WCC changes mind on Basin flyover

December 21st, 2012 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Katie Chapman at Dom Post reports:

Wellington’s big transport projects are in limbo as the NZ Transport Agency and Wellington City Council face off over plans for the Basin Reserve.

The agency is committed to a flyover north of the historic cricket ground as a key part of its transport plans for the city, which include the possibility of a light rail system.

It warned the council on Wednesday not to reconsider its backing for the flyover. But the council ignored the warning at a meeting that night, agreeing instead to spend $50,000 exploring fresh alternatives.

There’s nothing wrong with having a different view on a transport project. But what is highly unprofessional is changing your mind on a project, after previously agreeing to it. It just makes you look wonky, and like grass in the wind.

FOR

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown: “What we’re saying here is that we don’t want to leave any stone unturned in the search for a win-win solution that will reduce some of the congestion.”

Stephanie Cook: “Do we want Wellington to end up like Los Angeles with its spaghetti junctions, flyovers and intersections all over the place?”

Paul Eagle: “There has been a chorus from the community saying, ‘We do not want a flyover’.”

Andy Foster: “In some ways we’re doing NZTA a favour. We’ve learnt through bitter experience that when you think you’re right and you’ve got a winner, sometimes you don’t.”

Justin Lester: “We think [the flyover] is butt ugly and want something better for the city.”

Iona Pannett: “I’m appalled at the behaviour of NZTA. They’ve threatened us as elected representatives and acted in a political manner, when they should have been providing advice as public servants.”

Bryan Pepperell: “It is absolutely necessary that we do not accept last century’s solution to our transport problems.”

Helene Ritchie: “These roading projects are seriously [on] impacting the town belt.”

AGAINST:

Ray Ahipene-Mercer: “This was a deliberate act of political sabotage by the mayor and seven councillors.”

Ngaire Best: “What I see before me is actually a proposition to delay, delay, delay.”

Jo Coughlan: “Wellington needs to future-proof itself for growth, and investment in roading infrastructure is critical.”

Leonie Gill: “I just don’t know what this decision is going to achieve when alternative options can be taken through the RMA process.”

Ian McKinnon: “Presumably the solution is to do nothing. One can’t but help wondering if that’s what some councillors want.”

Simon Marsh: “By continually frustrating NZTA and the Government, the Government might say, ‘Wellington, you are too difficult to work with.’ “

John Morrison: “It appears this council has finally become a Green Party protest rally.”

I like an article that includes not just how each person voted, but a quote from them. Helps me with my voting decisions next year.

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26 Responses to “WCC changes mind on Basin flyover”

  1. Viking2 (11,544 comments) says:

    Why is that research based solutions are so vilified. Who had money invested on the current staus quo?

    there are always idea’s worth testing.

    NZTA are not the font of all knowledge. Indeed are often wrong.

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  2. RRM (10,001 comments) says:

    Fuck’s sake. The roads around the basin are already a hot, noisy, dirty hell hole of a place to be. A flyover is not going to harm anything.

    Bryan Pepperell: “It is absolutely necessary that we do not accept last century’s solution to our transport problems.”

    :roll:

    Why not, Bryan? We are all driving last century’s 4-wheeled mode of transport remember. And there is no sign of that changing in the forseeable future.

    But let’s have government based on meaningless smelly-protestor slogans, eh Bryan you utterly braindead fucking emasculated little pillock.

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  3. libertyscott (359 comments) says:

    Not just the Council changing its mind, Labour wasn’t too fussed about it either when it funded a big boost in spending on Wellington roads in the first place.

    http://libertyscott.blogspot.co.nz/2012/12/basin-reserve-opponents-are.html

    Just look at the hysterical comments against it:

    Stephanie Cook thinks a 400m long two-lane one-way bridge is like Los Angeles. Such nonsense.
    Paul Eagle thinks a local ginger group represents all of Wellington.
    Iona Pannett, who belongs to a party that opposes the 2nd Mt Victoria Tunnel and all of the other road projects that aren’t worth doing until you fix this problem is being disingenuous in being “outraged”.
    Bryan Pepperell remains the Arthur Scargill of the Council.
    Helene Ritchie still isn’t taking her pills, given the bridge is around 400m away from the Town Belt, but she’s long been a loony tune.

    Sue Kedgley used to lie about the inner city bypass, claiming it was a multi-lane motorway, the same scaremongering politics have taken over the Council

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  4. Paulus (2,656 comments) says:

    I see that Grunty Robertson has got his oar in now wanting another Mt Vic tunnel instead.

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  5. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Andy Foster: “In some ways we’re doing NZTA a favour. We’ve learnt through bitter experience that when you think you’re right and you’ve got a winner, sometimes you don’t.”

    Translation: “In some ways my dog is a chicken sometimes”.

    And we pay these people?

