The following aspects are covered under this theme of the Waikato District Blueprints.
Although all settlements included within the Blueprint project are covered, consultation identified a strong desire within local communities for an increased level of service. It is proposed work be done to ensure that the frequency and timetables allow members of the community to rely on the bus service for access to and from jobs. This applies especially to the transport-poor that do not have access to a private vehicle and whose employment opportunities are dependent on the bus.
Work is underway to investigate the viability of a passenger train service. Opportunities exist for trains to stop at currently unused stations in several of the Blueprint settlements. While no specific initaitives are proposed pending the outcome of this work, it is proposed that opportunities for train services and for the development of train stations within any of the settlements be kept open. Examples include allowance for future developments with a greater density and/or mix of uses within the walkable catchment of a train station, or for the development of a Park and Ride facility.
Any projects undertaken within the vicinity of stations or the railway line should, if possible, create favourable conditions for a possible future train service and associated facilities and/or Transit-orientated development.
The State Highway network
Extensive work on the State Highway network within the district is underway, including the realignment of the Waikato Expressway around Huntly and Taupiri, at Tamahere, and the planning and construction of Southern Links.
Analysis of the above and consultation with NZTA was undertaken as part of the Blueprint project. This was in order to understand impacts of the above on, and opportunities for, the district and/or local communities. Information on the situation of specific areas (Tuakau/Pokeno, Meremere, Huntly, Whatawhata, Tamahere) considered can be found in the draft Waikato District Blueprint under ‘Transport’.
Proposed initiatives under this theme include:
- Refer to identity for cycling and walking tracks
- Secure an improved bus service for the entire Waikato district
- Support the Waikato train stations within the Auckland to Hamilton Corridor project
- Continue to monitor the consequences of State Highway projects on the Waikato district and its local communities, and when possible fulfil an advocacy role to positively influence outcomes.