People in the Wellington region are being encouraged to give their feedback on major changes proposed for Wellington bus services from Island Bay to Grenada.
Peter Glensor, Chair of Greater Wellington’s Economic Wellbeing Committee which oversees public transport, says the proposed changes would affect every bus route that runs throughout Wellington City south of Grenada North. These include some peak-only services that come from outside Wellington City. The only exception is the Airport Flyer.
More than 317,000 people catch the 12,173 buses that run in this area each week.
“Most people’s regular travel patterns would be affected so we’re urging people to find out what the changes involve and let us know what they think.”
The proposed changes are the result of the first major review of Wellington City bus services in about 20 years. “Since then of course Wellington City, and people’s transport needs and expectations, have changed a lot. Many people have either travelled extensively or lived in cities around the world where public transport is easy to use, very frequent, and runs all day seven days a week. And that’s what they expect of a modern public transport system.
“The changes we are proposing bring Wellington into that kind of territory with, essentially, the creation of a new network. More core routes would provide bus services running to key employment, residential and recreational areas at least every 15 minutes, some every 10 minutes, from 6am till midnight seven days a week. On secondary routes services would run every 30 minutes to and between town centres and less populated residential areas, with regular and carefully planned connections to the core routes. Additional peak time services would also run on these routes. A significant number of peak-only services would run in many areas.
“Simpler routes and better connections from one service to another would make it much easier for many people to get around Wellington on the bus. For example, under these changes 75% of people, compared to 58% at present, would be within a 10 minute walk of a high frequency core bus route.”
The proposed changes also aim to reduce congestion on the Golden Mile through Wellington CBD, which is used by more than 140 buses per hour in the morning and evening peak. “We’re proposing that one of the core, high frequency bus routes runs along The Terrace and that some peak-only services run along the waterfront quays. This would reduce the bunching effect of buses on the Golden Mile, particularly at Willis and Manners Streets, in this part of the city.”
“We’re very keen to hear if people think we are heading in the right direction with the concept of a three-tiered network made up of core, secondary and peak-only services. If approved, the changes would be rolled out over several years, beginning next year, as they will require very detailed timetable planning and big changes to infrastructure and technology.”
More information can be found at www.gw.govt.nz/wellington-city-bus-review . A series of community information sessions will also be held where Greater Wellington staff will be on hand to take people through the proposals. Details of these sessions are below. People need to give their feedback by Friday 16 March.