Calls are growing for the Government to step in and fix Wellington's troubled new bus network, with one upset commuter likening it to a pasta disaster.

About 400 frustrated commuters packed into Karori West Normal School last night to address Greater Wellington Regional Council representatives.

One passenger referred to the new system as a "lasagne of failure" while another said trying to get on a bus, let alone securing a seat, was like a round of the Hunger Games.

Greater Wellington Regional Council chairman Chris Laidlaw was accused of not caring about the people.


Elected members who voted to go ahead with the new network were told they had proven themselves incompetent.

Diane Steffensen was among the tens of people who spoke during the lengthy open mic session, wanting to know who drew up the plan for the system and why.

"Heads should roll, not [be] swept under the carpet".

Margie Scotts said she had lost faith in Greater Wellington Regional Council and appealed to MPs in the room for help.

"I actually think there's some other kind of intervention, whether that's statutory management or whatever."

At the end of the session National list MP Nicola Willis grabbed the mic.

She said the council had not addressed people's questions and she had written every query down.

"I am going to send them to the council and with the support of this room I will demand that we get answers to those questions within the next week."


Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson said the Public Transport Operating Model the previous government created was flawed and needed to be changed.

He said the Transport Minister has work under way to re-look at it.

"But unfortunately in terms of this contract in Wellington it won't be possible to re-write history and go backwards on that and that's why it's really up to the regional council to resolve this particular issue."

Wellington City councillor for the Onslow-Western Ward Diane Calvert said advocating was no longer enough and the Government needed to intervene.

"What needs to happen is the Government, through NZTA, look at their investment and how effective that investment is and whether they need to have greater governance over that investment."

Robertson said he was uncertain whether NZTA had the power to step in.

"Look, from my point of view whatever the Government can do, we should do."

The regional council's Sustainable Transport Committee deputy chair Daran Ponter offered an apology at the meeting.

"The regional council has been rather feeble in the way that we have acknowledged the pain and the anger that you have experienced over the last seven weeks."

Following the meeting, Laidlaw said resigning would be the easy way out and he had no intention of doing so.

He said he did care about the people and understood they were hurting.

"I'm fielding questions every day and talking to people personally every day about their issue, we are spending our entire week only on this issue."