Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan

Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan
Ngauranga to Wellington Airport
Corridor Plan
Adopted October 2008

For more information, contact:

Greater Wellington               Published November 2008
142 Wakefield Street             GW/TSD-G-08/228
PO Box 11646
Manners Street         
Wellington 6142        
T 04 384 5708
F 04 385 6960
Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan
Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
This multi-modal corridor starts at the                                 Immediate priorities
Ngauranga Merge and continues through the
                                                                        The immediate priorities for this corridor are:
Wellington City CBD to Newtown (including the
regional hospital), the Eastern Suburbs and                             •   Continuing a programme of travel demand
Wellington International Airport. It includes                               management measures to reduce the number
State Highway One, major arterial routes, the                               of car trips (particularly sole occupant to
railway line where the North Island Main Trunk                              work) and encourage alternatives such as
and the Wairarapa lines merge and through to                                public transport, walking, cycling and
Wellington City rail terminals, and key routes for                          telecommuting, flexible working hours and
passenger transport, walking and cycling.                                   working from home.
                                                                        •   Establishing bus priority measures as a first
Introduction                                                                step towards the development of a high
                                                                            quality, high frequency public transport
This plan defines a number of packages for
                                                                            spine that will cater for travel growth, reduce
improvements to the transport network within
                                                                            vehicle congestion, improve liveability, guide
the Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor.
                                                                            and support urban intensification and
In particular, it provides for a major planned shift
                                                                            provide resilience against fuel supply and
to passenger transport, walking and cycling in
                                                                            price shocks.
order to improve the sustainability of this part of
the region’s transport system. This shift is                            •   Improving traffic management at the Basin
consistent with the targets in the recently                                 Reserve to enable more reliable bus journey
released New Zealand Transport Strategy 2008,                               times, improved reliability of the ring route
the Government Policy Statement1 and the                                    and improved pedestrian and cyclist
Regional Land Transport Strategy (RLTS) 2007.                               facilities.
                                                                        •   Improving the relatively poor cycling routes
This corridor plan aims to strengthen the four                              and facilities, with an emphasis on safety
key transport elements in the city which are:                               improvements, to encourage the increasing
1. a high quality and frequency passenger                                   use of this small but growing transport
   transport ‘spine’                                                        mode.

2. highly accessible and attractive ‘activity’ or                       •   Improving the already highly-developed
   shopping streets                                                         walking routes to cater for the substantial
                                                                            numbers of people who walk and encourage
3. a reliable and accessible ‘ring’ or bypass
                                                                            growth in these numbers - also essential for
   route for vehicles
                                                                            urban vitality.
4. interconnected and convenient local street,
                                                                        •   Protecting the strategic road network to
   walking, cycling and passenger transport
                                                                            ensure the ability to provide for future
                                                                            development of a high quality ‘predictable’
                                                                            vehicle ‘ring route’ for inter-regional
The plan identifies measures that should be
                                                                            accessibility, economic linkages, time critical
completed over the next ten years, as well as
                                                                            travel and to support the public transport
longer term measures that should be developed
over the next ten years and then programmed to
be implemented as conditions and funding

                                                                         Government Policy Statement on Land Transport Funding
                                                                        2009/10 – 2018/19 (Aug 2008)

 Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008                                                            1
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Strategic Context

     The long term vision for this corridor described in the RLTS 2007-2016 is:
     Along the Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor, access to key destinations such as CentrePort,
     Wellington City CBD, Newtown Hospital and the International Airport will be efficient, reliable, quick
     and easy. Priority will be given to passenger transport through this corridor, particularly during the
     peak period. Passenger transport will provide a very high quality, reliable and safe service along the
     Wellington City growth spine and other key commuter routes. The road network will provide well for
     those trips which can not be made by alternative modes and will allow freight to move freely through
     the corridor. Traffic congestion through the corridor will be managed at levels that balance the need for
     access against the ability to fully provide for peak demands due to community impacts and cost
     constraints. Maximum use of the existing network will be achieved by removal of key bottlenecks on the
     road and rail networks.

