Dom Post on flyover

July 12th, 2013 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The Dom Post editorial:

There are two inescapable facts when it comes to clearing traffic jams at the Basin Reserve. The first is that separating vehicles heading east and west from those going north and south is essential. The second is that all the evidence shows the best option to achieve that is a flyover.

What will it take for those Wellington city councillors who remain implacably opposed to the project to accept they have lost the argument?

It seems no amount of fact or reality can sway their blind opposition.

Yet, despite the council’s own findings, a majority of councillors – albeit a wafer thin one – remain determined to try and stop a project that will bring enormous benefits to the capital. Their latest bid to have it delayed is to request that Environment Minister Amy Adams ask the Environment Court to determine whether it should be given resource consents rather than have the applications referred to the faster board of inquiry process.

Councillor Iona Pannett, one of the most vocal opponents of the flyover, says she does not trust a board to give proper weight to arguments against a flyover and there is a real risk the project will be given the green light.

What she and like-minded councillors, including Mayor Celia Wade-Brown, seem unable to grasp is that whichever body considers the consent applications, it will not be deciding between a flyover or a tunnel because NZTA has made it perfectly clear an underground solution is neither workable nor affordable. It is, then, a flyover or nothing, and doing nothing is simply not an option.

Rather than seeking to delay the flyover’s construction, the council should invest its time and energy in ensuring NZTA implement all the measures needed to mitigate its impact on the environment. The time for dithering has ended. It’s time for action.

That is the key. A sensible Council would be putting all its energy into how to mitigate the impact of the flyover, not running a jihad against it.

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19 Responses to “Dom Post on flyover”

  1. northern (44 comments) says:

    The stupid ignorance of Celia, Iona et al is matched only by their blind arrogance in thinking this is just a WCC matter. Land transport routes through to the main regional hospital and airport are of critical importance to the whole region (and indeed the nation). For these local Luddites to stuff things up for everybody else is totally unacceptable. Their conceit – and contempt for the rest of the Wellington region – can also be seen in their takeover bid for regional local govt. Their WCC application to the Local Govt Commission would do away with all other local councils and have their “super” council packed with a majority of WCC ( = red/green) councillors. I hope they choke on their watermelon pips!
    (BTW, have you seen the pictures of the flyover? It’s really quite innocuous and not really a “flyover” at all….)

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  2. MarkF (102 comments) says:

    A new oxymoron – “A sensible council”

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  3. infused (658 comments) says:

    She is the worst mayor I’ve ever seen. Fucking useless and embarrassing

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  4. mavxp (490 comments) says:

    it’s interesting how the word ‘jihad’ has entered the lexicon since Sept 11. I guess ‘crusade’ still has some positive association in historical use “crusade against drink driving” or some other good cause, whilst jihad is all negative.

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  5. Peter (1,723 comments) says:

    I suspect they want traffic to back-up, so then they can say “see, we need more buses/bike lanes/trains/unicorns!”

    When the reason for the traffic back-up was was that they didn’t build the required road-way in the first place.

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  6. Manolo (14,016 comments) says:

    Iona Pannett is beyond redemption.

    She’s the same Luddite who spoke at the Green Party conference a few months ago: a reactionary, anti-progress, backward-looking individual. How she got elected defies comprehension.

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  7. slightlyrighty (2,475 comments) says:

    Pannett is the same loon who was against the war memorial park in Buckle street as she thinks it glorifies war.

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  8. Yogibear (372 comments) says:

    A sensbile Council would realise that they need to lead with actions.

    In Wellington, that means before berating NZTA about urban blight and loss of amienity, they’d take tangible steps to fix the transport blights they are responsible for:

    Like their 6 lanes of traffic that separate the CBD from the Waterfront

    Like making the Bus Teminus at the railway station as physically unappealing and inefficient as possible

    Like being a major shareholder in an airport that has been buggering up vehicle flow and parking continuously for the last year.

