Public Transport Committee

Open Minutes

Commencing:             Thursday 27 May 2021, 9.30 am

Venue:                         Bay of Plenty Regional Council Chambers, Regional House, 1 Elizabeth Street, Tauranga

Chairperson:               Cr Andrew von Dadelszen – Bay of Plenty Regional Council

Deputy Chairperson:  Cr Lyall Thurston – Bay of Plenty Regional Council

Members:                    Bay of Plenty Regional Council

                                    Cr Norm Bruning

Cr Jane Nees

Cr Paula Thompson

Cr Stacey Rose

Chairman Doug Leeder - Ex-Officio (from 9.47 am)

 

Lakes Community Board/ Rotorua Lakes Council

Phill Thomass

 

Whakatane District Council

Mayor Judy Turner

 

Tauranga City Council

Commissioner Stephen Selwood

In Attendance:            Bay of Plenty Regional Council: Mat Taylor – General Manager – Corporate, Namouta Poutasi – General Manager, Strategy and Science, Jessica Easton – Legal and Commercial Manager, James Llewellyn – Transport and Urban Planning Manager, Ruth Feist – Team Leader Urban, Nick Renton – Senior Transport Planner (via Zoom), Amanda Namana – Committee Advisor

 

External

Cole O’Keefe – Lead Strategic Planner, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency (via Zoom), Alistair Talbot - Team Leader: Transport Strategy & Planning, Tauranga City Council

Apologies:                  Mayor Garry Webber – Western Bay of Plenty District Council

 

Please note that this meeting was recorded via Zoom and is available on Council’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5RQruyTEa4

 

1.     Apologies

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Accepts the apology from Mayor Garry Webber tendered at the meeting.

Rose/Thomass

CARRIED

2.     Public Forum

2.1

Harry Perry and Lucas Daum – Tauranga Boys High School Year 9 students

Presentation: Tauranga's New Bus Plan: Objective ID A3813744

 

Key Points:

·         As frequent users of the bus system they were not satisfied with the current service provided

·         Provided a brief history of how public transport had evolved in Tauranga

·         Outlined the consequences of the current bus network – unreliability, unpunctual, under-serviced and with slow travel times

·         Noted that Tauranga no longer had just one hub, but five: CBD, Mount Maunganui, Bayfair, Pāpāmoa, Bethlehem and Tauranga Crossing

·         Described a new network initiative consisting of buses orbiting and connecting through the five hubs

·         Changes to fares and schedules for the proposed new network were suggested

·         Location and number of bus stops should be adjusted and provide shelter

·         Proposed a new App that ran similarly to Transit, named Hopit

·         Further information was available on the students’ website: https://lucasharry.editorx.io/tgabusplan

In Response to Questions

·         Rather than being an on-demand service, this was about significant changes to routes and schedules to gain all over improvement to the network and service

·         The new plan would utilise existing buses for the connecting ones and potentially smaller buses for the orbiters.

3.     Declaration of Conflicts of Interest

None declared.

4.     Minutes

Minutes to be Confirmed

4.1

Public Transport Committee Minutes - 18 March 2021

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

Confirms the Public Transport Committee Minutes - 18 March 2021 as a true and correct record.

Nees/Thurston

CARRIED

9:47am – Chairman Leeder entered the meeting.

5.     Reports

5.1

Chairperson's Report

Legal and Commercial Manager Jessica Easton, Transport and Urban Planning Manager James Llewellyn and Team Leader Urban Ruth Feist presented this item, supported by Tauranga City Council Team Leader: Transport Strategy & Planning Alistair Talbot.

Key Points:

·       Anticipated decision on funding from Waka Kotahi through the National Land Transport Plan (NLTP) in August 2021 for the Western Bay Public Transport Services and Infrastructure Business Case

·       A key challenge for the Point of Entry (POE) business case was the number of business cases that were potentially being promoted through the Tauranga Transport System Plan (TSP)

·       It was important to first make better use of existing resources, market the services better and introduce the travel demand management and behaviour change initiatives before committing significant additional  resources to increase frequencies

·       Maintaining a security presence at key bus stop locations held a significant cost of $700,000 per annum, all of which was currently funded by Regional Council

·       Police had noted a dramatic decline in calls since the security presence at bus stops in Willow Street and Farm Street

·       There was an opportunity to streamline and get better planning and governance

·       Council would ideally like to achieve flexibility from the Public Transport Operating Model (PToM) review

·       One of the biggest challenges the industry needed to plan for was the decarbonisation of the bus fleet and existing operators would have the advantage of existing infrastructure

·       The overarching issue with regard to fares was the challenge of finding a balance between generating revenue for reinvesting in services and the need to keep fares affordable and fair for passengers.

