The cost of growth

If there is one thing that both supporters and opponents of the Unitary Plan agree on it is that the councils communication over the plan has been less than ideal. Personally I think one of the biggest failings has been that the council didn’t put any effort into showing people what plans existed currently so they could accurately judge what change was occurring.…
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Shedding some light on this $30 million “funding gap”

My previous post, which commented on an NZ Herald article relating to operating costs of Auckland’s rail system, noted the somewhat bizarre emergence of a $30 million funding gap. While my previous post asked the question of “where the heck did this funding gap come from?” it is fair to say that Joyce has mentioned it a few times now – most recently in his interview on the TV3 programme “The Nation” a few weeks back.…
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Operation Lifesaver – where things are at

A month or so ago I helped present, on behalf of the Campaign for Better Transport, what we considered to be a more cost-effective and safety conscious option for upgrading State Highway 1 between Puhoi and Wellsford than the offline four-lane highway – often called the “holiday highway” – that is NZTA and the government’s current preferred option.…
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Huapai Rail – a worthy next step?

The ARC’s most recent Transport and Urban Development Committee meeting looked at the options for extending some services on the Western Line to Huapai. After the unfortunate (but not altogether unforeseeable thanks to the slowness of our trains) failure of the Helensville rail service, it seems as though some more realistic options are being looked at to extend some rail services from Waitakere township out to Huapai – a growing settlement to the northwest of Auckland.…
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“Operation Lifesaver” – a better solution for Puhoi-Wellsford

Today I helped present to the ARC’s Transport and Urban Development Committee an alternative to the Puhoi-Wellsford “holiday highway” that I have been working on, in conjunction with the Campaign for Better Transport.  As regular readers of this blog would well know, I do not think that the current proposal – a 38 kilometre “off-line” motorway between Puhoi and Wellsford is a good use of $1.7 billion that it is likely to cost.…
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Northwest Busway – update

Somewhat as the result of my pleading, the Regional Transport Committee back in April resolved to take a further look at the best way to provide public transport along the Northwestern Motorway in the medium and long-term future. As I have outlined before, SH16 is to be upgraded by NZTA over the next few years – at a cost of over $800 million.…
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ARC sceptical of “holiday highway”

At yesterday’s meeting of the ARC’s Transport and Urban Development Committee there was a lengthy discussion of the merits of the Puhoi to Wellsford “holiday highway”. This was reported in the NZ Herald today, in an article that includes the following: The Government was accused yesterday of “picking winners” by promoting a new highway north of Auckland for up to $2 billion while KiwiRail is considering closing its line to Northland.…
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Progress on Airport rail line!

Some exciting news hidden in the agenda of next week’s ARC Transport and Urban Development committee meeting, that the next step is being taken towards making a railway line to the airport a reality. The full item can be read from pages 8-21 of this document.…
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HOVs on the Northern Busway?

An interesting, if rather worrying, little piece of information has emerged from the dark depths of the ARC’s Transport and Urban Development Committee agenda – the meeting on which happened today. And that relates to some discussion that is being undertaken by the Northern Corridor Steering Group (a meeting of various transport organisations that relate to the northern part of Auckland) about whether High Occupancy Vehicles (HOVs) should be allowed on the Northern Busway.…
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