INDEPENDENT NEWS

Harbour Bridge: Public Transport A Great Option And Plan Ahead

Published: Sun 20 Sep 2020 02:53 PM
Auckland Transport (AT) is reminding customers to plan ahead this week if they are using routes impacted by the ongoing work on Harbour Bridge by Waka Kotahi, and also that there are plenty of seats available on trains, buses and ferries.
Public transport is a great option for those traveling around the region — and particularly in and out of the city centre — while work is being done on Harbour Bridge, says Shane Ellison, AT’s Chief Executive.
“We have plenty of available passenger capacity as we’ve only been sitting at around 50 per cent of normal pre-COVID levels recently. Ferries are operating as usual and have spare seating capacity. We will also be increasing bus frequency outside of peak hours,” he says.
“This incident will inconvenience many of us, but the best advice is pretty simple: plan ahead as you go about your day. We’re working closely with Waka Kotahi to ensure that disruption right across the network is minimised as much as possible so that we keep Auckland moving for business, freight, education and the general public.
“Our joint operations centre is monitoring traffic 24/7 and adjusting things like traffic signals in real time to keep things flowing as best we can.”AT has looked into how many passengers it can carry on bus routes that go across Harbour Bridge. We found that:For Monday morning, 7:00am to 08:59am:Inbound the Northern Busway has 7000 seats available with normal serviceInbound Onewa Road has 2500 seats available with normal serviceFor Monday outbound, 4:00pm to 5:59pm:Northern Busway has 6500 seats available with normal serviceOnewa Road has 3000 seats available with normal service
*Note that the above figures are for seats only and about 10% more people could be added with standing room. In addition, North Shore ferries will be using the largest vessels available, and additional services are on stand-by.
Like trains, ferries are a great option because they don’t get caught up in traffic, Mr Ellison says.
AT suggests customers consider traveling on public transport during off-peak hours, which will also allow them to take advantage of a 30% discount. Since there may be delays on buses in particular customers are advised to plan their journey with the AT Mobile app, which now also displays how many people are on a bus or train service at any given time, or use the journey planner on our website.
AT also reminds customers that a face covering must be worn while on public transport, register your AT HOP card and scan the on-board QR code with the Ministry of Health’s COVID Tracer app.
“Many people and businesses don’t have a lot of choice about and when they travel, so we appreciate everyone’s ongoing patience and understanding during the disruption,” says Mr Ellison.
For more information visit www.at.govt.nz or Waka Kotahi / NZ Transport Agency’s traffic updates or media release webpages.

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