State Transit Authority

State Transit Authority
Statutory Authority overview
Formed 16 January 1989
Preceding Statutory Authority
Jurisdiction Sydney
Headquarters Sydney
Minister responsible
Statutory Authority executive
  • Peter Rowley, Chief Executive
Child Statutory Authority
Key document

The State Transit Authority, also referred to as State Transit or STA, is an agency of the Government of New South Wales based in Sydney, operating bus and ferry services. The STA reports to the Minister for Transport, Andrew Constance. The current chief executive is Peter Rowley.[1]

The former Premier of New South Wales, Barrie Unsworth was chairman from November 2004 to November 2009.[2]


Custom Coaches bodied Volvo B12BLEA in May 2009
Custom Coaches bodied Volvo B12BLE on route 555 at Circular Quay in January 2009
Metrobus liveried Volgren bodied Scania K310UB in March 2009
Transport NSW liveried Custom Coaches CB80 bodied Volvo B7RLE at Circular Quay in June 2014

The State Transit Authority comprises two business units.

Sydney Buses

Sydney Buses is a commuter bus service operating in Sydney. The network is loosely based on the reach of the city's former tram network.

Sydney Buses has grown significantly through acquisitions of smaller bus companies as reforms to contracting arrangements encourage consolidation in the industry. In December 1999 North & Western Bus Lines was purchased followed in February 2000 by Parramatta-Ryde Bus Service.[3][4] In January 2005 most of former Harris Park Transport routes were taken over from Hillsbus, which were then given back to Hillsbus in September 2005 with the exception of routes 623, 624, 628 and 629.

Sydney Buses operates a number of high-profile services.

As of 2014/15, State Transit has not met its on-time running target in any of its four metropolitan contract regions for the last three years, although its performance has improved in three of the regions.[9]

Newcastle Buses & Ferries

MV Shortland operating the Newcastle-Stockton ferry service in July 2006

Newcastle Buses & Ferries is a commuter bus and ferry service operating in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie. Newcastle Buses & Ferries operates 28 bus routes plus a ferry service across the Hunter River between Newcastle and Stockton. The network radiates from a bus terminal near Newcastle station. Major interchanges are located at the University of Newcastle, Wallsend, Glendale, Warners Bay, Belmont, Charlestown Square, Westfield Kotara and Broadmeadow station.

Ticketing on Newcastle Buses & Ferries

Newcastle Buses and Stockton ferry services became Opal active as from 20 November 2014 as some older tickets were retired.[10][11]

Trips within a designated area of the Newcastle CBD on State Transit-operated bus services are zero-fare under the Newcastle Alliance's Free City Buses programme. The zero-fare zone operates between 07:30 and 18:00, seven days a week. The programme receives funding from the Honeysuckle Development Corporation and the Government of New South Wales.

Former units

The State Transit Authority also comprised two former business units.

Sydney Ferries

Main article: Sydney Ferries

Sydney Ferries is the public transport authority for ferry services on Port Jackson in Sydney. It was established in 2004 as a government agency, separate of the State Transit Authority. Since July 2012 the provision of services has been contracted out to Harbour City Ferries.[12]

Western Sydney Buses

Western Sydney Buses Custom Coaches CB60 bodied Volvo B12BLE in Liverpool in July 2013

Formed in 2003, Western Sydney Buses operated route T80, a bus rapid transit service in Western Sydney on the Liverpool-Parramatta T-way. Passengers made 2.77 million journeys with Western Sydney Buses in the 2011/12 financial year.[13] Western Sydney Buses operated out of a corner of Westbus' Bonnyrigg depot.[14]

In November 2012, Transit Systems Sydney won the tender for Sydney Bus Region 3 which included route T80 with the service and 22 buses transferring on 13 October 2013.[14][15]

Bus Network

Main article: Bus routes in Sydney

Sydney Buses operates services in the following areas:

Newcastle Buses & Ferries operates services in Newcastle. It also operates a ferry service between Queens Wharf on the Newcastle waterfront and Stockton across the Hunter River.

