Posted by: senjmito | September 19, 2010

Wellington Regional Council candidates respond to our transport questions

Greater Wellington Regional Council

Kapiti Ward

Ann Chapman

1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:
a. Public transport?
b. Walking (facilities and promotion)?
c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?
Please explain these choices.

As transport already receives 76% of the budget it is hard to see that increase without detrimentally affecting other services. I would not want to see it diminished. Walking and cycling are part of the package. As a Kapiti Coast district councillor I have supported our cycleways, walkways and bridleways initiative. I would like to see a commuter cycleway through QE Park.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:
Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.
a. Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor Y/N
b. Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor Y/N
c. Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space Y/N
This would be my preferred option. In addition I would like to see light rail extended through here and out to the airport
d. Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term Y/N see answer above
e. A Basin Reserve flyover Y/N No
f. Doubling the Terrace Tunnel Y/N Yes
g. Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel Y/N yes but would need to see the numbers for both these options and how it would increase activity in public transport. It would be ideal for light rail.
h. The Kapiti Expressway Y/N No No a thousand times no

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

Yes but until I am elected I can’t make any judgments about how to do this.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

Bringing back the western link road as a two lane local road. Extending the double tracking as far as Otaki. Supporting the continuation of the Capital Connection.

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region? See above

Wellington Ward

Judith Aitken
Also standing for CC District Health Board


1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:
a. Public transport?

Not less than current proportion and increasing over time subject to increased financial support from central government.

The main constraints on the WRC must be to avoid unaffordable fare increases on transport users, and additional or unfair financial burdens on ratepayers

Main purpose for WRC must be improved contracts with transport owners and operators and essential improvements such as real time, integrated ticketing and continuous service upgrades

b. Walking (facilities and promotion)?

Not less than at present and as much as can be afforded to encourage and support growing demand for healthy alternatives to costly vehicular transport.

Among the WRC’s most important ways of increasing walking opportunities are

(i) ensure that our overarching Regional Policies require and closely monitor provision by local councils and developers of walking opportunities in all urban development

(ii) develop our own regional parks so that they cater for a wide range of walking capacities, from relatively easy, safe grades ( eg QE Park) to “wild Wellington” tracks and marked ways in the new Baring head park and others.

(iii) advocate strongly to central government for retentio9n of safe walking opportunities wherever and whenever major roads are being developed/constructed

Promotion is important not only for physical wellbeing but also for the enrichment of spirit and mind that comes from free walking alone or with family and friends

c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?

Not less than at present, and significantly upgraded as requested in recent regional parks network plan consultations  For example

(i)  improved family friendly cycleway in QE park;

(ii) active consideration of providing range of cycle tracks for different groups of riders from very adventurous mountain riders to easier, more definitely “designed”  for the increasing number of older people who want to vary their walking programmes and get their bikes off suburban streets onto slightly rougher and moderately more challenging land.

(iii) regional policies that encourage local authorities to provide safe, accessible cycleways in and around our hilly suburbs

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable (NOTE these are essentially matters for Wellington City Council decision but in general):

Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.


Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space:

This decision has already been made by WCC re buses but I want to see very strong encouragement for pedestrians (and especially younger people) who want to walk or gather safely in the city


d. Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams

YES as a priority for the medium to longer term

e. A Basin Reserve flyover :

I seriously doubt the value of faster cars into the city and the damage to the values of the Basin – or heritage

f. Doubling the Terrace Tunnel No

g. Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel No

h. The Kapiti Expressway :

Very concerned about potential destruction of the physical, cultural and social environment that would result from this proposal.

A two lane road and bridge(s) from Paraparaumu to Waikanae would take about 23% of traffic off the SH1

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region?

YES: use the information and planning proposals forwarded repeatedly to the WRC by informed thinkers, notably like Paula Warren and Mike Mellor, and turn them into an integrated plan that provides the framework for all associated activities such as contracted transport, fares etc.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

Once we have completed the immediate matters for commuter rail (real time info and integrated ticketing), then I want to see an integrated public passenger plan, as in 3 above

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

Accessible, affordable, energy-efficient and safe train and bus transport all around the region, with effective incentives for increased use of public transport especially by current car-reliant people/ those for whom key reasons for using car are

•         habit,

•         lack of knowledge

•         limited experience in using public transport, and

•         lack of confidence in reliability, timetabling and convenience,

NOTING THAT this will entail more effective, affordable and reliable commercially- supported systems for shopper support, and for getting children to and from school and wherever else they need to be during the day and after school

Paul Bruce

1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan
(LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:
a. Public transport
= 80%
b & c. Walking and cycling = 7%
d  Roading =  13%

Operational expenditure public transport, cycling and walking:
Route planner, school and business plan development
Comprehensive safety and training in schools
Public Transport operational costs will increase as frequency of service rises, but
will then be balanced by improved patronage.
Every person switching to cycling, saves $35 a day to society, through personal savings
and increased safety and health, and diminished pollution.

