Cycleways in Chrstchurch

Lois Cairns at The Press reports:

If Christchurch is to become a city for cyclists, then the city council should spend the $69 million needed to create a city-wide cycleway network.

That is the view of Cr Aaron Keown, who says that if the council is serious about turning Christchurch into the Amsterdam of the South Pacific, it needs to put its money where its mouth is.

He said number crunching by council staff showed that if ratepayers were prepared to accept an extra 1 per cent increase in their rates, the network could be funded and built within two years.

“The average household in Christchurch pays $1600 a year in rates, so a 1 per cent rate increase is an extra $16 a year,” Keown said.

“If the people of Christchurch really want a cycle network, are they prepared to pay an extra $16 a year for it?”

Christchurch looks to be an ideal city for as it is so flat. The idea of cycleways is a good one. However I am unsure about the robustness of the $16 a year figure.

There are around 140,000 households in Christchurch. $69 million is in fact $492 a household. Not $16.

The story refers to it being funded within two years. So that would in fact require $250 a household per year – not $16.

This wasn’t hard to calculate. It would be nice if had the resources or inclination to fact check claims made by politicians, rather than just report on them.

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