It is understood the Let’s Get Wellington Moving working group – an initiative led by the New Zealand Transport Agency in partnership with the Wellington city and regional councils – is leaning towards the most radical of four options proposed last year.
That option, which could cost up to $2.3 billion, includes moving SH1 traffic off Vivian St into a tunnel; widening the Terrace and Mt Victoria tunnels and Ruahine St; separating local and highway traffic at the Basin Reserve;
and adding a fourth southbound lane to the urban motorway between Aotea Quay and Ngauranga.
Widening the two tunnels is essential as is sorting out the Basin. We need four lanes from basically the Airport to far out of Wellington.
The scenario also proposed to replace two of the six traffic lanes on the waterfront quays with cycle lanes, establish cycle lanes on a two-way Vivian St, and give more priority to pedestrians along Willis St, Victoria St, Cuba St and Vivian St.
That sounds reasonable. Cycling in Wellington is damn dangerous and don’t really need six lanes on the quays.
A mass transit public transport system was recommended from Wellington Railway Station to Wellington Regional Hospital and the airport, via the suburb of Kilbirnie.
Light rail has not been proposed as part of the recommended option, leaving the option of a rapid bus route in the mix.
Any proposal for light rail in Wellington would indicate out of touch with reality. The last time it was costed the BCR was a miniscule 0.05. Not 0.5, but 0.05.