Greens say scrap Tranmission Gully to fund Auckland rail

November 14th, 2011 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The has said their policy is to scrap , and use the money to fund Auckland rail.  Wellingtonians should be outraged by this theft.

If there is a Labour-led Government, the Greens will have massive influence as their vote is around 1/2 that of Labour’s. Will the death of Transmission Gully be one of the conditions in a coalition agreement?

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37 Responses to “Greens say scrap Tranmission Gully to fund Auckland rail”

  1. burt (8,019 comments) says:

    To be fair DPF – Transmission Gully will be put on hold immediately follwoing the election. It will be back on the plan again for 2014… this same pattern has repeated every election since the 50′s irrespective of which party gets into power – you will only convince me that National will do something different when a road is actually being built.

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  2. Paranormal (6 comments) says:

    Yet again Greens narrow vision of the world allows them to miss the big picture. Roads are lifelines. Christchurch was ‘lucky’ in that on a plain there were multiple access points. And then there’s the economic benefits – but of course the Greens aren’t keen on that anyway.

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  3. flipper (3,832 comments) says:

    Oh dear, the Greens just put the kiss of death on Robertson, Chauvel, Fa’afoi, Hipkins, King (well, I can wish can’t I?), AND PRETTY PLEASE, the Idiot M-Duck.
    What a pity, never mind!

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  4. RRM (9,638 comments) says:

    I’m with the right on this.
    Aucklanders don’t want (or deserve) a good urban rail network.
    So we can have transmission gully now, please?

    And comment #1 by Burt is spot on.

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  5. Batman (103 comments) says:

    AHHHHHHHH!!! this is ridiculous!

    Do the greens not realise that zero emission vehicles of the future need somewhere to drive???

    idiots

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  6. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    I work in the Auckland CBD and use the public transport. Having lived in New York and used the subway (and New York’s buses) I simply cannot see how a small train system will actually be economical. Which thus leads me to the suspicion that this is a ‘green’ gimmick.

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  7. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    Further to that, if this was good for the economy and for Auckland city, National, Key and Joyce would be all over it for the photo opportunities. They are, after all, politicians too.

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  8. MarkF (100 comments) says:

    I will repost my earlier post on another topic today here as it’s relevant to this discussion as well.

    “After driving Auckland to Wellington on Friday ( to collect my daughter from Victoria Uni) and return on Saturday. SWMBO and I were discussing that we really need to stop all these piecemeal roading projects in NZ such as the ” Holiday Highway” and “Transmission Gully” and I am sure many others and come up with a long term plan to properly connect all major NZ towns. Firstly a project to connect Whangarei to Wellington with a four lane highway (preferably a divided highway) with links to Tauranga, possibly Napier. Then start looking at the South Island, and before all of the “Mainlanders” get up in arms you already have good roads and little traffic, by comparison.

    This should be an ongoing long term project not a staccato one as now happens. Compare the delay in completing the second half of the Albany to Puhoi road and the Auckland to Cambridge expressway. As we finish one section, then on with the next and so on until it is finished. Funding, dare I say it, put a non purloin-able (by politicians) levy on gas specifically for this. People probably won’t mind this provided they can see on going progress on the project.

    AS TO THE GREEN ARGUMENT “NO MORE CARS”, WELL NEWS TO THEM EVEN IF WE HAVE REACHED PEAK OIL OR WHAT EVER, HUMAN INVENTIVENESS WILL SOLVE THE FUEL ISSUE SO GET OVER IT! PEOPLE WILL USE CARS, SO LETS MAKE THAT TRANSPORT OPTION AS EFFICIENT AS POSSIBLE NOT WASTING FUEL IN TRAFFIC JAMS ETC.

    Lets start looking at a long term plan as we are told by 2050 there will be 7m people here and the glorified goat tracks we have as the No1 highway will not cope.”

    That is why we should NEVER let the Greens get anywhere near the decision making process!!

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  9. GPT1 (2,103 comments) says:

    Use of theft might be to make a point but interesting you should associate Greens with criminality given they are now demanding that the secretly recorded conversation between Banks and Key is released. Seems the rule of law and the Greens are not the greatest of friends.

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  10. Mark (1,424 comments) says:

    The Greens have probably just lost a good proportion of wavering support in Wellington for not a hell of a lot of gain in Auckland. Expect that on the day they will poll just under 10% not the current 12% being predicted.

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  11. flipper (3,832 comments) says:

    Mark F….Excellent!

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  12. Daigotsu (451 comments) says:

    Typo.

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  13. decanker (222 comments) says:

    DPF, just today you said that you “agree Wgtn should pay for Transmission Gully”; and hey, now you can!

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  14. GL (60 comments) says:

    Auckland has been underfunded for years. Roads on the other hand have been overfunded for years. We have been subsiding the trucking industry and promoting inefficient and environmentally damaging practices with building motorways.

    I think this is a great move – the fact that the Greens are willing to say where they are going to get the money from for a project shows that they are starting to become more serious about economics and the priorities that you have to balance when in govt.

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  15. Murray (8,841 comments) says:

    Lets all play spot the new greens troll.

