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Transport blog brings about new bus lane

SIMON MAUDE
Last updated 05:00 29/04/2014
Matt Lowrie
SLOG BLOG: Persistently blogging about a lack of bus lanes finally made Auckland Transport sit up and take notice, says Matt Lowrie.

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City bus commuters will have a quicker trip home to Auckland's North Shore thanks to the efforts of bloggers.

Auckland Transport, the council controlled organisation responsible for the region's roads, footpaths, cycling, parking and public transport services, is turning the CBD's busy Fanshawe St kerbside northbound feeder lane into an interim bus lane.

The move is designed to improve traffic flow onto the nearby Auckland Harbour Bridge and follows lobbying on the Transport Blog - an online commentary launched by the transport advocacy group, Campaign for Better Transport in 2008.

Group spokesman Matt Lowrie says tired CBD workers should have time shaved-off their peak-hour trip.

"We've done quite a bit of lobbying on bus lanes, it's an excellent move by council," Lowrie says.

Fellow  transport blogger Luke Christensen says it's exciting to see council taking the popular blog seriously.

The blog took Auckland Transport to task for not building a single bus lane since the super-city was created more than four years ago, Christensen says.

It caught the attention of Auckland Transport's chairman of 15 months, Lester Levy, who was soon following the bloggers' comments.

"Organisations like ours should listen to what transport users are saying, and be open to giving credit to where ideas come from," Levy says.

He says new bus lanes are a low cost way of creating temporary relief for commuters before permanent fixes are made and more will be installed over coming years.

Auckland Transport has a "very significant development" planned for Fanshawe St, including a bus interchange due for completion in 2017, Levy says.

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