Recap: Council decision on the draft CNC Downstream Effects Mitigation Plan

The Christchurch Northern Corridor (CNC) Downstream Effects Mitigation Plan was on the Christchurch City Council’s agenda on 14 February 2019. The plan is required as a condition of the consent for the CNC project. Here’s a summary of what transpired at that meeting…

CNC map

Agenda item 4 – Presentation of petitions

Mark Wilson and Jason Harvey presented a petition of 2512 signatures in opposition to the Downstream Effects Mitigation Plan (DEMP). (Watch the video online.) Mark concluded by asking the council to “…not receive the draft plan, and requesting it go back to the community, with a much larger scope with people at its core, not cars”. After some discussion around procedural matters, the Council resolved to receive the petition and refer it to the Papanui-Innes and Linwood-Central-Heathcote Community Boards.


Agenda items 16 & 17 – recommendations that the Council receives the draft plan

(The draft DEMP can be found at item 8 of this Community Board agenda.)

Dr Shane Turner (author of the draft plan) and Richard Osborne (Council Head of Transport) joined the Council meeting.

Mr Osborne introduced the draft plan, and explained the Resource Consent conditions that require the Council to implement a Downstream Effects Mitigation Plan prior to operating the CNC. He also noted three other workstreams that the Council is involved in:

  1. High Occupancy Vehicles (HOV, led by NZTA) – potentially one lane down the full length of the CNC may be limited to high-occupancy vehicles, for the purpose of reducing the number of vehicles coming into Christchurch from the north. (Status: business case approved to pursue further, funding decision yet to be made – due in March 2019?)
  2. A sub-regional Urban Development Strategy business case around travel demand management. Potentially mechanisms such as park & ride, HOV lanes, across the whole sub-region, but a specific focus on the north of Christchurch. Could result in a park & ride facility in Waimakariri for the CNC, and also high-frequency bus services, potentially using the CNC. (Status not mentioned.)
  3. A Public Transport Futures business case. Not just potentially high-frequency busses on the CNC. As the CNC is anticipated to reduce traffic on Papanui Rd / Main North Rd, the freed up capacity on those roads could support additional public transport. (Status: business case understood to have been through the Public Transport joint committee and is going to NZTA board for approval. Timeframes not clear.)

Dr Turner noted that CNC impacts will be on more than just congestion/cars, so he has worked to consider other impacts such as safety.

Mr Osborne stated that a programme steering group has been established, led by NZTA, to bring the four workstreams together (the DEMP and the three noted above).

Mayor Lianne Dalziel noted that:

  • NZTA & CCC material relating to the CNC and the other workstreams don’t link well online – there is a need for more joined-up communication for the public.
  • The DEMP is ‘what happens when Council & community have to address impacts of something that’s already been decided [by the previous Government & Council]’.
  • She wanted Council to receive the draft plan so that some work can happen ahead of the opening of the CNC in 2020.
  • Demand management is the key – a need to get people out of single-occupancy vehicles & onto public transport. This is a challenge that needs Council, ECan, NZTA and Waimakariri District Council to work ‘hand in glove’.

DEMP Discussion.jpg

Ultimately, after over an hour of discussion (watch the video online), the Council resolved to:

  1. Receive the Draft Downstream Effects Management Plan for staff to commence engagement with the community on the recommendations contained within the draft plan.
    (Councillors Yani Johanson, Tim Scandrett, Dion Swiggs, and Mike Davidson voted against this resolution.)
  2. Request Staff to work with the local communities on local access needs.
  3. Request Staff to provide a [public*] briefing to the affected Community Boards on the travel demand management options currently being investigated. (*NB the word ‘public’ was included when this resolution was discussed at the meeting, but is not in the minutes.)
    (Resolutions 2 & 3 were passed unanimously.)

Minutes of the 14 February meeting can be found at this link (PDF document).

What happens next?

A period of community consultation on the draft DEMP is planned – see Timelines for consultation have not been announced at the time of writing.

Question for readers

What are your thoughts on the CNC and the draft Downstream Effects Management Plan?

%d bloggers like this: