Councillor's Christchurch park and ride plan may not solve traffic issues

City councillor Anne Galloway believes a park and ride for motorists from the south-west...
City councillor Anne Galloway believes a park and ride for motorists from the south-west travelling into the central city could ease congestion. Photo: Geoff Sloan
The viability of a park and ride facility for motorists travelling into Christchurch from the south-west has been scrutinised.

Earlier this year, councillor Anne Galloway called on Christchurch City Council staff to investigate the feasibility of a park and ride facility in the vicinity of Halswell, which would allow residents to park their vehicles and take public transport into the central city.

However, city council head of transport Richard Osborne said consultants have not yet identified a park and ride facility within the city’s boundaries as a cost-effective measure of improving bus patronage and access.

Osborne said the effectiveness of a park and ride facility is very much dependent on the competitiveness of the bus service when compared with private vehicle use, the cost of providing the facility, and the availability of creating parking spaces adjacent to bus routes.

He said it is also important to be wary of the traffic issues that can arise from the creation of park and ride facilities.

Park and ride facilities can consolidate traffic to a single point and cause congestion by having concentrated demand around when buses are arriving and departing.

However, Galloway still thought there was room to explore the idea of a park and ride facility.

“I just think that it is worth continuing to explore options within Halswell,” she said.

She still thought a park and ride model could be a good way to encourage people on to public transport and could complement the bus priority lanes planned for Lincoln Rd.

Galloway thought this was particularly pressing considering the city council’s goal of having a carbon-neutral city by 2045.

In the 2016/2017 financial year, Christchurch emitted an estimated 2,485,335 gross tonnes of carbon emissions.

Transportation was the largest contributor to the city’s emissions, accounting for 53 per cent.

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