This afternoon I found myself needing to get from north west Lake Macquarie into Newcastle, specifically, Dixon Park Surf Club (to see a screening of A Plastic Ocean – side note, wow, see it.)
What was different about today?
No bike. Zilch wheels. Nada velo.
So, time to put my brain into multi-modal mode. Luckily, it’s a lot easier to do that these days.
Check this Win. And no, we’re not in Switzerland. Nor Sydney.
7 min walk then 10 second wait time for bus. Alight from bus, walk and catch train 1 min 40 seconds later. Alight train and get picked up by Uber in 40 seconds. Arrive at destination.
Travel time: 35 min.
Distance: approx 20km.
For four modes of transport that’s a regional area punching above its weight.
How? I put it down to these fairly recent developments: Smartphone + NSW real time open data + market ingenuity + Opal + reliable transit.
Of course, if you were savvy back in the day (and public transit was more frequent) you probably could have achieved something similar. But these days, you don’t need to plan hours, days even, ahead.
Granted, this was definitely cutting it fine! Usually I would give myself a little more time, but what unfolded was what unfolded.
Had the bus been late due to traffic, I would have been left high and dry for perhaps an hour due to he infrequency of services. So we have a little way to go yet. Then again, it shows the bliss of the bicycle. Go where you want, when you want….. if the roads let you do so.