Auckland local authorities have trimmed the budget for a new integrated ticketing system for local transport and now plan to borrow to fund the project.This is an issue that even a super-city structure will have trouble with setting up, implementing and running, given the balkanised set up of public transport systems in Auckland.
Yesterday, the Auckland Regional Council (ARC) decided to borrow $15 million and deliver what its chairman, Mike Lee, descibes as an "economy model" integrated ticketing system to allow commuters to travel across the city on different modes of transport with a single ticket.
However, the plan still depends on further funding being granted by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA).
"We're putting the ball back in the government's court."
Tha aim of an Auckland Oyster Card should be: all systems, all passengers, all times, all routes, all areas. And to include all Waiheke public transport.
The London Oyster card, as an example, isn't perfect in all these aspects either: National Rail surface trains are excluded from the system (with a temporary exemption over the coming days as the London Tube will be on strike)