Part C: Our work in detail

6 Urban development – Tāone tupu ora me
7 Transport – Waka

7
Transport
Waka
By the numbers

46,300

Projected Wellington City population increase 2014-2043. This is an increase of 23%.

21,400

Projected increase in the number of dwellings in Wellington city 2013-2043. This is an increase of 27.4%.

94%

Increase in number of people cycling to and from work – 2001-2013.

25%

Increase in number of people using buses to get to and from work – 2001-2013.

The Council’s urban development work includes urban planning, controlling building activity and land use, assessing risks from earthquake-prone buildings, and developing and enhancing public spaces.

Our transport work includes transport planning, managing the city’s network of roads, cycleways and walkways, managing parking in the city, and promoting safety.

We fund these services because they matter to the lives of individual Wellingtonians and to the community as a whole.

Our work helps to make Wellington a compact, vibrant, attractive city in which it is easy to get from place to place.

This is essential for connections between people, their ability to interact with each other, and their enjoyment of the city and what it has to offer.

It is necessary for the economy, the ability of businesses to reach their markets, and to collaborate and innovate.

It is vital for the environment because a city with a smaller footprint produces fewer emissions and consumes fewer resources.

It is crucial for people’s health and safety, in the buildings they live and work in, and on the roads, walkways and public spaces they use.

In the next 10 years, the Council plans to spend more than $1.2 billion (net) on transport and urban development.

We aim to manage development so the city remains compact, vibrant, attractive, safe and resilient, in which it’s easy for people to connect with each other and to move from place to place.

The Council is one player among many in the city’s built environment. Urban development and transport decisions also involve central and regional government, businesses, local communities, and individuals.

The Council’s key roles are to provide public spaces and infrastructure, and to plan and control development so the city can support a strong economy and a high quality of life in an environment that is both attractive and sustainable.

All of our work involves partnerships with developers and home owners who want to build or extend, with commuters who want to get to and from work or school, with businesses taking goods to market and with everyone who lives, works and plays in the city.

Most urban development and transport services are publicly funded by local authorities and central government as they are core activities from which all residents benefit. Some services have a private component, in which case users are charged to cover at least part of the cost of providing the service, for example via development contributions.

Key projects

Better transport options

Wellington’s transport network plays an important role in the region’s economy by helping people to connect with each other and bringing goods to market.

An efficient transport network is also important for health and wellbeing, for connections between people, and the environment.

Though parts of Wellington’s transport network perform well, others are struggling. There is congestion, particularly at peak times, on northern routes into and out of the city centre, and on the route from the city to the airport.

The network is also potentially vulnerable in the event of an earthquake or other major emergency, due to the limited number of routes into and out of the city.

The network also provides limited choice and currently supports vehicle transport more effectively than other modes such as buses or cycles.

Addressing these issues will require a balanced approach with stronger public transport and cycle options alongside vehicle network improvements.

The Council is committed to work with others to see land transport network improvements implemented, so that residents can enjoy safer, more convenient journeys, and the region’s economic potential can be unlocked.

We are investing significantly in the coming years to improve the city’s network of cycleways. We have set aside $58 million over the next 10 years to implement a city wide-network of safe cycling routes.

Over the next 10 years the Council will also invest $2 million for pedestrian improvements focussed on safer routes to schools.

An additional $1.1 million has also been allocated in 2015/16 to strengthen and recess the Karori Road retaining wall which will improve bus and cycle access.

Another key priority will be the implementation of the Wellington Regional Transport Plan, under which a high-frequency, low emission Bus Rapid Transit service will be introduced on key routes linking the central city to the Basin Reserve, Newtown and Kilbirnie. Detailed plans are still to be finalised and funding options will be considered in future annual plans.

Affordable buses

We are also proposing the introduction of subsidies to drive greater bus use.

We provide the network for buses but the service itself is the responsibility of the Greater Wellington Regional Council.

There has been low growth in the use of the service in recent years. Reliability, frequency and cost are key factors limiting uptake.

