Today is first Auckland Transport board meeting of the year and it’s an important one as it’s also the first one with new chair Adrienne Young-Cooper as well as board member Darren Linton.
As usual, I’ve looked through the reports publicly available and here are some of the things that caught my attention.
There are a number of items on the agenda this meeting but most are things like ATs upcoming quarterly report to council, their upcoming statement of intent etc. The most interesting of the items are these for decision.
- Submission of the Urban Development Bill
- Submission on Land Transport (Rail) Legislation Bill
- Park and Ride Integrated Development
It’s probably the last one I’m most interested in. The last time we saw this it was looking at options such as below for Constellation Station – building a multi-storey carpark flanked by apartments.
The plans should hopefully be much more developed, and by that I also mean more development and less carpark focused.
The items below will generally be in the order they appear in the report.
Plan on a page and values refresh
As part of the section titled Culture & Transformation, they say
AT launched the Plan on a Page to our people in December 2019. The Plan on a Page is AT’s strategic framework and was co-created with the AT Board, the Executive Leadership Team and AT’s Senior Leaders in June 2019. The Plan on a Page is framed around a single organising idea – our purpose: Easy Journeys.
They also talk about refreshing the values of the organisation.
The new AT Values are the following:
- Manaakitanga: We care…full stop
- Tiakitanga: Safe with us
- Whanaungatanga: We connect
- Auahatanga: Better bolder together
It will be interesting to see how these and their purpose are translated into improved experiences for the public.
Real time displays
Getting accurate information about where your service is has always been hit and miss. AT say they’ve finally replaced the old system.
All modes (Bus, Train and Ferry) are now live utilising the new Command Centre functionality, new expected time of arrival (ETA) predictions (as shown on passenger information displays (PIDS) and AT Mobile), and schedule adherence for reporting purposes. The new solution is performing well. Following a short stability period, the legacy real-time system called RAPID was gracefully shut-down and decommissioned at the end of December 2019. This was a challenging project taking over two years to develop and deliver.
I wonder what they spent all the money on as personally I’m finding the arrival times worse than ever. For example just yesterday I had a bus on the busway that the PID told me was just about to arrive, take six minutes to show up.
They also talk about the change to the displays at train stations, on the handful that have LCD screens
A new display format for Rail Platforms was deployed during December to all Rail platform level LCD (liquid crystal display) Passenger Information Displays. Changes include line information on high contrast and larger font for improved visibility on the rail platforms, making them easier to read. The next phase will see the same principles and design benefits applied to displays at the station and concourse levels. AT has received positive feedback from customers on these changes.
Licence Plate Recognition (LPR)
Last month AT started their trial of using LPR on a car for parking compliance.
The LPR Car is in its first live trial which started on the 13 January 2020, after exhaustive testing to get the desired results for effective compliance monitoring. The installation of an additional five units will commence in February.
I’m not sure if that five additional units means five more cars but given the state of parking all over the region we’ll need that and much more. Although given ATs seemingly ultra conservative approach to enforcement it might not make a difference.
City Centre Travel Times
There’s been a lot of noise recently about travel time for cars in the city centre. The latest stats really show the impact of the downtown works. Although it’s worth noting that they’re still within the times allowed for in the City Rail Link consent conditions – although given all of the work going on separate to the CRL, AT really need to be pushing to get them removed. They also need to be upping the message telling people not to drive through the city.
Parnell Station opened nearly three years ago but still has extremely poor access to and from the platforms – so much so that the trains still announce a warning about it and that the station is not suitable for those with disabilities. As well as likely being financial, delays in resolving this have been brought about by Summerset buying the old Mainline Steam site for a retirement village and apparently not wanting public access beside their site. So it seems they’re looking to help fund a new underpass.
A concept design completed by Summerset Retirement Village and reviewed by AT is currently being costed for the deliver of an underpass and mobility compliant access path. An MOU between Summerset and AT has been drafted and will allow a funding agreement between the two parties.
Building underpasses are obviously fairly disruptive to the tracks and so that means another long shutdown will be needed at some point – although we’ll need one for the new underpass for the New Lynn to Avondale cycleway too. Of course there’s also bound to be plenty of shutdowns looming for CRL related works over the coming years.
PT Value for money reviews
AT are in the process of reviewing the performance of bus routes across the region and the report highlights a number of underperforming buses and what AT plan to do about them. The underperformance is based on the number of boardings per service hour for Nov-2019 compared to what was expected in the Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP). Interestingly many of these are peak only services
5 out of 39 (13%) Southern routes are below RPTP expectation.
3 out of 37 (9%) of West routes are below RPTP expectation.
1 out of 14 (6%) of East routes are below RPTP expectation.
10 out of 50 (20%) of Central routes are below RPTP expectation
1 out of 55 (2%) of North routes are below RPTP expectation
Huapai Gyratory gone?
Remember the horrible Huapai Gyratory AT were planning?
It seems the plan has been ditched with AT saying:
Station Road intersection, Huapai: an alternative, more affordable, solution has been identified which has in principle support from the NZ Transport Agency. AT anticipate making a funding application for the project in February 2020.
ATs latest quarterly customer satisfaction chart shows some worrying signs for ferry use