Free%20Days%20and%20Public%20Transport%20campaigns%20-%20Concept%20Case%20Study.pdf GAUTENG FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT DAY]
 +
|width="45%" bgcolor="#F2FAFB" style="border:1px solid #BAC5FD;padding:.4em;padding-top:0.5em;"| |width="45%" bgcolor="#F2FAFB" style="border:1px solid #BAC5FD;padding:.4em;padding-top:0.5em;"|
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*[http://www.patrec.org/web_docs/atrf/papers/1990/Philipson%20&%20Willis%20(1990).pdf Phillipson, Mike and Willis, David "Free public transport for all?", Australia] *[http://www.patrec.org/web_docs/atrf/papers/1990/Philipson%20&%20Willis%20(1990).pdf Phillipson, Mike and Willis, David "Free public transport for all?", Australia]
 +
 +EUROPE
 +*[http://www.bath.ac.uk/e-journals/jtep/pdf/Volume_V11_No_1_3-19.pdf Baum, Herbert J. (1973), "Free Public Transport", Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, January 1973]
|- |-

Revision as of 00:56, 15 November 2010

Should all public transport be free and paid for by the state?

Background and Context of Debate:

Some governments have considered paying for public transport out of taxpayers' money, making it free. This would take cars, along with congestion, off our roads, and help the environment, so many people think it's a great idea and everyone would be able to see its advantage. However, like nearly all policies, it does have its cons. This debate article explores that.

In Belgium the government made public transport free, and it was a huge success. Lots of money was saved by all parties; the transport companies, the government and particularly the customers. They saved on everything, even printing tickets. It is still free.

Contents

Would free public transport help the environment?

Pro

Free pubilc transport would reduce the number of cars on the road. Global warming is a serious issue and if public transport was free, more people would use it, taking cars off the road. 1 train could take 2000 cars off the road. A public transport system with 20 trains could take 40,000 cars off the road. Some people would simply choose to not own cars, further reducing the number of cars on the road. Across dozens of cities in a nation and thousands world-wide, the result of free public transport would be dramatic in cutting vehicle emissions and combating global warming.


Con

We would need more public transport. Buses, planes, trains etc. all harm the environment, just as cars do. If everyone used public transport, more buses would pollute cities. It should also be mentioned that the manufacturing and creation of a public transport system is very energy intensive, drawing largely on coal and fossil fuels for energy. This releases significant carbon emissions into the atmosphere.


Can the state pay for public transport services?

Pro

The Government's job is to provide services. This would be a great service that could be used by everyone. Taxes already pay for health care, schools and roads etc. so why not let taxpayers see the benefits for themselves, in a useful service everyone can use.

The environment would greatly benefit. As well as providing services, the govermnet should look out for the environment. No amount of money is too much to protect the environment.




Con

With the financial crisis, we can't afford to spend more money on something like this. It would cost too much for the government to pay for running public transport services. With the economic crisis, it needs to spend the money on other more important things.





Would this create jobs?

Pro

We would need more public transport workers. With increased and better public transport, we would need more bus and train drivers, creating jobs. This is great with the global financial crisis. And it work make it easier for people to get to their job - they could just get on a bus.

Con

Car sales would drop significantly. If it was free for everyone to get to work, families wouldn't need two or three cars; just one or even none, depending on their availability to public transport of course. Most families have several cars, and one is used just for someone to get to work each day. This wouldn't be necessary. It would hurt the car indudtry and car makers would most likely lose their jobs, and car companies may collapse, which is very bad news.

There are many people who would also lose their jobs. People like conductors, parking cops and plenty of other people wouldn't have their jobs any more, because their services would be no longer required.

Would this just put more strain on already poor public transport services?

Pro

Some public transport cities are already terrible; this would just increase the strain. Some public transport netowrks are already crowded and/or unreliable. With increased customers and pressure, these networks wouldn't manage.

If it was free, companies would not be expected to provide top service, because they are not paying customers. Generally when you pay a little bit more, you are paying for a good service. But if you aren't paying anything, and heaps of people are using the service, you can't expect top-notch customer service. Generally people look after paying customers more. If it was free, companies could lower their service under the excuse that its customers aren't paying anything so they should just "get what their given".

Con

The government would be forced to improve public transport. With more users, bad public transport networks would be improved by the government, to make it worthwhile using. Bad networks would be greatly improved, and the benefits can be used by everyone. Its definitely a worthwhile incentive.

A lot of public transport companies are reliable and need more customers. Most public transport organisations offer friendly and reliable service and could do with some more "customers". They would be happy to take them and it would get cars off the road.

If public transport was free, would more people use it?

Pro

Heaps of people would be tempted by free transport. If free public transport was offered to everyone, of course they would use it. Yes, some people may stick to their cars, but the majority would think it was a great idea. If you had the choice of paying thousands each year to run a car, or to get on a train every morning for free, what would you choose?

A lot of people would already be using it if it didn't cost so much. For a lot of people, the only reason they don't catch public transport is because it costs too much. If it was free, they'd definitely start using it.


Con

Many people dislike public transport and still would not use it. Many people will stick to their cars, and some would even stop using public transport, because with it being free, so many people will use it, it would become a mess and be way too crowded.



Pro/con sources

Pro

GLOBAL


ASIA


EUROPE


AMERICAS


AFRICA

Con

GLOBAL


ASIA


EUROPE

External links

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