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Auckland City takes step towards better bus travel

MAYOR'S OFFICE

MEDIA RELEASE

3 May 2006

Auckland City takes another step towards better bus travel

Auckland City’s biggest public transport project since Britomart has advanced with the completion of detailed design of the central transit corridor (CTC).

The CTC will be a dedicated busway connecting Auckland’s two busiest retail and commercial hubs, the CBD and Newmarket. The 4km route will service major passenger destinations such as the Vector Arena, the University of Auckland and its medical school, Auckland City Hospital, and the Domain.

Mayor of Auckland city, Dick Hubbard, says the CTC will be a vital part of the city’s public transport network and will become the backbone of the bus system.

“This is the most exciting local transport project the city has seen for years,” says Mr Hubbard.

“The CTC will cut 14 minutes off bus travel times between the CBD and Newmarket for more than 65,000 people each day.”

The Mayor says he expects bus patronage along the CTC route to increase by at least 30 per cent as people realise that taking the bus is a real alternative.

“The project is a key spoke in Auckland’s transport wheel, and will give the travelling public far more choice in how they get around the city,” says Mr Hubbard.

Pedestrians are set to benefit along the CTC’s route. New footpaths, landscaping and bus shelters with canopies are all part of the plan.

A major change created by the CTC is restricted access to Grafton Bridge.

Once the CTC is complete, the bridge will be open to pedestrians, buses, bikes and emergency vehicles during the hours of 7am and 7pm, Monday to Friday. It will be open to all traffic outside of these hours.

The council is applying for nine resource consents in early May, some of which include consent to plant and fell trees to introduce the bus lanes, change kerb alignment, introduce better footpaths and retain parking in places.

To accommodate the busway, 126 new trees will be planted along the route replacing 56 trees that need to be removed. No scheduled or protected trees will be felled.

The council will tender the construction contract in late June with construction work expected to begin in August 2006.

“If we can give Aucklanders a decent alternative to commuting by car then I know they will use it,” says Mr Hubbard.

“We’ve talked about this project for a long time – now it’s time to get started.”

The detailed design can be seen online: www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/ctc

Ends

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