A better way to commute for Waimakariri residents

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This consultation was held in Nov-Dec 2019 and is now closed. Thank you to all who provided feedback.

What's being considered? Waimakariri Park & Ride consultation

Direct commuter buses from Rangiora and Kaiapoi to central Christchurch are being considered for when the Christchurch Northern Corridor opens.

The new carpool lanes, at the Tram Road on-ramp and on the Christchurch Northern Corridor, will allow direct buses to skip congestion, particularly across the Waimakariri Bridge. Taking the bus would also save you money otherwise spent on petrol and parking, be more environmentally friendly by reducing emissions, and give you back some time in your day.

Simply put, we envisage these services making the commute stress-free.

Public consultation and feedback

Consultation ran from Monday 11 November until Sunday 8 December 2019. Overall support for the proposal was positive, and planning and design of the services will now begin. Here's a summary of the feedback:

  • 405 submissions were received from Waimakariri district ratepayers and/or residents. A further 65 responses were received from people who don’t live or pay rates in the Waimakariri district, and they have not been included in the statistics reported here.
  • Most respondents either fully agreed (56%), or agreed with suggestions or concerns (30%), with the concept of introducing direct commuter bus services, supported by Park & Ride locations.
  • In response to the question of partly funding the proposed services through a targeted rate increase, 51% of respondents supported the higher increase of $30 for urban properties and $10 for rural properties annually, providing for four morning trips and five afternoon trips from both Rangiora and Kaiapoi. Only 14% preferred the lower rate increase, allowing for less trips, and 35% didn’t support either option.
  • A significant portion of submitters who didn’t agree with the proposal, or didn’t agree with the rate increase, suggested the services be fully user-pays. It’s important to note that public transport across New Zealand is funded by a combination of central government grants, fares from users, and targeted local rates. It needs to be structured this way in order to access central government grants. If there is not sufficient contribution from rates, it is unlikely we would be able to receive central government funding for the service.
  • There was strong support overall for the proposed Park & Ride locations, with 70% fully agreeing, and 20% agreeing with suggestions or concerns.
  • Suggestions for alternative Park & Ride locations were made, including Woodend, Pegasus, Silverstream, Kaiapoi North and Tram Road. The aim is to utilise and improve existing facilities where possible in the short-term, but it is possible that new sites could be required in the future as demand increases, and as growing centres in other parts of the district, such as Woodend and Pegasus, develop further.

The full consultation feedback analysis is available under 'Important documents' on the right hand side of the page.

Based on the feedback from the community, planning for the Park & Ride services and direct commuter buses will go ahead, based on the funding option of a higher targeted rate increase for a more frequent bus service. Final funding approval was completed as part of Environment Canterbury’s 2020-21 Annual Plan process.

When will the new services start?

Along with Waimakariri District Council, we are continuing planning and preparation for these new services and the opening of the new Park & Ride locations. The start date is dependent on the opening of the Christchurch Northern Corridor, scheduled for late 2020. We provide an update once a start date for the new services has been confirmed.

This consultation was held in Nov-Dec 2019 and is now closed. Thank you to all who provided feedback.

What's being considered? Waimakariri Park & Ride consultation

Direct commuter buses from Rangiora and Kaiapoi to central Christchurch are being considered for when the Christchurch Northern Corridor opens.

The new carpool lanes, at the Tram Road on-ramp and on the Christchurch Northern Corridor, will allow direct buses to skip congestion, particularly across the Waimakariri Bridge. Taking the bus would also save you money otherwise spent on petrol and parking, be more environmentally friendly by reducing emissions, and give you back some time in your day.

Simply put, we envisage these services making the commute stress-free.

Public consultation and feedback

Consultation ran from Monday 11 November until Sunday 8 December 2019. Overall support for the proposal was positive, and planning and design of the services will now begin. Here's a summary of the feedback:

  • 405 submissions were received from Waimakariri district ratepayers and/or residents. A further 65 responses were received from people who don’t live or pay rates in the Waimakariri district, and they have not been included in the statistics reported here.
  • Most respondents either fully agreed (56%), or agreed with suggestions or concerns (30%), with the concept of introducing direct commuter bus services, supported by Park & Ride locations.
  • In response to the question of partly funding the proposed services through a targeted rate increase, 51% of respondents supported the higher increase of $30 for urban properties and $10 for rural properties annually, providing for four morning trips and five afternoon trips from both Rangiora and Kaiapoi. Only 14% preferred the lower rate increase, allowing for less trips, and 35% didn’t support either option.
  • A significant portion of submitters who didn’t agree with the proposal, or didn’t agree with the rate increase, suggested the services be fully user-pays. It’s important to note that public transport across New Zealand is funded by a combination of central government grants, fares from users, and targeted local rates. It needs to be structured this way in order to access central government grants. If there is not sufficient contribution from rates, it is unlikely we would be able to receive central government funding for the service.
  • There was strong support overall for the proposed Park & Ride locations, with 70% fully agreeing, and 20% agreeing with suggestions or concerns.
  • Suggestions for alternative Park & Ride locations were made, including Woodend, Pegasus, Silverstream, Kaiapoi North and Tram Road. The aim is to utilise and improve existing facilities where possible in the short-term, but it is possible that new sites could be required in the future as demand increases, and as growing centres in other parts of the district, such as Woodend and Pegasus, develop further.

