Farewell Region 6 – The Network

Region 6, currently operated by State Transit and soon to be handed over to Transit Systems Australia covers a large area making up much of the Inner West and Inner South of Sydney.

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Region 6 STA operating area shown in light blue

The first government run Inner West bus route was Route 59 from Concord to City York Street which began operation on 27 January 1933. Throughout 1933 dozens of other routes began operation including Route 65 from Central Railway to Ashbury and Route 88 from Central to Enfield. The first government run tram replacement service also began in 1933, between Hurlstone Park and Summer Hill.

Department of Road Transport & Tramways purchased the Metropolitan Omnibus Transport Company that same year, taking over their routes and their Burwood depot. This allowed for a massive expansion of government bus services.

Throughout the following two decades, the government opened three more depots at Leichhardt, Kingsgrove and Tempe. These allowed for further expansion of the bus network. Most of the earlier routes were concentrated on tram feeder services around Ashfield, Canterbury and Strathfield. High capacity double decker buses were also introduced on popular routes.

One of the biggest network expansions was in the 1950s. The previously extensive Inner West tram network was decommissioned and replaced entirely with bus services. These tram replacement services still make up the majority of services today.

In 1987, Metroline 400 began operating in the region allowing for the first time, cross-regional bus connections without requiring passengers to travel into the city and back out again. Since then many new cross regional routes such as the 348, 370, 492 and 530 have been introduced.

In 1996, the reach of STA in the Inner west was expanded south to Hurstville and Kogarah and later in 2000 expanded west to Parramatta and Olympic Park. The most recent complete overhaul of Inner West bus services occurred back in 2010, as part of the process of creating the bus contract regions.

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Today there are over 225 bus routes comprised of around 60 public bus routes and 165 school bus routes. Some high profile routes in the region today include the Route 370 from Coogee to Leichhardt, Route 400 from Bondi Junction to Burwood, Route 438 from Abbotsford to City Martin Place, Route 461 from Burwood to City Domain and Route M10 from Leichhardt to Maroubra.

From July 1st, these services will no longer be operated by government owned STA ending 85 years of government bus services in the Inner West.

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