Auckland port expansion shelved

August 10th, 2013 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

Auckland Mayor Len Brown has shelved the latest plans to expand Waitemata Harbour for port business until the consequences for the rest of the city are known.

Last night, Mr Brown said the city needed to have a conversation about the future of Auckland’s port based on proper analysis.

“Before we make any decisions about whether the port expands or otherwise, we need an informed discussion with Aucklanders, underpinned by a robust study that includes consideration of economic, social and environmental factors.”

Details of the study, which is not likely to start until next year, are expected to be made by Mr Brown in the coming weeks.

Mr Brown’s statement follows a series on port expansion by the Herald this week and a fresh campaign by the Heart of the City lobby group to have a rethink and not rush ’s latest expansionary plans into the Unitary Plan.

This is a good thing. I am far from convinced that port expansion is appropriate on its current location. I’d like to see a fully independent (ie not paid for by POAL) appraisal of options for future locations so they can be considered.

Tags:

25 Responses to “Auckland port expansion shelved”

  1. smttc (638 comments) says:

    POA is an environmental eyesore on an otherwise beautiful harbour. Move the facility to Manukau harbour. Expansion will only make matters worse.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. campit (438 comments) says:

    I’m interested to know if it is viable for POA to increase its 19.9% investment in Northland Port Corporation and expanding operations to handle imports at Marsden Point. There is plenty of land to expand there. The railway line is consented – it just needs to be built. It would have to be cheaper than expanding the port at Auckland I would have thought.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. tvb (3,937 comments) says:

    I bet the people of Auckland will welcome that dreadful eyesore in central Auckland to disappear. It is a hangover from colonial days when cities were built around Ports. Cruise ships would continue to be welcome but freight can go elsewhere. There are a number of options including expanding Marsden Point (that and Bluff our two deep water Ports). The rail line would need upgrading including larger tunnels I understand.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. LiberalismIsASin (288 comments) says:

    Good news for Tauranga.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. alwyn (359 comments) says:

    Is this really a decision that Len Brown can make on his own? That is certainly the impression I take from the story.
    I realise that the mayor of Auckland was given greater powers than other New Zealand mayors but I didn’t think that the powers were that all-encompassing.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. Gerrit (105 comments) says:

    How many studies do we need? All we have is study this, study that. It has all been done.

    http://www.nrc.govt.nz/Resource-Library-Summary/Transport-publications/Upper-North-Island-Ports-Study/

    Just make a bleeding decision, That is what the big bucks are paid for.

    Bleeding hell, cant anyone, ANYONE, make any decisions in local or state government?

    As for the Manukau. Too shallow, would require 25 metres deep channel to be dredged (from the entrance, past the Airport and onto the Wiri shore) plus an at minimum 750 metre diameter turning circle at the same depth. Just not practical.

    Northport is the answer with an improved NAL rail link, to link the port into the rest of New Zealand.

    Encouragement of coastal shipping to top off the deal.

    Close the port of Auckland and return the land to the people. Good place for a all weather stadium. Ditch Eden Park and Mt Smart.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. Tautaioleua (266 comments) says:

    If Auckland wants to compete with other sizeable international cities, the port ought to be moved as far from the CBD as possible (Manukau harbour is not an option, water here is far too shallow). In most first world countries, the ports are hidden in places like Tauranga (and for good reason, there’s nothing there). Auckland should follow suit. We’re still plagued by problems of the twentieth century, problems that other international cities solved long ago.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. wreck1080 (3,519 comments) says:

    “ports are hidden in places like Tauranga (and for good reason, there‚Äôs nothing there)”

    Perpetuating the stereotype that jaffas have their heads up their ass.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. smttc (638 comments) says:

    Interesting comments here regarding the viability of Manukau harbour. In other quarters I had heard this was the natural alternative. But based on comments here, I agree that Northport is the best option for an expansion to accommodate POA.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. m@tt (535 comments) says:

    ++Gerrit
    Marsden point is a no brainer, deep water, easy access, all the space in the world to expand.
    POAL need to get their collective heads out of their arses and realise their future is in handling cruise vessels and leasing out waterfront property.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. nasska (9,471 comments) says:

    Whatever decision Loopy Len & his merry bunch of sycophants make, they’d better hurry up & make it soon. Port of Auckland may be standing still but ship owners & designers aren’t.

    For years the size of ships has been limited by what will fit in the Panama Canal. The locks as they stand can only cope with ships up to 290 x 32 x 12 (Length x Beam x Draught, approx. in metres) This is known as the Panmax class. New locks are proposed that will allow an increase in size to 427 x 55 x 18. Additionally 20 ships known as the Maersk Triple E class at 400 x 59 x 14.5 that will presumably bypass the Panama Canal are under construction now.

    The new boxboats are slower but use comparatively less fuel while producing less CO2.

    All of which means that NZ Inc as a trading nation had better be ready for these huge ships & we may not have the luxury of a long period of indecision that is the wont of our civic leaders.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. Steve (North Shore) (4,313 comments) says:

    Northport with a rail link and motorway to Auckland. And if Len puts up highrise buildings along the waterfront and up the bays I will hunt him down

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. berend (1,599 comments) says:

    Moving the port out of Auckland is a disaster. I suppose it’s all Wellingtonians commenting here?

