Relationship Between Politics And Transport Planning

2267 words - 10 pages

Politics plays an important role in any aspect of planning, but none such more than transport planning and the investments and policies that go in to constructing the aspects associated. As with any discipline, politics plays both positive and negative roles in public transport planning, policies and investment; as it shapes decision-making and the degrees of financial support that is given to each project. Because politics brings both positive and negative effects to public transport planning it can both promote and obstruct development. In the case of Auckland, New Zealand, politics plays a negative role, obstructing the development of a better public transport system for the city and surrounding neighborhoods. Although there are various different ways that politics can contribute to public transport planning, policies and investment, many of these roles can have both a positive and a negative impact.

In any country, the government, and therefore politics, plays a crucial role in the organisation and distribution of goods and services public sector, and the organisation of policies and investments that surround the transportation system, including public transit. National governments around the world differ in their social and economic structures, and in particular their infrastructure projects and investments (Galilea & Medda, 2010), and because of this, public transportation differs extensively. The national and/or local government essentially is in charge and runs the various modes of public transportation systems, as it is set up by policies and initiatives that are targeted at the local community and their needs, although the private sector does also get involved in the politics. As public transport is set up by legislation, the government and scope of politics at the time of the drafting and implementation highly affects the detail of the legislation or policy and the way that it affects the people that it is targeted at. Essentially politics plays a large role in public transport planning, policy and investment through such avenues as public-private relationships, cost benefit analysis and ideologies.

One role that politics plays in investment and policy involved with public transport is through public-private relationships. Over the last few decades, government has relied on public money to finance infrastructure. This is changing, and because of the demand for mobility and public transport all over the world, public-private partnerships are becoming increasingly common, as (Ni, 2012) explains, “governments at all levels are interested in public-private partnerships as a way of introducing private investment to the public transport infrastructure”. A public-private partnership is an institutionalised form of relationship of public and private actors who work together towards a common goal, with their separate objectives (Ni, 2012). Public-private partnerships can play both positive and negative roles. Public-private relationships can...

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