What is ATAP, and why is it needed?
The Government and Auckland Council recognise the importance of Auckland’s economic success to the national economy. As joint transport investors, they have a shared interest to ensure value for money but have not always agreed on the best way to achieve this.
Given the growth challenges that Auckland is facing, and the need for some big transport decisions to deal with this, the Government and Council have agreed on the need to improve alignment on a long-term strategic approach to transport in Auckland.
ATAP aims to jointly develop this strategic approach. It will identify whether better returns from transport investment can be achieved, particularly in relation to four key objectives:
- Support economic growth and increased productivity by ensuring access to employment/labour improves relative to current levels
- Improve congestion results, relative to predicted levels, in particular travel time and reliability, in the peak period and to ensure congestion does not become widespread during working hours
- Improve public transport's mode share, relative to predicted results, where it will address congestion
- Ensure any increases in the financial costs of using the transport system deliver net benefits to users of the system
What does the Foundation Report cover?
The Foundation Report sets out:
- The current transport situation, including historical demand
- Possible future trends, including population and employment growth and their impact on transport demands
- An approach to evaluating intervention options, including key indicators to measure interventions against
- The likely performance of Auckland’s transport system under current policy settings, including the challenge of providing access to new housing areas
What does the Foundation Report find?
The Foundation Report finds that:
- Progress has been made over the last 10 years in providing access and increasing public transport use though developing new corridors, but the next generation of transport investments will be more challenging as they generally don’t have available corridors set aside.
- Over the next 30 years access to employment looks set to improve for residents in North and Central Auckland but access for those in the South and West will likely need to be addressed.
- If not addressed, congestion could get worse in the next 20 years, before stabilising in the third decade.
- Public transport mode share in the morning peak increases from 7 percent to 15 percent over the next 30 years.
- Emerging transport & communications technologies have the potential to radically alter future travel demand and supply
What happens next?
The initial results reported in the Foundation Report suggest that there are opportunities to deliver better outcomes by making some changes to the transport interventions that have been proposed previously.
The next phase of the project will examine these opportunities in more detail. This will involve the testing of different intervention packages (combinations of infrastructure investments, services and policies) against the project objectives.
In addition to investments in infrastructure and services that increase system capacity, the potential for demand-side interventions that could improve the productivity of the existing transport system will be assessed. After receiving final recommendations later this year, the Government will consider our preferred approach.
How can I get more details?
The Foundation Report is being released on the Ministry of Transport’s website. The Ministry’s website also provides information about ATAP including the Terms of Reference for the project agreed between Government and Auckland Council. As further information from the project becomes available, it will also be published on the Ministry of Transport’s website.
What opportunities are there for public input?
The ATAP Project team has met with a number of key stakeholders, to seek feedback as appropriate. Further engagement will continue as the project progresses.
Wider public consultation is likely to happen in the work that follows ATAP to implement the agreed strategic approach.
This will include consideration of changes to statutory and strategic documents, such as the 2018 Government Policy Statement, the Auckland Plan and Auckland Council’s Long-Term Plan, which are subject to public consultation.