    Like making the road between Nauranga and Thorndon Quay one of the most dangerous stretches of road in the region for anyone who doesn’t drive a concrete mixer.

    Of course, its easy to take the high moral ground when its someone else’s money

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  9. Yogibear (372 comments) says:

    I was down at Victoria Park in Auckland a couple of days ago.

    Its a really nice place – made a hell of a lot nicer by the fact SH 1 goes over the top of it on a flyover rather than through it.

    (and yes- I know they are doing tunnels as well, but thats kinda justified by the 160k vehicles per day that pass through the area compared to the 25k that go round the basin)

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  10. Rick Rowling (815 comments) says:

    If we end up with a super-city in Wellington, are you Wellington metropolitan twats going to keep voting for councils like this?

    The poor quality of WCC is the only reason why I’m against amalgamation.

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  11. Rick Rowling (815 comments) says:

    It’s not like it’s a new problem.

    Look at the stupid 3-lane non-barrier-separated Terrace Tunnel. It could have been 2 efficient & safe tunnels, except for green opposition resulting in a congested, unsafe tunnel.

    How about the missing trench through the Upper Cuba area. The area could have been separated from the main road & therefore more pleasant and safer for local residents, cyclists and pedestrians, except for green opposition resulting in a noisy, unsafe dead area of the city. Because noooooo – we can’t have an efficient way for cars to travel through the city, even if it would have been better for everyone else too.

    Every step it’s “how can we make any new roads more crappy, to make trains look better”. If they only put as much effort into making buses & trains better as they do making roads worse, everyone would be better off.

    And how about the once-iconic Manners Mall – killed by the green-sponsored busway (the buses of which also kill and maim pedestrians).

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  12. RRM (9,993 comments) says:

    Morrison’s quote on this needs to be spread and popularised.

    Oppose everything. Do nothing.

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  13. RRM (9,993 comments) says:

    Rick – Manners mall was a cold grubby hangout for teenagers with no jobs. Good riddance.

    Terrace tunnel was a bit before my time, but I suspect cost would have been a factor in why that wasn’t completed as 2 tunnels right from the start?

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  14. Yogibear (372 comments) says:

    Rick – The Inner City by-pass was another of Pannett’s obstructionist crusades.

    The irony was the cut and cover trench as originally proposed would have improved the urban environment drastically in that end of town, and made it a better place to walk, cycle and take local car trips.

    But in Pannett’s view (and the small army on nutters that worked with her), anything other than complete and utter victory over the evil motorist was a loss.

    The conspiracy theorist in me thinks the NZTA deliberatley nerfed the bypass they were allowed to build after the court cases in order to get a decent crack at the by pass they wanted to build (and Wellington needs) in 10-15 years time.

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  15. flipper (4,188 comments) says:

    RRM….
    The Terrace Tunnel was cost, (from memory), plus the Bolton Street cemetery debate, and the predicted vehicle flows, which were far too conservative.
    Is not the tunnel part of SH1, not WCC network?.
    Not sure

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  16. adze (2,129 comments) says:

    Agreed re the Manners Mall, RRM. Shitty area it was.

    As to why the council keeps getting voted in, rest assured I will be voting against Celia Wade brown at the next election – hopefully enough of other voters will do too.

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  17. hj (7,059 comments) says:

    Why back in Houston tx…

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  18. insider (1,028 comments) says:

    @RRM you can still see the second Terrace tunnel entry road pillars at the north end in the Clifton Tce car park. It would have been overkill to build it. Not sure we really need it now, particularly with the congestion issues beyond the south portal.

    @ yogi. From memory the ICB was proposed to go underground but NZTA Refused to fund it – remember half the money from fuel tax was siphoned off into the consolidated fund back then – so the argument about the best option disappeared and it then became about the least worst. Maybe it became the worst worst…

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  19. Reg (539 comments) says:

    Next Mayoral Election – Remember – ABC – Anyone But Celia

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