Queenstown Lakes District Council, the NZ Transport Agency and Otago Regional Council have joined forces to develop and deliver a safe, connected and accessible transport network for the Wakatipu area.
The collaborative partnership will now be known as Wakatipu Way to Go and recognises that all three agencies have an important role to play in driving change.
QLDC Mayor Jim Boult said the challenges facing Queenstown are unique with substantial and sustained growth happening across a number of sectors, including tourism and resident numbers.
“We’re all aware of the issues facing our transport network in and around Wakatipu – our residents are telling me on a daily basis and I experience them myself.”
“However through the Wakatipu Way to Go partnership, we can make more headway into tackling the challenges and meet our end goal of working together to build the best possible transport network for the Wakatipu basin,” he said.
NZ Transport Agency Director Regional Relationships, Jim Harland said, “As a partnership we are committed to planning for an enduring, affordable, safe transport network that will connect communities and provide people with transport choice. The information we gather now, our planning and the changes we make together will make it easier and safer for people to live, travel and do business in Queenstown.”
Otago Regional Council chairman Stephen Woodhead said that a shared vision for travel would achieve the most sustainable solution. “We know that public transport will have an important part to play in Wakatipu’s future transport networks, but that’s only part of the picture. Working closely together is the best way we can drive change, not only through infrastructure development, but also through changing expectations about how to get around. We need to make a shift away from always going straight to the car as the first choice mode of travel.”
There has already been a significant amount of planning work completed to identify potential solutions and the group will continue to build on this, focusing on the following projects:
Mayor Jim Boult said community involvement will play a hugely important role in developing future solutions.
“Planning for an effective network requires insights and ideas from the people who use it every day. Whether you’re a cyclist, a pedestrian, motorist or public transport user, you’ll have slightly different perspectives. Drawing these out and into future solutions will be important as we move forward,” Mayor Boult said.
Early community engagement is underway on specific issues people are facing on their journey from Queenstown Airport and Frankton via State Highway 6A into and around Queenstown Town Centre.
Further opportunities for people to participate in the transport planning process is scheduled for April.