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Research Report 613 Seismic design and performance of high cut slopes

Published: | Category: Activity management , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

A review of the performance of slopes in historical earthquakes, a review of relevant literature describing recent research, consideration of New Zealand’s distinctive topography and seismicity, and limited numerical analyses have been carried out. Steep slopes have failed in past earthquakes, with the initiation of failures in the upper part of slopes indicating the contribution of topographical amplification of earthquake motions. Landslides have been concentrated in hanging wall areas relative to fault rupture, particularly in thrust fault rupture earthquakes. Past research and numerical analyses show that topographical amplification at the crest of a ridge and terrace slopes is likely, with the magnitude of the amplification being dependent on the frequency of the earthquake motions relative to the shape of the topography. The presence of weathered rock (or soil) overlying unweathered rock was shown to rise to larger amplifications of ground shaking.

Research Report 620 Incorporating and assessing travel demand uncertainty in transport investment appraisals

Published: | Category: Economic development , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

Uncertainty is pervasive when it comes to transport investment decisions. While it is natural to improve the traffic forecasts that inform such decisions, it is also important to acknowledge fundamental uncertainty exists about the future. Consequently, a process is required that acknowledges and addresses these uncertainties as part of improving investment decisions. This paper explores the uncertainties within transport modelling and the ways flexibility in the face of uncertainty can add value to a transport project. Insight into value is revealed by way of examples of real options. Likewise examples of adaptive management are explored. A process is recommended that explores the nature of the key uncertainties pertaining to a transport investment and actively searches for robust solutions in the face of uncertainties. This process transparently sets the trade-offs inherent in alternative solutions in front of decision makers. Keywords: adaptive management, real options, uncertainty

Research Report 603 The relationship between vehicle axle loadings and pavement wear on local roads

Published: | Category: Activity management , CAPTIF , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

In New Zealand heavy vehicles are charged for using the road based on the damage caused passing over the road. The current approach to charging has its origins in American research that found doubling an axle load increased the damage as a power function with an exponent of 4, known as the Fourth Power Law. This was developed with limited pavement and vehicle load types not representative of most of the roads in New Zealand. This research provided reliable evidence on the wear characteristics of New Zealand local road pavements from accelerated pavement loading studies at the Canterbury Accelerated Pavement Testing Indoor Facility (CAPTIF). The aim was to determine the relative damage on different pavement types/strengths. The data was extended with rut depth modelling with repeated load triaxial data and validated with field data from the nationwide long-term pavement performance sites.

Research Report 619 Approaches to estimating regional input-output tables

Published: | Category: Economic development , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

A methodology was developed with which to produce regional input-output tables for New Zealand. The methodology provides estimates of uncertainty for the entries of the table, allows the incorporation of third-party data, and makes best use of available data, be that official statistics, third-party data, or subject matter expertise. The method contains a novel approach to estimating regional trade, allowing for cross-hauling. In addition to the methodology for estimating regional input-output tables, this work develops indicators of the economic impact of transport and transportation industries using information available in regional input-output tables. The methodology is applied to the World Input-Output Database for the year 2000. The work took place between July and December 2016. Keywords: Bayesian modelling, CHARM method, cross-hauling, input-output analysis, New Zealand economy, regional economic development, World Input-Output Database (WIOD), regional trade

Research Report 597 The prevalence and impairment effects of drugged driving in New Zealand

Published: | Category: Safety, security and public health , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

The purpose of the research was to establish a quantitative picture of the type and the extent of drugged driving in New Zealand and investigate the level of driving impairment produced by the most commonly used drugs, both legal and illegal. A stratified telephone survey (n=2,000) and internet survey (n=434) were conducted to explore the extent of drugged driving. Other than alcohol, the drugs most commonly taken prior to driving were strong opioid-based painkillers, antidepressant medication, anti-nausea medication, cannabis and anti-anxiety medication. A large proportion of drivers also reported taking combinations of different drugs prior to driving. Of the most commonly taken drugs, cannabis, opioid-based painkillers and benzodiazepines (typically used to treat anxiety or insomnia) have been associated with increased crash and driving-related impairment. The combination of drugs and alcohol leads to significantly higher crash risk and driving-related impairments.

