JOSEPH Gould continues to push for tram services to be expanded in Bendigo.
Mr Gould, who heads the Bring Back the Trams campaign, said he hoped the City of Greater Bendigo supported new tram lines in its look at the CBD.
Bendigo Health chairman Michael Langdon told a forum on Monday night that he supported increased public transport in downtown Bendigo.
Dr Langdon said public transport running from the train station to the Queen Elizabeth Oval could be positive for the CBD.
Mr Gould said the local community’s attitude to trams had changed.
“If you asked people five years ago about the possibility of having the trams back, a lot of people were hesitant,” he said.
“These days it’s a real proposition and a possible thing to do for the city.
“It’s encouraging at the moment.”
Mr Gould said there was a local “depot full of W-Class trams we could use”.
“They’ve been modernised and they conform with all the safety regulations and comfort they have in Melbourne,” he said.
“The public perception has gone ahead. Even the council’s sounding more positive these days with the idea of the extending the tram way.
“There’s a big shift in the way people look at trams.”
Mr Gould said the first possible extension could be from Pall Mall along Arnold Street to the showgrounds.
“The council’s looking at revamping the CBD and there are thousands of Bendigo people I’ve spoken to in the last four or five years that say increased commuter services will bring the atmosphere back to the CBD,” he said.
A council working group will be created to consider ways to improve downtown Bendigo.
Bendigo mayor Lisa Ruffell said people would have ample opportunity to have input.
A May council meeting heard it would cost $35 - $40 million to build a tram network and a further $2.7 million per year to maintain.
But Mr Gould said that figure was highly inflated.