Meeting of the Regional Transport Committee


Date:                       Friday 16 September 2022

Time:                      10.00am


Council Chamber

Hawke's Bay Regional Council

159 Dalton Street





Item          Title                                                                                                                                           Page


1.         Welcome/Karakia/Notices/Apologies

2.         Conflict of Interest Declarations

3.         Confirmation of Minutes of the Regional Transport Committee held on 9 September 2022

Decision Items

4.         Regional Public Transport Plan Deliberations                              3




Regional Transport Committee

Friday 16 September 2022

Subject: Regional Public Transport Plan Deliberations


Reason for Report

1.        This deliberations report provides the Regional Transport Committee with information to assist it to make informed decisions on the Regional Public Transport Plan.

Officers’ Recommendations

2.        Council officers recommend that the Committee considers the views expressed in the written submissions received, and verbal submissions heard, and the information contained in this report. This information and the views expressed can be used when making decisions in the form of recommendations to Hawke’s Bay Regional Council for the adoption of the Regional Public Transport Plan.


3.        Under the Land Transport Management Act 2003 (LTMA), every Regional Council must adopt a Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP) unless it does not intend to enter any contracts for the supply of public transport services or provide any financial assistance to any operator or user of a taxi or shuttle service. Hawke’s Bay Regional Council does both.

4.        The Plan must be reviewed every three years at the same time as, or as soon as practicable after, the public transport components of a regional land transport plan are approved or varied. The Hawke’s Bay Regional Land Transport Plan was reviewed in 2021.

5.        Hawke’s Bay Regional Council’s Regional Public Transport Plan was last adopted in April 2019 and was the first developed under the new LTMA requirements.

6.        The Draft Regional Public Transport Plan proposes a step-change for public transport that moves away from a coverage approach towards a high-frequency patronage model. The plan proposes a service for the region to make the network more frequent, faster, and more reliable.  These changes will offset the additional time to walk to revised bus stops.

7.        The vision for public transport is ‘To deliver a public transport service that is safe, accessible, and supports the shift to reduce driving and emissions, while improving the economic, social, and environmental wellbeing of the people of Hawke’s Bay’.

8.        At the Council meeting on 27 July 2022, Council adopted the Draft Regional Public Transport Plan amended to incorporate the Proposed Public Transport Network Plan which had been endorsed by the 10 June 2022 Regional Transport Committee meeting, for public consultation.

9.        Council also delegated to the Regional Transport Committee:

9.1.        The hearing of verbal submissions

9.2.        To make decisions on the submissions received by way of recommendations to the Regional Council for the adoption of the Regional Public Transport Plan in its final form.



10.      Public consultation on the Plan was undertaken from Monday 1 August to Wednesday 31 August 2022.

11.      Staff used several platforms to consult and promote engagement, to encourage the public to provide feedback. There was an online submission form on the website. A submission form was also provided in the consultation document, which was also online. That form included details of where to email, post, or hand-deliver submission forms.

12.      Face to face engagement: the Transport team delivered an overview of the proposed network and policies to a wide range of community groups across the region, including special interest groups, community committees, and council subcommittees. The transport team also spoke to attendees at the Go Green expo, providing in depth information into the climate action that the regional council is taking with this approach. This engagement took place across the month of August and reached thousands of HB residents.

13.      A public notice advertisement ran in Hawke’s Bay Today on 1 August 2022, supported by a media release, social media and content on HBRC’s website. Advertising was also placed on goBay bus services, inviting current users to share their thoughts on the proposed changes.

14.      The RPTP consultation drew attention from Tuki Tuki MP, Anna Lorck in support of reinstating passenger rail. This was due to rail not being referenced in the plan. The MP generated media attention for the consultation of the RPTP and held multiple events to support residents to write in support of reinstating a passenger rail service.

15.      HBRC’s Facebook and Instagram social media channels delivered a total of 10 posts and targeted ads concerning this consultation, resulting in:

15.1.      Reach (content seen): 32,297

15.2.      Engagement (reactions, comments, shares, link clicks): 823.

16.      Go Bay’s Facebook social media channel delivered a total of 6 posts and targeted ads, resulting in:

16.1.      Reach: 20,870

16.2.      Engagement: 549.

Submissions received

17.      A total of 244 submissions were received through the consultation period. The majority were submitted by individuals via the online portal or written submissions. Many also provided supplementary submission documents. These broadly took the form of opinion pieces relating to Regional Public Transport networks, infrastructure, and frequency. One independent business case was submitted around the development of a regional solar rail network. 