We are keen to trial a lower cost service and propose to introduce a capped fare at weekends in the lead-up to Christmas. We have allocated $200,000 towards this programme.

We also propose to part-fund a discount scheme for tertiary student bus fares. The project aims to enable more tertiary students to travel by bus. We’ve set aside $75,000 for the service and expect to see contributions from the regional council and support from the universities.

Vehicle network

Improvements to the vehicle network are also needed. We support NZTA’s programme for Wellington, which aims to unlock the city’s economic potential by improving transport routes into the city, and from the city to the airport. One of our top priorities will be to find a solution to Basin Reserve traffic congestion in a way that supports increased traffic flow while meeting community aspirations. The programme also includes duplicating or widening the Mount Victoria and Terrace tunnels.

Land transport initiatives are funded by Greater Wellington Regional Council, NZTA, the Council, and users.

Other priorities include:

Urban regeneration

Although Wellington has a vibrant Central Business District, parts of the inner city remain underdeveloped. Fragmented ownership and a shortage of capital combine to slow development that could otherwise unlock economic potential and bring social and environmental benefits.

Of particular significance is the ‘growth spine’, linking the northern suburbs to the central city, the Basin Reserve, Newtown and Kilbirnie. By focusing future development along this spine, we can significantly increase housing supply and create vibrant, new, mixed-use city and suburban areas.

Focusing growth is also better for the environment, as it ensures that land is used efficiently, and reduces dependence on private cars.

In coming years, key projects will include:

Other urban development initiatives include:

These projects will build on the considerable work done in the last 10 years to upgrade the city’s public spaces. These have included major projects such as the creation of Waitangi Park and Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, transformation of other waterfront spaces, the creation of several new inner city parks, and upgrades of Kilbirnie, Miramar and other town centres.

Urban regeneration agency

To act as a catalyst for inner city regeneration, the Council is exploring opportunities to establish an urban development agency. This organisation would play an active role in regenerating the city.

Urban development agencies have proved successful internationally at driving urban regeneration. The success of Wellington’s waterfront also shows the benefits of having a single organisation coordinating city development while working in partnership with other investors.

Establishing such an agency could allow us to:

Protecting Wellington’s heritage buildings

Heritage buildings make an important contribution to the city’s character, but many require strengthening to make them safe in earthquakes. We support building owners by providing grants for earthquake strengthening. Over the next three years we will provide $3 million to the Built Heritage Incentive Fund to increase the number of buildings that are being strengthened.

We will also undertake a heritage audit /study of Mt Victoria in 2015/16.

City resilience

Our work to improve the resilience of the city (and region) will continue over the period of this Long-term Plan. Many actions are now largely ‘business-as-usual’ including ongoing upgrades of key infrastructure, assessment of earthquake-prone buildings, planning for emergency response and restoration of key lifelines, and planning for hazards and climate change. A new focus area will be the development of a comprehensive resilience strategy for the city’s infrastructure and communities, including a particular focus on ensuring the city’s economic resilience.

Revitalising the Civic Precinct and strengthening the Town Hall

The Civic Precinct is an important hub of Wellington’s civic and cultural life. Several of the precinct’s buildings now require strengthening to bring them closer to modern earthquake standards.

This creates an opportunity to refurbish and revitalise Civic Square, opening it up to a wider range of uses and improving links with surrounding buildings and streets to make the square more lively and attractive. Key aspects of the plan include:

The proposed lease of the Town Hall, Jack Ilott Green and Michael Fowler Centre car park (and possibly the Municipal Office Building) will require specific Council approval.

Cheering up the streets and laneways

We are working with others to increase levels of economic activity and pedestrian movement along inner city lanes and streets.

The works will include physical improvements such as lighting in key locations and a rolling programme of low-cost, pop-up activities at changing locations across the city. Improvements to Lombard Lane are part of this wider programme of street and laneway upgrades and $1.5 million has been budgeted in 2016/17 for this work.

Waterfront Development Plan and Frank Kitts Park

A three-year Waterfront Development Plan is in our Long-term Plan. Key aspects of the plan include:

Refer to the Waterfront Development Plan in the appendices for more information.

