Final Government Policy Statement on Land Transport 2024 includes a significant win for pedestrians

The final Government Policy Statement on Land Transport 2024 has now been released. While we still have many concerns about the overall reduction in funding and the reduced priority for walking and other low-carbon transport modes compared to the previous GPS, we are very pleased by one significant change between the draft and final GPS.

Living Streets Aotearoa has advocated to successive governments that the Walking and Cycling Improvements activity class in the GPS should be split into separate Walking Improvements and Cycling Improvements classes, each of which should be well-funded. The effect of the combined class is to pit walking and cycling against each other to access limited funding - and that has meant that walking gets the scraps.

The recently-released GPS retains the combined activity class. However, following Living Streets Aotearoa's meeting with Minister of Transport Hon Simeon Brown in May, in which we stressed the importance of separated funding for walking, the Minister has added an instruction in the final GPS that 25% of the Walking & Cycling Improvements activity class should be spent on footpaths and other walking projects.

We still want a separate activity class for walking, and we want it funded at a level that reflects the importance of walking to our transport system, and pedestrians' place at the top of the Sustainable Transport Hierarchy. Nonetheless, we regard this instruction that walking should get a set percentage of the combined funding as a major step forward that we can look to build on.

We also had a very useful conversation with the Minister about pedestrian safety issues, and we expect these to be a major focus of our policy work during the term of the present Government.

Tim Jones, President, Living Streets Aotearoa

Region (NZ): 

About Us

Living Streets Aotearoa is the New Zealand organisation for people on foot, promoting walking-friendly communities. We are a nationwide organisation with local branches and affiliates throughout New Zealand.

We want more people walking and enjoying public spaces be they young or old, fast or slow, whether walking, sitting, commuting, shopping, between appointments, or out on the streets for exercise, for leisure or for pleasure.

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