2018-2028 Government Policy Statement (on Transport) Adopted. Large Changes Towards Rail and Transit

GPS signals chances to how we invest in transport

Integrated Planning Also Mentioned


Yesterday the Transport Minister (Phil Twyford) released the final version of the Government Policy Statement for Transport which will go live in August. The GPS outlines the expectations of transport investment for NZTA, all Councils (and their transport departments) and soon Kiwi Rail as rail will come under the National Land Transport Fund. Exact funding to follow the GPS will be done by NZTA’s National Land Transport Fund (the super version of a Regional Land Transport Fund Auckland Transport recently failed at – again) which itself will be out soon.


You will hear or see me refer to the GPS when comparing transport projects here in Auckland and the northern Waikato. That being is that transport project or planning document compliant with the GPS. If it is like Auckland Transport’s RLTP then you will hear me say NO (see:¬†Auckland Regional Land Transport Program 2018-2028 Feedback and Report Going to AT Board ‚Äď Did Anything¬†Change?)

Record transport investment to grow the economy and improve safety

Phil Twyford
HON PHIL TWYFORD Source: Beehive
Cabinet has approved a new 10-year plan for transport which will unlock record investment in the roads, rail and public transport for our growing regions and cities, and save lives on our roads, Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has announced.

The Government Policy Statement 2018 on Land Transport increases investment from $3.6 billion in 2017/18 to a record $4 billion in 2018/19. It will continue to rise to $4.7 billion a year by 2027/28. Additionally, the Government is also investing $1 billion this year in specific projects, such as the City Rail Link, and councils will invest a further $1 billion a year.

‚ÄúThe Government, through the National Land Transport Fund, will invest more than ever in transport, to boost the economies of our cities and our regions, while making travel safer for everyone,‚ÄĚ Phil Twyford said.

“Auckland alone loses $1.3 billion a year in productivity to congestion. We will tackle gridlock in Auckland by giving commuters options through major road projects and upgrades such as Mill Road and Penlink.

“Throughout New Zealand more commuters will be able to leave the car at home because of investment in public transport, walking, and cycling.

“This investment will unleash the potential of our cities. It will complete the expressway projects begun under the previous government and allow for future state highway upgrades, with up to $9.5 billion for state highway improvements.

“Regions are set to gain through investments to help freight flow faster and more efficiently. Up to $6.2 billion will be available for regional road and local upgrades, along with more funding for rail upgrades and a big boost to maintenance after years of neglect. The majority of regional councils made submissions in support of this plan after suffering funding cuts under the previous government.

“The New Zealand Transport Agency will increase their share of costs for certain high and very high priority locally-led projects, meaning councils can get more transport investment without asking more of ratepayers.

“There is a new emphasis on safety, with a doubling of investment in road safety promotion and a 14 per cent increase in road policing to help reduce the number of deaths on our roads. This Government is not prepared to accept a growing number of road deaths.

“To fund the infrastructure for our cities and regions to thrive, and save lives, there will need to be increases in excises and charges. There will be three increases in Petrol Excise Duty of 3.5 cents a litre from 30 September, and equivalent increases in Road User Charges from 1 October, and further 3.5 cent increases in 2019 and 2020. This will cost the average family 83 cents a week this year, rising to $2.50 a week by 2020.

‚ÄúThe increased excise will fund $5 billion of investment over the next decade. If the Opposition intends to scrap this funding, they must explain which $5 billion worth of roads, public transport projects, and safety improvements they would cancel,‚ÄĚ Phil Twyford said.

GPS 2018 can be found here: https://www.transport.govt.nz/multi-modal/keystrategiesandplans/gpsonlandtransportfunding/


Source: The Beehive


The GPS at a glance can be seen below:



The full GPS here:



As for Integrated Planning:

Theme: Integrating land use and transport planning and delivery

  • Integrating land use and transport planning and delivery is an important element in creating a transport network that benefits the wider community. Transport is an enabler, connector and shaper of urban areas.
  • Land use planning (including planning new and increased residential or commercial development, improved health or education infrastructure or regional development) has a significant impact on transport policy, infrastructure and services provision, and vice versa. Once development has happened, its impacts on transport are long term. Changes in land use can affect the demand for travel, creating both pressures and opportunities for investment in transport infrastructure and services, or for demand management. Likewise, changes in transport can affect land use.
  • It is essential that land use and transport planning and delivery are coordinated and integrated. This is largely a role for local and central government, supported by funding under GPS 2018.
  • Central government has a role in improving the visibility of planning and infrastructure intentions, facilitating engagement and enabling joint funding and decision-making. A greater emphasis on the integration of land use and transport planning is also a critical platform in achieving the Government‚Äôs objectives for urban development.


I can say in conversations I have had with NZTA and Auckland Transport that the future of integrated land use and transport planning is a mixed bag. That is NZTA is doing their absolute best to deliver on this GPS theme while it seems Auckland Transport Executive Managers seem not to be interested or see the value in it at all. From NZTA I am very excited about but from Auckland Transport perhaps the Minister of Transport should remind AT of their obligations under the GPS.

The project to watch is City Centre to Mangere Light Rail (aka the Northern Airport Line). NZTA are set to deliver the project and have full appreciation for full integrated planning (that is the transit line subsequent urban development along the transit line) while AT are just not interested at all.

My apologies if I have no faith nor trust in Auckland Transport to deliver integrated planning projects either after the Manukau Bus Station saga (see:¬†Missed Transit Orientated Development in #OurManukau ‚Äď How Not To Design a Bus Station as there Was No Integrated Planning¬†Whatsoever!) and the Great South Road Bus Lanes saga (they will deliver the bus lanes but keep fobbing it off to another department to deliver the cycleway rather than do both at once (see:¬†Papakura Local Board Meeting Agenda June 2018: Transport Updates Including Park and Rides, And Bus¬†Lanes)


So while the GPS is great for the City the delivery is going to be one that needs to be watched extremely closely.



Cycleways, general lanes, tram lines and even street trees That is integrated transport planning before the zones go down for urban development



Public transport RTN Proposal AP2050 final
Source: Auckland Council