North Shore Times : February 5th 2013
www.northshoretimes.co.nz 6 NORTH SHORE TIMES, FEBRUARY 5, 2013 NEWS WANT SOMETHING TO DO AFTER SCHOOL? Come and discover fun and adventure with our awesome new programme designed especially for young people like you in Years 7 & 8. Years 7&8 Phone: 09 444 8355 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Check: youthtown.org.nz/north_shore Find us on Facebook For more information contact: Workshops include: • Multisports • Master Chef • Fashionsita Plus loads more fun activities... Bus loops to CBD will cut off coast By KATASHA McCULLOUGH Direct bus routes from Long Bay to Takapuna may be dropped in favour of high-frequency loops designed to service the Auckland central business district. Hibiscus and Bays Local Board chairwoman Julia Parfitt and deputy chair- man David Cooper both spoke against the changes at the Draft Auckland Regional Public Transport Plan hearing. Under the draft plan the present bus routes running down the coast would be axed. Instead the plan focuses on connections to the motorway. Mr Cooper says the short trip from Rothesay Bay to Campbells Bay would become a two-bus journey and travelling from Torbay to Campbells Bay would mean catching three buses. The baby's being thrown out with the bath- water, following the phil- osophy of getting everyone into the CBD,'' he says. Ms Parfitt says repeat- edly getting on and off buses is dangerous and increases the risk of accidents. She says off-peak public transport users are often vulnerable elderly, chil- dren or non-English spea- kers. Auckland Transport's Anthony Cross asked Mr Cooper if he would still want the coastal services at the expense of the motorway feeder routes. Fewer routes with higher frequencies, that's the kind of tradeoff we're trying to achieve,'' he says. Ms Parfitt says the present system has achieved huge growth in public transport usage. We need to look after the customers we do have and be very careful when changing anything.'' There is also a risk to local businesses if connec- tivity along the coast is lost, Mr Cooper says. The board also wants the Northern Express bus route extended past Brito- mart to service the univer- sities, Auckland Hospital and Newmarket. Free wi-fi on buses to attract younger genera- tions is another idea the board put forward. Mr Cooper believes the consultation period for the draft plan was too short and the public were not aware of the proposed changes. Fewer than 350 general public submis- sions were received. Mr Cross says there will be consultation with com- munities but no statutory hearings. East-west bus link explored On the move: Auckland Council's public transport plan has been called the biggest shake-up in years. By JESS ETHERIDGE FERRY USERS PAY A PREMIUM Connecting Glenfield and Takapuna by a system like Auckland's inner-city link bus network has been mooted by two North Shore local boards. The east-west bus con- nection was proposed at Auckland Transport's draft Regional Public Transport Plan hearing at Takapuna's Smales Farm on January 30. The 10-year plan outlines targets for public transport, including the North Shore, and has been called the big- gest shake-up to the system in 30 years. A total of 719 submissions from across the city were received by Auckland Trans- port but only nine submit- ters were heard at Smales Farm. Devonport-Takapuna and Kaipatiki local boards both presented the east-west link to the panel, led by Auckland councillor and chairman of the Auckland Transport committee Mike Lee. Devonport-Takapuna board chairman Chris Darby cited the successful'' inner/ outer link bus systems as a base model for the link. Mr Darby says the failure to effectively link the two regions, separated by the Northern Motorway, is stop- ping residents from entering major employment zones''. The link system would encourage motorists off the heavily congested Takapuna roads, Mr Darby says. Cr Lee agrees: For four years the transport focus has been north and south. But there is obviously a need.'' The board will investigate. Copies of the draft trans- port plan are at public lib- raries or at aucklandtran- sport.govt.nz. Premium ferry fares were challenged at the transport hearing. Kaipatiki Local Board chairwoman Lindsay Waugh says fare pricing should be equal across each transport service. It costs an adult travelling 11 kilometres $8 by ferry compared to $4.50 for the same distance on a bus. Devonport-Takapuna Local Board chairman Chris Darby challenged the panel over a ''key oversight'' in leaving ferries out of the integrated transport model. ''It reinforces ferries as the 'poor cousin' in the three-mode mix'' including buses and trains, he says. Ferry commuters are paying a premium for travelling the same distance as bus users, he says. ''Don't disenfranchise ferry users further.'' Panel member Mark Lambert, manager for public transport operations at Auckland Transport, says subsidised fares are available but integrated fares are a matter of priorities and funds.
February 1st 2013
February 7th 2013