The Elephant in the Room

It has been a depressing last while for public transport advocates like myself. The government’s stone-age attitude to transport funding, further delays for rail electrification (at least the funding for the electric trains) and the inevitability of having $1.4 billion wasted on the Waterview Connection make it easy to get depressed about whether we are heading at all in the right direction when it comes to transportation – or whether all the optimism of the last few years (that Auckland might actually eventually have a half-decent public transport system) was misguided.…
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Waterview Process Bulldozing

It seems like my worst fears about the Waterview Connection are going to come true, particularly with regard to bulldozing the project through the weakened Resource Management Act. This from an observor of an Eden/Albert Community Board meeting earlier in the week: As we already know, the public consultation period is set to end 31 July.…
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Funding for Electrification?

It appears as though National has set aside the necessary funding for the below-track works in the 2009 Budget. Page 41 of the “Vote Transport” includes the following: Now I’m a little confused by this. Is this $663 million just for ProjectDART activities (double-tracking of the Western Line and other rail upgrades that have been ongoing for years now)?…
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Bridge Crossing – the fallout & NZTA’s lies

It has been interesting, if a little annoying, over the past couple of days to see the fallout from Sunday’s Harbour Bridge Crossing. Interestingly, the NZ Herald has actually been one of the better reporters of the whole incident, with plenty of photos, a controversial story that relates to “when’s this happening next” (you can even see me in the photo for that story) and even a nice personal story about someone who crossed the bridge 50 years ago when it first opened and finally managed to cross it again yesterday.…
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Our Bridge

What a fantastic day for Auckland! After 50 years of having the Auckland Harbour Bridge locked off to all those not in cars, today Aucklanders took back Our Bridge. I was right there at the front of the rally – impressed by the speeches (particularly that of Christine Rose) and heckling abuse at Wayne McDonald of NZTA.…
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Super City Analysis – II

I left off with my Super-City Analysis at section 11 yesterday, so let’s take things forward a bit more today. Firstly, a couple of interesting points were raised in the comments thread of yesterday’s post – particularly about potential conflicts between the council and the mayor.…
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Future Auckland Metro?

Following on from discussions earlier this week about a possible future Metro for Auckland, I have got drawing with Photoshop! This is only the Auckland City part of the East-West Metro and would certainly be built much later than the Manukau City part (which follows the alignment in this post).…
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Super-City Analysis

A few posts back I briefly outlined my thoughts on the Super-City legislation and what I think – at a broad level – should be changed before it goes through parliament and becomes law. There were basically three parts to the legislation that I thought were flawed: ‘at large’ councillors, powerless local boards and a lack of Maori seats.…
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Action Stations!

For now I am just going to add weight to the Campaign for Better Transport’s “Action Stations” campaign: The Campaign for Better Transport today launched a campaign to highlight uncertainty surrounding the future of public transport projects in Auckland. Join the campaign here.…
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