Fullers is investigating using three double decker buses for tours on Waiheke, raising concerns for island residents.
Christine Gisby says double deckers would be unsafe on Waiheke’s narrow, winding roads and their weight could damage the island’s roads.
She is concerned that the community is not being consulted or even kept informed about the possible use of double deckers on island roads, despite the fact the buses could have a “major impact”.
Fullers chief executive Doug Hudson says the company applied last year to operate three double decker buses on its public transport service from the wharf at Matiatia.
However, Auckland Transport declined the application on the basis it would be too expensive to remove vegetation and move phone and power lines for the buses.
Fullers is now considering using three double deckers on its tours and would pay for tree pruning or changes needed to phone and power cables.
The double decker coaches are no wider or longer than buses already on the island and no extra consent would be required to start using them on the island, says Mr Hudson.
However, Fullers hopes to work with the community to overcome concerns before pushing ahead with the proposal.
“The island is becoming increasing popular for tourists.
“If we can move people more efficiently with less vehicles, that must be a positive,” he says.
The buses would mostly be driven on main roads and can take 80 passengers, although Fullers expects it would keep numbers down to about 65 on each tour. • Rose Davis