Tickets and fares

Sydney Buses services charge fares on the basis of distance. Newcastle Buses & Ferries bus services charge fares on the basis of travel time. Journeys on Newcastle buses within a certain area of the CBD are zero-fare during the day. Fares are set by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal of New South Wales.

Fares are calculated on the number of sections travelled, where one section is approximately 1.6 kilometres.

State Transit services uses a variety of tickets under the MyZone structure. These include single ride tickets bought on board buses or from selected resellers, MyBus TravelTen, MyMulti, Pensioner Excursion Ticket, MyMulti DayPass and Opal card.

On single ride tickets, the bus number + 4,000 (e.g. 6492 = 2492) is printed on the top left side, the time of travel, route number and direction of travel is printed on the bottom. For TravelTen tickets, the route number is printed on the left, followed by the section number, then the direction of travel, the time of travel, the bus number + 4,000 (e.g. 6492 = 2492) and the trip number.

State Transit services use the Automated Fare Collection System and its magnetic stripe multi-ride tickets. In 2006 route 333 Bondi BeachCircular Quay was the subject of a prepay only test. The test was successful and further prepay routes have been introduced. In 2009 the STA progressively rolled out prepay only to all CBD bus stops between 07:00 and 19:00.

On 6 December 2013, route 333 became the first route to accept the Opal card. The Opal card was rolled out to all State Transit services in 2014 along with the installation of new Parkeon Wayfarer 200 ticket machines to connect to the Opal card. In preparation for the Opal ticketing system, from 1 June 2014, daily unlimited travel tickets such as MyMulti Daypass and Pensioner Excursion Tickets and Family Funday Sunday tickets were not available for purchase onboard all Sydney Buses routes.[16]


Bus stop on George Street

In view of its political sensitivity, the agencies responsible for public transport in New South Wales are frequently restructured. Buses and ferries were the responsibility of the Department of Government Transport until 1972, when it was merged with the New South Wales Government Railways to form the Public Transport Commission.

In July 1980 the Transport Authorities Act 1980 (NSW) separated the functions of the Public Transport Commission with the State Rail Authority taking responsibility for trains, and the Urban Transit Authority responsibility for buses and ferries.[17]

In January 1989 the Urban Transit Authority was restructured as the State Transit Authority taking over the private bus service functions of the Department of Motor Transport.[18] In October 1989, the Chullora Bus Workshops closed with a smaller facility established at Randwick for mechanical repairs with body repairs contracted to the private sector. The remaining four hydrofoils were replaced by three JetCats and the MetroTen ticketing system introduced a few years before was replaced with the Automated Fare Collection System in use today.

In 2004 the STA's Sydney Ferries business was separated into a separate agency, Sydney Ferries Corporation. On 13 October 2013, T-way service T80 was transferred from Western Sydney Buses (a subsidiary of State Transit) to Transit Systems Sydney who was awarded the Region 3 Contract.

The current state government plan is for the STA to become more tightly integrated with the 'transport cluster' headed by the NSW Department of Transport. This will involve the implementation of shared services and common infrastructure for departments such as information technology to ensure that the costs of transactions and administration are kept to a minimum.


As of November 2016 the fleet consisted of 2,166 buses operating in both Sydney and Newcastle from 14 depots.[19]

All State Transit vehicles are now fitted with CCTV cameras. The STA continues to improve its environmental impact with a large percentage of the fleet being powered by compressed natural gas as well as meeting strict emissions regulations with 270 Euro 5 compliant vehicles entering service from 2007.

