The first full AT board meeting for the year is today and as usual I’ve trawled though the reports to find the things I find interesting – there may be stuff I haven’t covered that you find interesting so if you do, post it in the comments.
This is usually where all of the most interesting stuff is discussed, the stuff in italics are my comments about these.
Items for Approval/Decision
- Road Stoppings
- CFS Review pre consultation findings
- PTOM Bus Procurement Update – In the business report AT say the South Auckland bus contracts will be awarded end of February. Presumably this will be approving them.
- Draft SOI
- Quarterly Report to AC
Items for Noting
- VfM – Delivery – The AT board look at how AT are operating to ensure they are delivering value for money. I’m told this is nearly complete and will be released publicly.
- Deep Dive–Revenue from events – AT charge organisers of large events for things like running additional PT services. This will presumably look closely at that.
- Light Rail Update – There is a lot of work going on looking at light rail to ensure it’s the right solution and as I understand, it’s being worked on by both AT and the NZTA. We should hopefully hear more on light rail soon.
- CRL Road Stopping – I assume this relates to the sale of QE2 Square
- CRL Property Update – For some reason there are two property updates listed, neither provide much information based on the titles. They must be getting close to having all property they need for the CRL now.
- AT Deliverables
- DSC Development Agreement – Board execution – I assume this is the formal agreement to build the CRL tunnels through the downtown shopping centre site.
As usual I’ll work though it in order of the items that are in the report of interest to me.
Sale of Diesel Trains – AT say a heads of agreement with a purchaser was signed in late 2015 and they are currently drafting up the sale and purchase agreement. They expect to make the first shipment of trains by the end of April. There is no indication who the purchaser is or how much they are likely being sold for.
EMU integration trial – A “trial is underway to pilot automatic data downloads from the EMU’s, e.g. automatic passenger counting, and CCTV, as well as enabling the CAF GPS system to feed into RAPID real time tracking system”. I hope this means this will allow for trains to be shown on AT’s real time tracking results.
Aerial Drones Management – Following the CAA’s regulations around drones last year, AT have created some rules for its property. They’ve declined requests for recreational use however commercial drones are allowed providing they follow an approval process.
Rapid Transit Network – We’ve mentioned before that AT have started a study looking at future rapid transit options to the North Shore. This report gives a little more information including that it will be completed by April and be used as part of the Additional Waitemata Harbour Crossing works by the NZTA. They say they’ve been looking at what parameters exist for using the existing bridge in the future. Unfortunately, it appears that this study has a base case of assuming another road crossing will be built first or at the same time.
AT also say they’ll be starting indicative business cases for the Northwestern Busway and Bus improvements around the Learning Quarter (CBD Universities) in the second quarter of this year.
Nelson St Phase 2 – AT say the work on phase 2 between Victoria St and the Waterfront is 85% complete with the delay a result of needing to respond to a large number of submitters that called for the cycleway to stay on the western side and link into Market Pl rather than swap to the eastern side.
Newmarket Crossing (Sarawia St crossing) – The hearing for the Notice of Requirement is scheduled for late April with a decision by the end of May. AT expect to have all land negotiations completed by the end of June.
Parnell Station – The platforms are practically completed and it is now just waiting for the station building which they say will be done by the end of the year and Kiwirail have all of the consents they need to do the work. However, as I understand it, the station won’t open till the Newmarket Crossing is complete.
Otahuhu Bus/Train Interchange – AT say it is on track for completion in August.
Integrated Fares – AT are on track for deliver Integrated fares in July.
SuperGold – AT is working to have all SuperGold users converted to using HOP by 1 July as required by the Ministry of Transport.
PTOM – As mentioned AT are due to award the contracts for the new South Auckland bus network by the end of the month. The tender for the West Auckland routes starts in March. A tender for the contracted ferry routes will happen in the second quarter of this year.
March Madness – AT say that for the March madness PT spike they’re doing the following:
- Additional bus frequency for Birkenhead Transport buses along Glenfield Road and Onewa Road – an additional 17 urban and school trips per day introduced 2 February
- Additional capacity on Howick & Eastern Buses. One additional trip each to the 545, 575 and 580 services in East Auckland to improve customer travel options
- Additional West Harbour ferry service capacity was provided from 1 December 2015
- Additional Pine Harbour ferry services will be introduced from late February
- Additional Gulf Harbour ferry services will be introduced from late February
- The order for 53 new double decker buses by Howick & Eastern Buses, Ritchies and NZ Bus, under contract to AT, is progressing. February saw the full operation in the off-peak of double deckers on the Northern Express route, 14 in total. 14 Howick & Eastern double deckers will be progressively enter service in the next few months.
- Waiheke Bus Company will put in place additional service trips to meet the additional Fullers ferry services from 28 February
- Additional 7 trips will be introduced on Ritchies services from 29 February
- Additional NZ Bus trips and frequency will be implemented in March on Mt Eden Road, Dominion Road and New North Road
New Bus Network – The final design of the new North Shore bus network will go to the AT board in March for approval. For the central Auckland consultation, they had 3604 submissions and for the East Auckland consultation they had 1026 submissions and they’re still analysing those.
PT On-Time Performance – The percentage of train services that rain on time in January was the highest ever at 95.9%. This is shown in the red line on the chart below. You can also see just how much it has improved since we stopped using the diesel trains.
Bus performance in January was also the highest it’s been. It has been improving quite a bit ever since AT stopped relying on the bus companies self-reporting their results. Buses performance is based on when buses start their route and just over 95% of all buses departed on time. The best performing bus was the Northern Express at 98.6%
In mid-March AT will trialling a shuttle bus between the Half Moon Bay ferry terminal and a 100 space park & ride at Lloyd Elsmore Park. I’m not a massive fan of P&R but making use of existing resources rather than building expensive new parking facilities is something I’d like to see more of.
Over Easter Kiwirail are installing additional pedestrian level crossing lights and barrier gates will also be installed.
This wasn’t available when I wrote the post on patronage last week. Now it is a couple of things caught my eye.
This always a month or two lag with this and the results to November show a remarkable increase in the last month to 48.8% (it appears the comment in the image below is wrong based on the January indicators report). Consequently, the subsidy per passenger KM for rail has continued to fall considerably.
This is of course quite interesting based on the fact that some fares are increasing from this Sunday. On that note, AT have released the board paper that they used to justify the fare increases. They expect the changes will increase farebox recovery by another 0.76% which would push it very close to the NZTA target of 50% by the end of June 2018. If we reach that 50% mark early it will hopefully give AT some additional funding to further increase services. If you’re interested the board paper also gives some quite detailed information on how many trips are affected by each of the fare changes.
Also interesting is that both on and off street parking occupancy in the city centre remains at the top of the target bands AT have set. If these measures start to go over 90% it will indicate that AT are likely to increase these prices further.
Anything else that caught your attention?