Developing, maintaining and operating any transport system requires investment, and investment requires decision-making about what to invest in, how much to invest and when that investment should be made. Such decisions need to be informed by an understanding of the key issues and opportunities to be addressed, a clear vision of what is to be achieved, and a clear set of priorities that will move toward that vision. In times of financial constraint when funding is tight the need to clearly identify the right priorities becomes even more important. The DCC have adopted a 10 Year Financial Strategy (2012 – 2022) which aims to help steer a course between the competing tensions of affordability, keeping up and investing for the future. This Financial Strategy states the limits to rates and borrowing that the Council has set, and any investment in transportation infrastructure must be managed with regard to the Financial Strategy.
The purpose of an Integrated Transport Strategy is to enable the DCC, and other agencies, who together invest a substantial amount of money in Dunedin’s transport system, to review whether investment priorities of the past are still relevant and whether they are achieving the type of transport system that will best support the City, its people and the wider region. As the social, environmental and economic context in which transport operates is constantly evolving, priorities may need to be recast to address new challenges, changing values or a new long-term vision.
This Strategy identifies some of Dunedin’s key transport challenges, including road safety, fuel price volatility, high dependence on motor vehicles and the importance of improving provision for travel modes other than cars, and the future complexities of prioritising, protecting and maintaining critical infrastructure in light of a changing climate. To address these challenges, and a number of others (Section 2), this Strategy has identified a vision (Section 4) and five ‘Areas of Focus’ (Section 8) that the DCC will prioritise through this Strategy. These areas of focus are:
- Safety: Improving Dunedin’s road safety record
- Travel Choices: Providing safe, viable travel options in addition to the car
- Centres: Strengthening connections to, within and between Dunedin’s centres
- Freight: Supporting safe and efficient freight movement
- Resilience: Ensuring the on-going resilience of Dunedin’s transport system and key infrastructure.
A number of priority actions have arisen from these ‘Areas of Focus’, and these are included in an indicative 10-year action plan in the final section of this Strategy. Many of these priorities still require more detailed investigations before any commitment to invest will be made, but they represent the most important investment priorities for Dunedin over the next 10 years. In addition to these specific projects, the DCC will adopt the direction and priorities of this Strategy as overarching guidance for all transport work undertaken by the DCC.
This is a 30-year strategy, and many of the goals and objectives will only be fully realised over the full lifetime of this strategy. Because Dunedin’s challenges and priorities will continue to evolve over the next 30 years, the DCC will review the Integrated Transport Strategy every five years.
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