Medium-density housing

The Council has already created medium-density residential zones in Johnsonville and Kilbirnie. Consultation with residents in Karori and Tawa will determine the extent to which medium-density housing may be suitable for those communities.

We are working with the local communities to identify aspects of the town centres which could be improved to better accommodate an increased population. Benefits could include increased housing supply, choice and affordability, improved use of public transport, walking and cycling, and optimised use of existing infrastructure and facilities.

More detailed information on our urban development projects and programmes is in the Council’s Urban Growth Plan at wellington.govt.nz/your-council/plans-policies-and-bylaws/policies.

1st place​

In a 2014 survey of six NZ cities, Wellington residents were much more likely than residents of other cities to:
  • perceive their city and local area as great places to live
  • be proud of the look and feel of their city and local area
  • be positive about their city’s urban design, including the quality of buildings and public spaces.​
Wellingtonians use public transport more often, and private cars less often, than residents of other cities.

Urban development – group of activitiesTop

Group of Activities Rationale Service Offering Negative effects
6.1 Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development (including Waterfront development)

6.1.1 Urban planning and policy development

6.1.2 City shaper development

6.1.3 Public spaces and centres development

6.1.4 Built heritage development
Smart growth/urban containment

Resilience

Character protection
  • Guiding where and how the city grows through the District Plan
  • Maintaining Wellington's sense of place and pride by preserving the city's heritage and developing public spaces including the waterfront
  • ​Key projects include:
  • Frank Kitts Park upgrade
  • Adelaide Road regeneration
  • Kent and Cambridge Terraces urban regeneration project
Population growth and urban development, if not well managed, can have negative effects on a city’s environment and on social well-being. Left unchecked, growth can result in a reduction of open and green spaces with consequences for recreational opportunities, amenity and even some ecosystems.

Development in the wrong areas, or the wrong types of development, can place strain on infrastructure and reduce people’s ability to access services and enjoy the opportunities the city offers. Poorly-planned growth and poor development and construction of individual buildings can reduce the attractiveness of the city and the ‘sense of place’ that people identify with and it can have a direct impact on people’s safety. As explained above, we aim to avoid or mitigate these negative effects by guiding future development into areas where the benefits are greatest and the negative effects least.

The tools we use include planning, working with landowners, direct investment in development of public spaces, and using our regulatory powers under legislation such as the Building Act and Resource Management Act.
6.2 Building and development control

6.2.1 Building control and facilitation

6.2.2 Development control and facilitation

6.2.3 Earthquake risk mitigation – built environment
 
  • Ensuring building are safe in accordance with the Building Act
  • Ensuring natural resources are used sustainably in line with the Resource Management Act
These activities exist to mitigate and manage risks from development, construction, weather-tight building problems and from earthquakes.

Development and construction, if not well managed, can have negative effects on a city’s environment and on social well-being, and on the safety of individuals.

Development in the wrong areas, or the wrong types of development, can place strain on infrastructure and reduce people’s ability to access services and enjoy the opportunities the city offers.

Poorly-planned growth, and poor development and construction of individual buildings, can reduce the attractiveness of the city and the ‘sense of place’ that people identify with and it can have a direct impact on people’s safety.

​Our quake-prone building assessment programme is focused on ensuring quake-prone buildings are strengthened to required standards to ensure the safety of those that occupy the building and its surrounds

Urban development – performance measuresTop

Urban development
Objectives Smart growth/urban containment

Resilience

Character protection
Outcome indicators Residents’ perceptions that Wellington is a great place to live, work and play

Value of residential and commercial building consents

Population - growth and density (central city, growth spine)

Residents’ perceptions of the city centre as an easy place to get to, use and enjoy

Residents’ perceptions of urban design/urban form safety issues (i.e. graffiti, vandalism, poorly-lit public spaces etc.)

