“Today’s release of a study showing the benefits of road pricing in Auckland is a step in the right direction, but if we don’t take action and move to implementation, we will be having the same conversation again in another five years,” says Hamish Glenn, Policy Director at Infrastructure New Zealand.
“The Congestion Question’s Phase Two report shows that tolling strategic corridors on the Auckland road network would lead to an 8-12% network improvement, similar to traffic flows during school holidays.
“This result is unsurprising to anyone familiar with this topic – Stockholm saw sustained 20% reductions in flow after its scheme was introduced – and is consistent with earlier reports on road pricing in Auckland over the last 15 years.
“Unfortunately, the only thing that has changed in that period is that congestion has become worse.
“Congestion is not only a problem in Auckland, as Wellington is facing very similar problems going forward, with an even more restricted physical landscape.
“The Government should investigate how an Auckland solution could be implemented in other regions or indeed nationwide.
“The time to act is now. Not only is congestion continuing to worsen, our increasingly efficient vehicle fleet is paying less and less into the National Land Transport Fund, meaning there will be less money to maintain our existing network.
“The Government needs to consider how road pricing schemes could integrate with broader road user charges for non-fossil fuel vehicles in the future.
“Our Government has an unprecedented mandate to solve the long-standing issues we are facing. We hope they find the courage to seize the solutions that we have known about for a long time,” says Glenn.
In 2015 Infrastructure New Zealand featured insights into the successful road pricing scheme in Stockholm, much of which informed today’s report. To learn more about why and how the Stockholm approach to road pricing worked, click here to watch a presentation from Jonas Eliasson, former Head of Stockholm City Transportation Department, that he gave for one of our past Building Nations Symposiums.
For further information and comment contact Hamish Glenn on 021 034 7229