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Have your say on proposed new bus lanes


19 August 2011

Have your say on proposed new bus lanes

New bus lanes are being proposed for Courtenay Place, Kent and Cambridge terraces and Adelaide Road to further improve the city's public transport services and Wellingtonians will have an opportunity to comment on the plans from next week.

Wellington City Council's Strategy and Policy Committee yesterday agreed to create new bus lanes:

* almost the entire length of Courtenay Place on both sides of the road (these would operate all the time except for the eastbound section between Taranaki Street and Reading Cinema, which would operate 4-6pm, Monday to Friday)

* along Kent Terrace from Majoribanks Street to Elizabeth Street, 4-6pm, Monday to Friday, which will complete the bus lane to the Basin Reserve

* along Cambridge Terrace between the Basin Reserve and Tennyson Street, 7-9am, and between Tennyson Street and Courtenay Place, 7-9am and 4-6pm, Monday to Friday

* along Adelaide Road, southbound between the Basin Reserve and John Street, 4-6pm, Monday to Friday.

The Council's Transport Portfolio Leader, Councillor Andy Foster, says the changes are the next step in a progressive plan to improve bus routes through the city and are in line with the Council's Transport Strategy and the Ngauranga to Airport Plan, which has been jointly agreed with the New Zealand Transport Agency and Greater Wellington Regional Council. Both plans emphasise the importance of developing good public transport networks.

"Wellingtonians are big users of public transport and we want to encourage that by doing all we can to give buses an easy run through the city. People are much more likely to take a bus if the journey times are predictable and they know buses will arrive on time."

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says bus lanes and other bus priority measures benefit bus users, the environment and people in cars.

"It's all about choice. The more people we have walking, cycling and using public transport - the less likely it is that we will get caught in traffic when we do have to drive. I also believe that by making public transport more appealing, we can potentially bring more people into the city, assist retailers and add to the prosperity of the central city."

The proposed new bus lanes are primarily at peak times only and in most places replace existing peak-time clearways. About 31 parking spaces that are not already part of existing peak-time clearways would be affected - eight on Courtenay Place between Taranaki Street and Reading Cinema, 4-6pm; 10 on Kent Terrace between Majoribanks and Elizabeth streets, 4-6pm; and 13 on Cambridge Terrace between Buckle Street and Fifeshire Avenue, 7-9am. These would not be available Monday to Friday during the peak times listed but would operate as usual at other times. No parking changes in Adelaide Road are proposed at this stage.

Motorcyclists and cyclists would be able to use all of the proposed new bus lanes. Motorists turning into side streets would be able to enter the new bus lanes up to 50 metres ahead of their planned turn. This is the case with all bus lanes on roads shared with general traffic.

More information about the proposed new bus lanes will be available in the Public Input section of the Council website Wellington.govt.nz from next Tuesday 23 August. Feedback can be made online and is required by Tuesday 6 September.


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