Public transport ($1580m – 80%)

–        Present expenditure ($730)
New Matangi trains, upgrades rail, station, heavy maintenance, bus shelters, real time
information, electronic ticketing, regional rail plan.

–        Additional items ($850):
Development of Tram – Train extension through Wellington Railway Station to Airport  $450m
Double rail and tunnel Plimmerton to MacKays – $300
Double tracking to Upper Hutt, passing bays in Wairarapa  – $100m
Public transport network plan – savings used to increase frequency of services – zero
net cost.
Integrated ticketing – initial cost to set up, cost neutral in long term.
Travel demand management, providing incentives for people to avoid unnecessary travel,
encouragement of commercial development around transport hubs

Walking and cycling ($140m – 7%):

Construction of safe cycle and walking paths along all state highways, starting with the
Petone to Nguaranga gap (GHW), free cycle carriage on train and bus – initial cost for
racks on buses then recovery on operational costs

Roading ($260m – 13%):

Cancel new roading expenditure that comes under the Roads of National (Party)
Significance  allowing $2.2- $2.4 billion savings.  Minor safety upgrades – Western Link
Road to proceed as a local road.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:

I support:
Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space
Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for short term

Do not support:
Basin Reserve flyover
Doubling the Terrace Tunnel
Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel
The Kapiti Expressway

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the
region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

I support development of  integrated public transport network across region, utilizing
train and/or tram on main arterial routes connecting with shuttle buses at sub-hubs and regional stations.
One ticket available for all modes, with suitable concessions for regular users, special
sectors such as school children, and off peak users.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which
you are standing?

Development of tram train extension through golden mile to hospital and Kilbirnie, and
safe cycle paths along all arterial routes, cancellation of new roading (RoNs) projects

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

Safe  cycle and walking path 4-5 meters wide Petone to Wellington CBD, alongside
purchase of light rail units for use Johnsonville and Melling through Wellington CBD to
Airport.

Dianne Buchan

1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:
a. Public transport?
b. Walking (facilities and promotion)?
c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?

Please explain these choices.

I think we need to start with a list of things to be done that will make a real difference to the numbers of people choosing to use these forms of travel and then work out a budget based on that.  I would expect that the funding needed to sort out public transport will be a lot more expensive than the development of better walking facilities but that does not mean I consider one more important than the other. Ideally I would want to see cycleways and walkways separated from each other and from road traffic. That will not be possible in many parts of the city but I think we should be aiming for that as much as possible and have a funding programme based on what can be achieved over the next 10 years.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:

Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.

a. Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor N
b. Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor N

c. Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space Y

d. Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term Y/N

I would love to say yes but given the funding priorities of NZTA and the current government I do not believe this is possible in the short-term. I accept that light rail is cheaper than the flyover and tunnel expansion etc but the reality is that under the current regime, government would fund the roadworks but not a light rail/tram system. We need to get the bus system working in a way that is similar to how a light-rail system would work to get people used to that and keep the pressure on for light rail as the only long-term sustainable option.

e. A Basin Reserve flyover N
f. Doubling the Terrace Tunnel N
g. Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel N
h. The Kapiti Expressway N

I do not support any projects that will encourage more traffic into Wellington City. Already developers are promoting the impending TGM and Kapiti Expressway as making living in Otaki and further north a viable option.  This makes me shudder.

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

Yes I do. Integrated ticketing seems the least we should have and better coordination between the services. This is part of how I see we get the city ready for light-rail in the future.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

In no particular order:

a) undertake a review of the Travel Demand Management (TDM) measures undertaken by GWRC to date to find out why some were unsuccessful and how others could be improved to get greater up-take and genuinely pursue TDM as an alternative to more roads

b) work towards providing a 15 minute train service from Upper Hutt  to the city and from Waikanae (and better still, Otaki) to the city

c) work with NZTA and WCC to ensure safe and pleasant cycleways along the State Highway routes

d) increase park-and-ride capacity at all railway stations in the region – most are full by 8.30 and overflowing into adjoining commercial carparking area

e) use the influence of the GWRC to encourage central government to re-think its funding priorities to give a much higher allocation to non-roading transport options.

f) review current contracts with bus service operators to find ways of making the service more friendly towards consumers and the environment.

