Friday, February 12, 2010

Time for a 'big shake up' in Auckland too?

Houston, Texas, is the fourth largest city in the USA, with a population of 2.2 million.

Just like Auckland, it is afflicted with the sick-city problems of urban sprawl, car dependency, inadequate transit services, an over-abundance of congested motorways, pollution and poor pedestrian-friendly facilities.

The newly-elected Mayor, Annise Parker (Democrat) plans a major revamp of public transport to turn this around - including considering fare-free public transport.

With the advent of the new 'super city', it is time Auckland embarked on a 'big shake-up' too.

Editor: FarefreeNZ

Houston Looks At Reshaping Transit

11 February 2010 - 11:00am

Houston Mayor Annise Parker is considering a big shake-up of the city's public transportation, including the option of transitioning to a fare-free system.

"Parker has signaled that she is not wedded to conventional wisdom about Metro, even suggesting eliminating fares to increase lagging ridership. While acknowledging that Metro would have to cope with the loss of fare revenues — $66 million in 2009, about 20 percent of its expenses — she said it is a discussion the agency needs to have.

The mayor, who appoints five of the nine members of Metro's board, said she envisions a seamless network of transportation services that move people efficiently throughout the eight-county Houston region."

Reports are due at the end of the months to help guide the region's investment in transit and transit oriented development.

Source: The Houston Chronicle, February 8, 2010

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