How should we fund the transport system in the future?

A good transport system allows people and goods to move efficiently and safely, to connect to friends and whānau, and to access job opportunities, education and recreation.

The way we pay for the transport system has functioned well for decades, but it is time to reconsider how it works in the longer-term, because the way New Zealanders travel is changing.

What should the land transport system look like in the future, and what is a fair way of funding it?

You can help shape the future of transport funding in Aotearoa

Share and vote on ideas in an interactive online conversation called Pol.is.

Explore the conversation as it develops and check back every few days to review and vote on new ideas.

Findings from this Pol.is will be shared with you once available. They will be used by Te Manatū Waka Ministry of Transport as it develops policy. Further public consultation and engagement on the long-term future of the Revenue System is planned for 2024. Click here for our privacy statement.

A future land transport system might include low-emission vehicles, improved public transport, more walking and cycling. It could make sure that the young, the elderly and disabled aren’t disadvantaged and can easily access the places and things they need.

Changes to the transport system could be driven by a range of things like advances in technology (e.g. vehicle automation and electrification), the need to reduce carbon emissions, and a desire for more liveable and sustainable cities.

What does land transport include?

  • carCars
  • motorcycleMotorbikes
  • truckTrucks
  • busBuses
  • trainTrains
  • walkingWalking
  • bicycleCycling
  • pathsRoads, paths
    and tracks

Need to know more?

View background information for this project and learn about different funding perspectives  >>>

Questions to think about:

  • How will we pay to maintain and improve the transport network if road vehicles travel less and less revenue is collected from FED and RUC?
  • How should the transport system balance the promotion of well-being, safety, access and connectivity, along side environmental and economic outcomes?
  • How should we pay for the major investments needed to transition to a lower emissions transport system (e.g., EV charging infrastructure, more public transport, bike lanes)?
  • How should we pay for the range of transport options needed in our towns and cities so that people have more choices about how and when they travel? How should we pay for a transport system that is more vulnerable to shocks like extreme weather events?
  • How do we ensure that we are meeting the needs of all who use our transport system – including businesses, people who live in smaller towns and rural areas, people who are on lower incomes, or people with disabilities?
  • Should we make more use of pricing tools (e.g., tolls, congestion and pollution charges) to encourage people and companies to make different travel choices?
  • If we are encouraging more use of public transport, walking and cycling, what should those users pay towards its upkeep? As newer transport forms become more available, eg e-bikes, scooters, should these make a contribution?
  • How should other costs that vehicles impose on the system (such as congestion and pollution, and vehicles’ use of scarce land) be accounted for? Should these ‘externalities’ be something that drivers should pay for?
  • How should the benefits and costs or new transport infrastructure be shared across society?

Future transport perspectives – what do you think?

I think… our system of fuel excise duty (FED), road user charges (RUCs) and rates means that those who use our roads and ratepayers pay for maintenance and improvement, as well as contributing to public transport and other parts of the transport system.
I think… funding priorities need to shift from a focus on roads and private vehicles to more sustainable forms of transport. We need to reduce carbon emissions, the effects of pollution, biodiversity loss and harm to human health.
I think… There is more to transport than getting from A to B as effortlessly and efficiently as possible. The way we travel, and the cost of travel, has social and cultural consequences. If not addressed, these can lead to issues of inequality and a transport system that doesn’t serve different kinds of people.
I think… if we are serious about how to raise revenue for the future transport system, then we should get the private sector much more involved.
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About Koi Tū

Koi Tū: The Centre for Informed Futures is an independent, transdisciplinary think tank and research centre at the University of Auckland.

We generate knowledge and analysis to address critical long-term national and global issues challenging our future.

 

Address

Koi Tū: The Centre for Informed Futures
The University of Auckland
Level 7, Building 804, 18 Waterloo Quadrant, Auckland Central 1010
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Twitter: @InformedFutures

Contact

Future transport email:
ccl-transport@auckland.ac.nz
Future water email:
ccl-study@auckland.ac.nz

Phone: 027 271 9907