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Environment Court North Shore Busway designation

Environment Court confirms North Shore Busway designation

The Environment Court this week confirmed all necessary designations related to the 8.5 kilometre $200 million North Shore Busway. Transit regional manager, Wayne McDonald, said the confirmation of the designations was good news for the busway and the extension of public transport services on the North Shore.

“It means that we can now proceed confidently with final design of the busway and the stations and also with our funding applications so that construction can begin as soon as possible,” he said.

The busway designations and resource consents originally resulted in nine appeals against the Transit designations, 10 appeals against the North Shore City Council (NSCC), and seven appeals against the combined Transit-NSCC resource consents. Of these, only two appeals required decisions from the Environment Court as the others were settled by mutual agreement.

As a result of the Environment Court decision, the following designations have now been approved:

The 8.5 kilometre busway comprising two lanes from Constellation Drive to Esmonde Road interchange and a single bus priority lane from Esmonde Road interchange to the Auckland Harbour Bridge. The Esmonde Road interchange that will feature a two-lane tunnel beneath the southbound on-ramp and Esmonde Road to Akoranga Drive connection to accommodate the busway. Constellation bus station and park and ride facilities. Sunnynook bus station. Westlake bus station and connecting Shakespeare Road extension Akoranga bus station. Akoranga bus station link road to Fred Thomas Drive. Akoranga bus station over-bridge connection to the AUT Campus. Modifications to the Onewa Road interchange to accommodate the bus priority lane.

In response to an appeal by Smales Farm, the term of the designation was reduced from 15 years to 10 years for the busway and stations and to five years for the Shakespeare link road extension serving Westlake station. The Environment Court also added a condition requiring authorities to discuss with Westlake Girls High School the enabling of school buses at Westlake station, as well as on the roading network around the school.

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