NZ Local News

Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown proposes transport funding for Long Term Plan

Editor Written by Editor · 1 min read >


Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown has proposed almost $20 billion of council funding for public transport for the city’s next Long Term Plan.

Brown said the funding would make public transport “better, faster [and] cheaper”, by capping weekly fares, investing in dynamic lanes – which can have their direction changed – and going towards railway track maintenance and level crossing removals.

Brown said it would also save bus routes from being cut and would go towards security screens to protect bus drivers from unruly passengers.

His proposal includes giving Auckland Transport $5.8b for operating expenses over the next 10 years and $14b for capital investment.

Brown said his final proposal for the Long Term Plan (LTP) came from its consultation.

“I’m listening to Aucklanders who asked for more spending on public transport,” he said.

“It’s time we got on with making buses fast and reliable. That will ensure a smooth transition to time of use charging [tolls or congestion charges], which is needed to decongest our roads.”

Brown said dynamic lanes, track maintenance, and funding to keep the buses running were “low-cost initiatives.

“We’re going to focus on simple improvements to make our public transport better, faster, cheaper,” he said.

Some $600m would go towards dynamic lanes and “small capital works” to improve bus speeds.

Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown has proposed almost $20 billion of council funding for public transport for the city’s next Long Term Plan. Photo / Dean Purcell
Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown has proposed almost $20 billion of council funding for public transport for the city’s next Long Term Plan. Photo / Dean Purcell

On the security screens for drivers, Brown criticised the current rollout of the protective partition.

“Without this funding, it would take up to 10 years to ensure that every bus driver is protected by a security screen. That is unacceptable, and under my proposal, we’ll do 80 per cent of buses within two years,” he said.

Brown mooted $6.5m from the total proposed funding for the screens.

The Auckland Tramways Union president, Gary Froggatt, said the union hoped the proposal would go ahead.

On rail, Brown said part of the proposed funding would remove four level crossings in Takanini. He said this work would be necessary for the full benefits of the City Rail Link in the central city to be realised.

He also said more level crossings needed to be removed.

“The four level-crossings at Takanini see the highest number of rail traffic in Auckland and already contribute to road congestion.

“This problem will only get worse when the CRL opens. So, it is crucial that we get on with the work now,” he said.

Of the total proposed funding, $550 million would go towards the removal of level crossings in Takanini. A further $5m would go to maintaining tracks.

The final proposed LTP will be considered by the council’s budget committee on Thursday.

Raphael Franks is an Auckland-based reporter who covers breaking news. He joined the Herald as a Te Rito cadet in 2022.



Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

WP Twitter Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com