NZ in Tranzit advocates moving forward with clear purpose
The debate in Christchurch about rail and light rail (buses which are always likely to be the primary mode are usually taken for granted or disparaged!) obscures the real core issue - what sort of public transport strategy is needed.
NZ in Tranzit blog sees seven key strategic goals of public transport in Christchurch, as follows;
1) To ensure ease of access to workplaces and educational centres for residents from all parts of the city, fostering a mobile, flexible and educated workforce - the economic motor without which little else can be achieved.
2) To protect resident mobility options and outer area property values in the face of coming oil price rises and increased living costs and in general to maintain and improve social equality, prosperity and quality of life in a less favourable economic climate.
3) To directly target longer journeys to and from the city and its centre and across the city, the journeys that both cause and suffer the most congestion, time waste, greenhouse gases, and roading costs and which will be more severely impacted upon by fuel price increases.
4) To ensure a base level of mobility for all residents and not least those with limited or no access to cars, including independent children, teenagers, the mentally and physically handicapped, retired persons on limited income and the mobile elderly - notably access to neighbourhood supermarkets, smaller shopping centres, medical and recreational facilities within a bus journey of less than 3km.
5) To offer added frequency of services to higher density inner suburb and university adjacent areas where demand is naturally higher and easier to service and ownership or use of cars is likely to be less or more easily reduced further by an effective alternative
6) To ensure ease of access of residents, visitors and tourists to major attractions, social and sporting venues and hospitality areas, including reducing congestion at large events
7) To create systems that allow ease of use, simplicity and ease in understanding and support transfers from one route to another and where services operate in an integrated, alternating pattern
Noted; A good public transport system also inherently addresses congestion and environmental issues.