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Community asked to consider Wakatipu transport options

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Joint Media Advisory 

Widened footpaths, better connections for walking and cycling, signalised intersections and bus priority lanes, better public transport facilities, street scape upgrades and more techniques to manage parking in town.

These are just some of the options included in an emerging programme of work proposed to vastly improve our journeys through Frankton into and around Queenstown Town Centre (from Ladies Mile and the Kawarau Falls Bridge via State Highway 6 and 6A).

Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC), Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency and Otago Regional Council (ORC) working together as the Way to Go group, have today released details of a wide range of transport projects and is now calling for local feedback.

QLDC General Manager Property and Infrastructure and Way to Go Board Chairperson Peter Hansby said the emerging programme of work has been developed through a detailed business case process and ongoing engagement with a number of key stakeholders and the wider community.

"We’ve landed on a programme of work that we think will result in better movement of people around the Wakatipu basin, improve facilities for walking and cycling and transform the Queenstown town centre into a place people are proud to visit and spend time in," Mr Hansby said.

"Part of this is an emphasis on a transport system that encourages people out of their cars and into public transport, cycling or walking," Mr Hansby said.

"It’s important to note this work is based on extensive modelling and investigation undertaken pre COVID-19. While our growth story might be on a bit of a detour at the moment, we still need to provide high-quality transport choices for today’s community, as well as continuing to look ahead and ensure our transport system can cope when our district recovers," he said.

Waka Kotahi Director of Regional Relationships Jim Harland said that as the region navigates the COVID-19 response, there is a good opportunity to prepare properly for future growth.

"We know that Kiwis and international visitors love Queenstown and that they will return, and we also know the transport issues need to be addressed to provide the best possible environment for residents and visitors."

"Already the NZ Upgrade Programme has seen the Government allocate $90 million to fund some of this programme on SH6 and SH6A. It is important that we hear from the community on how they feel about these plans and how it fits with this emerging programme of work."

Otago Regional Council Public Transport Manager Garry Maloney said public transport will play a crucial role for an improved, linked up transport solution that will come out of this emerging programme.

"Two of the recommendations including priority bus lanes and a dedicated transport hub will vastly improve service levels and customer experience, making catching the $2 bus even more attractive," he said.

An engagement summary will be distributed via the Mountain Scene on Thursday 13 August. In the meantime, it can be read online along an interactive map/feedback form at https://letstalk.qldc.govt.nz/

Feedback closes on 31 August 2020.

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