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  16. campit (467 comments) says:

    The Greens has said their policy is to scrap Transmission Gully, and use the money to fund Auckland rail.

    Where did you read that? I imagine they are scrapping Transmission Gully because it doesn’t stack up economically. (It is supposed to be a toll road, yet no-one has announced how much the toll will be. How can the BCR be known anyhow?)

    The $2.8bn raised each year from fuel taxes will be redistributed to public transport and other projects which reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and actually make a long term difference for motorists.

    They are also scrapping the uneconomic and “geotechnically challenging” Holiday Highway toll road, which has only been costed as far as Warkworth, will cost a billion dollars and will only save a few minutes travelling time. The NZTA’s own report from 2008 concludes that there aren’t any economic arguments for building it either. The only congestion on this road occurs on the 27th December and a couple of other dates during the year, so there is absolutely no rational justification for building it.

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  17. Mick Mac (1,091 comments) says:

    Yet another reason to not vote for the watermelons nor their best mates The Labour party.

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  18. swan (659 comments) says:

    “The Greens has said their policy is to scrap Transmission Gully, and use the money to fund Auckland rail. Wellingtonians should be outraged by this theft.”

    Ha. Thats a ridiculously bad policy (the auckland rail part anyway), but theft is a bit strong dontcha think DPF??

    Has anyone else noticed this site has slipped from relative independence, to selective self-censorship, to out-and-out spin, and now to pure agitprop as the election has drawn ever nearer?

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  19. adc (582 comments) says:

    MarkF, the only way we’ll have 7M people here by 2025 is if the Greens get in and import a bunch of 3rd world refugees (like they keep threatening to)… in which case goat tracks are kinda appropriate.

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  20. MarkF (100 comments) says:

    @adc I think you will find I said 2050. And it’s not my figure

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/news/5956532/20-20-vision-for-2050

    But I get your point!

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  21. adc (582 comments) says:

    @MarkF doh so you did.

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  22. Other_Andy (2,512 comments) says:

    Campit

    “The only congestion on this road occurs on the 27th December and a couple of other dates during the year, so there is absolutely no rational justification for building it.”

    Really?
    And where did you get that information?

    And….
    This is NOT a holiday road! There are a lot of people who rely on this road to get to and from work.
    Especially at night this road is chocka with freight transport.
    This road is the only viable option to get north of Puhoi.
    And…..
    The New Zealand Road Assessment Programme has identified SH1 between Warkworth and Wellsford as having the 7th highest risk of any stretch of road in NZ, with SH1 between Orewa and Warkworth having the 10th highest risk5. Furthermore, between 2000 and 2009 there have been 41 road fatalities on this stretch of SH1, comprised of 15 between Puhoi and Warkworth6, and 26 between Warkworth and Wellsford7. In addition to these 41 fatalities, between 2004 and 2008 alone there were 31 serious injuries and 118 minor injuries resulting from accidents between Puhoi and Wellsford.

    Ah well, who cares about a few dead and injured people, lets have a train set in Auckland.

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  23. aitkenmike (94 comments) says:

    Other Andy – As I understand it, there are fully costed alterations to the current highway that alleviate these problems that are budgeted at around 2-300 million, as opposed to the 1.2 billion plus holiday highway.

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  24. leftyliberal (642 comments) says:

    Did you forget the link DPF?

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  25. Other_Andy (2,512 comments) says:

    aitkenmike

    “Other Andy – As I understand it, there are fully costed alterations to the current highway that alleviate these problems that are budgeted at around 2-300 million, as opposed to the 1.2 billion plus holiday highway.”

    First….
    If you want to be taken serious don’t call it a ‘holiday highway’.
    It isn’t.
    Secondly…
    Nothing short of a two way highway is going to solve the problems I have mentioned.
    We have had several ‘alterations’ and ‘improvements’ over the last 10 years. The only improvement that (partly) worked was the Orewa-Puhoi extension of the motorway.

    The situation is getting worse every year.
    You want to throw away 200-300 million for a short term ‘solution’ instead of doing it properly.
    I don’t think that is the right way to solve a problem.

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  26. campit (467 comments) says:

    Ah well, who cares about a few dead and injured people, lets have a train set in Auckland.

    That is why we are pushing for immediate improvements to the road between Puhoi and Wellsford, rather than wait for a new toll road to be built sometime after 2020 where safety improvements will only be available to those willing to pay.

    http://www.bettertransport.org.nz/2010/08/lifesaver-highway-proposed-for-puhoi-wellsford/

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  27. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    What I said on the other thread:
    Black with a Vengeance said:

    the potential rise of fuel prices to over 5-10 dollars a litre in say the next 2 to 5 years promoting an inevitable decrease in the use of private vehicles ?

    Would you be prepared to wager a tank of gas on that statement? If the price of petrol is over $5/l for ULP91 on 14 November 2016 I will buy you a tank of gas, but if it’s under you will buy me one?

    Kiwi in America said:

    If Sydney can’t make a new inner city transit rail link work with its much larger population and its more deeply ingrained public transport culture, what makes the proponents of the Auckland CBD loop think that Auckland will fare any better.