Building density throughout the city

Proportion of houses within 100 metres of a public transport stop

Residents’ perceptions that heritage items contribute to the city and local communities' unique character

New Zealanders’ perceptions that Wellington is an attractive destination
6.1 Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development (including Waterfront development)

6.1.1 Urban planning and policy development

6.1.2 City shaper development

6.1.3 Public spaces and centres development

6.1.4 Built heritage development
Purpose of measure Performance measure 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018-25
To measure the quality of our urban planning, heritage protection and development work Residents (%) who agree the city is developing in a way that maintains high quality design Baseline Increase from previous year Increase from previous year Increasing trend
District Plan listed items that are removed or demolished Nil Nil Nil Nil
Residents (%) who agree the central city is lively and attractive 87% 87% 87% 87%
Residents (%) who agree their local suburban centre is lively and attractive 60% 60% 60% 60%
Residents (%) who rate their waterfront experience as good or very good 90% 90% 90% 90%
The proportion of grants funds successfully allocated (through milestones being met) 95% 95% 95% 95%
Residents (%) who agree heritage items are appropriately valued and protected 65% 65% 65% 65%
6.2 Building and development control

6.2.1 Building control and facilitation

6.2.2 Development control and facilitation

6.2.3 Earthquake risk mitigation - built environment
Purpose of measure Performance measure 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018-25
To measure the timeliness of our building and development control services Building consents issued within 20 working days 100% 100% 100% 100%
Code of Compliance certificates issued within 20 working days 100% 100% 100% 100%
Land Information Memorandums (LIMs) issued within 10 working days 100% 100% 100% 100%
Resource consents (non-notified) issued within statutory timeframes 100% 100% 100% 100%
Resource consents that are monitored within 3 months of project commencement 90% 90% 90% 90%
Subdivision certificates - Section 223 certificates issued within statutory timeframes 100% 100% 100% 100%
Noise control (excessive noise) complaints investigated within one hour 90% 90% 90% 90%
  Environmental complaints investigated within 48 hours 98% 98% 98% 98%
  Customers (%) who rate building control services as good or very good 70% 70% 70% 70%
  Building Consent authority (BCA) accreditation retention (2-yearly) To retain n/a To retain To retain (2-yearly)
  Earthquake prone building notifications (section 124) (%) that are issued without successful challenge 95% 95% 95% 95%
To measure the quality of our building and development control services Customers (%) who rate building control services as good or very good

Building consent authority (BCA) accreditation retention (2-yearly)
70%


To retain
70%


n/a
70%


To retain
70%


n/a
To measure our progress on earthquake risk mitigation Earthquake prone building notifications (section 124) (%) that are issued without successful challenge 95% 95% 95% 95%

Urban development – activity budgetTop

6.1 Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development 2014/15 AP 2014/15
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2015/16
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2016/17
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2017/18
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
10-year total
Gross Expenditure
Operating expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
6.1.1 - Urban planning and policy 1,819 2,277 2,217 1,995 22,256
6.1.2 - Waterfront development 11,226 972 991 1,011 11,131
6.1.3 - Public spaces and centres development 1,763 2,169 2,148 2,185 22,427
6.1.4 - Built heritage development 1,026 1,498 2,007 1,767 12,875
Total operating expenditure 15,834 6,916 7,363 6,958 68,689
Capital expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
6.1.1 - Urban planning and policy - - - - -
6.1.2 - Waterfront development 2,712 6,843 7,105 4,184 56,657
6.1.3 - Public spaces and centres development 1,984 1,425 2,456 928 84,214
6.1.4 - Built heritage development - - - - -
Total capital expenditure 4,696 8,268 9,561 5,112 140,871
6.2 Building and development control 2014/15 AP 2014/15
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2015/16
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2016/17
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP 2017/18
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
10-year total
Gross Expenditure
Operating expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
6.2.1 - Building control and facilitation 12,801 13,809 14,012 13,646 148,600
6.2.2 - Development control and facilitation 5,728 5,981 6,112 6,221 67,628
6.2.3 - Earthquake risk mitigation - built environment 1,469 1,710 1,598 1,959 20,140
Total operating expenditure 19,998 21,500 21,722 21,826 236,368
Capital expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
6.2.1 - Building control and facilitation - - - - -
6.2.2 - Development control and facilitation - - - - -
6.2.3 - Earthquake risk mitigation - built environment 17,651 5,940 6,502 26,108 69,715
Total capital expenditure 17,651 5,940 6,502 26,108 69,715

Transport – group of activitiesTop

Group of Activities Rationale Service Offering Negative effects
7.1 Transport

7.1.1 Transport planning

7.1.2 Vehicle network

7.1.3 Cycle network

7.1.4 Passenger transport network

7.1.5 Pedestrian network

7.1.6 Network-wide control and management

7.1.7 Road safety
Increased active mode share

Road safety

Reliable transport routes

Reduced emissions
  • 54 road bridges (road and pedestrian) and 5 tunnels
  • 2,397 walls, 450 bus shelters and 18,000 street lights
  • 24.3 km of cycle ways
  • 858 km of pedestrian paths 680 km of road pavements
  • 132 km of handrails, guardrails and sight rails
  • 1500 hectares of road corridor land
  • 21,500 signs and traffic signals
  • Lincolnshire Farm link roads
  • Cycleways
With any transport system, the potential negative effects are significant. In particular, there are environmental costs, ranging from air and noise pollution to surface water runoff from roads that may carry contaminants (by-products of tyres, brakes and engines and deposition from exhaust gases) into the stormwater system. This environmental impact is linked to the number of vehicles on the road, however the dominant impact is the surrounding land uses, which direct stormwater run-off to the road. There are also potential negative effects from individual projects: for example, construction of any new road has effects on neighbours and neighbourhoods.

Dealing with these effects is complex. Some issues, such as vehicle emission standards, are properly dealt with at a national level. Others, such as air and water quality, are regional issues. Of those issues that can be dealt with at a local level, we seek to reduce the cause of the negative effects where possible. At present there are few statutory requirements for road controlling authorities to mitigate contaminants in road runoff before it is discharged to the receiving environment.

This Council does monitor the effects of stormwater run-off on aquatic receiving environments to ensure that adverse effects are avoided, remedied or mitigated.

Other potentially significant negative effects we must consider include:
  • ​The timing of road works and other improvements. These can impact on local businesses but may also affect growth opportunities. Our transport planning is designed to minimise the impact and focus our work in growth areas.
  • Safety. The transport network brings pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles together. This presents hazards to users. We’ve developed road safety programmes and design solutions to reduce the likelihood and severity of accidents.
7.2 Parking

7.2.1 Parking
Enabling people to shop, work and access recreation activities
  • 12,000 on-street parking spaces, 3,400 of which are in the central city
  • Street spaces for taxis, couriers, people with disabilities, bus stops and diplomatic services
  • ​Managing off-street parking at Clifton Terrace, the Michael Fowler Centre, and beneath Civic Square
 

Transport – performance measuresTop

Transport
Objectives Increased active mode share

Road safety

Reliable transport routes

Reduced emissions
Outcome indicators Residents’ perceptions that peak traffic volumes are acceptable

Residents’ perceptions that the transport system allows easy access to the city

Residents’ perceptions of quality and affordability of public transport services

Air quality monitoring (i.e. nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter peaks)

Change from previous year in the number of road crashes resulting in fatalities and serious injury.*

Social cost of crashes

Residents perceptions of transport related safety issues (i.e. issues of most concern)

Number of cyclists and pedestrians entering the CBD (weekdays)

Residents (%) who agree the transport system allows easy movement around the city - vehicle users and pedestrians
7.1 Transport

7.1.1 Transport planning

7.1.2 Vehicle network

7.1.3 Cycle network

7.1.4 Passenger transport network

7.1.5 Pedestrian network

7.1.6 Network-wide control and management

7.1.7 Road safety
Purpose of measure Performance measure 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018–25
To measure the quality and timeliness of the transport infrastructure and service Residents condition (%) rating of the network - roads and footpaths (good or very good) Roads 75%

