Informal Workshop Notes

Regional Transport Committee Workshop

Held:                            9.00 am, Friday 5 May 2023, Bay of Plenty Regional Council Chambers, 1 Elizabeth Street, Tauranga

Chairperson:               Cr Lyall Thurston - Bay of Plenty Regional Council Toi Moana (BOPRC)

Present:                       Mayor Faylene Tunui - Kawerau District Council (via Zoom), Mayor David Moore - Ōpōtiki District Council, Mayor Tania Tapsell - Rotorua Lakes Council, Cr Conan O'Brien – Alternate, Rotorua Lakes Council (via Zoom), Commissioner Stephen Selwood – Alternate, Tauranga City Council (via Zoom), Mayor James Denyer - Western Bay of Plenty District Council, Mayor Victor Luca - Whakatāne District Council, Deputy Mayor Lesley Immink – Alternate, Whakatāne District Council, Deputy Mayor John Scrimgeour – Alternate, Western Bay of Plenty District Council (via Zoom), Lyndon Hammond – Alternate, KiwiRail (via Zoom)

External Advisors: Greg Pert - Freight Advisor, Simon Sinclair – NZ Police Road Safety Advisor, Glen Crowther – Environmental Sustainability Advisor

In Attendance:            BOPRC Councillors: Cr Stuart Crosby, Cr Ron Scott, Cr Malcolm Campbell, Cr Kat Macmillan, Cr Jane Nees (via Zoom)


BOPRC: Mike Seabourne – Public Transport Director, Andrew Williams – Team Leader, Transport Planning, Oliver Haycock – Manager, Transport Planning, Bron Healey – Principal Advisor, Transport, Amanda Namana – Committee Advisor

External: Sarah Roberts – Regional System Design Advisor, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency (via Zoom)

Apologies:                           Cr Ken Shirley – BOPRC, Cr Andrew von Dadelszen – Alternate, BOPRC, Angus Hodgson – KiwiRail, David Speirs - Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, Jessica Andrew - Alternate, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, Chairman Doug Leeder – BOPRC  


1.     Introduction

Chairperson Cr Thurston advised that the workshop would be recorded for the purpose of obtaining feedback from any members who were unable to attend.


Overview - Background, Timeline, Purpose and Aim

Presentation: Regional Land Transport Plan Review - Strategy Development: Objective ID A4361195  


The workshop was presented by:  Andrew Williams – Team Leader, Transport Planning, Oliver Haycock – Manager, Transport Planning, Bron Healey – Principal Advisor, and supported by Mike Seabourne – Public Transport Director.

Key Points:

·       The workshop’s key focus was progressing the Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024-34 strategy and strategic framework, and advancing the Investment Logic Map (ILM)

·       Outlined the timeline for the RLTP – developing the strategic framework; programme development and prioritisation; public consultation and deliberations; adoption of the final document and final submission to Waka Kotahi in April 2024

·       Central government had indicated the Government Policy Statement on land transport (GPS) was delayed and expected to be released on 22 May 2023

·       A further workshop scheduled for 4 August 2023 would begin prioritisation work for the ten-year investment priorities

·       The Waka Kotahi intervention hierarchy took a mode neutral approach – investing for transport outcomes rather than modes, which was also imbedded in the Ministry of Transport (MoT) outcomes framework and the GPS

·       Highlighted signalled changes to the priorities in the upcoming GPS, which was scheduled to be released prior to the general election.  Noted the risk that a new GPS could be  released following the election.

Key Points – Members and Advisors:

·       Being clear about the needs and transport strategy of the region and reflecting the priorities, whilst aligning with national priorities to attract funding would provide a greater chance of success

·       Freight movement was expected to grow 40% - 65% faster than the population within the next ten years so congestion, safety and resilience concerns were significant and needed to be addressed

·       Highlighted the importance of the Port of Tauranga - connection with Auckland and Waikato regions needed a strong focus in relation to future freight movement requirements

·       Enabling other parts of the region to grow, thrive and take a stronger role would reduce pressure on Tauranga – underlining the criticality of the strategic state highway links between the urban centres

·       Considered the RLTP needed to become a more proactive document to be able to recognise the challenges of growth

·       Noted the lack of an integrated economic development model for the region and associated transport issues.