Key Points - Members:

·       12-18 months to complete a business case was a long time considering the amount of information on the network available

·       The PToM submission should be a combined submission with all other affected councils

·       Recent experience in Whakatāne had highlighted that trialling different initiatives provided substantive benefits in discovering what could change human behaviour

·       Essential for mode shift change was staff working together in an integrated collaborative manner across councils.

In Response to Questions:

·       Discussions had commenced with Rotorua operators regarding implementation of the living wage

·       The last living wage increase in September 2020 was currently going through the Long Term Plan (LTP) process and provided this was adopted by Council on 24th June 2021 then this would be back paid

·       The Cameron Road project was programmed to start construction in August 2021 and would also provide a proof of concept for other projects

·       The POE work was completed internally by staff and the cost of the business case was expected to be approximately $650,000

·       The Transport Special Interest Group (TSIG) had a workstream to review the Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) process.  One option within this review would be proposing a more devolved model of funding and decision making

·     If Waka Kotahi saw a successful outcome from the Innovating Streets fund, other trial based options may be considered

·     The issue that any prospective bus operator had was the large upfront investment required to bid and service a contract

·       Research undertaken to date for the parking strategy suggested that maintaining availability of parking was key, relative to the desired outcomes of each particular area.

 

Items for Staff Follow Up:

·         Provide regular updates to future meetings on TSP and on the Cameron Road project 

·         Circulate minutes to members from the Western Bay of Plenty Community Panel.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Chairperson's Report;

von Dadelszen/Rose

CARRIED

2           Invites Harry Daum and Lucas Perry to attend the Western Bay of Plenty Public Transport Community Panel.  

Thurston/Thompson

CARRIED

 

 

10.56 am – The meeting adjourned.

 

10:56 am - Chairman Leeder withdrew from the meeting.

 

11.15 am – The meeting reconvened.

Decisions Required

5.2

Bay of Plenty Travel Demand Management and Behaviour Change Programme

Presentation: Travel Demand Management and Behaviour Change Programme: Objective ID A3813745

Transport and Urban Planning Manager James Llewellyn presented this item.

Key Points:

·          Travel planning for employers, schools and hospitals was crucial

·          Acknowledged the work of Tauranga City Council, in particular in addressing the challenges of the school bus services

·          There was a significant opportunity to improve in the mobile technology space

·          Accommodating new areas of housing growth was a key factor in  policy and planning

·          Services provided needed to be integrated with travel demand management measures

·          Understanding how people view their lifestyles and how transport fit within those lifestyles was a key consideration

·          A key challenge was altering people’s perception of public transport to view it as a sign of living in a vibrant and successful community.

Key Points - Members:

·          A fundamental issue was clearly identifying the target market and applying this to the sub-regions

·          Focus on providing services that meet people’s individual needs

·          Break down the market segments in the objectives in order to have a more focused approach

·          Provided statistics on the journeys people travelling to jobs in the city took – they came from 77 different origins which provided the reason people were currently car dependent

·          Requested direction in regard to providing disincentives for car travel

In Response to Questions:

·         Desired outcomes from new developments was a significant increase in the number of journeys by modes other than single occupancy cars

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Bay of Plenty Travel Demand Management and Behaviour Change Programme.

2           Approves the high level scope and timeframes for the programme as outlined in this report;

3           Also recognises the jurisdictions of all entities and the need for integration.

von Dadelszen/Thompson

CARRIED

 

5.3

Accessibility Concession - Addition of a Plus 1 Concession

Senior Transport Planner Nick Renton presented this item via Zoom.

Key Points - Members:

·         Commended the initiative for promoting inclusion and creating empowerment

·         Requested the data was tracked to correlate with the Total Mobility scheme.