Footpaths 75%
Roads 75%

Footpaths 75%
Roads 75%

Footpaths 75%
Roads 75%

Footpaths 75%
Requests for service response rate - urgent (within 2 hours) and non-urgent (within 15 days)* Urgent 100%

Non-urgent 100%
Urgent 100%

Non-urgent 100%
Urgent 100%

Non-urgent 100%
Urgent 100%

Non-urgent 100%
Roads (%) which meet smooth roads standards (average quality of ride on sealed local road network, measured by Smooth Travel Exposure based on NAASRA counts)* 70% 70% 70% 70%
Footpath (%) condition rating (measured against WCC condition standards)* 97% 97% 97% 97%
Street lighting (%) for major roads (arterial, principal and collector roads) meets national standards) 100% 100% 100% 100%
Residents' satisfaction (%) with street lighting in the central city and suburban areas Central city 85%

Suburbs 75%
Central city 85%

Suburbs 75%
Central city 85%

Suburbs 75%
Central city 85%

Suburbs 75%
Sea wall and retaining wall condition rating - walls (%) rated 3 or better (1 very good, 5 very bad) 90% 90% 90% 90%
Percentage of the sealed local road network that is resurfaced* 10% 10% 10% 10%
*DIA Mandatory measure
7.2 Parking

​7.2.1 Parking
Purpose of measure Performance measure 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018–25
To measure the quality of our parking provision On-street car park turn-over rates - weekdays and weekends Weekday 6.8

Weekend 5.2
Weekday 6.8

Weekend 5.2
Weekday 6.8

Weekend 5.2
Weekday 6.8

Weekend 5.2
On-street car park average occupancy 75% 75% 75% 75%
On-street car park compliance - time restrictions and payment Time 95%

Payment 90%
Time 95%

Payment 90%
Time 95%

Payment 90%
Time 95%

Payment 90%
Residents' perceptions (%) that parking enforcement is fair Increase from previous year Increase from previous year Increase from previous year Increase from previous year

Transport – activity budgetTop

7.1 Recreation promotion and support 2014/15 AP
2014/15
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2015/16
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2016/17
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2017/18
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
​10-year total
Gross Expenditure
Operating expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
7.1.1 - Transport planning 1,108 1,144 817 712 6,660
7.1.2 - Vehicle network 23,136 22,645 23,543 25,858 301,520
7.1.3 - Cycle network 692 1,660 1,803 2,371 28,455
7.1.4 - Passenger transport network 1,612 1,720 4,036 1,653 22,315
7.1.5 - Pedestrian network 6,579 6,548 6,583 7,018 79,088
7.1.6 - Network-wide control and management 6,285 6,799 6,874 7,040 72,621
7.1.7 - Road safety 5,971 6,095 6,067 6,325 68,712
Total operating expenditure 45,383 46,611 49,721 50,977 579,372
Capital expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
7.1.1 - Transport planning - - - - -
7.1.2 - Vehicle network 24,565 23,017 19,479 25,300 286,755
7.1.3 - Cycle network 4,352 5,673 12,001 17,071 57,704
7.1.4 - Passenger transport network 161 145 902 1,140 22,859
7.1.5 - Pedestrian network 3,851 4,583 3,851 5,269 60,631
7.1.6 - Network-wide control and management 2,055 2,804 1,230 1,275 16,013
7.1.7 - Road safety 2,729 2,352 3,360 2,973 36,933
Total capital expenditure 37,713 38,573 40,823 53,028 480,895
7.2 Parking 2014/15 AP
2014/15
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2015/16
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2016/17
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
2017/18
Gross Expenditure
2015–25 LTP
​10-year total
Gross Expenditure
Operating expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
7.2.1 - Parking 11,936 13,404 13,358 13,619 154,210
Total operating expenditure 11,936 13,404 13,358 13,619 154,210
Capital expenditure ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000) ($000)
7.2.1 - Parking 180 1,449 496 298 8,842
Total capital expenditure 180 1,449 496 298 8,842