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

As above (4).

Charles Finny

I support the current Land Transport Strategy for the region.  This is a balanced approach seeing investment across all modes.  I would invest a bit more on cycling, to make this option safer.  This would require more dedicated cycle lanes. I don’t really want to promote this option more until we can make it a much safer option.

2 a Yes.  I would begin with a 0700-0900 1600-1800 restriction on non-public transport activity.
2 b No.  Our population base will not support this, and we need this space for buses (and maybe eventually light rail)
2 c see 2 a
2 d I support of proper study on the feasibility of light rail.  I will support this if it is economically viable.  As our population grows this option becomes more viable.
2 e I support some form of grade separation at the Basin.  I don’t much like the idea of a flyover.  I would prefer an underpass.
2 f Eventually
2 g I support the current proposed timeframe for this.  We need to be prepared the accelerate this work if congestion gets out of control as a result of increased usage associated with indoor stadia/film museums/marine education centres..
2 h I support all the proposed projects along the airport to Levin RONS

3 Yes, and I would extend use of the snapper card to trains and all other operators immediately.

4 Delivering on the current strategy.  The major area of action not already addressed adequately is the need to plan for some form of road user charging/congestion charging to encourage even greater uptake of public transport.  See comments above on cycling also, and the need for a light rail study.

5 My own priorities are pretty much in line with the current regional strategy amended by comments in 1 and 4 above.  I would like a later express bus from the city to Seatoun – say 8pm – but that is total self interest…..

Michael Gibson

Michael Gibson seeks a fourth term so that he can again ask the hard questions about our trains & buses running late & about environmental pollution.

REFORM  aims at hitting Councillors in the pocket if they fail to make proper attempts to look after ratepayers’ funds.

In Wellington the focus will be on the multi-million-dollar subsidies paid to non-performing Railway Companies & on the $40,000,000 lent by ratepayers to the Stadium.

The over-subsidisation of Railways speaks for itself whilst the fees paid to Council representatives on the Stadium Trust are questionable because little effort has been expended on having this money returned.

REFORM  believes that the return of unjustified transport subsidies and  the $40,000,000 Stadium loan are the biggest single measures which can be taken to improve Wellington’s finances.

Michael Gibson will not be afraid to ask the questions about these which other Councillors have failed to ask.

** REFORM:    “Review Every Financial Outlay of Ratepayers’ Money” **

I hope this speaks for itself – together with my record on past sustainable transport matters e.g. securing an extra $5,000,000 for the Johnsonville line at a time when it was most at risk.

Chris Lipscombe

1. What proportion of transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:

a. Public transport? – 85-90%

b. Walking (facilities and promotion)? 10-15%

c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?

Please explain these choices.

a) Wellington already has a significant investment in public transport. Maintaining an efficient, safe and affordable public transport will continue to be the primary focus of public transport funding.

b) Our regional transport network serves a large geographic area, catering for commuters up the Kapiti Coast and through to the Wairarapa. Cycle and walking can be integrated with public transport but cannot replace the services provided by our rail and many of our bus services.

c) Wellington’s hilly terrain means that public transport is always likely to have a strong place in Wellington.

d) Wellington typically has an unkind winter climate – walking and cycling is not always the most desirable in these conditions.

e) Greater attention needs to be given to integrating cycling with public transport.

To date our rail units have been woefully inadequate in terms of the carriage of bikes. It appears that the Matangi Units will not be much better!

f) Just spending 10% of public transport funding on walking and cycling would be a huge improvement on current expenditure.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:

Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.

a) Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor NO

b) Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor NO

c) Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space YES – but with very restricted speed limits and clear delineation of bus routes.

d) Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term NO – this is a medium to long-term matter that needs careful consideration.

e) A Basin Reserve flyover NO.

f) Doubling the Terrace Tunnel YES – This was always the intention.  We have lived with a ‘halfway house’ solution for too long.

g) Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel YES – Regardless of what we do in public transport we require a more modern and safer tunnel, for both private and public transport, cyclists and walkers. The current tunnel is unsafe and does not meet modern standards.

h) The Kapiti Expressway YES WITH RESERVATIONS – We need to find a roading solution that provides fast, dependable access in and out of Wellington, and at the same time provides an adequate solution to traffic congestion and local access for the people of the Kapiti Coast. Surely this can be done without dividing Kapiti Coast District right down the middle? The work on mitigation of effects from the expressway needs to address the likely social and economic impact as well as environmental and design issues.

