Wellington City and NZTA to sign Accord

20 December 2013

Wellington City Council and the NZ Transport Agency will this week sign an agreement to strengthen the relationship between the two organisations, and to work together on the transport opportunities that benefit the Capital.

Under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding, which is being signed this Friday 20 December, the Council and NZTA will act cooperatively in an open and transparent manner to support much-needed improvements to the transport network in Wellington.

 Both parties agree to early notification and opportunities for discussion of each other’s major programme, plans, project or policy discussions, which may have implications on each other.

 The MoU clearly states that it is a non statutory agreement, so it would not override any of the statutory duties or responsibilities imposed by legislation on either party.

 Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the MoU is an important symbol that the Council and NZTA can work cooperatively while retaining the right to disagree on specific transport policies or projects.

 “How people get around in our compact Capital and improving the quality of our urban environment is core business for Council, and this Accord enables us to remain inside the tent for important transport programmes and projects, taking a ‘no-surprises’ approach,” she says.

 “However, the Accord also makes it clear that we have the right to firmly advocate for the best outcomes for the city.

 “Through this Accord, both parties have identified the need to work constructively on projects that affect the Capital, and have open and positive dialogue. This agreement is a sign Wellington is open for business.”

 Transport Agency Regional Director Jenny Chetwynd says the Accord reflects the close working relationship that will be integral to achieving the shared transport objectives of not only Wellington City but also the wider region, as expressed in the Ngauranga to Airport Corridor Plan.

 “We’re partners and co-investors in Wellington’s transport network, and we share a lot of common ground. Together, we want to foster economic growth, bolster public transport, improve safety, and make our city a better place to walk and cycle around. 

“We look forward to working closely in tandem with the Council as partners, along with Greater Wellington, in achieving the transport outcomes this city and region needs.”

 Cr Andy Foster, Chair of Transport and Urban Development Committee, says the MoU covers a range of strategic actions to improve Wellington’s transport network across all modes.

 “The Accord is about how we work together as well as including a range of specific actions. The specific actions include investigating a Petone to Grenada link road, implementing a high-quality public transport system along the central city ‘spine’, improving the safety of cycle facilities throughout the city and cycling links to Hutt City and Porirua, and adopting a safe systems approach to road safety,” he says.

 The MoU will be signed by Mayor Celia Wade-Brown and Wellington City CEO Kevin Lavery on behalf of Wellington City, and NZTA CEO Geoff Dangerfield and Regional Director Jenny Chetwynd for the NZTA.

 Key points of the MoU between Wellington City and NZTA

 General principles

Apply a “one network” approach to provide those who use the transport system with an experience that is fully integrated across modes, connections and locations.

  • Support economic growth and development in Wellington City through the way we plan for, and invest in the development of a multi-modal transport network and the way we operate and maintain that network.
  • Strengthen Wellington’s strategic location as a freight hub by improving the efficiency of freight movements to, through and beyond Wellington.
  • Ensure that transport and land use decisions are integrated so that the relationship between urban form and the transport network contributes positively to the current and future “liveability” of Wellington.
  • Strengthen the Ngauranga to Wellington Airport Corridor Plan through the implementation of key transport improvements.
  • Improve the resilience, efficiency and reliability of the transport network that links Wellington to the rest of the region and country.
  • Optimise Wellington’s urban network by making more effective use of existing transport capacity across all modes.
  • Use a safe system approach to create a transport system that accommodates human error and vulnerability.
  • Use a robust evidence-based approach to maximise the value for money of our mutual investments in the transport network and system. 
  • Achieve efficiencies for road users and ratepayers through the effective maintenance and operation of local roads and state highways.
  • Look for innovative solutions and share the risk of trialling new ideas to address and resolve issues and problems.

 Strategic actions

  • Investigate options to develop a link road between Petone to Grenada to improve the resilience and efficiency of the future transport network.
  • Enhance Wellington’s strategic location for the movement of freight and people on the north-south sea link by improving access to Centreport and the ferry terminals.
  • Develop a high quality and frequency passenger transport spine by implementing any key actions agreed to as part of the Passenger Transport Spine Study.
  • Continue to work together on the Wellington Northern Corridor Roads of National Significance projects in the Ngauranga to Airport Corridor Plan.
  • Improve opportunities for active mode travel including safe cycle routes for access to and from the CBD and between Wellington and the Hutt Valley and Wellington and Porirua.
  • Investigate and implement options to optimise the transport network for all transport modes through integrated network operational management eg Joint Traffic Operating Centre.
  • Continue to progress the agreed work programme, and work together to develop the 2015–2018 Regional Land Transport Programme.