Netflix model for transport service mooted

NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance envisaged a subscription model for transport services.
NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance envisaged a subscription model for transport services.

The NSW transport minister envisages a Netflix-style subscription for transport services and believes fast trains connecting the regions are "very feasible".

Andrew Constance says governments' role in the future will not necessarily be about providing physical carriers like buses and trains but providing the technology linking people to those services.

He told a Melbourne infrastructure summit on Thursday that he believed road pricing would soon be a thing of the past and become "mobility pricing".

"I envisage a subscription service for transport - like Netflix," Mr Constance said in a written copy of his speech.

"You sign up for a nominal fee each week or month and all the different pricing for public or private providers is built into it - whether that be an Uber, a ride-share car, a bicycle or a Metro."

Premier Gladys Berejiklian, when asked about Mr Constance's vision, said she would have to "check up with him on what he meant by that".

"We're always looking at new opportunities, let's just leave it at that," she told reporters in Sydney.

Mr Constance said that while many considered fast trains to "unattainable" he thought they were a "very feasible possibility".

"(But) it should be less about connecting Melbourne and Sydney and more about connecting the regions - like Nowra, Canberra, Coffs Harbour," the minister said.

Such trains would allow people to live in the regions and commute into the city for work each day.

"Here we are spending $50 billion on Metro style train assets in the heart of Sydney so everyone is better connected and can get across town - well imagine if we spend $50 billion on a fast train," Mr Constance said.

City-shaping projects needed lots of money and the federal government could incentivise state governments "to get moving and sell some assets" by bringing back its asset recycling program, Mr Constance added.

His speech came as the Sydney Morning Herald reported Transport NSW was proposing ways of making $7 billion in annual savings, including up to $1.9 billion a year from staff costs, within a decade.

Ms Berejiklian said she'd not seen the proposals and couldn't comment.

Australian Associated Press