18.      Twelve detailed written submissions were received. These submissions were from business, key service providers, advocacy groups, and other regional and territorial authorities. These groups are considered key stakeholders in the RPTP and take both a specific and holistic approach to feedback. The key stakeholder submissions broadly focused on providing an agile, efficient, and effective network that is accessible to all people.

19.      Several key stakeholder submissions focused on the need to provide full accessibility to disabled and aged people in HB. These submissions focused on the need to consider end to end journey elements to support the mobility and visually impaired. The need for accessibility and integration of information across the journey lifecycle is a key request. While these groups supported the move to an increased frequency model, they identified how their communities would be disadvantaged by the further distance to bus stops.

19.1.      It was highlighted that MyWay is having a positive impact on their communities and that they would like to see this new mode brought into the proposed regional public transport network permanently. They believe ‘On Demand’ services will provide equity, accessibility, and independence for people of all abilities, and better access to main high-frequency services. A strong case was made for consideration of the fare structure for the mobility impaired community, and the ability for carers to travel free of charge.

19.2.      It was requested that any future public transport plans closely consider the needs and requirements of the disabled and aged persons communities of Hawke’s Bay to enable equitable access.

19.3.      Proposed route changes may present accessibility and patronage issues for these groups. Accessibility will need to be considered in any infrastructure development. Examples of considerations include; presentation of information in a range of formats,  languages (e.g. Braille, Te Reo Māori, audio announcements for hearing impaired) and real time where possible; tactile strips for visually impaired persons at bus stops and on board; bus rolling stock that supports a range of disabled and aged accessibility needs; bus stop infrastructure that supports accessibility; and an integrated service delivery plan to support aged, less able, and disabled peoples end to end journey experience.

19.4.      On demand services such as MyWay are viewed as a great tool to enable both access and independence for disabled and aged peoples. Consideration will be required to ensure such services are holistically suitable for these demographics. To enable an increasingly targeted service, consideration could be given to partnering with existing community disability transport providers to operate in an On Demand capacity. Advocacy groups would like to see on demand services implemented across Hastings and Napier as well as Central Hawke’s Bay (CHB) and Wairoa.

19.5.      A request was made for the consideration of adding bus stops at key facilities and pieces of regional infrastructure that weren’t included in the plan, such as the Clive Pools. Those with mixed abilities often access work or sport venues that are not included in the network but could be with infrastructure improvements.

20.      Detailed submissions were received from significant Hawke’s Bay employers, representing a range of industries, including transport service providers. The two key submissions are outlined below:

20.1.      T&G Global submitted a presentation outlining some of the challenges presented to both the business, staff, and the wider Whakatu industrial area, specifically getting people to and from work. The submission proposed the development of a shift based public transport service running across key suburbs in both Hastings and Napier to align with shift times in Whakatu. Commercial partnership with employers will be a key enabler of this. T&G Global have expressed interest in partnering with Council on this.

20.2.      Te Whatu Ora submitted a written proposal that was broadly supportive of the proposed changes with particular recognition of the move to high frequency more direct services. Further support was offered for the proposed changes to Routes 11 and 12 as well as support for both the medium and long-term network improvements. Concern was raised over the proposed removal of Route 10 H/North bus to and from Hawke’s Bay Hospital as many staff utilise this service. It is worth noting that the reason the express service was not included in the plan, is due to the efficiencies made to the main trunk line. Te Whatu Ora would like the Council to consider extending the trunk line service (to be known as route 1) to Bluff Hill, Ahuriri, and Napier Airport, and the retention of Bay View within the overall network. The main driver of this is staff accessibility to, and coverage of, the public transport network. Te Whatu Ora have expressed interest in engaging further on this.

21.      Two key transport service providers presented detailed submissions outlining feedback and considerations, highlights of which are outlined below:

21.1.      Driver wellbeing and the health and safety of drivers was a key theme across the submissions. A request was made to remove cash fares, as well as concern expressed around the health and safety implications of running later services to certain communities. It is worth noting the health and safety concerns of running services later in the evening was raised in two stakeholder submissions and supported by several other individual submissions in relation to the type of patronage a late-night service would attract, with options to improve safety through the use of CCTV.

