- A new bus network coming to North Shore
- Big public transport boost for Warkworth and Kowhai Coast
- Bus changes for last step of Hibiscus Coast New Network
The North Shore will have a new bus network from 30 September, which will be simpler and better connected, and there will be more buses coming more often.
The new network includes a second Northern Express, the NX2, which will take customers from Northern Busway stations to Wellesley St and the city centre universities every 5 minutes at peak-times, and every 10 to 15 minutes at other times.
Connections to local destinations will also be improved. There will be better access to North Shore Hospital, a service linking Albany Station and Corinthian Drive, and Beach Haven residents can look forward to getting to Glenfield using a single bus, via Kaipātiki Road.
North Shore ward councillor, Chris Darby sees this is a turning point for bus services in the North Shore, “We’re looking at the horizon of the biggest step-change in bus access for Shore residents.
“We’re pushing go on improved services to universities and North Shore Hospital, a new cross-Shore link, frequent ferry feeder buses and much better connections from neighbourhoods to town centres and the Busway.”
Fellow councillor, Richard Hills, says the popularity of local bus services is on the rise, “In the past three years, the monthly seat capacity of the three major North Shore routes (Onewa, Takapuna to the city centre, and the Northern Busway) has increased by 460,000 seats.
“This new network will respond by increasing services even more, with a 45 percent total increase – that’s huge. This is a big win for people who face challenges of full buses, or wanting a direct service from Beach Haven to Glenfield and Takapuna.”
Cr Darby agrees, “Not only will users receive better services, but they’ll do so in next-level comfort, travelling on brand-spanking new buses. The wave of bus users is getting larger by the day as Shore residents swap congested car travel for frequent and reliable bus access. With the new network rollout, this wave will become even more popular.”
Auckland Transport’s Network Development Manager, Anthony Cross says, “The existing North Shore network can be confusing. Some services do different things at weekends or off-peak, and depending on when people travel, they may have to take different services from different stops to reach the same destination.
“The New Network is more straight forward. We’ve designed frequent, more direct bus services that connect to busway stations and shopping centres, where you can easily transfer between services to access more destinations than ever before.
“To make these improvements we’ve had to reduce the number of routes that run all the way into the City Centre, so for some journeys a transfer will be required. But the increased frequency and connectivity of the new network will give many people reduced waiting times and increased flexibility.
“We’re also running out of suitable space for buses in the City Centre, so we need a more efficient bus network. A higher proportion of the services that come into the City Centre will use double-deckers and the Northern Busway.”
North Shore households will receive a brochure detailing the changes in early September, and there will be a series of public information events. Korean, Chinese, and accessible versions of the brochure will be available from the AT website.
Consultation regarding the North Shore New Network took place in 2015, and 2,279 responses were received which contributed to the final network design.
A few AT school buses will have route changes from Term 4. AT will provide affected schools with detailed information.
Warkworth will also get a new bus network and Hibiscus Coast bus timetables will change from 30 September 2018.
North Shore New Network highlights
|Northern Busway services|
|NX1||Hibiscus Coast Station, Albany Station, all Northern Busway stations and Lower Albert St.
Albany Station buses will run at least every 5 minutes at peak times and at least every 10-15 minutes at other times.
Hibiscus Coast Station buses will run at least every 6-10 minutes at peak times and at least every 30 minutes at other times.
|NX2||Albany Station, all Northern Busway stations, Wellesley St and city centre universities.
Buses will run at least every 5 minutes at peak times and at least every 10-15 minutes at other times.
|866||Albany Station, all Northern Busway stations, Ponsonby Rd, Karangahape Rd, Auckland City Hospital and Newmarket.
Buses will run at least every 10 minutes at peak times and at least every 30 minutes at other times. Monday – Friday only.
|Frequent routes run at least every 15 minutes, all day, 7 days a week|
|82||Milford, Takapuna, Wellesley St and Mayoral Dr|
|83||Massey University, Albany Station, Browns Bay, Mairangi Bay, Constellation Station, Smales Farm Station and Takapuna|
|95||Glenfield, Onewa Rd and Lower Albert St|
|97||Beach Haven, Onewa Rd and Lower Albert St|
Improved connections to North Shore destinations
- Service between Devonport and the Northern Busway at Akoranga Station for the first time (814)
- Buses will serve North Shore Hospital more often, from early morning until late evening (845, 856, 928 and 941)
- New routes in growing areas, including Long Bay (861), Schnapper Rock (883) and Corinthian Dr (890)
Travel around Warkworth will be much simpler and more convenient from 30 September.