In Response to Questions

·       Clarified that public consultation would likely occur in December 2023/ January 2024 – and whilst this timing was not ideal, the timeframe was governed by Waka Kotahi and MoT

·       From past RLTP processes, there had been between 50 and 2,000 submissions received, these had been dependent upon topical issues in the region at the time

·       Waka Kotahi had national priorities and targets that needed to be aligned with regional perspectives and local issues within the RLTP document

·       Although the last RLTP worked well to align with central government policy and direction, there were new documents to now consider i.e. the Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP)

·       The RLTP sought to utilise and support local and regional policy context – the last RLTP had a section on supporting regional growth, including sub-region land use drivers.

Direction Provided:

·         A sub-regional breakdown of submissions received would be useful to members following the public consultation process.



2.      Regional Land Transport Plan Review: Strategy Development


The Vision


Key Points:

·       If required, the vision could be adjusted and tested after the Committee prioritised the objectives and headline targets

·       Clarified that the vision was the long-term aspiration for the region’s transport system, rather than the current state.

Key Points – Members and Advisors:

·       Resilience was crucial, particularly regarding climate change and increasing severe weather events affecting the access of vulnerable sub-regions

·       The vision needed to drive regional priorities and investment plans

·       Noted the conflict between resilience and efficiency and balancing these/ acknowledging the trade-off.

In Response to Questions

·     The ERP had been released after the original vision had been drafted, therefore further consideration could be given to whether the current wording appropriately covered lowering emissions.

Direction Provided:

·       After discussion around introducing the term ‘fair’ with regard to emissions reduction, it was suggested that ‘equitable’ was a more fitting term to include, although some  members considered this may sit better under objectives.


The Objectives


Key Points:

·       Outlined the five objective themes of the current RLTP, which were drawn directly from the MoT Outcomes Framework

·       Under each of the five objective themes, there were currently seven objectives, with the potential of reducing these to five - the challenge would be in amalgamating objectives one, two and three. 

·       The objectives were each supported by policy under the policy framework

·       The five objective themes were enduring outcomes that were designed to assist RLTP’s to remain as consistent as possible through changing GPS etc.

·       Staff would suggest alternative wording of the objectives from discussion at the workshop, then adjust these for endorsement at the next scheduled Committee meeting on 15 June 2023.

9.42 am - Mayor Tunui withdrew from the workshop.

10.06 am – Mayor Tunui entered the workshop.

Key Points – Members and Advisors:

·       Keeping the existing five objectives made sense given the funding sources – it was important to keep productivity and drive for economic prosperity and growth.  There was strong support to retain the five objective themes, and the seven objectives within

·       Route security was critical when considering resilience – particularly of state highways 30, 35 and 2

·       Supported the wording ‘identified and actioned’ in relation to resilience.

In Response to Questions:

·       The guidance document for the RLTP had been developed by the Transport Special Interest Group (TSIG), which was endorsed by Waka Kotahi

·       The efficiency of the objectives was monitored through a set of KPIs (under the headline targets), which were the primary measure of whether each objective was being achieved 

·       There was also an annual monitoring report on the KPIs which provided a snapshot on how the current RLTP was tracking, available on Council’s website: Regional Land Transport Plan | Bay of Plenty Regional Council | Toi Moana (

·       Clear investment stories needed to be told to provide clarity around what was trying to be achieved

·       The term ‘transport system’ was a more holistic term than ‘transport network’ as it incorporated everything supported by the network – safety programmes, etc.

Direction Provided:

A robust discussion was held with alternative objectives considered, and the Committee provided the following direction:

·     Objective One: no change recommended

·     Objective Two: the word ’reduced’ to replace ‘minimised’

·     Objective Three: no change recommended

·     Objective Four: the word ’reduced’ to replace ‘minimised’

·     Objective Five: amend to ‘‘Communities have access to an inclusive, equitable and reliable transport system that…’

·     Objective Six: further work was required on this objective to address integration with spatial planning and having transport networks that support this (potentially an additional specific objective would be a better option). 

·     Objective Seven: amend to ‘Resilience issues in the transport system have been proactively identified and actioned so that the region can respond to…’.



10.25 am – The workshop adjourned.

10.47 am – The workshop reconvened.



Headline Targets


Key Points:

·       The headline targets were derived from the objectives and were the key measures of what was sought to be achieved through the RLTP

·       Past issues with some data sources (particularly for economic prosperity, resilience and security) had improved, but it was still important to consider whether targets were SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound).

