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Introduction

This section provides guidance for assessing public transport improvement, rapid transit and transitional rail activities that target a specific increase in levels of service as part of a public transport network. Each activity has an implementation cost of over $1,000,000.

For general information about developing an assessment profile including relevant reference frameworks, see Developing an assessment profile.

Prior requirements for assessment

Before an investment proposal is assessed against the Investment Assessment Framework (IAF), a business case must be developed, which the Transport Agency will assess to ensure it:

  • is robust and has been developed using business case approach (BCA) principles
  • meets the requirements for being included in the National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) and is eligible for NLTP funding.

For further information about prior requirements, see Developing an assessment profile.

Results alignment

For public transport, rapid transit or transitional rail improvement activities, results alignment can be low, medium, high or very high (see below).

NOTE: Rapid transit improvement proposals need to demonstrate that they will substantially increase the movement of large numbers of passengers on dedicated key major metro corridors

 

  • Requirements for a low rating

    A public transport, rapid transit or transitional rail improvement activity may be given a low results alignment rating if the activity addresses one or more of the following criteria:

    Strategic priority Criteria for a low rating
    Access – thriving regions; liveable cities
    • Addresses an identified  gap in the level of service in accessing social or economic opportunities
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  • Requirements for a medium rating

    A public transport, rapid transit or transitional rail improvement activity may be given a medium results alignment rating if the activity addresses one or more of the following criteria:

    Strategic priority Criteria for a medium rating
    Access – thriving regions
    • Addresses a significant gap in level of service in accessing social or economic opportunities  and is identified in an approved programme
    • Addresses a significant gap for inter-regional public transport
    Access – liveable cities
    • Addresses a significant gap in level of service in accessing social or economic opportunities and is identified in an approved programme
    • Addresses an identified gap in access to new housing in medium growth urban areas
    • Trials innovations in public transport that test improvements in levels of service
    • Supports agreed integrated land use and multi-modal plans in urban areas
    Environment
    • Enables reductions in environmental and public health harms, particularly arising from land transport-related air pollution and noise.
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  • Requirements for a high rating

    A public transport, rapid transit or transitional rail improvement activity may be given a high results alignment rating if the activity addresses one or more of the following criteria:

    Strategic priority Criteria for a high rating
    Safety
    • Enhances actual and perceived safe use of and access to public transport
    Access – thriving regions:
    • Addresses a significant gap in level of service in accessing social or economic opportunities in a region and is identified in an approved regional economic development programme (RED) as making a significant contribution
    • Makes best use of the public transport service operations in a multi-modal context with land use
    • Supports technology to enhance public transport user experience
    • Addresses significant resilience gap in the public transport network
    • Addresses an unplanned loss of an existing significant public funded transport connection
    Access – liveable cities:
    • Addresses a significant gap in level of service in accessing social or economic opportunities and makes a significant contribution
    • Supports agreed integrated land use, multi-modal plans and mode shift in major metros
    • Improves intermodal connectivity where this enhances the appropriate use of public transport
    • Makes best use of the public transport service operations and connection to other services
    • Supports technology to enhance public transport user experience
    • Addresses significant resilience risk to continued operation of the public transport network
    • Addresses an unplanned loss of an existing significant public funded transport connection
    • Addresses a significant gap in access to new housing in high growth urban areas
    Environment
    • Enables significant reductions in environmental and public health harms, particularly arising from land transport-related air pollution and noise
    • Enables long term reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from land transport.
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  • Requirements for a very high rating

    A public transport, rapid transit or transitional rail improvement activity may be given a very high results alignment rating if the activity addresses one or more of the following criteria:

    Strategic priority Criteria for a very high rating
    Safety
    • Addresses a very high predicted safety risk resulting from public transport
    Access – liveable cities
    • Enables a substantial increase in access to social and economic opportunities for large numbers of people  along dedicated key corridors and enables transit-oriented development.


     

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Cost–benefit appraisal

The Transport Agency requires approved organisations and the Transport Agency (state highways) to use the Transport Agency Economic evaluation manual  procedures and templates to determine the benefit–cost ratio (BCR) for public transport, rapid transit and transitional rail improvement activities.

For further information on cost–benefit appraisal see Developing an assessment profile.

 

  • Further considerations and requirements

    Ranking

    Refer to Prioritisation of activities for information on calculating the BCR and on the resulting rating.

    Use of generic or default BCR

    No placeholder, generic or default BCRs are to be used.

    Peer review

    The Transport Agency reserves the right to require a peer review of cost–benefit appraisal determinations and measures, including any non-monetised/additional benefits and adverse impacts, regardless of the scope, prior to an investment decision. 

    Insufficient information (L*)

    An activity can be included in the NLTP even if a cost–benefit appraisal has not been prepared or if robust evidence is lacking to support the assessment. In such cases the rating for cost–benefit appraisal will default to L (low) for improvement activities. The Transport Agency represents these activities as L* to indicate that more information is required to achieve a robust assessment profile.

    An activity with an L* status will not be considered for funding approval.

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