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The New Zealand Transport Agency has refreshed its strategy in response to the challenges and opportunities we, our partners, our customers and the transport sector are facing.

Our value: Great journeys to keep New Zealand moving

A great journey is easy, safe and connected. When we talk about great journeys, we mean more than the literal movement of people and goods – we mean all the connections and experiences that occur within the complex, dynamic system of people, businesses, infrastructure, vehicles, information and processes that form New Zealand’s transport system. Our focus is on working with others to provide one integrated land transport system that helps people get the most out of life and supports business.

Our strategy makes sure transport is an enabler of opportunities, not a barrier – so all New Zealanders, today and in the future, can live well.

Our strategic responses:  The big changes we are seeking

Three strategic responses describe our new approach to addressing New Zealand’s transport challenges and delivering great value to New Zealand, in partnership with others and in a rapidly changing environment.

One connected transport system

We aim to transform the performance of the transport system by integrating digital technology with physical infrastructure to create a safe, connected system that works for everyone.

This approach sees us building on our legacy of investment and delivery of road networks and services, to holistically considering all levers in the transport system, including infrastructure provision, transport and mobility services, regulatory and policy settings, technology, information and communications systems. We are paying particular attention to digital integration because it is the single most disruptive and transformative element in the transport system at this point in time. Digital integration introduces new players into the system, enables all parts of the system to interact in new and dynamic ways, creates new opportunities for transport and mobility services, and offers new tools for managing and regulating the system and getting the best out of it for customers and citizens.

People-centred services

We aim to simplify our customers’ lives and our partners’ work with innovative services and experiences that make it easy for them to do what they need to.

Transport is a service, and customers are wanting more accessible, intuitive and responsive services that meet their needs. We aim to work with partners and customers to understand their needs and co-design solutions that deliver value for customers and for New Zealand.

Partnerships for prosperity

We aim to unlock social and economic opportunities for customers, business and communities through targeted partnerships.

This approach sees us moving beyond investing for and delivering transport outcomes, to investing for and delivering wider benefits where transport can release or bring forward the social and economic aspirations of government for the people of New Zealand. This requires us to target existing and new partnerships, understand where transport initiatives and resources can make a real difference, and coordinate our efforts with others to support customers, business and communities, particularly those facing significant challenges to participating in our society and the economy.

Collectively, these strategic responses signal the big changes we are seeking, and how we will work with others to make sure New Zealand has one integrated transport system that serves people, business and communities really well for today, and tomorrow.

Our focus areas: How we will make the changes signalled in our strategic responses

Eight focus areas direct our efforts and resources to deliver the big changes we are seeking.

Shape the land transport system: Shape New Zealand’s land transport system and influence its delivery.

New Zealand’s land transport system has a programme of work – but it needs a plan. As a national planner, investor and deliverer of transport solutions we are uniquely placed to work with a range of partners to collaboratively develop one clear, integrated, shared and long term view of the land transport system that New Zealand needs now, and in the future.

Informed by a clear and shared evidence base, this view will identify the key interventions required to deliver a land transport system for New Zealand that is innovative, customer focused and fulfils the transport sector outcomes of safety and responsibility, resilience, efficiency and effectiveness. It will capture statutory, regulatory and policy settings and it will identify the timing and location of the major regional and inter-regional investments required to achieve specific regional outcomes. Overall, it will ensure that New Zealand’s economic, social and environmental aspirations are supported.

Our aim is to collaboratively develop a view of the land transport system that is shared by key decision makers, and can be used to guide improved decision-making that is informed and coordinated. This document is our starting point.

Connect and develop regions: Partner for tailored solutions that support wider outcomes for communities, regions and New Zealand.

Transport is an enabler of wider economic, social and environmental outcomes that are important to people, business and communities. Under this focus area, we will be targeting new and existing partnerships to ensure that transport solutions are integrated with initiatives that address agreed regional outcomes.

Through this focus area we will be supporting regional economic development opportunities and connections for business, freight and tourism, working and moving within and between regions. For our customers who live, work and play in the regions, we will be working with others to support social and economic outcomes where transport has a role to play. We will also be working with others to identify customers or communities facing particular social or economic challenges, and we will co-design and deliver tailored solutions to improve their ability to live and work well. Under this focus area we will also be looking after the land transport system for the longer term, ensuring the system as a whole is resilient, keeps people safe, minimises harm and supports multi-modal connections and transport services.

Target rapid growth: Balanced solutions for customers in high growth urban areas.*

This focus area is about sharply targeting high growth urban areas that are facing significant transport challenges due to rapid growth.

We need to step up our efforts to deliver rapid and meaningful change in these areas, because our customers are being challenged by increased economic, social and environmental costs related to significant and rapid growth. We will collaborate with others to deliver technology-enabled demand management and network optimisation solutions while also providing new transport capacity. This balanced and integrated approach will enable quality residential and business growth, and manage its effects on our customers.