·       The 2020 baseline for headline targets was not as accurate as expected due to the post Covid-19 data set

·       Noted a grammatical error in the 2021-31 RLTP headline target for inclusive access, which should read: ‘increase mode share for public transport and active modes to 20% by 2030’.

Key Points – Members and Advisors:

·       Suggested that with the strong focus on Vehicle Kilometres Travelled (VKT) reduction, a target based upon this may be better aligned - requested to disentangle emissions reduction from VKT

·       Freight transport values could be normalised by amount of freight or a per person basis

·       Needed to consider whether marine emissions were to be included, as there were a share of these allocated to each council which could significantly impact targets

·       Being less aspirational had negative impacts for the community

·       Suggested that travel time and travel time predictability could be better measured

·       Needed to consider that working from home was an “active mode” in its own way - this was likely to increase and should be recognised

·       93% of freight by tonne was moved by road.

In Response to Questions:

·       Whilst data could be collected from numerous sources, it was important to note the long-term nature of the headline targets and the criticality of reliable and consistent information/data sources

·       At a national level, TSIG recommended using ‘road and or rail freight volumes’ as a proxy for economic prosperity. It was recommended that the Committee do the same, although historically this had been difficult to measure

·       The current targets were agreed during the development of the previous RLTP and reducing the number of KPIs reported on was under consideration

·       Clarified that the mode share measure was the relative share across all modes in the transport system

·       Target one aligned with Waka Kotahi’s “Road to Zero” campaign

·       There were dimensions of economic prosperity that transport contributed to and it was important to understand how the primary freight network worked and how efficient it was, in order to measure it

·       Emissions data was difficult to capture and there had been challenges nationwide in finding a suitable source.  Waka Kotahi now had an available  source recommended for use

·       The resilience and security headline target related to the availability of the network to facilitate movement, including accidents, slips and weather events.  What made a route critical was the availability of alternatives.

Direction Provided:

·     Healthy and Safe People: no change

·     Environmental Sustainability: required more thought and a more generalised/ high level target should be considered, along with the various alignments discussed

·       Inclusive Access: Combine active modes and public transport

·     Economic Prosperity: Suggested removing ‘predictability’ and use travel time and congestion with road and rail freight volume.  Another view was that predictability was both useful and measurable – suggested including travel time and travel time predictability as a target

·     Resilience and Security: further work to be undertaken on this target – reflecting shipping and air, and the rail system and closures following recent weather events

·     Check for internal consistency across the targets.





Key Points:

·       There were 37 policies under the key objective themes in the 2021-31 RLTP which could be reduced after reviewing if the Committee considered this was too many.

Direction Provided:

·       The Committee were comfortable with the recommended approach of staff reviewing the policies with support from the Regional Advisory Group (RAG), before being provided to a Committee meeting for consideration.



Advancing the Investment Logic Map (ILM)


Key Points:

·       The ILM could be adapted to reflect any national policy changes

·       Outlined the requested change to Problem Statement 1 by Tauranga City Council

·       The wording of the ILM was important to flow through into the strategic level of the RLTP document.

Members and Advisors’ Comments/ Direction Provided:

·       Investing in capacity needed to occur to progress the transport system and this was not adequately covered in the initial ILM, nor was congestion affecting the quality of life in the region’s cities

·       Define what was meant by ‘unsustainable urban form’ within the ILM

·       Supported the wording changes suggested by Tauranga City Council in the presentation

·       Suggested ‘sub-optimal urban form’ replace ‘unsustainable urban form’

·       The logic behind not including the capacity constraints was that there could be a higher rating in the benefit statement for environmental outcomes – the trade-off was that although growth and capacity led to worse environmental outcomes, it could also lead to improved community wellbeing

·       In the ILM workshop, ‘unsustainable’ was considered literal in that it could not be sustained economically, socially or environmentally over a period of time – defining what needed to happen differently in communities was key

·       Contradicting government policies and initiatives was a significant challenge.  Transport issues were also driven by urban and rural form

·       Priority investment must be across the entire region and consider regional decentralisation of industrial and commercial hubs.  It was important that capacity constraints and congestion did not impact long term investment into regional connections to maximise sustainable growth.

Key Points - Staff:

·       Supporting statements could be supplied with the Problem Statement to provide definition.

12.17 pm – Greg Pert withdrew from the workshop.



3.     Next Steps

After the draft GPS was released in May 2023, the prioritisation process would begin and noted that the ILM fed into the priorities and the three to ten year phase of the RLTP document.






The workshop closed at 12.27 pm.