Residents urged to back transport moves

Publish Date : 27 May 2024

Residents are being asked to add their voice to the Papakura Local Board’s while submissions on Auckland Transport’s Regional Land Transport Plan are open.

Board chair Brent Catchpole says the more voices saying the same thing, the more likely it is to bring about change.

“The consultation will shape the plan, which allocates how money is spent. Our people are calling out for progress, especially around level crossings and improved train services, so those same voices need to make themselves heard at AT.”

He says transport covers everything from walking to road and rail. “Cars remain hugely important and while we support moves to get more people on to the trains and off our roads, the plan has to cater for those who need to rely on their vehicles.”

During consultation on Auckland Council’s Long-term Plan, locals indicated a willingness to pay higher rates to see more done.

“Our Local Board Plan has a strong focus on transport and identifies a lot of challenges our area faces,” Catchpole says.

“We are particularly concerned about a lack of resilience in the roading network. We still see gridlock and other disruptions, with the economic disruption that brings, yet we are no closer to an alternative route.”

Catchpole says the impacts of growth on traffic volume show no signs of abating and infrastructure has struggled to keep up. “It’s really quite simple, if you want to see rail level crossings go, to see more invested in roads, more pathways or better public transport, you need to speak up.”

The city’s 21 local boards control only their own Capital Transport Funds, money they can spend on projects they deem important that might not receive AT funding, but otherwise can only advocate for their communities.

“Auckland Transport is like all council organisations, constrained by its budgets,” Catchpole says. “We need the public to support the budget we do get, to ensure it stays in place.”

He says the board will be making submissions of its own and remains committed to seeing improvements to pathway and cycling safety, more frequent public transport over an extended area, including on demand services, and more maintenance.

“If people back those things, and responses to our consultations indicate they do, they need to tell AT the same thing.”

There is a local event at Papakura Markets in Smiths Avenue on 7 June from 4-8pm, and there are two online events - 22 May from 6.30-7.30pm and 4 June from 12:30pm – 1:30pm oat the site, where you can also make submissions.

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