What is this consultation for?

The draft Regional Public Transport Plan is vastly different from previous plans, and we want to know what you think about it. 

We are looking for the community's thoughts on the vision and strategy for public transport.  During the consultation, we are asking you to consider what your priorities are over the next 3-5 years, such as improved frequency, environmental benefits, and better technology.

You can comment on anything in the Plan, such as whether you agree with the vision, the priorities to address key issues, the focus on reducing emissions, the proposed extensions of core routes in the Greater Christchurch network, and the policies. 

Your response will help to inform any changes to the Regional Public Transport Plan as well as decisions about our future programme of work.


What is the Greater Christchurch Public Transport Joint Committee?

This Regional Public Transport Plan has been produced, for the most part, by the Greater Christchurch Public Transport Joint Committee.  The Committee was established in 2016 to foster collaborative and decisive leadership for the provision of public transport services and infrastructure in Greater Christchurch. 

It meets regularly and is made up of representatives from Environment Canterbury, Christchurch City Council, Selwyn District Council, Waimakariri District Council, Canterbury District Health Board and the NZ Transport Agency. 

NZTA and the CDHB provide subject matter expertise and perspectives on the important topics of public health, affordability and transport outcomes.


Will ratepayers need to pay more?

As part of this consultation, we are asking whether Greater Christchurch ratepayers are prepared to pay slightly more for a significantly improved service.

Successful public transport provides significant benefits to our community across a number of areas such as:

  • health benefits from walking to and from the service;

  • environmental benefits through reduced greenhouse gasses, emissions and noise;

  • social benefits in connecting people and community inclusion;

  • economic benefits by supporting business, commercial activities and productivity; and

  • benefits through reducing congestion and journey times across our community. 


How much is the total cost of the future plan, including bus priority lanes, bus stops, other infrastructure?

Over the 10-year plan, the overall additional investment will be around $370 million or $37 million per year on average.  We want to know if you support this.

Public transport funding is made up of user pays (fares), local contributions (rates), and government grants.  The consultation asks whether you think this funding model is appropriate.


What does future rapid transport mean?

Rapid transit can take many forms, each with its benefits and disadvantages.  Rail is the most well-known form, but increasingly cities are finding that more flexible and cost-effective solutions such as bus rapid transit or trackless trams are more appropriate modes for delivering rapid transit outcomes.

The important thing is to ensure we make the right investment at the right time, in the right locations to deliver the best long term economic and transport benefits for Greater Christchurch.


Does this include a light rail option on the north and southwest lines?

Rapid mass transit is something that we believe will feature in the future transport service for Greater Christchurch, and the Plan identifies the core corridors where we believe some form of mass transit will make sense when transport demand requires it in the future.

However, at the moment the population and transport demand in our region is not enough to justify this investment now.  Technology is changing so rapidly now that other forms of cost effective and flexible mass transit other than rail may well become a more suitable solution for our community. 


How are you going to put more bus priority in?

There are many forms of bus priority, not all of which impact on-street parking.  Intersection priority and high occupancy vehicle lanes are examples.  Consideration will be given to the best intervention to suit the location.  A key objective of our plan is to ensure that public transport is reliable and moves high volumes of people efficiently for the benefit of all our community. 

How does Timaru and the rest of the region fit into the consultation?

Timaru is a critical part of transport investment in Canterbury and has its own unique transport needs and opportunities.  Two consultation documents have been produced – one for the Greater Christchurch area and one for Timaru and the rest of the Canterbury region.

In Timaru, the Plan proposes taking a new innovative approach to public transport delivery, including a proposal for a new public transport model providing a more flexible and accessible service which is well suited to this community’s geography and travel needs.

The Total Mobility Scheme and Community Vehicle Trusts are operated in areas across Canterbury, and these are also included in the Plan. The Plan includes ongoing support for existing vehicle trusts, and investigation and development of new trusts. The plan also commits to continued management and funding of the Total Mobility Scheme in the areas it operates, at the current funding levels.