Meeting Minutes 5th September
Present: Anne Marie Parsons, Jessie Forslind, Anne Prior, Ann McWhirter, Allison Beck, Annette Direen, Des McIntosh, Chris Ford, Telagi Papau, Nick Stoneman, Meg Davidson, Mavis Timms, Liz Angelo, Veronica Estell, Tom Trevathan, Alex King, Peter Dowden. Greta Yeoman (Star Newspaper), Hayden Peevers
Apologies: John Gibb (ODT)
Peter explained the loop at the Waverley end of no 19 bus route, and how the bus waits for 37 minutes during off peak times, in the middle of the loop at the Waverley end. Off peak times are in the weekend and from 9 to 3 When the new route was introduced, the was was at the bus stop on Murano Street.
Anne Prior told the meeting that she had calculated that there were 51 hours of waiting time on the route over a week during off peak times. This does not include waiting times during peak time.
Peter suggested the 37 minutes wait during the off peak be moved to the Belleknowes end.
It was noted that there was no bus stop at Marne St. Hospital, or in Sommerville street, what use is a route if you can't get on or off the bus? This is probably in contravention of the rules for bus stops. Peter's opinion was that there should be a stop outside the Hospital in both directions, and he undertook to pass this on to the Council.
Many members were from City Rise and were badly affected by the changes.
Peter suggested a new route.....(Peter please fill this in)
A member suggested, coming into town, travel the old route until Harvey Norman, then turn left up Rattray Street to Smith Street to join the present route.
People have missed the Number 19 buses in town as there is another bus in the way. This was seen as a disadvantage of the proposed bus hub, although Peter said there would be a technological solution to that at the new bus hub.
Jessie told us there is a 1 hour 20 minute wait if she goes to the library and does not get the bus back home almost immediately. She is taking a taxi because she does not want to be wandering about the supermarket for that long.
Peter summarised the two routes and asked which people preferred. Around 7 were in favour of reinstating the original route, and a couple were in favour of Peter's suggested route.
Peter recognised that his own proposal was not favoured by the meeting and would only advocate for an idea that has public support. Liz suggested we should not plan the new route we want, but simply pass on the problems people have with the routes currently and let the Council plan the routes to provide a service that meets the needs, since that is their job. Peter thought the Council needed help to get it right, and reported that there was a lack of communication in the industry which was hampering a good outcome for bus users.
Allison noted that people could not afford the increased fare to Port Chalmers. It was clarified that this was about the cash fare. Peter noted the cash fare has gone up and people are being encouraged to get a card. This is not affordable if people don't have enough money to buy a card. The idea of a "GoCard foodbank" was suggested.
Chris said that changes to the Bradford service was affecting a disabled person who now has to walk a lot further, as the bus no longer goes to the University.
Nick suggested a clear representation to the ORC, including telling them clearly exactly what we want.
Liz suggested that gold card users are disadvantaged when there are only hourly bus services in the times they can use their cards. Peter said the cutback to hourly service for Belleknowes, which was not announced and we only found out after the new timetables were released, was contrary to the ORC's "Code of Conduct" (the Regional Public Transport Plan). Alex noted that the ORC probably viewed the changes as not a cutback but just a shift of times, as there are now evening services where there were none before. Allison noted that the evening services were vital to young people who did not own cars, so those need to be retained if the service is to be relevant to young people as well as the older generation.
Next meeting 3rd December 11am at Green Island.
A "GoCard foodbank" was suggested. If this were established, people who no longer needed their GoCards such as tourists could drop off their cards at a point such as a supermarket, which could then be passed on to those in need so they could access the cheaper fares.