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

Yes

a) Integration of all major transport planning and investment agencies into a single coordinated function with the ability to make rational choices of investment on transportation infrastructure.

b) An integrated Wellington transport plan that brings together all aspects of transport funding and investment, so that more rational choices can be made.

c) A single fare across the region valid for 1 hour of travel, with concessions based on hour of travel and for the young, elderly and disabled.

d) Integrated ticketing, making one ticket or Snapper transaction valid across the network for 1 hour.

e) Stronger focus on cycle ways and walking access in Wellington city.

f) More space for cycles on trains and at railway stations, and capacity for buses to carry bikes.

4.  What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

a) An efficient and, safe public transport system. Wellingtonians have to regain their confidence in public transport – rail commuters in particular. We have to do the basics right.

b) An affordable public transport system – On 1 October bus fares rise again. We are sending the wrong messages to Wellingtonians. We need to reverse the recent decisions to increase fares and put in place a fairer and simpler fare structure.

c) Accessible public provided transport for the disabled (including taxis).

d) Integrated ticketing – 20 years after starting talking about it we still don’t have integrated ticketing across our public transport network. We need to take all reasonable steps to make public transport an easy option for commuters.

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

a. An efficient and, safe public transport system.  Wellingtonians have to regain their confidence in public transport – rail commuters in particular. We have to do the basics right.

b. An affordable public transport system.  On 1 October bus fares rise again. We are sending the wrong messages to Wellingtonians. We need a ubiquitous public transport system that Wellingtonians use by default.

c. Accessible public transport, especially for the disabled.

d. Integrated ticketing. 20 years after starting talking about it we still don’t have integrated ticketing across our public transport network. We need to take all reasonable steps to make public transport an easy option for commuters.

e. Stronger focus on cycle ways and walking access in Wellington city.

f. More space for cycles on trains and at railway stations.

g. Planning for light rail in concert with changes to the Wellington City Council’s District Plan.

Daran Ponter

1.  What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:

a. Public transport? – 90%

b. Walking (facilities and promotion)? 10%

c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?

Please explain these choices.

a) Wellington already has a significant investment in public transport.  Maintaining an efficient, safe and affordable public transport will continue to be the primary focus of public transport funding.

b) Our regional transport network serves a large geographic area, catering for commuters up the Kapiti Coast and through to the Wairarapa.  Cycle and walking can be integrated with public transport but cannot replace the services provided by our rail and many of our bus services.

c) Wellington’s hilly terrain means that public transport is always likely to have a strong place in Wellington.

d) Wellington typically has an unkind winter climate – walking and cycling is not always the most desirable in these conditions.

d) Greater attention needs to be given to integrating cycling with public transport.  To date our rail units have been woefully inadequate in terms of the carriage of bikes.  It appears that the Matangi Units will not be much better!

e) Just spending 10% of public transport funding on walking and cycling would be a huge improvement on current expenditure.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:

Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.

a) Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor NO

b) Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor NO

c) Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space YES – but with very restricted speed limits.

d)  Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term NO – this is a medium to long-term matter that needs careful consideration.

e)  A Basin Reserve flyover Y/N – NO

f)  Doubling the Terrace Tunnel Y/N – YES – This was always the intention.  We have lived with a half-way house solution for too long.

g)  Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel YES – regardless of what we do in public transport we require a more modern and safer tunnel – for both private and public transport, cyclists and walkers.  The current tunnel is unsafe and does not meet modern standards.

h).  The Kapiti Expressway Y/N – YES and NO – We need to find a solution that meets both the needs of those traveling to and from Wellington and the people of the Kapiti Coast who are affected by the existing traffic congestion and any new roading plans. Public consultation on the express way proposal has been appalling as Minister Joyce railroads through his preferred option.  The people of Kapiti deserve to been properly consulted on transport options.

