We’ve become used to seeing Auckland Transport run what we’ve described in the past as a ‘consultation season‘ around November of each year. This is when they rush out a heap of consultations all at the same time just before the summer holidays. But that didn’t happen last year – likely due to the the COVID lockdown and it seems we’re getting it now.

We’ve already seen consultations for New North Road and the next round of speed limit changes and now we’ve got another important one, bus changes on the North Shore. There is also another consultation coming next week about bus changes to the Northwest.

The changes to bus routes on the North Shore are planned to be implemented in 2025 in conjunction with the opening of the Rosedale Busway Station. The busway extension itself is due to open in a few months time but the station itself has been delayed.

You can see progress on the Northern Busway extension in the video below.

A quick summary of what changes are proposed is below

We propose to change nine existing bus services and introduce one new bus service on the North Shore. Together with Rosedale Station (a new Northern Busway station planned to open in 2025), the proposed changes would make it easier and quicker for more people to travel around the North Shore and the rest of Auckland using public transport.

Some of the proposed changes are minor:

  • The NX1NX2 and 866 already use the Northern Busway and would therefore stop at Rosedale Station (while continuing to stop at all other busway stations)
  • The 884 and 885 North Harbour Industrial Estate loop services already use the part of Rosedale Road that will become part of Rosedale Station, and would therefore stop at the new station

More significant changes are proposed for the following bus services:

  • The 865 would serve Rosedale Station and Massey University instead of Albany Station
  • The 883 would serve the North Harbour Industrial Estate
  • The 889 would serve Rosedale Station instead of Apollo Drive and Constellation Station
  • The 907 route would be extended, to serve the Mairangi Bay shops, Maxwelton Drive, Apollo Drive and Rosedale Station

The new bus service, the 864, is proposed to connect Browns Bay, Rosedale Station and Albany Village.

The new and changed routes are shown on the map below – I have to say, it seems an odd choice to show the Constellation Station off-line for the busway services.

The proposed changes with unaffected routes greyed out (click for the PDF version).

The combination of the new 864 and the changed 865 seem like they’ll make it faster for people from Browns Bay to access the busway. The 865 also looks will become the fastest way for people to connect between Massey University and the busway. It would of course be even better if one or both of these routes could be upgraded to a frequent status.

Here’s a full map with all the routes

All routes for the upper North Shore (click for the PDF version).

For those interested, you can find the current map for the area here.

Overall the changes seem logical, I only wish we weren’t having to wait another three years for the busway station to be finished.

The consultation is open till Sunday 3 April and they are having a some in person and online information sessions

Public drop-in sessions:

  • Constellation Station on Tuesday 22 March from 4pm to 7pm
  • Albany Station on Thursday 24 March from 4pm to 7pm
  • East Coast Bays Library in Browns Bay on Saturday 26 March from 10am to 2pm

Online information sessions

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  1. Good to see AT are planning ahead with bus routes although very disappointing we will wait more than three years for the Rosedale bus station to open after buses start running past it on the busway in a few months. Overall the bus routes look promising and I am pleased the 907 is being extended. It has been stupid that it began and ended its route on the hill above Mairangi Bay and not in the village. However it is disappointing that the peak service of 907 will be reduced from four an hour to three as it is the only feeder bus which serves Sunnynook Station. At the same time AT could be greatly improving feeder services to Sunnynook with two simple changes. Swap the routes of the 906 and 843 between Constellation Station and Sunnynook Road and run them past Sunnynook Station to continue on their normal routes to the south and east. This would make three feeder buses past the station (using stops C and D on Sunnynook Road) and compensate the people on Sunnynook Road for the decrease in peak service of 907. I submitted to AT on this through our Local Board over two years ago and am still waiting for their feedback.

  2. It still seems designed primarily to get people into the CBD which to me is outdated. It pretty much ignores the 30K people working in the North Harbour Industrial area. The connections through that area are desultory and therefore it misses the real opportunity to get them to convert to PT.

    I have tried to catch a bus from Constellation through to Bush or Wm Pickering and it’s pretty much impossible. The services are infrequent and at the times workers might want to use them are turned into de-facto school buses for Kristin and Albany High. Not a welcoming experience. I walked instead

    The local business association wanted to fund a shuttle from drop off points in Oteha Valley Road and Constellation through the estate. First AT refused to let them use bus stops then when asked to put in parking restrictions for the proposed hours of operation (just a few spaces) so that the shuttle had somewhere to safely drop people off AT again refused.

    the proposed service may have been a failure but it is hardly encouraging mode shift.

  3. The problem is that the 865 and 864 are going to use Hugh Green and Rosedale Rds, which are chocka at rush hour with no bus priority. The previous route up to Albany Bus Station via McClymonts never had any traffic issues.
    But the routing itself makes sense.

  4. – Frequencies on all routes should be higher – I’m still holding out for 20-30 minute off-peak frequencies on all local & connector bus routes.
    – I’d really like to see the 866 become the NX3, and become a 7-days-a-week service instead of just Monday-Friday.
    – It just seems odd that the 865 terminates at Massey Uni instead of Albany – I know there’s an absolute glut of other bus routes between Massey Uni, Albany Mall, & Albany Bus Station that would be easily transferred too, not to mention the NX1/NX2 from Albany to Rosedale stations. Maybe it’s just the aesthetic appearance of the route on the map. After reading dm’s comment I wonder if extending the 865 along Bush Rd and Paul Matthews back to Constellation could be a possibility (if a complex one?)
    – I feel like the 883 could benefit from a Sunset Rd-Meadowood Dr routing between Constellation and Paul Matthews Rd, getting just that extra bit of residential catchment in Unsworth Heights.
    – On a tangent I reckon the 888 could be rerouted via Medallion Dr instead of Oteha Valley Rd and that narrow bit of Fairview Ave. It would bolster the 856 through the north side of Pinehill – and perhaps open up the chance of the 888 loop being bidirectional instead of unidirectional?
    – 907 extension looks good. I wonder if it might benefit from a routing via Sunrise Ave (as proposed in the New Network Consultation with the N41), keeping it separate from the frequent 83 – but it seems local residents rejected any buses along Sunrise Ave.
    – I wonder how they’re going to get both the 907 and the 889 turned around at Rosedale Station? I assume they’ll either go up to the park-n-ride where the Turners building once was, or loop around the Tawa/Rosedale roundabout?

  5. Here’s an idea, instead of proposing sixteen thousand million dollars on a light rail tunnel to sandringham, maybe they spend some of that money making these buses, and the rest of them, run frequently and reliably?

    So crazy they have this good bit of kit going in and serving it with half hourly feeders.

  6. Geez, it didn’t really click, but this is a three year delay. Thats pretty crazy for a structure that isn’t exactly a major feat of engineering, and will be quite a big improvement for the local area.

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