21.2.      The proposed changes were broadly supported, with both submissions outlining the opportunity to extend Route 1 to service Hawke’s Bay Airport in a more direct fashion. A notable recurring theme was the request for a more direct service to the Hawke’s Bay Airport came through as a common thread throughout the consultation.

21.3.      On demand services should play an ongoing role in the overall transport network and regional plan. A theme emerged around the opportunity for on demand services to run along current routes that are proposed to be curtailed as a transport and accessibility enabler.

21.4.      Both transport operators strongly supported the inclusion of the Central Hawke’s Bay (CHB) service and see value in fast tracking this element of the proposal. Also mentioned by one transport operator, and supported by individual submissions, was the benefit to operating a CHB service during off peak as well as the proposed commuter service, as well as the potential to reduce peak demand by incentivising off peak travel.

21.5.      Increased reliability of service, resilience of the network, and strengthening of service delivery are core themes – both service providers are committed to improvements. Driver recruitment and retention is outlined as the key to deliver the above and due consideration is required.

22.      Government bodies and other territorial authorities submitted detailed written responses.

22.1.      Strong support for a CHB bus service exists and the community would like to see the commuter service run twice (morning and afternoon). Central Hawke’s Bay District Council (CHBDC), in conjunction with feedback from the community, would like to see the inclusion of a high-level policy to explore the option and suitability of a rail service. This should be done in conjunction with KiwiRail. Overwhelmingly, the residents of CHB would like the commuter bus service fast tracked. There is also support for services to increase beyond commuter times.

22.2.      Horizons Regional Council have recently adopted a new Regional Public Transport Plan. The plan builds in a high-level policy to investigate inter and intra-regional rail options in conjunction with other regional authorities, KiwiRail, Waka Kotahi, and central government.

22.3.      Kainga Ora would like to see any future public transport network support and enable access to existing and future Kainga Ora communities.

22.4.      Safer Napier Strategic Group would like focus placed on key elements of an effective public service including safety of routes and associated infrastructure, reliable, effective, and frequent services, a physical environment that supports safe travel for all users (e.g., robust conditions of carriage, CCTV, etc), and access for all members of the community.

23.      In total, 198 (81%) submitters supported the overall proposal, 13 (5.3%) did not support the changes, and 33 (13.5%) submitters provided no answer to that question. This feedback indicates broad support for a move to a more frequent network, using a patronage model.


24.      The breakdown of those who stated they were residents or ratepayers of HB versus those who are not is as follows:

Hawke’s Bay Rate payer summary


Response number

Response percentage







No answer






24.1.      Of the submissions received outlining they are not ratepayers, 23 were from businesses, other regional or territorial authorities, or advocacy groups. The remainder are likely to be people who rent property and permanently reside in HB.

25.      All 244 submissions commented on at least one question.

Headlines and key themes of submissions

26.      The majority (81%) of submitters support the premise of the RPTP proposal – a move away from infrequent one-way loop coverage towards a high frequency, more direct services. A small group (13.5%) of submitters gave no answer, with a minority (5.3%) not supporting the changes.

27.      The graph below shows the split of submissions received by constituency. The areas with the largest representation are Heretaunga-Hastings (39.3%), and Ahuriri-Napier (28%).


28.      Of the 5.3% of submitters who did not support the RPTP proposal, clear themes were:


Sub themes


·    Would like a commuter rail system

·    Do not support buses as a public transport mechanism

Not a public transport user

·    Have not used public transport and have limited intention to do so

29.      All submissions (244) have been analysed and theme coded. Key themes were kept consistent across all questions to enable continuity of insights. The themes are high level and build into elements of the public transport system or potential policy. A statistical analysis of the themed responses is included in an appendix.


Key insights

Out of scope

·   This theme was applied to submission that were largely complaints and had no relevance to the RPTP proposal.

Connection with areas outside Hastings/Napier

·   25% of respondents indicated they would be more inclined to utilise a Public Transport service if it connected to areas outside of Hastings/Napier.

·   An emerging theme was the request to have public transport options or opportunities that connect communities outside the urban areas with key transport routes. The Cape Coast area was consistently raised.

·   Consideration should be given to enabling/supporting community transport options in smaller communities such as CHB and Wairoa.

Option for train/rail service

·   This theme was the subject of many submissions, with a significant level of support.

·   The submitters were interested in both a commuter service between CHB, Hastings, Napier, and Wairoa, as well as inter-regional connections (e.g., Gisborne, Wellington).