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

Yes

a) Integration of all major transport planning and investment agencies into a single co-ordinated function with the ability to make rational choices of investment on transportation infrastructure.

b) An integrated Wellington transport plan which brings together all aspects of transport funding and investment, so that more rational choices can be made.

c) A single fare across the region valid for 1 hour of travel, with concessions based on hour of travel and for the young, elderly and disabled.

d) Integrated ticketing, making one ticket or Snapper transaction valid across the network for 1 hour.

e) Stronger focus on cycle ways and walking access in Wellington city.

f) More space for cycles on trains and at railway stations, and capacity for buses to carry bikes.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

a) An efficient and, safe public transport system – Wellingtonians have to regain their confidence in public transport – rail commuters in particular.  We have to do the basics right.

b) An affordable public transport system – On 1 October bus fares rise again.  We are sending the wrong messages to Wellingtonians.  We need to reverse the recent decisions to increase fares and put in place a fairer and simpler fare structure.  Bus users should not be subsidizing train users.

c) Accessible public provided transport for the disabled (including taxis).

d) Integrated ticketing – 20 years after starting talking about it we still don’t have integrated ticketing across our public transport network.  We need to take all reasonable steps to make public transport an easy option for commuters.

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

a. An efficient and, safe public transport system – Wellingtonians have to regain their confidence in public transport – rail commuters in particular.  We have to do the basics right.

b. An affordable public transport system – On 1 October bus fares rise again.  We are sending the wrong messages to Wellingtonians.  We need to reverse the Regioanl Council’s decision to put bus faes up.  Bus users should not be subsiding train users.

c. Accessible public transport, especially for the disabled.

d. Integrated ticketing – 20 years after starting talking about it we still don’t have integrated ticketing across our public transport network.  We need to take all reasonable steps to make public transport an easy option for commuters.

e. Stronger focus on cycle ways and walking access in Wellington city.

f. More space for cycles on trains and at railway stations.

g. Planning for light rail in concert with changes to the Wellington City Council’s District Plan.

Terry McDavitt

% trans funding to modes…

An interesting question, BUT:  firstly, funding isn’t and can’t be allocated to modes in this way. Rather it is allocated to the statutory activities (capex, opex, promotion – each across all modes.)  Secondly, different Councils have (by law) different roles so eg GW doesn’t and can’t fund footpaths (or roads) directly, and City Councils can’t fund public transport directly. Thirdly, the wording of yr q is ambiguous as to whether you mean opex or capex or both – right now, eg most GW funding goes to RAIL capex because we are at that stage of the investment cycle. And do you mean 10-year averages or 1-year snapshots (snapshots will be misleading, because capex profiles change annually). So, nobody could really answer yr q meaningfully.

However, going with the spirit behind the question rather than the technicality, I would say 90% GW trans funding should go to public transport and around 5% to cycling. (5% is higher than current but I agree cycling needs investment in key cycleways). You don’t mention another activity (mode) that GW also HAS TO fund, ie total mobility, ie subsidised taxi transport for the elderly and infirm, which takes about 5% of the GW  budget every year.  I support this – if GW didn’t do it nobody would, and not all of us are fit and mobile. The remaining bit wd be for promoting smart travel – eg carpooling/ safe walking.

abc –  CBD/Golden Mile function

I support none of your options. Though c comes closest. The Golden Mile cannot be simply public transport nor simply pedestrian , nor even simply both – it has to be serviced, which means commercial traffic needs access (else, shops don’t get stock – and the stock does NOT arrive via pub trans or peds). The ped-only idea for Golden Mile is daft – this is the public transport spine of the region. PT -only suggests peds are not there – which is equally daft. I would support traffic calming/traffic limitations to make it more like c, but not outright traffic prohibition. I worry about what you mean by “dedicated” and “essential”; presumably tons of regulation and definition. You don’t need such regulation – Lambton Quay is practically traffic-calmed now; there are alternative routes to most of it.

Your 2 d-h:

D – I support investigation of, and see it as quite possible in med-term, but actually I see rescue of the regional rail system as the higher priority right now – see answer to yr 4. I say take care of what you’ve already got first … Right now light rail is a nice to have, not a must have, at least as compared to having a functioning rail network.  I think the Ganz Mavag review due 2011 is the time to sort out the mode q.

E – Was impressed by Basin tunnel idea, but query cost and engineering of? At base, some grade-separation around Basin is desirable. Too much east/west and north/south conflict there, including for buses, peds, as well as cars, taxis, etc etc.  Is it a priority ? Yes, more central to regional economy and functioning than eg yet another interchange in the Hutt.

F – Probably not. I see the current bottleneck as useful in moderating the traffic flow into the city. Doubling the terrace tunnel wd worsen downstream conditions – and downstream is city centre. So it is not a priority for me.