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  6. Viking2 (11,544 comments) says:

    RRM (6,028) Says:
    December 21st, 2012 at 11:10 am

    Fuck’s sake. The roads around the basin are already a hot, noisy, dirty hell hole of a place to be. A flyover is not going to harm anything.
    ————————–
    Well you will live in Wgtn. :lol:

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  7. RRM (10,001 comments) says:

    They should just bulldoze the basin reserve and run the highway straight through, with a massive cloverleaf intersection for Adelaide Rd and the two terraces.

    [Basin reserve would be no loss… At least one of the stands is an earthquake risk building and there’s no money to fix it. This country’s shit at cricket anyway, and the only other event of note that happens there is the annual stoner concert, which could always move back to the velodrome where it came from… ]

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  8. libertyscott (359 comments) says:

    I wonder how many of the enthusiasts for “alternatives” have read this:

    http://www.nzta.govt.nz/projects/basin-reserve/docs/prelim-option-x-assessment.pdf

    It’s fairly damning on how good intentions are no substitute for professional qualifications in highway engineering and transport economics. The nonsense claim that a 2nd Mt Victoria Tunnel can somehow improve conditions says it all – what happens to the traffic when it gets to the Basin?

    NZTA is legally required to consider a wide range of options, and has done so. This is largely a half-arsed attempt to politicise a non-issue because it is a National government progressing the project. The Greens are acting in form, Labour is jumping on what it perceives to be a populist bandwagon – like it did with the Inner City Bypass, until it got into government and reason finally won the day.

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  9. backster (2,184 comments) says:

    John Morrison get closest to the truth……….The only people who tend to vote at local body elections are Greens and Homosexuals, they are well organised, get their people into key positions, and appoint people like them. Increased rates, borrowing and wasteful spending follow just like night follows day.

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  10. Peter (1,723 comments) says:

    It is absolutely necessary that we do not accept last century’s solution to our transport problems

    Perhaps he prefers two centuries old solutions i.e. trains and “buses” (horse and cart)

    Or perhaps he’s advocating personal jet packs.

    I could totally go for that…..

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  11. Left Right and Centre (2,994 comments) says:

    Justin Lester: “We think [the flyover] is butt ugly and want something better for the city.”

    hahahaha…. butt ugly!!!!

    Something better….. like.. a cut and cover tunnel!! No… that costs fifty times more. No tunnel wankers. Even though that would certainly kill the ‘ugly’ flyover problem. Have an ugly tunnel instead.

    That whole route to the airport where only small planes can land. Bad road, bad airport. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear and this is what you get.

    When was that tunnel opened? The 1930s? 80 years!! One lane in, one lane out. 80 years later… still one in and one out. Almost half the history of colonial NZ. Most or all of NZ’s mass motoring history. They’ll never put a second tunnel through!!

    You’re so right DPF… it’d great to see the little added comments (how about greaser points as well as the demerit set-up)

    I’d love to see what would happen if Pannett called all the shots. Now, wouldn’t *that* be interesting?

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  12. Manolo (14,023 comments) says:

    Five well-known Greenie nutters on one side. What else can we expect?

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  13. mpledger (425 comments) says:

    Most Wellingtonians have been to Auckland and they know they don’t want a massive motorway exchange which will attract grafitti and rubbish and where hobos come to live and die. It would be right by the Governor General’s house, right by the new war memorial, right by two school and right by the cricket ground.

    What’s even worse is that the NZTA came out and showed their true colours by trying to blackmail the city council by threatening funding for other projects. They need to be kicked up the pants and reminded that their sole job is to fund projects based on the cost/benefit ratio. But then John Key is too busy playing radio jockey to actually keeping checks on what is happening in his government – everyone else is on power trips, Brownlee, Hekia, Collins and he can’t even be bothered keeping anyone in order.

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  14. libertyscott (359 comments) says:

    Where’s this massive motorway exchange????

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  15. Peter (1,723 comments) says:

    I don’t know why they don’t scrap the Basin and build a few new roads right through it. And under it.

    Cricket is boring We’re absolute rubbish at it. If we must have a cricket ground, stick one in Porirua. Or Bulls.

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  16. Peter (1,723 comments) says:

    which will attract grafitti and rubbish and where hobos come to live and die

    Ah, that structure has been in place for some time at Molesworth Street

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  17. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    LA is fuckin awesome to drive around. For 20 million people all sharing the same roads. we’re about to get another bore through the Caldecott Tunnell that links SF to the East Bay Area. They’re adding more plans to the Bay Bridge and have an awesom rail system (BART) that goes under the bay and lands in SF. America fuckin rocks. If it’s needed it gets built and the greenies have to suck it up.

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  18. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    Driving through San Franciso at the moment. Poor Welly has such potential but for thee wowsers scared of a few roads.

