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Record numbers jump on board for bus service



thumbnail Village to Beach Loop Bus-261Mangawhai’s bus service proved hugely popular with both locals and visitors this summer.

The bus ran daily December 27–January 17 and then every weekend and public holiday to February 08, picking up passengers from Mangawhai Village to the surf beach.

The service saw a 35 percent increase in use when compared to the same period (December 27–January 11) last year. A total of 2536 passengers used the service over summer, more than double overall.

The bus service is funded by Kaipara District Council and Waka Kotahi NZTA, and operated by local outfit Leabourn Passenger Service Limited. This is the second year the bus has run – next summer will be the last before the funding partners look at future options.

The bus is one of a number of initiatives implemented to improve congestion in Mangawhai, particularly during the busy summer months.

Lyndon Leabourn, General Manager for Leabourn Passenger Service Limited says it’s been a busy summer for the service and their drivers.

“Particularly popular stops included MAZ, the Surf Beach, and Wood Street. The bus is especially great for kids and teenagers who need to get around Mangawhai but don’t drive or have access to a car. We’re proud to be part of this trial.”

Gail Fotheringham, Community Advisor for Kaipara District Council, is pleased with the significant increase in use compared to last year.

“We are over the moon with the uptake this year. Coming into the second year of a three-year trial, it’s fantastic to see more and more people using it.”

“We are already planning ways we can improve the service for next year. We are running a survey and want to hear from any bus users and the community about what they think could be made better.”

The survey is available on the Mangawhai Community Plan website mangawhaicommunityplan.co.nz.

More than double the passengers used the free Mangawhai loop bus service this summer.

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