G – I do see further Mt Vic tunnel capacity as desirable, and a priority (more than f). This includes bus tunnel needs,  and walking and biking facilities. Current conditions for bus/walk/bike are atrocious.

40,000+ people live the other side of Mt Vic – that’s a city the size of Whanganui , and it’s growing, and it’s got poor access.  NOT increasing the tunnel capacity will simply put more pressure onto the Newtown route – which is deteriorating in front of our eyes, and that is very sad cos Newtown is or cd be a nice place. Mt Vic tunnel naysayers are dooming Newtown.   There is serious congestion on this route now morning, evening, and weekend.

H – No, I support a modified  Western Link Rd – mind you Kapiti Council mucked up the Western Link Rd so much that it became unrecognisable, so I can understand the Minister’s exasperation. But he’s wrong – the Sandhills Expressway is not the best solution there.

Your 3, Tell me, what is an “integrated” public transport system? One that has all the same mode? one that is timetable-connected? one that has unified branding? one with the same operator all the way up and down ? (It sounds like a slogan, and I distrust slogans). … It needs definition, eg, to an extent we have integration now, in that Metlink brands/sets prices and policies/ funds/ has a level of service guideline.

Seriously, THE major improvement to Wgtn pt system I wd desire and that some see as “integration” – but it isn’t – wd be  “integrated” ticketing, whereby the one ticket/fare carries you across the region, thru all modes and operators.  I know we have a problem here in that bus and rail require difft ticketing mechanisms, but the problem is not beyond the wit of smart cooperative people to solve if they want to. Integrated ticketing/fares  is the best step we cd take  to unifying the whole region, not just its transport. Suddenly Kapiti/Wairarapa people wd actually be Wgtnians and vice versa.

5 Top transport priorities for GW? (Note : by definition this means PT projects)

A Increase pt patronage  – this single, simple goal gathers most others together;

B Improve reliability of rail service (lots of trackwork needed)

C Work out a Ganz Mavag replacement strategy – note, this wd lead to light rail fleet decision

D Reduce traffic volumes esp at congested times – pt/other modes/have a role to play, but so does development policy , as in smart growth,

E Integrated ticketing

6 Top REGIONAL transport priorities (ie PT plus other inc roading)

5 A-E , though I might put D ahead of B and C in this context in that it is more over-arching.

BUT to be complete I wd also add in roading – Basin/Kapiti, and TG (regional resilience).

Bill Rainey

I am a very keen cyclist (city, touring and mountain-biking).

1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:
a. Public transport?
b. Walking (facilities and promotion)?
c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)?

Please explain these choices.

Sorry but I have been unable to access the Regional Council’s website to see its LTCCP.  My general view is that GWRC needs to take a very strong role in promoting and providing for increased options for public, pedestrian and cycle transport options.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:
Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.

Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor Y/N No
b. Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor Y/N No
c. Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space Y/N Yes
d. Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term Y/N No, I think we are lucky to have an existing electric trolley bus network, and it’s unlikely development of an extended rail system would be feasible.
e. A Basin Reserve flyover Y/N Maybe, but there could be other options – underground?
f. Doubling the Terrace Tunnel Y/N This doesn’t make too much sense without some rational plan for dealing with increased traffic feeds into the CBD
g. Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel Y/N This very much depends on the airport’s expansion plans.  If expansion goes ahead as suggested then relieving traffic congestion at Mt Victoria (be it cars, buses or whatever) is likely to be critical.  But second guessing whether or not the expansion will in fact take place should not be the job of Councils and their infrastructure spending.  There needs to be close liaison between the airport and Councils on this one.
h. The Kapiti Expressway Y/N Yes

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

In principle yes, and I think the Regional Council should be taking a lead role in this area.  I have not researched the options sufficiently to be able to answer the second part of your question.

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

Improving public road and rail transport options and services,  doing much better to support and provide for improved pedestrian and cycle modes.

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

Essentially the same as 4. Above.

Chris Laidlaw

1. What proportion of the transport funding in the Long Term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) of the Council you are standing for would you want to see devoted to:

a. Public transport? CONSIDERABLY MORE THAN AT PRESENT

b. Walking (facilities and promotion) 5%

c. Cycling (facilities and promotion)? 10%

Please explain these choices. WE ARE EFFECTIVELY HOSTAGE TO THE COSTS OF ROADING PROJECTS WHICH THE REGIONAL LAND TRANSPORT COMMITTEE AND NZTA IMPOSE.

