Greater Wellington Regional Council is responsible for the provision of public transport services in the Greater Wellington region.
As Programme Director of the Bus Services Transformation Programme, Andrew was responsible for delivery of a number of projects providing a step change in the service performance, cost effectiveness and ease of use for customers of bus services in the region.
These projects included:
- Implementation of the Public Transport Operating Model (PTOM) for bus and the associated procurement of 16 bus operating contracts across the region to the value of circa $80 million pa. The objective of PTOM is to deliver a competitive public transport operator market, with enhanced service levels and value for money for the public purse by tendering new performance based contracts. The successful implementation of PTOM is critical to the delivery of a range of interdependent transformational initiatives that will change the way PT services are delivered in Wellington in the future.
- Fleet transition – incorporating the transition from trolley buses and old diesel fleets to a low emission bus fleet and ultimately an all electric bus fleet in the region.
- New bus network – incorporating implementation of the new Wellington city bus network and the associated communication and transition arrangements with customers, bus operators and other stakeholders.
Andrew designed and led the procurement process for sixteen 9 and 12 year bus operating contracts. Under PTOM, services are grouped into ‘units’ of routes, each an exclusive contract with an operator. The Wellington region comprises 16 bus units. Seven of these units were directly appointed by negotiation to incumbent operators, with nine units tendered. The tender process included many features to reduce barriers to entry and is regarded as a benchmark for industry engagement. The result was a highly competitive tender process with nine local and international bus operators submitting tenders.
To meet Council aspirations for a low emission bus fleet, the tender process featured an industry-first quantitative assessment of bus fleet emissions using an economic cost to society approach to monetise bus emissions. This feature contributed to a tender outcome that has delivered 100% new buses to the tendered contracts, 95% of which are Euro VI, plus an initial ten battery electric buses which will be followed by the phased introduction of a further 22 electric buses over the first three years of the contracts. The resulting environmental outcomes are delivering improved air quality across the region with emissions of harmful pollutants reduced by 38 per cent in Wellington city and 84 per cent in the Hutt Valley conurbation. Read more here.
Andrew’s responsibilities also included the implementation of a redesigned bus network in Wellington city featuring a more integrated and connected system of bus routes designed to provide greater coverage and reach, while reducing route duplication and bus congestion in the central city. The new network features greater use of connecting services requiring the construction of 7 bus hubs at key locations across the city.
Stakeholder engagement has been a key area of focus throughout the project, requiring close working relationships with the NZ Transport Agency and Ministry of Transport. In addition to meeting governance requirements through the course of the project, Andrew regularly briefed the GW Council, together with other stakeholder TLAs, in particular Wellington City Council.
While the tender process met objectives for enhancing competition, delivering value for money and substantially improving bus fleet quality, the transition was particularly challenging. The new contracts, featuring two new entrants, new fleet and new depots were implemented at the same time as a radically new bus network, expanded and upgraded ticketing system, upgraded real time information system and a substantial change programme for the Regional Council, involving new roles, systems and processes.