From today's SMH

 * The most congested of Sydney's central roads should be off-limits to private cars and trucks during daytime hours. The freed-up roads would provide ideal public transit malls that would also facilitate walking and cycling, as in the auto-free zones of so many European cities. Regardless of whether any new light rail lines are built in Sydney, cars must be removed from central city streets to reduce traffic congestion. That is the key to speeding up bus services.

* Both walking and cycling access should be vastly improved. Existing conditions are inconvenient and dangerous. Cycling and walking should be fully integrated with public transit services.

It is time for an end to the incompetence, petty rivalries, bureaucratic turf battles, and short-sightedness of state and local government officials responsible for the public transport mess. Only they can improve the situation, and it is up to voters to force them to do so.

Through their complacency with the present situation, Sydneysiders themselves are partly responsible for it. Western Europeans and Canadians certainly would not tolerate the second-class public transport services in Sydney.