The Green Party has today outlined a major transport plan for Auckland including new investments in light rail, busways, an expansion of regional rail services, and quick improvements to buses.
This comes as part of a nationwide transport announcement from the Greens aimed at addressing the climate crisis and making it easier to get around without a car.
“We are very proud of the gains we’ve secured for sustainable transport in Auckland, with funding secured to deliver projects like SkyPath, rail electrification to Pukekohe and an expansion of busways out east”, Green Party Co-leader James Shaw said today.
“At the same time we recognise the need to go much further and faster to make it easier and faster to get around Auckland by bus, train and bike. We know this is essential to ensure a stable climate.
“We have put forward an innovative two stage approach to green Auckland’s transport and get the city moving.”
Over the next ten years the Green Party will complete key parts of the city’s rapid transport system including:
- A new light rail line to Māngere and the airport
- A new light rail line to the north western suburbs
- Completed busways between Botany and Panmure and Botany and the Airport
- A new Upper Harbour busway between Henderson, Westgate and Constellation
- Begin work on a second harbour crossing with light rail to Takapuna and Albany.
“However, we recognise Aucklanders can’t wait ten years to be able to escape congestion so we plan to take an innovative two stage approach to these projects.
“Stage one will see central government fully fund and fast-track high-quality bus priority measures across these rapid transit corridors.
“This means within the next two to three years buses will be given dedicated right of way along continuous stretches of these routes as well as priority at lights. Raised station platforms will be built for passengers which can later be used as light rail and busway stations.
“These improvements will significantly improve travel times and reduce bus congestion on these routes and be future proofed for the inevitable switch to light rail or bus rapid transit.
“Auckland will also benefit from our nationwide investment in fast inter-city passenger rail.
“As part of our investment in the post COVID-19 economic recovery we are proposing a large-scale expansion of fast, electric passenger rail services to Hamilton and Tauranga and eventually Whangārei.
“Fast regional passenger rail services would take just an hour and forty minutes to reach Hamilton and an hour and ten minutes between Hamilton and Tauranga. This would be as fast as driving for many trips and would allow people to work, rest, and enjoy the scenery while travelling.
“The Green Party plans to establish a $1.5 billion Cycle Super Highway fund which could see the expansion of some of Auckland’s major commuter cycleways.
“We expect the Cycle Super Highway fund could ultimately deliver continuous separated cycleways from South Auckland, Albany, Botany and out west, all connecting into the city.
“With the rise of e-bikes and e-scooters, more and more Aucklanders are looking for safe, high quality cycleways to get about the city on.
“This plan for Auckland is part of our nationwide focus on to address the climate crisis by changing how we get around our towns and cities.”