Board backs busway plan

North Harbour News - - NEWS -

The Hibis­cus and Bays Lo­cal Board sup­ports the New Zealand Trans­port Agency’s move to­wards the ex­ten­sion of the North­ern Busway to Sil­verdale and Orewa.

Chair­woman Ju­lia Parfitt says the North­ern Busway has proved a stel­lar per­former and she be­lieves the time is right to ex­tend the ser­vice fur­ther north.

‘‘In just un­der three years of op­er­a­tion, the North­ern Busway has clocked up pas­sen­ger six mil­lion. Pas­sen­ger seven mil­lion is al­ready in our sights,’’ Mrs Parfitt says. ‘ ‘ Res­i­dents have flocked to the ser­vice and pa­tron­age fig­ures show strong, con­tin­ued growth over that time.’’

Re­search on North­ern Busway pas­sen­ger us­age showed 39 per­cent of busway users de­scribe them­selves as peo­ple who had not pre­vi­ously been users of pub­lic trans­port ser­vices.

‘‘It’s clearly an at­trac­tive and pop­u­lar ser­vice for res­i­dents and it’s work­ing ex­tremely well to move peo­ple around the city and cut con­ges­tion on our roads.

‘‘Peo­ple from Rod­ney are driv­ing south each day and com­pet­ing with Al­bany and East Coast Bays res­i­dents to find park­ing in an in­creas­ingly full park and ride sta­tion.

‘ ‘ The re­al­ity is, the de­mand re­quired to make these ser­vices eco­nom­i­cally vi­able has al­ready ar­rived. Res­i­dents’ needs are only go­ing to be­come more acute as petrol prices creep ever higher.’’

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