congestion = crowding / not moving freely
propose =
rates = money people pay to the local government for services such as rubbish collection and roads
levy =
like a tax
scheme =
alienating effect = making people feel alone and isolated
bumping into = accidentally meeting a friend or person you know
ease =

News (Advanced)

Free Public Transport

The transport system is a growing problem in many large cities. Politicians in Melbourne are discussing the idea of free public transport as a means to reduce road congestion. The idea has been supported by a number of politicians over a period of many years. Some propose a $100 to $200 rates levy for all households to pay for the scheme.

Associate professor Frank Fisher from the Monash Science Centre believes that private cars have an alienating effect while public transport is a more social phenomenon which leads to ‘people bumping into each other.’ He argues that railway stations would be safer and that graffiti and vandalism would be reduced if stations were busier places.

Critics of the idea argue that free public transport wouldn’t ease traffic congestion significantly and would lead to overcrowding on buses, trams and trains.

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