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Universities help tackle city’s transport problems

Auckland’s Universities help tackle city’s transport problems

The University of Auckland and AUT (Auckland University of Technology) delivered a proactive response today to their contribution to the city’s transport problems. The two universities announced they would partner with the Auckland Regional Transport Authority (ARTA), the Auckland City Council and Transit New Zealand to put together a comprehensive Universities’ Travel Plan.

Tim Greville, the University of Auckland’s Registrar said, “The staff and students of The University of Auckland are already efficient users of transport in the city but more can be done in planning terms to reduce reliance on single occupancy cars and increase the availability of alternatives. The development of a Travel Plan with the other major stakeholders is a welcome initiative and we hope these new initiatives will increase efficiency overall.”

Nigel Murphy, AUT’s Director of Public Affairs said, “ The Universities’ Travel Plan will help give people better information about the full range of travel options available to them, from public transport alternatives to walking and cycle ways. And, for those who need to use their cars, it will also make car-pooling easier as an alternative to single occupancy vehicles. Anything the Universities can do to reduce traffic volumes will be good for everyone in Auckland.”

ARTA’s Manager, Sustainable Transport, Anna Percy said, “Staff and students travelling to the city campuses are the initial focus of the Travel Plan although inter-campus travel will also be considered. The plan will review existing transport infrastructure and services universities policies relating to transport current staff and students travel behaviour information on travel options.”

Ms Percy said the workplace travel plans ARTA developed were “ not anti-car. We recognise that some people have to travel by car although information on the increasing offering and frequency of public transport choices will, we hope, enable people to make more informed choices.”

Ms Percy said ARTA will review the current travel patterns of the universities staff and students through a survey which will take place at the start of the Universities’ first semester in March 2006.

“The results of the survey will help in developing a draft travel plan which will be open for consultation amongst the universities’ staff and students.

“The finalised plan, which will take 2 years to complete, will present a comprehensive programme for making travel easier and which in the longer term reviews infrastructure, services and information, while in the shorter term travellers to the universities will benefit from new car-pooling software, better access to information on travel particularly on-line as well as to new staff and students who are deciding on travel arrangements,” Ms Percy said.

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