Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Wellington Public Transport Plan requires decisive action

Wellington Public Transport Plan requires decisive action

NZ Bus welcomes the Draft Wellington Regional Public Transport Plan 2014 (PT Plan) but calls for the decision-making process to be fast-tracked to provide Wellington with greater certainty over the future shape of its public transport system.

NZ Bus CEO Zane Fulljames says the PT Plan, if implemented well, has the otential to improve the efficiency of Wellington’s bus networks, reduce travel times and enable better access for the public.

“NZ Bus is a strong supporter of both the Spine Study and Bus Rapid Transit, as we believe Wellington public transport deserves a boost. For too long the system has suffered from poor connectivity, weak infrastructure, infrequent trips and expensive fares, especially in the central city,” says Mr Fulljames.

“Adopting the recommendations of the Wellington City Bus Review has been well signalled and moves to reduce duplication and congestion on the Golden Mile are overdue. The draft PT Plan’s proposed simplification of the bus network by consolidating 43 routes down to 34 will make it easier to manage and more user-friendly.”

The draft PT Plan reinforces Greater Wellington Regional Council’s preference to scrap the trolley buses from 2017 and seeks feedback on what new fleet could be introduced to replace them, but stops short of putting the case forward for a favoured option.

“Unfortunately we are no closer to gaining clarity on whether the trolleys will indeed be scrapped, and if so what will replace them. NZ Bus spent close to $40 million – not the $27 million reported last week – on rebuilding the trolley fleet of 60 buses in 2007, which have an expected life of 15-20 years.

Metrolink • North Star • GO WEST • Waka Pacific • LINK • GO Wellington • Valley Flyer • Airport Flyer

“As an operator, having $40 million in assets retired halfway through their expected life span provides little incentive to invest in new fleet, particularly when 2017 is only three short years away and we don’t know what that new fleet requirement will be,” Mr Fulljames says.

There are a number of options available to the GWRC, the simplest of which is to extend the trolley services through to 2022 when the new services proposed under the Spine Study are to be implemented.

Councillors have also suggested in the media that GWRC intends to replace a further 218 buses at the same time as removing the trolleys, at a cost of roughly $80 million. Without certainty, it is difficult for bus operators to make sound decisions involving this amount of investment.

“It is prudent to evaluate all options. But right now, given the timeframes in play, it is vital we move beyond discussions to decisions. It’s important that GWRC provide clarity as soon as possible to their operational partners and ratepayers on the when, how or even what new buses, currently of an indeterminate nature, will be servicing their loyal customers from 2017. While the PT Plan looks good on paper, action needs to be taken now to ensure this opportunity to deliver a step change for Wellington’s public transport system isn’t lost.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news