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Consultation on bus priority measures

Mon, 13 Sep 2004

Consultation on bus priority measures

North Shore City Council will begin public consultation this week on the first of a series of bus priority projects across the city.

Residents and stakeholders in and around Forrest Hill Rd and Constellation Drive will receive a brochure asking for feedback on proposals to introduce transit lanes, build cycle and pedestrian paths and improve intersections.

"The aim of these projects is to give buses priority access on roads and at intersections to help prevent them getting stuck in queues of congested traffic," North Shore City's works and environment committee chairperson, Joel Cayford, says.

"If buses travel around our city quickly and easily, bypassing traffic jams, this will encourage more people to go by bus and leave their cars at home.

"We also want to provide better facilities for people to cycle and walk - both pollution-free, sustainable methods of transport that are also great ways to get fit."

A morning peak transit lane for buses and vehicles with three or more people, an off-road shared pedestrian/cycle path and improvements to intersections are being considered for Forrest Hill Rd.

Two main options are being considered for Constellation Drive. Option one is to provide transit lanes and cycle facilities within the existing road, while option two would involve road widening.

More bus priority projects are on the way. North Shore City is spending $1.8m on bus priority measures this financial year (2004-5). Consultation is scheduled to begin over the coming months on bus priority projects and suburban bus stations for: * Shakespeare Rd * Highbury centre * Albany centre * Wairau andTaharoto roads * Takapuna centre * Browns Bay centre * Milford centre * East Coast Rd * Glenfield centre

Residents and other stakeholders can give their views on proposals for each project by sending in a freepost feedback form, or filling the form in online at the council's website, www.northshorecity.govt.nz.

"Local arterial bus priority measures are a critical part of North Shore City's commitment to ensuring the Northern Busway network connects right into the community," Joel Cayford says.

The Northern Busway is due for completion in 2007. Earthworks have begun for Busway stations at Albany and Constellation. Construction will start on the Busway road, alongside the Northern Motorway, this summer.

Bus priority measures have already proven successful in North Shore City. Since enforcement of the Onewa Rd transit lane began in 2002, bus patronage has gone up by 25 per cent. During the morning peak on Onewa Rd, two-thirds of all people bound for the motorway travel in the transit lane, in only 27 per cent of the vehicles.


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