·   There is little information of the costs and feasibility available publicly, and no mention of rail in the plan.  Without guidance on the costs or feasibility, the public have suggested it as a viable alternative.

Better timetables (including reliability, frequency, extended hours)

·   This was raised in most submissions.

·   Speaks to need for a reliable & frequent network with minimal cancellations that largely runs on time.

·   Some submitters suggested looking at the option for bus lanes along key routes to ensure bus prioritisation.

·   Improved timetables are both a key enabler and supporter of improved service delivery.

More efficient buses (including electric, well maintained)

·   There was little focus placed on this by submitters, but those who did were strongly in support. Reliability, frequency, and efficiency were rated as more important.

Better/increased choice of routes/connections across suburbs

·   While this was a consistent theme across submissions, it was not as important as better timetables and improved service delivery.

·   Some expressed concern at the impact of removing Tait Drive from the trunk route.

·   Other respondents focused on the need for public transport to service large employment hubs on a regular basis.

·   General theme of convenience/increased choice presented throughout the submission. On Demand transport is a response to this requirement.

Increased multi modal integration

·   Increased level of secure bike storage and e-bike charging at key interchanges was suggested by many submitters.

·   Bike racks on buses that support e-bikes.

·   Increased multi modal integration at key hubs within the network, such as Clive, to service the Cape Coast community.

Improved service delivery (reliability, maintenance, physical environment, efficiency, etc)

·   Support for a more frequent, reliable, and efficient service.

·   Submissions spoke to the end-to-end journey experience and included key themes of safety, security, access, reliability, well maintained buses, good route infrastructure, efficient trip times.

·   This theme featured consistently as a secondary theme, underscoring the importance to robust service delivery within an efficient and effective public transport network.

Increased rapid transit

·   A more direct route to the Hawke’s Bay Airport is desired.

·   Options for work/shift-based services to a variety of key employment hubs is desirable.

Increased on demand services/options

·   On Demand is viewed as a great addition to the network. Trials are desired across the region.

·   Viewed as a key enabler/connector for disabled and aged communities.

·   Theme strongly represented in written submissions.

Focus on transport disadvantaged

·   Fare structure review for families, people on benefits, and those with carers, including free travel for companions.

Increased access for disabled and aged populations

·   This was somewhat represented in the bulk of the overall submissions. However, increased access was strongly reflected in detailed written submission.

·   Concerns were raised for the need to increase access for those that aren’t aided by the patronage model.

Real-time bus information

·   A strong theme across both detailed written submission and independent submission.

·   An integrated real time information solution is desirable. Submitters indicated this would significantly improve service delivery and customer experience.

Covered in consultation

·   Used to capture responses that were covered in the consultation document already.

Safety, technology

·   Reflected across submissions as a tertiary theme.

·   Respondents would like a focus on improved trip security, improved lighting at bus stops, and ways to leverage technology to ensure safety and efficiency.

Recommendations to amend the Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP)

Resolve to accept and adopt the proposed RPTP with the following amendments:

30.      Add further detail to Policy 49, expanding the progressive implementation of integrated real time end to end trip information across the network and applicable channels (e.g., bus stops, applications, online, in-bus)

31.      Better specify the expected timeframe for the trial of the CHB commuter service, and the inclusion of key destinations (Waipukurau, Waipawa, Otane).

32.      Better consider the disabled and aged communities in the plan by restructuring the policy areas to ensure access is a priority across all aspects of the network.

32.1.      Acknowledge that the move from a coverage to patronage model network may adversely affect disabled and aged communities. Include a policy to actively engage with reference groups as subject matter experts in the design of bus stops, fare structures, customer experience, and service development to ensure accessibility and equity are meeting the needs of all people across the whole network.

32.2.      Include a policy to continue to trial on demand services as a tool to enable greater access to the wider public transport network for disabled and aged communities with a view that the mode is a complimentary network enabler.

32.3.      Amend fare policies to reflect consideration for fare exemptions for the mobility impaired and their companions, with value given to the balance of costs across all funded activities (i.e., the increased cost of further subsidising PT fares is outweighed by the savings in total mobility subsidies).

33.      A strong level of support for trains, both inter-regional and commuter services was noted in the submissions. Preliminary advice points to the cost prohibitive nature of passenger rail services in HB, resulting in significant funding constraints and the inability to deliver. However, given the large level of interest, the following actions are proposed:

33.1.      Making preliminary figures available, that outline the public cost of rail as a mode of passenger transport. This should be shared publicly. 