    Brisbane has a rail link to the airport that is privately funded (OK partially owned by Brisbane Airport Corporation which is owned by the state government, but it is an SOE that makes money and was essentially a private not government funded project). It makes money, it has won medium sized business awards and is really convenient (unless you need to get to the airport at stupid o’clock). Granted, it does effectively have a subsidy because it joins to a subsidised city rail network, but it does work and it does work well. Brisbane is also roughly the size of Auckland, and the SE Queensland region would be a similar size and probably demographic to the Waikato-Auckland-Rodney-Whangarei region.
    Part of the problem with Sydney is that it is cheaper to take a cab from the last public railway station to the airport than it is to use the train – that’s not the case at Brisbane since it’s a fair distance.

    I do like the idea of an underground busway for Auckland – it seems sensible, cheaper and more flexible than a rail network (and works very well in Brisbane for the areas that don’t have rail, including “downtown”). The reason rail networks work in other cities is that the core infrastructure already exists. That is not the case in Auckland, so look to see what the best option for core infrastructure is in Auckland.

    and:
    Oh yeah, forgot to mention that the motorway link isn’t just for people in Auckland. Again, using the Brisbane example, the Pacific Highway through the Gold Coast isn’t mainly used by people living in Brisbane to travel to Byron Bay for a holiday, it is used by people on the Gold Coast to travel from one part of the Coast to another and to a lesser extent by trucks heading to and from New South Wales. The users from Brisbane are pretty irrelevant, really.

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  28. Other_Andy (2,512 comments) says:

    campit

    See my reply at 4.02.

    “….where safety improvements will only be available to those willing to pay.”

    I hope you are not serious..
    What happens to those who cannot pay, will they have to use the unsafe road?

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  29. campit (467 comments) says:

    @Other_Andy – I doubt $300m+ worth of safety improvements will go ahead if a parallel toll road is built. So the existing SH1 will remain in its current state.

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  30. Other_Andy (2,512 comments) says:

    campit

    “I doubt $300m+ worth of safety improvements will go ahead if a parallel toll road is built. So the existing SH1 will remain in its current state.”

    OK, fair enough.
    But tinkering with the existing SH1 won’t help either.

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  31. Scott Chris (5,967 comments) says:

    David Farrar says:- “Wellingtonians should be outraged by this theft.”

    Theft of what? Welllington doesn’t make any money. They just spend other people’s.

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  32. Scott Chris (5,967 comments) says:

    Murray trolls:- “Lets all play spot the new greens troll.”

    What, and trip trap on your bridge Murray?

    Got anything useful to say?

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  33. The Scorned (719 comments) says:

    If you aren’t willing to pay somehow then you shouldn’t be on any damn road….bludger.

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  34. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    The Scorned – we do pay. Every time we fill up our petrol tanks….Fuckhead.

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  35. SPC (5,473 comments) says:

    Why would Wellingtonians begrudge Auckland necessary funding for their half completed rail system. In these times, it is a matter of priorities. Wellington’s population is not increasing much and so the need for this roading is not really increasing over time. It’s a nice to have, not a pressing issue. That it has been around awhile as an option does not change that.

    It’s a little sad that pro National spinners try and play pariochialism on this.

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  36. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    SPC –
    1. Transmission Gully won’t just serve people from Wellington. It will serve people from as far away as Palmerston North (and further afield for freight users) getting to the airport and ferry. Which are pretty much the only times I ever go to Wellington – that said, my dad goes to Wellington most weeks, but since he’s not usually going to the CBD he doesn’t waste his time with the train. Even his neighbour who works in the CBD drives every day, because by the time you piss round getting to the train and spending money on a ticket from Otaki you might as well have driven. You also don’t have the flexibility on public transport as you do with your own vehicle.
    The benefits of the Gully route aren’t just for Wellington – just like the benefits for the “holiday highway” aren’t just for the people of Auckland.

    2. The population of Auckland might be growing, but is that population living or working in the CBD or central suburbs? I don’t think so, but nobody has come up with any statistics either way. My suspicion is that Auckland’s growth is suburban and the increase in traffic will be suburban, not in the CBD. Those people will only use the train system if it is easy to go where they want – and if it only goes to the central suburbs then it’s pretty useless for people on a day to day basis, when they will be within their own suburb or between suburbs and not to the CBD – it is not possible to join up all the suburbs with an efficient rail system; the only public transport that will work are buses. I only use public transport when I am travelling to Brisbane, and only then when it suits me (more often than not I park my car at a provider near the airport than take the train.)

    3. There is an underexplored option of the bus tunnel, which nobody has commissioned a proper study on. It might cost half the price, give better results and be much easier and cheaper to reconfigure since the supporting infrastructure already exists. This system works very well in other cities but the supporters of public transport in New Zealand seem to think the only option is expensive rail.

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  37. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    Re the previous comment – I park at the airport when the train doesn’t suit. That doesn’t mean that I don’t want to take the train, it just doesn’t run for flights that leave before 7:00ish (a real pain since about 1/3 of Brisbane’s domestic flights leave before 7). Which is the biggest problem with public transport – you have to fit their timetable or it doesn’t work.

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