Long Read: Fixing our Transport Planning System

This is a longer post than usual, but I want to tackle a question that’s been nagging me for quite a while, as well as look into some issues with the inner workings of our transport planning system. The big question, the one that we should always be coming back to over time is: “why, despite tens of billions of dollars in investment, are so many transport outcomes generally getting worse rather than better?” To do that I’m going to run through some pretty big issues: How much do we spend on transport and what do we get for this?…
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Defining the “average” Aucklander.

In this post, I want to talk (somewhat informally) about how we define the “average Aucklander”, before relating this discussion to the people who contribute material for the Blog. I finish with a plea for help. I’ve been pondering these issues for sometime, due to Peter’s excellent post about submissions on Auckland’s Unitary Plan as well as Emma’s compelling call for greater involvement from women in urbanism.…
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Biting the Breast that Feeds Us

I was saddened to read some recent news articles (here and here) that described a young mother in Auckland being kicked off the bus for breastfeeding her child. My heart goes out to this woman and her child. As someone who will soon be a parent myself, I was saddened to find this is still a problem for two reasons.…
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Tauranga’s transport schemozzle

Greetings from Greater Tauranga. We are a newly formed group that aim to have an active voice in transport and land use planning for our city. This first blog is an overview of the web of agencies, plans and agendas that govern our transport planning and in our view make it nigh on impossible for the bold and integrated planning required to  avoid the future that Auckland is now trying to untangle itself from.…
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Pre-emptively poking holes in the land tax bucket

Land taxes have – unexpectedly – become a hot policy topic in the run-up to the election. Land taxes were originally suggested by the economist and social reformer Henry George as a fairer alternative to income or business tax. The logic behind them is that land values are shaped by the activities of society as a whole, rather than the individual owner: they are boosted by public investments in transport and good schools, and by the productivity gains that arise from lots of workers and businesses interacting in cities.…
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New Zealand’s problem with death

Matt’s post the other week about New Zealand’s worsening road safety record was troubling. After years in which the number of people dying in road crashes has fallen, the number’s been rising steadily since 2014 and it’s recently spiked upwards. As Matt wrote: That our road toll is increasing is appalling and it’s even more disappointing to see that pedestrians are bearing some of the brunt of it.…
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