The RLTS also contains the following region                 Existing pressures and reasons for
wide strategic outcomes:                                    change
•    Increased peak period passenger transport
     mode share.
•    Increased mode share for pedestrians and               National and regional policy clearly signals the
     cyclists.                                              need to shift towards more sustainable forms of
                                                            transport in order to deliver a transport system
•    Reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
                                                            that is integrated, responsive, safe, affordable
•    Reduced severe road congestion.                        and sustainable.
•    Improved regional road safety.
•    Improved land use and transport integration.           Oil supply and price volatility
•    Improved regional freight efficiency.                  Oil prices have risen dramatically over the past
                                                            three years and are likely to continue to grow.
Wellington City Council’s Transport and Urban               Prices are currently very volatile , having
Development Strategies seek to achieve the                  fluctuated between US$51 and US$137 per barrel
following outcomes:                                         during the last two years.2 This volatility is
•    Concentrated future population and                     expected to continue but with an upward trend.
     employment growth along the Growth Spine,              In an era of rapidly rising fuel prices, vehicle use
     supported by:                                          may decline or at least the rate of growth may
     –– A dedicated, high quality and high                  slow. Conversely, if there is a large uptake of
         frequency public transport corridor                alternative fuels or electric vehicles then the
                                                            historic trends in increasing personal vehicle
     –– A high quality state highway route with
                                                            usage may continue.
         dependable travel times
     –– Bus priority along connecting arterial
•    Convenient and safe walking and cycling
•    Limited commuter parking in the Central                2
                                                             Source: Ministry of Economic Development, Weekly Average
                                                            Price of Dubai Crude and the US$/NZ$ Exchange Rate (accessed
•    Improved access to the waterfront.                     29/10/2008)

 2                                                      Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Increasing travel demand                                                Social and lifestyle changes
There are many significant factors that influence                       Over the next 30 years it is possible that there
travel in the region. There is some uncertainty as                      will be significant social and technological
to the outlook for some of these factors.                               changes which could affect the demand for
Therefore this Plan has been developed to                               transport. Future changes could, for example,
commit to short term measures that address                              include a substantial increase in telecommuting,
pressing needs and to signal the likely changes                         working from home and flexible working hours.
needed to address longer term requirements.                             Where such effects change travel demand
The short term measures will in some cases (e.g.                        significantly, a review of the measures in the Plan
public transport corridor) provide a platform for                       may be required.
initiatives that may be needed in the future. The
timing of longer term measures will be reviewed                         Urban form
as significant trends become evident.
                                                                        Current travel demand derives from the existing
An example of increasing demand is travel                               urban form of the region which primarily
generated by the airport. They expect use to                            influences population and employment densities.
double by 2030. There is real potential to move                         If future settlement patterns change densities
some of this travel from cars to improved                               materially, a review of the Plan may be required.
passenger transport services.                                           For example, a significant increase in densities
                                                                        within the Wellington City Central Area (along
                                                                        the public transport spine) or the development of
Population growth
                                                                        major venues and attractions in the Eastern
Population for the whole Wellington region is                           Suburbs could bring forward the need for one of
expected to grow by 12% (53,200) by 2026 in line                        the higher capacity public transport options such
with the 2007 Statistic Department estimates                            as bus rapid transport or light rail.
(medium projection), 66% of this growth is
expected to be in Wellington City. Thereafter                           Population in Wellington City is forecast to grow
populations are predicted to stabilise and                              by 20% (35,000) by 2026. The city has developed
possibly decline primarily due to aging. A                              a growth strategy, in line with its Urban
significant change in population and living                             Development Strategy and the Wellington
locations would affect travel demand and trigger                        Regional Strategy, aimed at ensuring most of that
a review of the plan. This would normally be                            growth is concentrated along a growth spine
identified following each Census.                                       from Johnsonville, through the CBD and Newton
                                                                        to Kilbirnie as shown in the following diagram.
Economic growth
                                                                        This corridor plan assumes that the city manages
There is a strong correlation between economic                          growth, mainly through controls in its district
growth and the growth in demand for transport.                          plan, in accordance with its growth strategy.
The transport modelling underpinning the Plan                           Passenger transport services will be improved
assumes 1.8% annual growth in regional Gross                            along the growth spine to support the denser
Domestic Product, in line with the expectation of                       urban development that is envisaged.
the Wellington Regional Strategy. A significant
change in the region’s economy may require the
plan to be adjusted.

 Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008                                                   3
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor

Operating costs of private motor                          decades. This is strongly related to people’s need
vehicles                                                  to travel for work, social and recreational
                                                          purposes. In many cases the private car is the
Any factor which changes the relationship
                                                          most efficient way of travelling, hence its
between the cost of operating private motor
                                                          popularity3. While there is an assumption that
vehicles and the cost of alternative transport
                                                          car ownership and use will continue to rise in
(passenger transport, walking, cycling, and
                                                          line with economic growth, the rate of car
telecommuting) will affect travel patterns. Factors
                                                          ownership growth is forecast to taper off as we
which could significantly affect this relationship
                                                          near a saturation level and may also fall if oil
include international oil prices, carbon charges,
                                                          prices become too high. Reaching this theoretical
vehicle technology changes (such as a shift to
                                                          saturation level is forecast to be beyond 2050, so
electric cars) or subsidy policies regarding public
                                                          current projections show there is a need to ensure
transport. A significant change in such factors
                                                          the community’s needs for private vehicle
may require the plan to be adjusted.
                                                          transport are reasonably provided for.

Car ownership and use
Research shows that the region’s level of car             3
                                                           76% of all weekday trips throughout the region are
ownership has been increasing steadily for                undertaken in private vehicles.

 4                                                    Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Adaptability                                                            tertiary institutions to implement sustainable
                                                                        transport initiatives. Greater Wellington is also
The scope of the longer term measures set out in
                                                                        working with a number of schools and plans to
the Plan is based on a number of assumptions
                                                                        extend participation over the coming years.
which are likely to affect the growth of travel
demand. These assumptions are set out above.                            In September 2007, the Wellington City Council
Any material changes in these assumptions may                           approved a new parking policy which
trigger a review of the timing and or need for the                      established the role of parking within the city
measures in the Plan. The Plan will be reviewed                         transport network and its contribution to the
every five years to ensure that it is taking account                    strategic goals. The policy establishes a number
of significant changes, or earlier if new                               of work programmes including review of central
information arises that affects our understanding                       city parking, review of the coupon parking
of the network.                                                         scheme and investigation of park and ride
                                                                        facilities. Work on these programmes will
What we plan to do                                                      commence in mid 2008.

Travel demand management
                                                                        Walking and cycling
The region wide Travel Demand Management
                                                                        The plan aims to improve the level of service
(TDM) Strategy will be implemented by all
                                                                        for walking and cycling. It largely relies on
agencies. Key initiatives include:
                                                                        Wellington City Council developing and
•   Ensuring the best use is made of existing                           implementing appropriate improvement
    infrastructure.                                                     programmes. This includes an investigation
•   Raising awareness of individual travel                              of cycling and walking improvements between
    choices.                                                            Ngauranga and Wellington City, providing
•   Encouraging integrated land use and                                 high quality facilities to connect local networks
    transport planning.                                                 and consistent with the vision of the ‘Great
                                                                        Harbour Way’.
•   Encouraging school and work places to have
    travel plans.
                                                                        Passenger transport
•   Advocating to Central Government for the
    ability to implement congestion pricing.                            Greater Wellington is the primary agency
                                                                        responsible for the provision of passenger
The TDM Strategy aims to limit car traffic growth                       transport services throughout the region.
particularly at peak times, increase journey to                         Greater Wellington has a number of
work mode share for passenger transport,                                improvements currently underway that will
walking and cycling; and improve integration                            improve the passenger transport system over the
between all modes of transport. It is expected                          next few years. The key improvements are:
that such changes will lead to reduced                                  •   61 new trolley buses to replace the aged fleet
greenhouse gas emissions, reduced fuel                                      and increase passenger capacity (2007 to
consumption, reduced road congestion,                                       2009).
increased residents’ satisfaction and the region’s
                                                                        •   Progressive implementation of real time
economic development being supported.
                                                                            information from 2009.
Greater Wellington will continue to promote its                         •   Progressive implementation of
travel planning programme to schools and                                    comprehensive integrated ticketing from
workplaces. Greater Wellington is currently                                 2011.
working with a number of central government                             •   Providing additional capacity through the
agencies, regional District Health Boards and                               Kaiwharawhara throat (rail bottleneck).

 Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008                                                       5
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
•    Ongoing bus fleet renewal will provide more          Wellington City Council will implement roading
     super low floor vehicles to improve                  improvements including the installation of new
     accessibility and new buses will have cleaner,       intersections over the next few years to improve
     more efficient engines that will produce             access to the Inter Island Ferry Terminal and
     lower emissions.                                     CentrePort. These improvements will also
                                                          service ongoing development at Harbour Quays
Wellington City Council, in collaboration with            and on KiwiRail land in the Pipitea precinct.
Greater Wellington and the New Zealand
Transport Agency, has a 10 plus year plan to              Wellington City Council is responsible for the
progressively implement bus priority measures             renewal, maintenance and operations
on all key routes to ensure passenger transport           programmes for roads, footpaths, traffic signals
services can operate as reliably and efficiently as       and street lighting. The Council will also
possible.                                                 continue to identify and implement road safety
                                                          improvements and urban redevelopment projects
A key initiative of this Plan is the development of       to revitalise city streets and to enhance safety for
the passenger transport network to support the            all users of the city’s roading network.
growth spine. This Plan proposes a staged
approach to the implementation of the passenger           Measures within the corridor
transport improvements. In the early years the
railway line to Johnsonville will be upgraded             This section of the corridor plan defines a
and bus priority measures will be provided                number of measures for improvements to the
through the central city where the greatest               transport infrastructure with in the corridor. The
benefits can be gained for the biggest number of          measures have been grouped into those that
users. Bus priority measures will also be                 should be completed over the next ten years, and
implemented on arterial routes which service the          longer term measures that should be developed
city centre and eventually the network will be            over the next ten years and then programmed to
completed out to the key suburban centres. In             be implemented as conditions and funding
later years the dedicated road space that has             allows. Timing has taken account of the
been allocated for passenger transport use may            ‘immediate priorities’ set out above.
be upgraded further to provide a high quality
                                                          Funding for the measures will normally be a mix
busway or light rail service. Alternatively, a
                                                          of national and local sources. Larger projects
personal rapid transport system may be
                                                          may also require funding from the regional and
                                                          crown funding sources. This will be determined
                                                          by the Regional Transport Committee in 2009 as
Road network management                                   part of the development of the new Regional
The New Zealand Transport Agency will work                Land Transport Programme in accordance with
with Wellington City Council to ensure that the           the requirements of the Land Transport
traffic signal operations are managed to ensure           Management Amendment Act 2008.
the most efficient means of moving public
transport, pedestrians and private transport
through the roading network and to best meet
the competing demands of these modes.

 6                                                    Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Overview diagrams

Figure 1: Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor - Measures to be implemented within 10 years.

 Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008                              7
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor

Figure 2: Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor - Measures that may be implemented (beyond 10 years).

 8                                                            Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Measures to be implemented within 10 years
                                                                                            Indicative cost1 Performance
    Measure                                               Responsibility   Timing
                                                                                            $M               measure(s)
    Implement passenger transport improvements WCC (lead)                  Immediate        202                Faster, more reliable
    (including bus priority measures, signal pre-                          start                               journey times
    emption, real time information) along the      GWRC
    golden mile route to improve journey times,                            Ongoing from                        Greater passenger
    reliability and passenger waiting and boarding                         2008                                satisfaction
    provisions. Improvements to include:
                                                                                                               More passengers
    •   Golden Mile (from Lambton Interchange
        to eastern end of Courtenay Place)

    Implement bus priority measures on arterial
    routes, including:
    •   Kent/Cambridge Tce
    •   Taranaki St
    •   Mulgrave/ Murphy/ Molesworth St
    •   Adelaide Rd
    •   Thorndon Quay
    •   Glenmore St

    Implement bus priority measures to
    Wellington International Airport, Wellington
    Regional Hospital and key Suburban Centres,
    •   Newtown
    •   Hataitai
    •   Kilbirnie
    •   Brooklyn
    •   Karori
    •   Island Bay
    •   Miramar
    Finalise and implement a Wellington City              WCC (lead)       Ongoing from To be                  Increased pedestrian
    walking policy to promote walking trips that                           2008         determined             volumes
    would otherwise be taken by car, including:           NZTA
                                                                                                               Reduced crash rates
    •   Improving the walking environment
    •   Increasing the number of short trips to                                                                Greater pedestrian
        work or study                                                                                          satisfaction
    •   Increasing walking in suburban centres by
        encouraging people to walk to their local

    Investigate cycling and walking improvements
    between Ngauranga and Wellington City that
    provide high quality facilities connecting local
    networks and are consistent with the vision of
    the ‘Great Harbour Way’.

    Indicative costs are December 2007 dollars.
    Excludes the cost of the real time information system which is being progressed separately by Greater Wellington.

    Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008                                                            9
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
                                                                                         Indicative cost1 Performance
    Measure                                            Responsibility   Timing
                                                                                         $M               measure(s)
    Finalise and implement a Wellington City           WCC (lead)       Ongoing from To be                   Reduced crash rates
    cycling policy to make cycling safer and more                       2008         determined
    convenient, including:                             NZTA                                                  Greater cyclist
    •    Improving the safety and convenience of
                                                                                                             Maintained cyclist
    •    Emphasising the quality and continuity of                                                           volumes
         cycle routes
    •    Providing better facilities for cyclists
    •    Investigate cycling and walking
         improvements between Ngauranga and
         Wellington City that provide high quality
         facilites connecting local networks and are
         consistent with the vision of the ‘Great
         Harbour Way’
    Investigate water borne passenger transport        GWRC             Investigation To be                  More people using
    services between the Wellington CBD and                             from 2008/09 determined              passenger transport
    Miramar Peninsula, and improving passenger                                                               to get to /from the
    transport services to/from the airport                                                                   airport
    Design and construct improvements at the      NZTA (lead)           Investigation 33                     More passengers
    Basin Reserve to improve passenger transport,                       from 2008/09                         carried
    walking and cycling by separating north-south WCC                   Construction
    flows from east-west traffic; and implement                         from 2011/12                         Improved Passenger
    complementary bus priority measures on Kent GWRC                                                         transport journey
    Tce, Cambridge Tce and Adelaide Rd                                                                       times and reliability

                                                                                                             Reduced crash rates

                                                                                                             Reduced severe
    Investigate improvement to walking and             NZTA (lead)      2009/10          To be               Increased pedestrian
    cycling facilities in Mt Victoria Tunnel                                             determined          and cyclist volumes
    Reallocate existing general traffic lanes on Hutt NZTA (lead)       Investigation 30                     More passengers
    Road between Ngauranga and Thorndon for                             from 2009/10                         carried
    bus lanes and possibly high occupancy             WCC
    vehicles; and construct peak period lanes on                        Construction                         Improved Passenger
    State Highway 1 between Ngauranga to Aotea                          from 2011/12                         transport journey
    Quay                                                                                                     times and reliability

                                                                                                             Reduced single
                                                                                                             occupant vehicle

                                                                                                             Reduced severe
    Implement intersection improvements,               NZTA (lead)      Construction
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
                                                                                           Indicative cost1 Performance
    Measure                                               Responsibility   Timing
                                                                                           $M               measure(s)
    Investigate improvements to Wellington                GWRC (Lead)      2010/11         Administrative Review complete
    Railway Station to improve walking                                                                    and reported to
    connections to buses and the pedestrian               ONTRACK                                         GWRC
    Undertake a feasibility study for a high quality GWRC (lead)           2011/12         1               Feasibility study
    public transport system, including light rail                                                          complete and
    (the most favourable option(s) will then be      WCC                                                   reported to partner
    developed further by a more detailed scheme                                                            agencies
    assessment after 2013/14)                        NZTA
    Review the operational performance and         GWRC                    2011/12         Administrative Review complete
    capacity of bus service provisions within the                                                         and reported to
    corridor following the completion of the                                                              GWRC
    Golden Mile bus lane improvements and the
    delivery of the new trolley buses. This review
    should also assess the effectiveness of the
    Hataitai bus tunnel
    Undertake a feasibility study for the four            NZTA (lead)      Investigation
The Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor
Measures that may be implemented
(beyond 10 years)
The implementation of these projects will
depend on the outcome of the scheme
assessments and be influenced by the factors set
out in the ‘existing pressures and reasons for
change’ section above.

                                                                                        Indicative cost     Suggested
Measure                                      Responsibility   Timing
                                                                                        $M                  funding
Implement further improvements to the          WCC (lead)     Likely to be beyond       20-140+             To be
passenger transport spine giving consideration                10 years                                      determined
to further bus improvements, light rail or new GWRC
personal rapid transport systems
Four laning of Wellington Road and Ruahine   NZTA (lead)      Likely to be beyond 43                        To be
Street                                                        10 years but may be                           determined
                                             WCC              appropriate to
                                                              develop in stages,
                                                              particularly to
                                                              coordinate with
                                                              improvements to
                                                              access for Hataitai
                                                              Park. It would be
                                                              necessary prior to
                                                              opening any
                                                              duplicate Mt Victoria
Duplication of Mt Victoria Tunnel            NZTA (lead)      Likely to be beyond       175                 To be
                                                              10 years                                      determined
Duplication of Terrace Tunnel and            NZTA (lead)      Likely to be beyond       167                 To be
Waterfront lane reduction                                     10 years                                      determined

 12                                                    Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan – Adopted October 2008
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