In late February, Business North Harbour hosted a drop-in information morning for members interested in finding out more about the proposed Rosedale Bus Station which will be built in conjunction with an extension to the busway as part of the Northern Corridor Improvements project during 2019-2021.
The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) is responsible for the bus station and other northern corridor improvements that include extension to the busway from Constellation Drive to Albany and a dedicated walking and cycleway alongside the busway. NZTA is working closely with Auckland Transport to plan and develop public transport options that will link with the station and the extended busway once they are completed.
“The project overall,” says Lucie Timmers from NZTA, “is all about changing transport behaviour and providing more [commuter] options, as the local roads are very congested.”
The bus station is expected to cater to a minimum of 4,000 commuters per day, with the entrance the station and plaza on already-busy Arrenway Drive. Platforms will span Rosedale Road to allow commuters easy access to bus bays on Rosedale Road, and the station will also include pick-up and drop-off areas, mobility parking bays, a waiting area and cycling facilities such as bike racks and lockers.
Janine Brinsdon, general manager of Business North Harbour, says traffic and public transport is a hot topic in the area, as there has been increased congestion in the last 12 months. Business North Harbour is supportive of the Northern Corridor Improvements project, “and in principle we recognise that the bus station will provide an alternative that doesn’t exist for commuters.”
At the same time, North Harbour businesses are concerned that with the bus station mainly catering for commuters heading for the central city, if there are not enough new feeder services to connect commuters to the bus station, local roads around Rosedale could become even more congested with all-day parking than they are at present.
“We need to get more cars off the road. The bus station needs to be there,” says Janine, “but critical to its success is adequate feeder routes and parking management.”
Business North Harbour is keen to ensure that Auckland Transport, which is revamping North Shore services and increasing feeder routes across the Shore this year, will also further increase services ahead of the opening of the busway. “We’d like to see improved services along Rosedale Road during construction, and even before the official opening. It’s a really positive move; we have to get people out of their cars, but it has to be planned.”
Auckland Transport and NZTA are aware that the new bus station may encourage more people to seek all day parking in the area, and are developing an on-street parking strategy to ensure parking encourages local commercial activity, rather than increasing congestion in the area. Detailed traffic modelling assessments are under way, and both organisations are inviting people to respond to a survey that will help assess, among other things, the likelihood of people using the new bus station, of using feeder services, and of their walking or cycling to the new station. It also asks about the amenities people would like to see at the bus station.
If you live or work in the area, you can provide feedback by filling out the online survey form at www.nzta.govt.nz/Rosedale-Busway-Station before 16 March.