In Response to Questions:

·         There was a Total Mobility Advisor also working on the project.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Accessibility Concession - Addition of a Plus 1 Concession;

2           Notes the inclusion of a ‘Plus 1’ Concession in the roll-out of the Accessibility Concession scheme from July 1, 2021.

Thompson/Thurston

CARRIED

 

5.4

Rotorua Public Transport Review Consultation Feedback

Presentation: Rotorua Public Transport Review: Objective ID A3813743   

Transport and Urban Planning Manager James Llewellyn and Team Leader Urban Ruth Feist presented this item.

Key Points - Members:

·         Expressed support for the CBD Orbiter initiative in revitalising the previous CBD area

·         Suggested seasonal buses to Lake Ōkāreka

·         There was strong support from iwi/hapū and from residents of rural areas for public transport options.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Rotorua Public Transport Review Consultation Feedback.

2           Notes the community consultation results for the Rotorua Public Transport Review, and that a decision has been made as part of deliberations on the Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s Long Term Plan 2021-2031.

Thomass/Thurston

CARRIED

 

5.5

Improving Our Network

Transport and Urban Planning Manager James Llewellyn and Team Leader Urban Ruth Feist presented this item.

Key Points:

·     Address the concern over needing to interchange at Bayfair by providing additional direct services between Pāpāmoa and the CBD

·     Noted that all of the proposed changes were within existing budgets

·     Additional services would be added to route 125 between Kawerau and Whakatāne at the end of May 2021, which had called into question the rationale of progressing with the on-demand service.

In Response to Questions:

·     Confirmed that this would be making better use of existing buses, not putting additional buses into service

·     Keeping pace with the school service demand was an ongoing challenge and an additional three buses had been added to the network.

 

Items for Staff Follow Up:

·     Report to the next committee on meeting the demands of the school service.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Improving Our Network;

2           Agrees to reconsider the Kawerau On-Demand Trial once the service enhancements to the Kawerau-Whakatāne bus service have been in operation for at least twelve months;

3           Notes that the Super Gold Card concession has been extended from 3.00pm to 6.30pm on weekdays for 12 months to 30 June 2022.

Rose/Thurston

CARRIED

Information Only

5.6

Updated Bus Non-User Survey

Legal and Commercial Manager Jessica Easton presented this item.

Key Points:

·         73% would consider using public transport in the future

·         62% of people stated convenience as the reason for not using public transport.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Updated Bus Non-User Survey.

Rose/Thompson

CARRIED

 

5.7

Public Transport Arotake Tuatoru - Performance Monitoring Report July 2020 to March 2021

Legal and Commercial Manager Jessica Easton presented this item.

Key Points:

·         A stop had been added to Route 85, the Waihī Beach town connector at the medical centre as requested from community feedback

·         Positive feedback had been received from the additional Total Mobility services provided, particularly in Katikati.

 

Resolved

That the Public Transport Committee:

1           Receives the report, Public Transport Arotake Tuatoru - Performance Monitoring Report July 2020 to March 2021.

Thurston/Nees

CARRIED

6.     Public Excluded Section

Resolved

Resolution to exclude the public

1       Excludes the public from the following parts of the proceedings of this meeting as set out below:

The general subject of each matter to be considered while the public is excluded, the reason for passing this resolution in relation to each matter, and the specific grounds under section 48(1) of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 for the passing of this resolution are as follows:

Item No.

Subject of each matter to be considered

Reason for passing this resolution in relation to each matter

Grounds under Section 48(1) for the passing of this resolution

When the item can be released into the public

6.1

The Living Wage for Bus Drivers in the Bay of Plenty

Withholding the information is necessary to protect information where the making available of the information would be likely to unreasonably prejudice the commercial position of the person who supplied or who is the subject of the information; Withholding the information is necessary to enable any local authority holding the information to carry out, without prejudice or disadvantage, commercial activities.

48(1)(a)(i) Section 7 (2)(b)(ii); 48(1)(a)(i) Section 7 (2)(h).

To remain in public excluded.

2       That Alistair Talbot - Team Leader: Transport Strategy & Planning, Tauranga City Council be permitted to stay in the public excluded section of the meeting due to his knowledge of the matter under discussion.

von Dadelszen/Thurston

CARRIED

12.57 pm – the meeting closed.

 

 

Confirmed                                                                                               

                                                                         Cr Andrew von Dadelszen

Chairperson, Public Transport Committee