Bus-link fight to continue

Greater Green Island Community Network chairman Steve Hayward is "hugely disappointed'' the Otago Regional Council has no plans to restore direct bus links with South Dunedin.

A council committee recently recommended that southern route bus links be restored between Green Island and Concord, but that no direct service be provided between Green Island and South Dunedin.

A petition signed by about 400 people and urging the restoration of a multi-stop No 70 "local'' bus service linking Brighton and South Dunedin was presented to the council in March.

That petition was organised by the community network and supported by Bus Go Dunedin.

Mr Hayward said efforts to have bus links with South Dunedin restored would continue through the public consultation process.

There were close links between Green Island and South Dunedin and people were "hugely disappointed'' over the decision, although the benefit for Concord residents was acknowledged, he said.

Green Island resident Jack Rutherford said he, too, was disappointed by the outcome, and the fight to have the service improved would continue.

Network community workers Leanne Stenhouse and Amanda Reid told the Otago Daily Times yesterday they had already received phone calls from people concerned about the continued loss of the South Dunedin service.

At the committee meeting, council deputy chairwoman Gretchen Robertson acknowledged the work that had gone into the bus options and said the public could make further input into the proposed decision.

Any change in the council's regional public transport plan, including the Concord proposal, will require a notified variation, which will be subject to public submissions, and no changes will take effect until February.

The bus link between Green Island and South Dunedin was lost when the council introduced a more direct southern route bus service to the central city last July.

john.gibb@odt.co.nz

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