Research Report 615 Maintaining the effectiveness of audio tactile profiled roadmarkings for their full life cycle

Published: | Category: Activity management , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

This research considered maintenance of the audio, tactile and visual effects of ATP roadmarkings including for situations where the road surface was to be resealed while the ATP roadmarkings had remaining effective life. The ATP roadmarkings studied are formed with raised ribs of thermoplastic or two-part reactive cold-hardening material laid on a chipseal road surface. Measurements and observation indicate the audio and tactile effects of the ATP roadmarkings are long-lasting and effectiveness can be retained with resealing ‘in lane’ adjacent to the ATP roadmarkings. Visual effects of ATP roadmarkings need to be considered and maintained separate from the audio and tactile effects. Overall, ATP roadmarkings should be considered an asset and their performance monitored accordingly. The report proposes an approach to monitoring using a subjective rating system. Keywords: audio tactile profiled (ATP) markings/roadmarkings, chipseal, inverted-profile line markings, maintenance, noticeability, raised-profile markings, reseal, rumble strips, visibility

Research Report 616 Assessing the value of public transport as a network

Published: | Category: Transport demand management , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

The development of a comprehensive mechanism for measuring the value of public transport is important to gain a greater understanding of existing networks and plan optimal future networks. Mechanisms for measuring the value of public transport in New Zealand are currently limited and generally only consider financial aspects. Peak services on high-frequency corridors with high patronage generally operate with high efficiency, while other services such as evening or feeder services typically have low fare box recovery, and low perceived efficiency but are likely to contribute to higher passenger numbers elsewhere across the network and in doing so add value to the network as a whole. This research explored the elements that influence the value of a public transport service and developed a framework that extends the NZ Transport Agency’s economic evaluation procedures to consider the contribution of isolated services to the wider network value.

Research Report 568 Travel time savings and speed: actual and perceived

Published: | Category: Integrated land use and transport systems , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

This project aimed to understand time saving as a motivation for New Zealand drivers’ speeding behaviour in the context of other motivations for speeding, and to investigate the effect of education designed to improve participants’ understanding of the costs and benefits of speeding. The project consisted of four parts: an initial survey on attitudes, education for drivers, a follow-up survey, and collection of real driving data from a small sub-sample of drivers. Results showed that while some drivers sped to save time, drivers more strongly agreed they chose not to speed due to the safety risk and penalties if caught speeding. Respondents tended to overestimate the time savings at high speeds and underestimate the time savings at lower speeds. Most drivers were aware that increasing speed above 100km/h would use more fuel and the majority gave estimates of the fuel savings close to the correct amount.

Research Report 582 Time and fuel effects of different travel speeds

Published: | Category: Safety, security and public health , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

This project investigated the effect of different maximum trip speeds for six New Zealand routes. The study recorded actual mean speeds, time taken and fuel used. Speeds of 40km/h and 50km/h were tested on three short routes and speeds of 80km/h, 90km/h and 100km/h were tested on three long routes. On the short routes, decreasing maximum speed decreased mean speed by 7% to 14% and increased travel time by 8% to 15%. Trips at 40km/h used 3% to 5% less fuel on the two Wellington routes but the difference in fuel used was not significant on the Auckland route. On the long routes, reducing trip maximum speed to 90km/h and 80 km/h reduced mean speed and increased travel time across all routes.

Research Report 614 Establishing the value of resilience

Published: | Category: Economic development , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

Resilience is universally understood to be a ‘good’ concept. Improving the ability to prevent, or respond to, disruption is objectively desirable. However, the means by which we look to achieve resilience is more subjective and debatable. What do we want to be resilient to?
How do we prioritise investment to improve resilience to disruption?
How should stakeholders be consulted when making decisions about resilience?
In addition to the subjectivity of resilience is a plurality of terms, definitions and understanding of the various concepts relating to resilience. A lack of consistency in this regard makes it more difficult for decision makers to do what is right for communities of interest. With this in mind, the NZ Transport Agency commissioned research to ‘establish a consistent approach to transport resilience; terminology, levels of service, valuation and responses’.