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

 

Gordon Campbell: On What John Key Should Be Asking Joe Biden

No doubt, US Vice-President Joe Biden will be updating Prime Minister John Key on the chances of a TPP vote taking place in the ‘ lame duck’ session of Congress that’s held between the November’s election and the inauguration of a new President in January. More>>

ALSO:

Make NZ Make Again: Greens Will Establish A Minister For Manufacturing

The Green Party announced today that it will establish a Minister for Manufacturing in Cabinet, to better represent the interests of manufacturers and ensure they thrive. The Minister will be inside Cabinet and have responsibility for the long-term interests of the manufacturing sector. More>>

ALSO:

Cannabis Party: Treasury Figures On Cost Of Criminalisation

Figures released by Treasury prove the economic viability of The Cannabis Party's policy, while destroying the credibility of police claims about cannabis harms. More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: Investigation Into Mental Health Facilities Shows Disarray

The Health Minister must urgently launch an inquiry into mental health services, after serious issues with the standard of care at mental health and disability facilities around the country were revealed today, the Green Party said. More>>

ALSO:

Apparently He Means 'Years 0-8': Seymour Announces 4th Partnership Schools Application Round

“The continuing growth of this policy reflects the achievement of the eight existing Partnership Schools, and the strong levels of interest educators and community leaders are showing in the Partnership Schools model and what it offers students and their families,” Mr Seymour says. More>>

ALSO:

Trust Directors: Urban Māori Win Case Against Te Ohu Kai Moana

The National Urban Māori Authority (NUMA) and Te Waipareira Trust have succeeded in their claim over a $20 million trust set up for the benefit of urban Māori, meaning all directors of the trust must represent Māori who are not affiliated with an iwi. More>>

New Model: Carbon Tax Could Lower Emissions And Boost Economy

A carbon tax targeting emissions-intensive industries, along with a revamped Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), could boost economic growth, with the extra tax generated used to cut GST from 15 percent to 12.5 percent. More>>

ALSO:

Budget Docs Release: ACC Sought $158mn In Budget 2016, Got $26.4mn

The Accident Compensation Commission requested an extra $158 million in funding for 2016/17 from the government ahead of Budget 2016, but Treasury instead recommended an interim payment of just $26.4 million be funded to tackle demographic changes, papers published by the government show. More>>

ALSO:

Submissions Sought: Māori Party Joins Opposition Housing Inquiry

People who are homeless, those who were once homeless, those working with the homeless and concerned New Zealanders are being asked to share their experiences and solutions to this growing issue with the Cross-Party Homelessness Inquiry. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news