The balanced approach will enable people and businesses in high growth urban areas to manage their transport needs far more effectively. We will need to work with others to: improve the performance of the transport system and the services it enables; improve the availability and reliability of a range of transport information that is available to customers on the go; supporting MaaS; and promote new and improved transport choices.

*High growth urban areas’ is a term defined in the proposed National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity, and is an eligibility category used by the Housing Infrastructure Fund. It means main or secondary urban areas with projected population growth (or resident and visitor growth) over the next ten years of over 10%. Current ‘high growth urban areas’ are Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Christchurch and Queenstown.
This focus area also includes Wellington. While it does not achieve the growth threshold above, parts of Wellington nonetheless are experiencing transport challenges characteristic of high growth and demand.

Keep people safe: Solutions that contribute to improved safety and public health outcomes and reduce environmental harms.

This focus area will take a whole-of-transport-system view expanding from road safety to land transport system safety. It continues to address preventing and reducing deaths and serious injuries on our roads, but widens the safety focus to include all land transport modes, and human and environmental health outcomes.  The Transport Agency will continue to deliver on its accountabilities for road safety regulatory activities, Safer Journeys, and as the rail safety regulator.

The focus area requires us to more sharply focus on evidence-based, high-impact and coordinated interventions to significantly improve safety and prevent or reduce deaths and serious injuries. It explicitly requires us to treat safety and efficiency as complementary and interdependent outcomes to support ‘safe mobility’ for people interacting with the land transport system. We will work with partners to enable and encourage greater use of safety technology, including in-vehicle systems, real-time safety information, and road-based innovations.

More broadly the focus area enables us to consider and provide for improved health outcomes and prevention or reduction of human and environmental harm from the land transport system. In some cases our interventions may enhance either or both the built environment and the natural environment. The focus area allows us to take a much more holistic approach to delivering positive health and safety outcomes and preventing or reducing harms.

Improve customer experiences: Deliver innovative services and experiences customers and citizens value.

This focus area is about enhancing and improving transport experiences for customers and citizens; it explicitly places the land transport system at the service of customers. It’s about getting much closer to our customers and actively working with them to understand how they experience the transport system, and what needs to be improved to deliver better value. It involves sourcing and mining a wide range of information, including the customer voice, customer and system information and design practices, to gain deep insight into customer behaviour and experiences. We will use that knowledge to challenge, change and enhance the system.

A big part of this focus area is co-designing solutions with customers and for customers, enabling them to participate in shaping the system and its services to better meet their needs. Getting smarter and sharper with customer differentiation will mean we can tailor experiences for the needs of different customer segments.

This focus area will support a one agency model of engaging with customers and citizens. It recognises that if we want to improve customer transport experiences  and achieve better outcomes for New Zealand, we must work together, and with business partners and customers to build capability and harness innovation.

Deliver connected journeys: Lead the integration of a digitally connected land transport system.

This focus area is about riding the technology wave in order to harness new and emerging technologies that can deliver better transport solutions and enable easy, connected and safe transport services for customers and citizens.

A key part of this focus area is creating a digital platform that connects with customers in new ways. Mobility as a Service (MaaS) is a new approach to transport that combines journey options from many providers into a single mobile service (e.g. an app), where customers can select and pay for all their journeys in one place and don’t need to own a vehicle. The digital platform will enable us to work with others to design integrated solutions that get the best from the system for customers.

Achieve organisational excellence and transform the Transport Agency.

The six focus areas above will deliver the big changes we are seeking for the transport sector, for our customers and for New Zealand. They constitute a significant shift in our thinking, our behaviour, the way we work, and what we prioritise. To ensure that we are fit to deliver, we have turned the spotlight on ourselves. Two focus areas, Achieve organisational excellence and transform the Transport Agency address our internal capability, capacity, culture, systems and processes to ensure that we have the right people, with the right skills and tools that can deliver for New Zealand today, and tomorrow.

In delivering on our focus areas, we expect to use a range of existing and new tools and approaches to ensure the transport system delivers value for customers and citizens:

  • Statutory, regulatory and policy settings, e.g. vehicle certification, funding, pricing, enabling new business models and technologies
  • Making better use of the existing system, e.g. optimising key routes, harnessing new and emerging technologies to get the most out of what we’ve got, generating asset management efficiencies
  • Targeting investment in infrastructure, services and technology to priority challenges, e.g. agreeing the big challenges early, considering balanced solutions addressing both supply and demand using thewhole toolkit
  • Maximising opportunities to influence travel demand, e.g. integrating land use and transport planning at national, regional and local levels, encouraging modal shift and more transport choices
  • Smarter transport pricing, signalled by Treasury in the National Infrastructure Plan and in the Auckland Transport Alignment Project. Pricing is a powerful tool to significantly improve the performance of the transport system for customers. We will be working with partners to explore the options.

The particular mix of tools and approaches we use will be determined by the challenges and opportunities we and our partners face. The challenge will be using the right suite of tools, at the right time, in the right way – and selecting the best balance of approaches for any given situation.