2. Do you support the following transport projects, where applicable:

Note: Options a-c are mutually exclusive. Each assumes that essential service vehicles would have limited access.

a. Turning the Golden Mile into a public transport corridor NO

b. Turning the Golden Mile into a pedestrian corridor NO

c. Turning the Golden Mile into a dedicated public transport/pedestrian space YES

d. Extending the rail system through the Wellington CBD, by developing modern trams as a priority for the short term YES

e. A Basin Reserve flyover NO

f. Doubling the Terrace Tunnel NO

g. Doubling the Mt Victoria Tunnel YES, WITH TRAM/BUS/LIGHT RAIL PRIORITY

h. The Kapiti Expressway NOT WHERE CURRENTLY DESIGNATED AND NOT AT ALL IF TRANSMISSION GULLY PROCEEDS

3. Do you support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region? If so, what changes would you propose making to bring this about?

WE NEED A BOTTOM UP REVIEW BASED ON SUSTAINABILITY AND WITH PUBLIC TRANSPORT ALWAYS AS THE PREFERRED OPTION

4. What do you consider should be the top transport priorities of the Council for which you are standing?

A REVIEW OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY OF THE CURRENT MIX OF PROJECTS

5. What are your own top transport priorities for the region?

PROMOTION OF ELECTRIC VEHICLES

LIGHT RAIL CORRIDOR AGREED – RAILWAY STATION TO AIRPORT THROUGH CBD

Upper Hutt Ward

Stephanie Lambert

1.     Proportion of transport funding in LTCCP currently is 76% of total rates take.

Less than 1%  is devoted to walking and cycling (facilities and promotion) and one would always like to commit more but there are also national and international trends effecting  positive change for walking and cycling as good alternatives.   In fact, it would be an excellent result if the 76% currently spent on public transport could be reduced by making certain transport services more profitable, (by encouraging more people to use public transport) thus reducing the need for WRC subsidies (as indeed some routes now operate – the 110 for instance).

2.      Support Option C ; many ideas have been floated about this – a giant mall for instance, but we have to realistic – we don’t have the environment – neither climatically, nor economically – to support a giant mall.  Also – how would those physically disabled be able to easily move from one end to the other if a pedestrian mall was adopted.  The decision hs been made really already with further construction of the bus lanes in Manners St/Willis Street.

2 d No, there has been much discussion of a lightrail extension through the city, but if the buses and trains co-ordinate, we would not need a light rail system.  Also much money has already been spent on improving bus lanes (see above) and if timetables are co-ordinated more people would see the benefit of using public transport.

2 e No, as it will still result in traffic bottle-neck further along

2 f No – again – if 4 lanes coming into the City -only move the bottleneck further along.  OK for northbound onto the motorway.

2.g No – again – the lanes entering/exiting the tunel are restricted, so increasing wide of tunnel would not have much advantage.  Be extremely costly too I would think.

2 h Kapiti expressway  – no opinion

3.    Support creation of integrated public transport system?

Definitely,  some progress already being made on this front.  But – in light of the recent concerns expressed by Wellington residents at huge increases in bus fares around the city, public/private partnerships should be carefully managed to avoid this sort of “surprise” in the future. As stated above – if timetables are co-ordinated, and costs realistic, resulting in more users, and ultimately more regular services.

4.    Top transport priorities – getting all to work together – if it can be done in Auckland for the Rugby World Cup – why stop there?  It should be a nation-wide ongoing project for benefit of all users.

5.    Own top transport priorities  – to get more people using public transport – to do this we need to ensure all public transport runs to time & commuters are informed of any delays/breakdowns.  This applies to both trains and buses.  The amount of productive manhours lost is huge, and people deserve a reliable service, and if the service isn’t reliable people won’t use it.

Paul Swain

The focus of the Greater Wellington regional council is currently on providing a modern, affordable reliable and safe public transport system. While there is a small amount of money set aside for walking and cycling, the bulk of the budget is focused on public transport, which I support.

The transport priorities for Upper Hutt constituents are more focused on improving the rail network and upgrading SH2, than on the Wellington CBD (see Question 4). However, I understand that the Regional Transport plans aim to improve, among other things, the Ngauranga to Airport corridor, which includes allowing public transport access to Manners Mall, increased bus lanes and  feasibility studies for both light rail and the duplication of the Mt Victoria and Terrace tunnels. This will link in with the Government’s identification of Levin to Wellington (SH1) as a “road of national significance” that requires priority treatment.

