Bus Users Support Group Otepoti-Dunedin requests that the 2017-2018 Annual Plan include the following:
Bus Stops quality upgrade
A programme to upgrade bus stops in Dunedin (and Palmerston) bus network to a standard equalling or exceeding that in the NZTA Guidelines for Public Transport Infrastructure and Facilities and the World Heath Organisation's WHO Healthy Cities programme, in consultation with bus users. We suggest that improvements be made when normal road maintenance or construction is carried out so that there need not be any extra construction cost. For example, when road markings are reinstated following resealing, the yellow "bus stop" markings could be reinstated in accordance with the 'Guidelines' document. We envisage all this work would be performed by Dunedin City Council at the ORC's instruction (this list was also included in our DCC Annual Plan submission).
More bus stops
We would like the Otago Regional council to fund, and to instruct the Dunedin City Council to install, additional bus stops at the following places (this list was also included in our DCC Annual Plan submission):
- outside Tool Shed, Hillside Rd (one one side only, as the other direction is adequately served by the Caledonian Gymnasium stop)
- outside and opposite Pak n save,, Hillside Rd
- Crawford/Jervois corner
- Crawford/Jetty corner
- Outside and opposite rest home in Marne St/Somerville St Andersons Bay
- Opp/adj Clarendomn Hotel, Mclaggan St
- both sides near bushy end of Canongate/Serpentine Ave hairpin corner
- Both sides Portobello Rd near Portsmouth Drive/Shore St corner
In most cases these proposed stops are not "improvements" as such but bring routes up to standard to comply with the ORC Regional Public Transport Plan 2014 Policy 18 "(a) In built-up urban areas, spacing between bus stops of 300 and 400m are desirable in most situations, certainly no more than 500m apart and no less than 200m apart."
We request the following stops to maintain bus service accessibility in the Octagon area when the Bus Hub is built (these were requested in our submission to the Bus Hub consultation):
- opp/adj Bracken Court, Moray Pl (to replace Savoy/Tip Top stops)
- Opp/adj Library steps (to replace Civic Centre/BNZ stops; could be served by Concord-Port Chalmers bus. We are advised by DCC that although Moray Pl is often closed for graduation, George St and Octagon is always open at such times)
Further improvements to the Dunedin bus service
- Immediate reinstatement of the half hourly frequency during weekdays on the City to Belleknowes end of Route 19 and rapid introduction of half hourly frequency on the Waverly end, to bring this route up to the standards of most other routes. It is unfair to treat this route differently due only to its historically poorer service level as Waverly and Belleknowes ratepayers pay the same public transport levy on their ORC rates.
- Buses after 6pm on Sundays and Public Holidays: We would like these days made identical to Saturday services. We agree that to pay for this, the three normal weekdays that fall between each Christmas and New Year, known as "interstats", (and possibly a few days immediately after New Year) could be changed to run at Saturday service levels to lower costs at a very low-demand time of year.
- Full Public Holiday bus service on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Easter Sunday. The Otago Heritage Bus Society, we hope, wouldn't mind being done out of a job but they have demonstrated that there is a clear unmet demand.
- We would like an Airport bus to be introduced, possibly by extending some Mosgiel services. We think the Waitati/Harington Pont, Waikouaiti and Palmerston fare zones would be appropriate for fares to Allanton, Momona and the Airport respectively.
Changes to fares
- Community service card discount to replace the very limited "beneficiary" discount. In return for this we would agree to Cash fares rounded up to the nearest dollar.
- The minimum top up should be $5 to make use of Go Cards more accessible to people on lower incomes, or at least this lower minimum topup should be available to holders of Community Services Cards, students, elderly and children
- We would like the Go Card Adult fare to be set as the "standard" fare (subject to publicly consulted adjustments) with discount fares and cash fares calculated from thgis base fare. We don't object to cash fares incurring a surcharge in line with the increased costs of collection and the desirability of electronic ticketing for multiple reasons, plus rounding up as detailed above.
- We support the publicly notified fares being the declared maximum permitted fare with council staff and/or bus operators being given discretion to offer discounts of various types from time to time.
- Weekly/Monthly bus passes should be considered.