33.2.      Inclusion of a high-level policy aligned with the approach of Horizons Regional Council – committing to working with Waka Kotahi, KiwiRail, local government, and central Government, to investigate options for a connected regional passenger rail network.

33.2.1.      Include further policy to reinforce the need for advocacy to central Government to ensure sufficient regional investment is made in key infrastructure improvements such as expanding the rail network.

33.2.2.      Commit to a feasibility study of passenger/commuter rail in Hawke’s Bay (HB).

34.      Revise Policy 63 and 64, broadening the scope to include all communities outside of the HB urban areas. Key communities to include in the extended scope are Wairoa, CHB, and the Cape Coast area. This policy would identify the delivery of community based public transport systems/networks with requirements defined by the community that focus on connecting with the main public transport network.

35.      Inclusion of a policy to monitor and review the effectiveness, efficiency, and equity of a transition to a high frequency direct public transport model. Regular reviews will be undertaken with key stakeholders, proposed annually.

36.      Inclusion of a policy that considers opportunities to develop commercial partnerships with business partners to provide targeted public transport services that meet the needs of both the business community and employees.

37.      Development of policy that ensures HB Councils work together to achieve effective integration of multi modal transport, including the provision of secure bike storage and e-bike charging stations within easy reach of bus stops at key interchanges and locations such as Clive, that are fed by cycleways that provide vital connections to more remote communities like Te Awanga and Haumoana.

Financial and resource implications

38.      If the decision to adopt the RPTP with recommendations shown is made, additional internal resource will be required to develop new programmes and increase the scope and pace of proposed programmes.

39.      Changes to the proposed network will result in increased cost for external consultants, to redesign in accordance with additional or alternative requirements.

Key obligations of the Regional Transport Committee in making its decisions

40.          In making its decisions, the Committee is required to:

40.1.      Consider the advantages and disadvantages of the reasonably practicable options identified in this report (i.e., to extend community transport options to all rural communities in HB, and the associated cost involved).

40.2.      Consider the views and preferences of all persons likely to be interested in or affected by the matter (as expressed through consultation). This means:

40.2.1.      Giving due consideration and having regard to all views and preferences, and

40.2.2.      Giving due consideration and having regard to such views and preferences with an open mind (i.e., not having a predetermined view).

40.3.      Take account of:

40.3.1.      The diversity of the community, and the community’s interests within the HB region

40.3.2.      The interests of future as well as current communities, and

40.3.3.      The likely impact of any decision on the interests referred to above.

Decision Making Process

41.      Council and its committees are required to make every decision in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Act 2002 (the Act). Staff have assessed the requirements in relation to this item and have concluded:

41.1.      The Regional Transport Committee has been delegated by Hawke’s Bay Regional Council to make decisions on matters relating to the adoption of the Regional Transport Plan by way of resolution on 27 July 2022; being:

41.1.1.      Delegates to the Regional Transport Committee the hearing of verbal submissions and to make decisions on the submissions received by way of recommendations to the Regional Council for the adoption of the Regional Public Transport Plan in its final form.

41.2.      The persons affected by this decision are those with an interest in public transportation and those who submitted to the draft Regional Public Transport Plan.



That the Regional Transport Committee:

1.        Receives and considers the Deliberations on the Regional Public Transport Plan staff report in conjunction with the written submissions received and verbal submissions heard on 9 September 2022

2.        Recommends that Hawke’s Bay Regional Council:

2.1.         Agrees that Council can exercise its discretion and make decisions on this issue having considered the recommendations of the Regional Transport Committee made after having received and considering submissions received as the result of community consultation over the period 1 August through 31 August 2022.

And either

3.        Agrees to adopt the Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP) as it was presented to the Regional Transport Committee prior to consultation


4.        Agrees to adopt the Regional Public Transport Plan, with the proposed amendments.


5.        Does not adopt the Regional Public Transport Plan and seeks redevelopment of the plan.


Authored by:

Bryce Cullen

Transport Strategy Policy Analyst

Katie Nimon

Transport Manager

Approved by:

Katrina Brunton

Group Manager Policy & Regulation





RPTP submission response analysis by question and theme




Regional Public Transport Plan - With tracked changes


Under Separate Cover


RPTP submission response analysis by question and theme

Attachment 1


PDF Creator