As a former Minister of Transport I strongly support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region. This will require better coordination of transport providers, so that things like integrated ticketing and real time passenger information is available across the entire network. Greater accountability for performance will also be required. Continued central government funding for public transport will be needed.

The top priorities for the Upper Hutt constituency include upgrading SH2  and improving the rail network. Commuters are already seeing the benefits of road improvements on SH2 with the completion of the Dowse (Maungaraki) to Petone project. The next priorities for Upper Hutt commuters should include improving the Melling, Kennedy-Good and Haywards intersections, and completing safety projects on River Road and SH58. At the same time, fixing the decaying rail network so that the service is reliable is critical for Upper Hutt and the region. Priorities include upgrading the infrastructure (signals, overhead, tracks platforms etc), phasing in the new Matangi trains, introducing real time information for passengers (so they are not stranded on platforms not knowing what is happening) and improving safety at “park and ride” areas.

My own priorities are outlined in answers to questions 4 and 2.

Hutt Ward

Peter Glensor

1. Already, almost the entire transport budget of Greater Wellington Regional Council is devoted to public transport.  There is a tiny proportion for us to develop our Regional Transport Plans, which includes plans for cycling and walking.  But our operational focus is on the public transport network – both upgrading the network and subsidies for the operation of the public transport system

2. I am Deputy Chair of the Regional Transport Committee, which includes the Mayors throughout the region, and various interests related to PT.  I was a member of the Hearings Committee for the Ngauranga to Airport Corridor Plan which was presented to the RTC, then to the Regional Council, and adopted by both.  It calls for a high quality public transport spine through central Wellington.  The plan outlines a programme which is roughly as follows – in time sequence:

a. Various initiatives, such as opening of Manners Mall for PT, signalising of pedestrian crossings in Courtenay Place, and implementation of Real Time Information systems, to speed up the flow of public transport through the CBD, introduction of Real Time Information – beginning with Wgton City

b. Creation of a shoulder lane on the Aotea Quay motorway, focusing on the creation of a bus-only lane coming in from the north

c. Grade separation of east-west traffic from north-south traffic around the Basin Reserve, with a particular focus on improved facilities for cyclists, pedestrians and PT

d. Ensuring that dedicated space is preserved for public transport through the CBD, and through to Newtown – which could be converted into either bus ways, or light rail corridor

e. Simultaneous feasibility studies of a bus way or a light rail system on that dedicated PT corridor, plus four laning of Ruahine/Wellington Streets and a duplication of the Mt Victoria Tunnel

f. (In the long term) Feasibility of duplication of the Terrace Tunnel

I continue to support  the adopted Corridor Plan and this timetable.

3.      Yes, I support the creation of an integrated public transport system across the region.  For this to happen we need to have more authority as a Regional Council to get the various parts of such a system working together more effectively.  At present, and in the future, we are restricted in a number of areas and I’ll continue to advocate for Regional Councils to have the necessary powers to ensure that the system is indeed ‘integrated”.  There is also a need for continued and increased levels of central government funding for public transport, and I’ll be advocating for that.

4.      Top transport priorities for GWRC:

a.      Completion of the upgrade of the rail network

i.     bringing the 96 Matangi units into service,

ii.     a decision either to refurbish or replace the 88 Ganz Marvag units, followed rapidly by the central government funding to implement that decision

iii.     completion of the network upgrade – signals, tracks, power system, platforms

b.      Introduction of Real Time Information throughout the region – buses and trains

c.      Finalising of a Public Transport Operating Agreement – strengthening the ability of GWRC, in partnership with operators and central government, to ensure an integrated, transparent and accountable PT network is operating

d.      Implementing the provisions of the Ngauranga to Airport Corridor Plan regarding the creation of an effective and secure high quality public transport spine through the Wellington City CBD

5.      My own top priorities  – as above in question 4.

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Responses

  1. […] Wellington Regional Council (Greater Wellington) candidates […]

  2. Thank you Sustainable Wellington Transport for putting together this useful guide. I did notice, though, that the responses from Chris Lipscombe and Daran Ponter are identical. Is this intentional, or has there been an error in uploading their responses?

  3. Thanks, Fiona. I too was struck by the similarity of their responses when we received them, and so I checked carefully to ensure they were loaded correctly. If you look closely, there are in fact some differences in these two responses!


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