Rodney residents are furious about Auckland Council’s decision to exclude public transport in the region from its draft long-term plan.
Currently Auckland Transport does not fund public transport services north of Waiwera, which Steven Garner, Rodney Local Board transport spokesperson, says is “not enough”.
Garner said Auckland Council was instead focusing on large-scale roading plans, including a $2 billion extension of the Northern Motorway from Puhoi to Wellsford.
He felt the council had not communicated enough with the Rodney community to understand its transport needs.
Even so, with a new region-wide rating system coming into force from July, more than a third of Rodney residents’ rates will go towards transport.
Chris Hart, a founding member of the Whangateau Residents and Ratepayer Association, was frustrated by the unfair distribution of costs.
“If the council were to promise a bus service then we would be getting value for money,” he said.
Mike Lee, the chairperson of Auckland’s transport subcommittee, said the main issue was a lack of people using public transport.
Lee said the council had the development of the Silverdale park-and-ride as a high priority.
Wayne Walker, an ex-Rodney Council member who is now an Auckland councillor, said transport to the Hibiscus Coast came first.
“We need to get our act together with existing services.”
Walker said car-pooling services were something the council “needs to resource more”.
Submissions for Auckland’s draft Long-Term Plan and the Regional Land Transport Programme closed this week.