The 995, a new service between Warkworth and Hibiscus Coast Station in Silverdale will create a vital link to the rest of the Auckland Region. Passengers can transfer to Northern Express buses at Hibiscus Coast Station.
Auckland Transport’s Public Transport Network Manager Anthony Cross says “This is a huge step forward for public transport in Warkworth.
“It will give the area seven day a week access to Auckland’s public transport network for the first time, opening up employment and education opportunities and making events in Auckland more accessible.”
Rodney ward councillor Greg Sayers says, “This will be a great addition to the travel options for people going between Warkworth and Hibiscus Coast. The northern busway has really opened up how people can travel around the area and this new service provides a much improved link between the busway and Warkworth. I’m really looking forward to hearing from people in my community about their experiences using the bus so that we can keep pushing to improve the entire transport network around Rodney.”
A trip from Warkworth to Hibiscus Coast Station will take approximately 35 minutes, Warkworth to Albany will take approximately an hour, and Warkworth to Auckland City will take approximately an hour and a half.
Beth Houlbrooke, chair of the Rodney Local Board says, “It is fantastic to see this long advocated-for service by the local board finally introduced. The local board is keen to expand public transport services throughout Rodney with the help of the transport targeted rate, starting with a Wellsford-Warkworth service, as soon as possible. Our residents need affordable public transport options to get to appointments for health, social, and justice services, and to universities. The student and senior (Gold Card) concessions will therefore be particularly welcome.”
The current Kowhai Connection will be replaced by two new routes; the 996 which will connect Warkworth, Algies Bay, and Snells Beach, and the 997 will connect Warkworth, Matakana, Point Wells, and Omaha.
Mr Cross says, “These new local services will continue to cover the same area serviced by the Kowhai Connection, but will be simpler and more direct with improvements to the timetable and the route.
“If paying by AT HOP, a journey anywhere in Warkworth or the Kowhai Coast will only be $1.90 for a full paying adult. With an AT HOP concession, students will get discounted rates and SuperGold card holders will be able to travel for free after 9am weekdays and all day weekends”
Public Information Event
Tuesday 18 September, 9am to 2pm - Old Masonic Hall, 3 Baxter St, Warkworth
AT HOP cards and gold AT HOP cards for SuperGold card holders will be available for purchase at this event.
The last key piece of the Hibiscus Coast new bus network launches on 30 September, replacing the current city centre express buses with more and improved local and Northern Express services.
Auckland Transport’s Anthony Cross, Network Development Manager says, “The New Network is all about running more frequent services that connect with each other.
“Although this means all passengers will need to transfer at Hibiscus Coast station to get to the city centre, we are significantly increasing the number of buses running at peak times, resulting in a considerably improved timetable and minimal wait time between buses.”
After 30 September, during the morning and evening peaks, buses between Gulf Harbour and Hibiscus Coast Station will run approximately every 6 to 10 minutes, and buses between Waiwera and Hibiscus Coast Station will run approximately every 10 to 15 minutes.
The Northern Express from Hibiscus Coast Station to the city centre will also be doubling its frequency during peak times to every 5 to 8 minutes.
Mr Cross says, “With buses coming this often, if you travel at peak times you won’t need a timetable - you can just turn up and go.”
Passengers who wish to travel to Wellesley St or the city centre universities instead of Lower Albert St are advised to transfer at Albany Station or any busway station to the new NX2 service, which is launching on 30 September as part of North Shore’s New Network, and runs every 5 minutes at peak times.
Mr Cross says, “The Hibiscus Coast was the first to benefit from Auckland’s region wide project of implementing a new bus network, when it launched on the coast in 2015. This final step has been held off until the change of bus operating contracts, which is happening for all areas north of the Auckland Harbour Bridge on 30 September.”