Tranzwatching in Auckland, Te Ika a Maui, New Zealand
As part of the so-called "supercity" created by the Amalgamation of the four former cities of Auckland (and a couple of county areas) all transport was brought under the one umbrella, Auckland Transport.
The first eight months of operation for Auckland Transport have ended on a strong note with a number of significant projects delivered to a high standard, Chief Executive, Dr David Warburton according to a media release this week.
In the year to June 2011, commuter rail patronage has risen 24% and Northern Busway usage has risen 14.5%. Note; while not knocking a significant achievement it is always worth remembering these are largely new systems in which high percentile growth is to be expected. Another success, a transit smartcard "Hop" cards has finally been introduced. Also in this eight month period probably the most expensive bit of road ever built in New Zealand [another huge subsidy to Aucklanders from the other two thirds of New Zealand!] the Waterview Tunnel (3.5 kilometres - $2.77 billon dollars) has been given the green light.
Meanwhile - back in the wreckage of Christchurch a plea by the Christchurch City Council for the Government to be more balanced in its transport funding appears to have brought no response!!
Not only has the previously highly successful CBD bus service "The Shuttle" been dropped - despite the obvious constant link it might have provided around the red zone and tofro the Hagley Park entertainment area - now it looks like a only medium term low budget Bus Exchange is to be built.