Following its second year of operation the summer shuttle bus provided by Leabourns Passenger Service through the peak period December 27 to January 11 proved popular though was still under-used by many who didn’t realise the advantage of utilising the service.
The scheme was well supported by Whangarei Regional Council, Kaipara District Council and the Mangawhai Business Development Association (MBDA).
Proprietor Lyndon Leabourn reports that summer 2014 was busier than the first year with a different flow of passengers moving door-to-door but routes need some modification for better utilisation by the public and also the means to allow a better service by the bus company.
For example, due to regular vehicle congestion in Wood St, few are taking notice of bus stop signs or are often unable to access them. Alternatively the Park’n’ride system operating from the recreation centre in Insley St has worked reasonably well. There are discussions to see if something similar can be instigated from the Wood St area such as re-assessing stopping points and/or utilising possible vacant land as park’n’ride stops outside the shopping zones thereby not adding to congestion.
Ideas are also welcomed by the MBDA on how best to navigate the congestion at the Heads and the boat ramp over the peak summer holiday period. It has also been suggested that, perhaps with advertising, the bus can be made more visible.
General opinion is that the service needs to continue as greater profile will, in time, aid pedestrian movement around Mangawhai. A delegation from the MBDA will be meeting with Council members shortly to discuss ways of streamlining the system and making it more accessable to all.
- Rob Pooley