The full consultation feedback analysis is available under 'Important documents' on the right hand side of the page.

Based on the feedback from the community, planning for the Park & Ride services and direct commuter buses will go ahead, based on the funding option of a higher targeted rate increase for a more frequent bus service. Final funding approval was completed as part of Environment Canterbury’s 2020-21 Annual Plan process.

When will the new services start?

Along with Waimakariri District Council, we are continuing planning and preparation for these new services and the opening of the new Park & Ride locations. The start date is dependent on the opening of the Christchurch Northern Corridor, scheduled for late 2020. We provide an update once a start date for the new services has been confirmed.

  • Park & Ride locations

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    11 November, 2019
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    Waimakariri District Council will ensure Park & Ride facilities are available in both Kaiapoi and Rangiora by the time the direct commuter buses would begin. Park & Ride facilities provide free parking spaces that allow drivers to connect with carpools and buses for the rest of their journey.

    Park & Ride facilities would initially be provided in north, central and south Rangiora, as well as in central and south Kaiapoi (see the map for proposed locations). The aim is to utilise and improve existing facilities in the short-term, but it is possible that new sites could be required in the future as demand increases, and as growing centres in other parts of the district, such as Woodend and Pegasus, develop further.

    The following facilities would be provided at Park & Ride locations in the short-term:

    • Firm, well-draining surfaces
    • Bus shelters
    • Lockable bike stands
    • Clear signage
    • Mobility parking

    Over time, we will look to further develop these areas with sealed surfaces, security measures, and electronic signage showing bus estimated time of arrival, timetables and expected journey times.

    Both the interim and the longer-term Park & Ride facilities have been budgeted for, so there would be no further impact on your Waimakariri District rates for these facilities.

  • Direct commuter services

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    11 November, 2019
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    We are considering running between 3-4 trips from Rangiora and the same from Kaiapoi, travelling direct from the Park & Ride facilities to the central city on weekday mornings, with at least the same number of trips back to each Park & Ride location in the afternoons. The Rangiora and Kaiapoi buses would be separate – meaning that Rangiora passengers would not travel via Kaiapoi like the Blue Line service does.

    The Park & Ride locations will be open to residents outside of the Rangiora and Kaiapoi townships who would like to use the direct bus service. For example, if you live in the Pegasus and Woodend areas, or somewhere along or near Tram Road, you could park your vehicle at one of the Kaiapoi Park & Ride locations and take the direct bus service to central Christchurch.

    The route to the city taken by these services would be flexible – the drivers would take the quickest way available, depending on traffic at the time.

    These services would be dedicated for Park & Ride users – this means you can use them if you are parking your car there, but also if you choose to walk, cycle, or be dropped off at the facility. The bus would pick up passengers at the Park & Ride locations and travel directly to the central city. No other bus stops within Rangiora or Kaiapoi, or elsewhere along the route, would be serviced. The same applies for the journey home – services would leave the central city from dedicated stops, and travel directly to the Park & Ride facilities, not stopping anywhere else along the way.

    Central city drop-off and pick-up locations

    Once the bus arrives at the city, the first drop-off points would be south of Kilmore Street. There would be a maximum of three drop-off and pick-up points in the central city. We’d like to know which of the proposed stop options you’d like to get off the bus in the morning and back on at the end of the day. The stops will be in the same location for drop-offs and pickups.

    Proposed city drop-offs

    Returning early?

    The Park & Ride locations in Rangiora and Kaiapoi would also be serviced by Metro buses so that Park & Ride users are able to get back or near to their vehicles at times outside of the direct commuter bus operating hours if needed. Passengers who prefer to take the Metro services can use the Park & Ride facilities as well.

  • Funding the new service

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    11 November, 2019
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    Public transport in Canterbury is managed by Environment Canterbury and is funded with a combination of central government grants, fares from users and Environment Canterbury targeted local rates.

    Central government grants: Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has already approved a grant to cover its portion of the funding required to operate the proposed direct commuter bus services.

    Fares from users: Fares for the proposed new service would be the same as Metro fares for the existing Blue Line and 95 services.

    Targeted local public transport rates: New services would require additional Waimakariri urban and rural targeted public transport rates (beyond what is currently rated for), applied by Environment Canterbury, to cover the local rates share of the funding. This is necessary as the current targeted rates for public transport are fully allocated to the existing Metro services.

    To find out what rate you currently pay, see your latest rates bill or head to waimakariri.govt.nz.

    Service and funding options

    We have suggested two different options for the direct bus service, which would require different levels of funding from rates.

    Option 1:

    Four trips from both Rangiora and Kaiapoi into central Christchurch in the morning, and five back in the afternoon. This is the level of service we believe is needed for it to be successful by offering enough different travel time options to make it attractive for as many people as possible.

    Targeted rate
    Current rate
    Maximum increase
    Urban
    $81.10
    $30
    Rural
    $9.70
    $10

    Option 2:

    Three trips from both Rangiora and Kaiapoi into Christchurch in the morning, and three back in the afternoon. This is the minimum number of trips we believe should be considered, as anything lower would be unlikely to be successful.

    Targeted rate
    Current rate
    Maximum increase
    Urban
    $81.10
    $22
    Rural
    $9.70
    $7