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  19. Left Right and Centre (2,994 comments) says:

    Alternative solution:

    Get rid of Newtown and put six lanes through to Kilbirnie. Off-ramp to hospital. Hey… at least your ambo might save a few seconds.

    They killed off Thorndon with the original motorway extension. Does anyone think that looks pretty?

    They could’ve tried to shove everything along the quays? Built some pig-ugly two storey monster all the way to the Basin?

    I always feel sad for Thorndon that it was ripped to shit. That’s progress for ya. That’s fairly fucking LA styles enough for one very small city if you ask me. It didn’t have much guts to rip out to start with. That’s like a stake through the heart.

    Hills… no room to put things… no cheap easy answers…. bugger.

    Just a theory… if you started a free CBD-airport bus shuttle service… what effect would that have on the taxis? Would the flash suits refuse to use a bus no matter what you try?

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  20. Anthony (798 comments) says:

    Some bridging is required to separate the traffic flows but maybe a 400m long flyover is not the answer. On the other hand we do already have a massive flyover thru Thorndon and I haven’t seen it turn into a ghetto.

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  21. mikenmild (11,606 comments) says:

    The airport bus is already stuffed full of pensioners flashing their gold cards.

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  22. PaulL (6,035 comments) says:

    I’d ride a free bus, suit and all. But it’d still be stuck in the traffic, and the taxis would be up in arms.

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  23. Mark (1,489 comments) says:

    Wellington councillors constantly whine that Auckland get more than the lions share of infrastructure spending. Is their any wonder with the way this rabble conduct business. Ridiculous decision by Wade Brown and her cronies

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  24. TM (99 comments) says:

    These projects require a lot of ducks in a row to proceed. The Council should follow a sequential process and not revisit the process. If they are saying they made an error with their previous decision, then they personally should pay all costs associated with revisiting this. This is a great way to spend large amounts of ratepayer money and not achieve any decision or action.

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  25. gazzmaniac (2,307 comments) says:

    I recently made a trip to visit my parents at Otaki Beach and made a startling observation.
    I live at Worongary which is roughly 90 km by road from Brisbane airport, and it takes me about 55 minutes to drive there even when there’s traffic – it’s motorway most of the way (I live about 2km from the M1 and cheap car parking is right next to the offramp at Nudgee Road. I timed it at 8:00 in the morning so just at the end of peak). Sometimes at peak hour you can be held up for 5-10 minutes at Springwood but recent improvements have almost eliminated that.

    Contrast that to Wellington. My parents live about 85 km from Wellington Airport. It’s motorway for about 30 of those km… At 4am last Friday with no traffic at all it took us 85 minutes (1 hr 25 min) and we only had two red lights (the one in the middle of the motorway at Waitangirua, and one at Kilburnie). At a more gentlemanly hour it takes significantly longer than that. I do feel obliged to say that it’s much better now the inner city bypass has been built, but it’s still shithouse.

    I know that the Basin is only a small part of that journey. Improvements there probably won’t have made much difference for the 4am trip, since we didn’t get held up, but I can see how making the Basin free flowing instead of chock with traffic lights would make the trip much better during the day. A decent freeway past Paraparaumu and Waikanae would also make a huge difference, as would getting rid of Mana and Pukerua Bay from the route. And pretty much any time apart from 4am, a duplication of the tunnels would allow traffic to flow better too. Wellington’s transport is a joke. It really is.

    It’s not only people from Wellington City who use the airport, it serves a whole region and needs transport links to that whole region.

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  26. Left Right and Centre (2,994 comments) says:

    gazzmaniac:

    If you want to drive straight past Auckland… that’s what you do. Main road takes you south-north-south no lights no bullshit no nothing. Just drive.

    And then there’s the Basin. It needs a road that don’t stop nowhere and faggots who just want the airport/ eastern suburbs can have it without meeting turds in town going other places. It’s like the pool filter of town… everything collects there. More lanes. More lanes, more roads. Wellington… there’s only one best road in, one out. Hills in the way everywhere.

    PaulL: Fuck the taxis. What are they gonna do? Go on a work to rule ‘go slow’? They’re doing that now.. hahaha. I don’t know… hate to sound like a Green Slimer but maybe more on bus = less taxis taking up road space? Shit, taxis take up half the road from Basin to airport. ALL the space on that stretch. Get rid of them and it’d be like emptying a dam.

    And when talking Wellington… buses take bus tunnel/ Hataitai via Moxham Ave.. not the main road to airport.. so they’re on different paths anyway. I’d tweak a few more things to favour the buses… lights.. intersections… give them the red carpet treatment… maybe bring PJ in as a consultant seeing as he knows all about red carpets.

    Especially the set of lights at Kilbirnie Park that take **f-o-r-e-v-e-r** to change. I’d fix those fuckers for the buses… hahahaha

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