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In January, Otago Regional Council public transport team leader Julian Phillips said it would investigate the feasibility of such a service early in the year.
But transport manager Garry Maloney yesterday said since lockdown, it was no longer known whether the demand for the airport service was big enough.
‘‘We need to consider the new environment as we plan ahead.’’
Dunedin remains the country’s only international airport without a bus service between the town centre and its airport.
‘‘We’re working on how to complete the investigation in time for it to be an input to the review of the regional public transport plan,’’ Mr Maloney said.
Regional transport committee deputy chairwoman Cr Kate Wilson believed the airport route was not likely to be in the new regional transport plan, which needs to be developed by March, but was looking to ensure a regional bus service could be easily added to the plan, even after the plan was completed.
The Otago Regional Council visited other city and district councils last week to discuss regional transport services in order to understand what each community’s priority was, she said.
‘‘It is a brand new world with Covid-19.’’
Regional transport committee member Cr Jim O’Malley said he was an advocate for public transport, but an airport service was not his first priority in regards to routes.
He would like to see express buses from Mosgiel to the town centre during peak hours.
‘‘[The airport service] would be an interesting idea but there are already [shuttle bus] services operating out there now, and I think when this was looked at another time it did not stack up.’’
He was also unsure how the demand for the service had changed.
The council decided to investigate the route in 2018, but became focused on other major projects.
The airport service was also not considered viable due to costs, distance and a low number of passengers going to and from the airport.