Chassis Body Year Number Notes
Scania L113TRB 14.5-metre Ansair Orana 1993/94 48 3447 scrapped – chassis damage and 3422 – fire damage
Scania L113CRB Ansair Orana 1994/95 85 Compressed Natural Gas
Scania L113CRL Ansair Orana 1996–1998 155
MAN 11.220 Ansair Orana 1996 16 Original order of 30
Volvo B10B Custom Coaches 238 1996 4 ex North & Western Bus Lines, all at Newcastle depot
Mercedes-Benz O405N Ansair Orana 1996/97 2 All at Newcastle depot
Volvo B10BLE Ansair Orana 1997/98 64 3888 scrapped (Spit Hill accident)
Volvo B10BLE Phoenix Bus Orana 1997/98 59 3936 scrapped (fire damage)
Mercedes-Benz O405 Custom Coaches 516 1998 4 ex North & Western Bus Lines
Mercedes-Benz O405NH Custom Coaches Citaro 1999–2002 290 Compressed Natural Gas, model discontinued after this order
Volvo B12BLE Custom Coaches CB60 2003–2007 150
Volvo B12BLE Volgren CR228L 2004/05 48
Volvo B12BLEA Euro 3 Custom Coaches CB60 2005/06 79 1695 written-off (fire damage)
Volvo B12BLEA Euro 5 Custom Coaches CB60 EvoII 2008 2
Volvo B12BLE Custom Coaches CB60 EvoII 2007–2011 270
Mercedes-Benz OC500LE Custom Coaches CB60 EvoII 2008–2011 254 Compressed Natural Gas, 4878 scrapped (fire damage)
Scania N310UA Volgren CR228L 2008 1
Scania K310UA Custom Coaches CB60 EvoII 2008 1
Scania K310UB 14.5-metre Volgren CR228L 2009 1
Mercedes-Benz OC500LE Custom Coaches CB60 EvoII 2009/10 20
Volvo B12BLEA Volgren CR228L 2009–2011 150
Volvo B7RLE Custom Coaches CB80 2011–2013 100
Scania K280UB Custom Coaches CB80 2011–2013 100 1 unit was sold to ACTION and returned to Scania Australia
Volvo B7RLE Volgren CR228L 2011/12 33
Mercedes-Benz OC500LE Custom Coaches CB80 2009 1 ex demonstrator, replacement for 4878
Scania K280UB Bustech VST 2013–2016 127
Scania K280UB Bustech VSTM 2014/15 27
Iveco Metro Volgren Optimus 2014/15 7
Volvo B7RLE Bustech VST 2015-2016 45
Scania K310UB Bustech VST 2016 23

In the early 1990s, State Transit adopted a white and blue livery with a red stripe. This livery with minor variations was retained until 2010, when the Transport for New South Wales white and blue livery was adopted. Buses dedicated to Metrobus services are painted in a red livery.

Newcastle Buses & Ferries operates two vessels, Shortland and Hunter, both of which entered service in 1988. The vessels are named for Newcastle pioneers Lieutenant John Shortland and Vice Admiral John Hunter.


State Transit operate 14 depots. The depots (depot code indicated) are located at:

External links


  1. Christmas spirit celebrated on Sydney buses Transport for NSW 12 December 2013
  2. The Hon. Barrie John UNSWORTH (1934 – )** PARLIAMENT OF NEW SOUTH WALES
  3. "State Transit Reaches Parramatta" Fleetline January 2000 page 22
  4. "STA Purchases North & Western and Parramatta-Ryde" Australian Bus Panorama 15/4 February 1990
  5. Metrobus Sydney Buses
  6. Lisa S. "Manly Daily | 2hrs 5mins – Sydney's longest bus trip". Retrieved 12 April 2013.
  7. Prepay Sydney Buses
  8. Timetable 890, 891, 892 & 895 Sydney Buses
  9. . Audit Office of New South Wales Retrieved 26 November 2015. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  10. NSW Government Gazette 14 November 2014, Retrieved 14 November 2014
  11. Opal card rolling out as 11 paper tickets in Newcastle retired Transport for NSW 19 November 2014
  12. New Sydney Ferries operator begins five months early Transport for NSW 28 July 2012
  13. State Transit Authority Annual Report State Transport Authority 30 June 2012
  14. 1 2 STA former fleet list, Australian Bus Fleet Lists', Retrieved 25 April 2014
  15. New bus contracts to drive improvements for customers Transport for NSW
  16. Changes to buying tickets onboard State Transit buses in Sydney, Transport NSW Info, Retrieved 6 June 2014
  17. Urban Transit Authority of New South Wales NSW Government State Records
  18. "New name for Urban Transit" Fleetline February 1989 page 22
  19. State Transit Authority Australian Bus Fleet Lists
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