    Every competitive city has a good port. I love seeing people work, and I love see container ships arriving. Keep it where it is, and make it even bigger. Auckland needs a good port, and woe the day we think we can ship the shipping, and lose even more jobs.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. Jack5 (4,209 comments) says:

    Don’t forget Marsden Point, NZ’s best natural deepwater harbour. Extend the railway line the short distance to there, create space in tunnels for containers on wagons, build a railway service distribution centre in west Auckland, and you have a great cargo port while Aucklanders get their waterfront back.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. Steve (North Shore) (4,313 comments) says:

    “Every competitive city has a good port. I love seeing people work, and I love see container ships arriving.”
    Here is a looker, not a doer. The same jobs are there – no matter if the port is here or another place.
    Go sit on the mat

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. Steve (North Shore) (4,313 comments) says:

    That man Jack5 thinks like I do (see my 6.55)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. Michael (880 comments) says:

    The council should just sell POAL and then any stupid decisions will be dead. It’s easy to have great plans when your owner has unlimited access to funding via the Auckland ratepayers.

    And not every competitive city has a port – Boom town Moscow does fine over a thousand km from the sea.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. V (660 comments) says:

    No doubt Len will destroy the value of POAL if nothing else but through inaction.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. Akld Commercial Lawyer (138 comments) says:

    Umm, there is a local body election coming up and the issue will be not so much whether he gets in – but who will be around the Council table with him. And the board of POAL is probably pulling its hair out in chunks. Its primarily an import destination – not an export one. At least not for the bulky exports of primary produce – where Tauranga has eaten its lunch. Even for the manufacturing exports, Tauranga has a transport hub in Auckland to get those goods to the Mount more efficiently.

    So, if Aucklanders want their new tvs etc to come via Marsden Pt, there are a few issues to surmount. There is a new rail link to Marsden Pt needed (estimated $120m in 2011).

    Then there is an estimated $100-$200m to upgrade the Northland line to an acceptable level – the tunnels cannot for example be used for hi-cube containers.

    The figure appears in an Auckland Council transport committee report. To put it into perspective, the next stage of the Northern busway (to Silverdale) is estimated at $500m.

    Rail presently accounts for approx 3% of freight movement in Northland and there’s a whole lot of trees coming up for harvest. And the closure of Port Whangarei led to a 70% drop in rail freight volumes.

    Of course, the Auckland Council has known all this since 2011 – its all in one of the Council’s own reports

    http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/SiteCollectionDocuments/transportcomag20110405.pdf

    But then its election season and kicking the unloved POAL takes the heat off some of the folk who are under the microscope by ratepayers as a result of the Unitary Plan debate. For myself, I am still trying to get to grips with the alternative transport plan posed by the folk who run the Auckland Transport blog. Enough

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. Mark (1,301 comments) says:

    @Jack5 extending the rail line to Marsden point may not be as easy and practical as you think. If my memory serves me correctly there are very difficult ground conditions to deal with to get rail to Marsden point that will carry freight loads therefore questionable financial viability; but if it is viable then you are right Marsden Point becomes a far better option for Auckland than conceding to Tauranga

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. jcuk (502 comments) says:

    I am amused at the Herald’s thinking that the Waitemata harbour can be expanded as any expansion of the port will decrease the size of the harbour which I guess is the bone of contention for Jaffa’s opposing the development.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. mavxp (490 comments) says:

    @ Mark, there are difficult ground conditions (prone to landslides in weathered sandstone and mudstone deposits of the Northern Allochthon) – but there are technical solutions. For example, deep soil mixing (cement mixed with soil in columns) has been quite successful in solving problem areas for Transit New Zealand.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. swan (651 comments) says:

    Akld Commercial Lawyer. So we are talking maybe $300m to upgrade the rail. It is worth noting that the branch line haa been considered as an investment purely for Northland exports. I am not saying it would be viable for that but some of the capital cost could effectively be paid for by that business. However, if the land at Aucklands port was converted to commercial land, it may be worth over $1b more than as a port. Now of course there are a lot more things to consider, but on the face of it, the Auckland council would be acting sensibly if it ditched the port altogether and redeveloped the land (over a suitably long orderly wind down period of course).

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. Paulus (2,291 comments) says:

    You really don’t believe Lying Len to change his ambitions for the Council owned Port.
    This is election year and the current “mind set change” will be only until after the re election of a left wing council led by Lying Len.
    Then watch a whopsy do about face change – again. Tough for the Ratepayers again.

    How many people have looked at the two Ports of Tauranga – one Container and one Dry Cargo/Oil etc (three if you count the land Port in South Auckland), on each side of the harbour.

    It has huge hectares of empty flat and available land on each side of the port allowing considerable expansion.

    Dredging of a deeper channel starts tomorrow, to allow new very large vessels into the Port – 7 weeks.

    Look at the financial efficiency of the Ports against Auckland – no comparison (look at the better climate too).

    This is not forgetting the current 90+ entries this year for up to three Cruise liners simultaneously berth as well, not affecting either of the ports at the same time.

    Get real Auckland Ports.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. mikemikemikemike (239 comments) says:

    So we take the Port away from Central Auckland and fill the roads between the Manukau port and the City (where the imported goods are ending up) with big trucks and industrial vehicles….I’ll bet the people of Newmarket/Epsom/One Tree Hill and the getting-rich of Onehunga will be stoked with that plan. ooohhhh but wait it takes away the ugly port from the old-rich folk of the east coast bays and the city who want the view for themselves…thats right sorry, no plan is to daft when the self-interested are involved.

    What exactly would we put in place of the port? We couldn’t make our minds up about the tank farm what makes anyone think that land would be any less contentious?

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.