The Christchurch City Council has adopted its Annual Plan 2010/11 and had the following points to make in regard to transport:
- a decrease in subsidy from the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) for the delivery of community programmes and travel demand management
- a reduction in subsidy from NZTA towards the new transport interchange
- no overall reduction in funding for cycling and walking programmes, set out in the LTCCP, despite reduced NZTA funding
- a review of the priority and funding of the suburban bus interchanges to be carried out in time for the next Annual Plan
The first two points were largely expected, and despite funding cuts it looks like the transport interchange will likely not be affected (unless Jim Anderton wins the mayoralty race; he has promised a review of the project). It’s good to see that the City Council will continue to fund planned cycling and walking projects, but it remains to be seen what this means for any new projects in the future.
The point about the suburban bus interchanges is interesting. They have been on the drawing board for some time now, but have never really made it off the ground. I have heard some rumblings from existing and would-be councillors that these should be given priority over such initiatives as bus lanes but, to be honest, I have yet to see a detailed outline of exactly what a ‘suburban bus interchange’ would be, while on the other hand Christchurch is clearly lagging behind on the bus priority front.
I feel a rant about lack of government funding for Christchurch public transport coming on, but I’ll leave that for another time.