Just under a year to the Local Elections
Let’s Talk Starting Transport
Recently Transport Blog ran a piece called For Auckland Election candidates – Part 1: Transport Trends. They have all the facts and figures on what is truly going on Auckland Transport and transport wise with Auckland some of which should bust a few myths like coming from my Electorate MP Judith Collins yesterday in the Sunday Star Times.
Below is a short well political speech of what I will be looking at with both Mayoral and Manurewa-Papakura Ward candidates next year in #Auckland2016. The emphasis is on a balanced approach like my thoughts with urban development (given both are inter-connected and interdependent of each other.
#Auckland2016 and Transport – My Perspective
I believed in a balance approach to transport investment in recognition of Auckland to be a true multi-modal City.
Upgrades such as to the Southern and Northern Motorways are needed especially when safety (Takanini Interchange) are concerned. The original NZTA Option A for the East West Link and redoing Mill Road as a 2 lane road with future improving to allow cycleways and bus lanes beyond 2025 are also needed as we grow.
What is not needed are projects right out of the 1960s such as the Third Harbour Road Crossing, the current East-West Link Truckway proposal, and the de-facto expressway that will be Mill Road.
Rail whether heavy or light still forms a critical spine in moving large amounts of people over medium and long distances efficiently. The continued investigation into LRT on the Isthmus as well as the North Shore Line and the Botany Line are excellent starts. The City Rail Link is crucial as we known and something tells me 2018 is looking more “viable” from where I sit. Post CRL though we need to look at where next and although the North Shore Line should really occur at the same time the CRL is being built if we can get it by 2027 that would be great.
Rail to the Airport is something Council and the Mayor have taken the eye off entirely since 2010. For me I am of the opinion of the Otahuhu to Airport Link as Bryce and Patrick have both mooted due to technical issues with the Mangere Harbour Crossing and double tracking needed for the Onehunga Line. Manukau to the Airport should be light rail by 2030 and part of the Botany LRT system.
For Heavy Rail to be at maximum efficiency outside of the CRL we need to grade separate 10 of the worst level crossings by 2020, have Pukekohe electrified by 2017 and the Manukau South Link also built and operational for 20 minute frequencies by 2018. The South Link which allows Papakura to Manukau in 14 minutes compared to 30 by bus and over 20 by car in peak traffic would give better accessibility for Southern Auckland to its heart – Manukau which is one of only two central nodes the bus networks gravitate around en-mass (the other being the CBD herself).
Buses. The South Auckland New Bus Network was the example set on how to set a proper bus network with the East proposal not far off (just missing a Panmure-Pakuranga-Botany-Manukau-Airport QTN at 20min frequencies).
The rest of the proposed network especially for the West is wanting and to a point it should be chucked and redone.
As for Interchanges they are slowing getting under way apart from Manukau with what delays have been happening a full inquiry should be ordered by the Governing Body.
Continuing with buses while bus lanes are slowly being rolled out we need better enforcement and a law change to allow demerit points charged when pinged driving illegally in a bus lane.
Bus ways are crucial where rail cant go and the North Western Busway needs to happen by 2020 at the absolute latest.
As for cycling I leave that to others to work with such as Cycle Action Auckland.
What would you like in regards to transport and #Auckland2016