The Eye of the Fish

Maximus
July 12, 2008

Boondoggle Gully

Following on from our recent post dissing the likelihood of the “Transmission Gully” project ever getting off the ground, Transit made a big splash with a 4 page advert in the local rag (sorry DomPost, but your quality has been on a solid downwards trajectory lately and you no longer deserve the epithet of national newspaper), setting out improvements: a “new route” (which seems to be “using the gully floor” instead of “half way up the bottom of a steep slope”), a reduction in the number of intersections, and a confirmation that it would be 4 lanes (ie 2 lanes each way). Somehow from that there is a saving of over $235 million, certainly nothing to be sneezed at. Why, that would get you one and a half new light rail systems (a relative snip at $140 million) in central Wellington, right there! And there’s the rub: Mayor Kerry is quoted on the front page as saying that Transmission Gully was still in Never-Never Land, and that unless central government stumps up with another $600 million, it isn’t going to go ahead. It’s worth noting that the definition of boondoggle not only includes: work or activity that is worthless or pointless but gives the appearance of having value, but also the following: a public project of questionable merit that typically involves political patronage and graft. Transmission Gully certainly qualifies as having questionable merit – only time will tell if it goes ahead, and if that go-ahead involves political patronage. Seeing as central government has already come up with $400 million, and wanted local government to come up with the rest of the $ 1 billion, it certainly looks like a solid impasse right there. Go directly to jail, do not pass Go.

gradtrangully.jpg

But it wasn’t always like that. Just a few years ago, when costs were cheaper, it was Transit who was dragging the chain, and saying the prospect of T Gully was an unlikely event, if memory serves me right. Presumably hands were slapped, heads were rolled, and – well, hell, after all, Transit is a roading body – they suddenly found a new-found enthusiasm for the previous ‘uneconomic’ route. So what is the reason behind the change from half way up a hill to down in the valley, and if it is such a good economic move, why didn’t they do it from the start? Well I’m no roading engineer and so can’t say for certain (Transit roading engineers: feel free to blog in anonymously with your reply), but at a guess: halfway up the hill was thought to be a better place in terms of orthodox road building, rather than in the shifting shingle at the base of the gully. It is an earthquake faultline after all, and the ground conditions are not good (witness washouts on the Paekakariki hills nearby, with thousands of tonnes of gravel ending up in the bedrooms of a motel – twice), and there is a small trickle / raging torrent (depending on weather) in the bottom. The section above shows the previous designated section along the route, while the picture below is the Otira Gorge viaduct (in Arthur’s Pass) designed by Beca and constructed / opened in 2005/2006 (and presumably more difficult ground than the Gully route).

otiragorge.jpg

Transit is now saying that they had it wrong before :

“The preferred route generally runs lower along the gully to reduce the height and number of large cuts into the hillside, meaning the risk of a landslide is reduced. Fewer bridges and culverts along the preferred route means there will be less obstruction to the natural movement of debris in streams during storms. This means that the overall risk of storm damage to structures as a result of debris build-up or washouts is reduced.”

They’re doing away with the viaduct across the faultline as well, using a large earth berm, so we won’t have anything as interesting as the picture above either, where the viaduct cleverly and delicately steps across the shifting gravel slope, the stream and the faultline all in one go; ending up on the other side of the valley while you motor happily on to your destination at Franz Joseph glacier, without barely noticing a thing.

No, here in the Gully route, the valley is wider, the traffic is heavier, the road is 2-3 times the width, and route is steeper, meaning that if you live in Kapiti and want this to become reality, you’re going to have to delve deeply into your pocket: because apart from weekends away in Waikanae, we Wellingtonians don’t want it. If we’re going to go further (and let’s face it, with the next stops being Bulls, Shannon, Palmerston North and Woodville, who can blame us), we’ll take a plane instead.

artandmylife
12 - 07 - 08

I am a Kapiti dweller but thankfully both I and my partner at the moment work out here as well. A while back we were considering a new job in Wellington central and decided that it would make more economic sense to move into town with oil prices etc. In talking to others already there are murmurs about moving closer to town for those that commute. Satellite towns like this won’t do very well in an oil crisis even though we are served by a reasonable rail link. The point being, I tend to agree that transmission gully is a bit of “never never” story as I think long commutes will become a thing of the past for many. It does have merit as an alternative route out of the city though as it doesn’t take much to close all northern land access to Wellington

Robyn
12 - 07 - 08

It seems to me that Wellington’s geographical location is the sort of place where no one would logically build a city. It’s a difficult landscape, one that doesn’t naturally lend itself to wide highways and motorways. If it takes such a lot of time, money and engineering effort to do something like increasing the capacity of SH1, then perhaps that’s not the answer, and other ways of getting more cars off the current SH1 should be looked at.

Philip
12 - 07 - 08

Ah, another lumbering, heavily modified, costly and abortion-prone transport project to add to the list.

If you look over at the dom website, their poll is quite telling – those suggesting users or local governments pay for the costs are very much in the minority. Yet it seems pretty clear that this is the only way things can move forward at the moment.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/4614550a6000.html?source=RSSdominionpost/headlines_20080711

I cant claim to be an expert, but it seems something is significantly off if we compare the cost/benefits for this project, both in the present and future.

Both national and the greens seem to have a point – this is an non-viable project without (somehow acquiring) significant private partnership, as well as representing a being a drastic misuse of resources.

jayseatee
13 - 07 - 08

I for one look forward to this region undertaking this project.
After all one shouldn’t stop progress.

and by “progress” I mean mindless destruction of natural resources and irresponsible spending.

I have more to say on this subject but I’m looking for a key bit of information. Has anyone seen daily traffic projections? I know that they would have to be part of the study, but they seem to be hard to find.
If you have a link or other info, please post it.-

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

Maximus, it seems from comments here on the blog and people that I’ve spoken to that people do want this road.

Just because you don’t want it doesn’t mean that you should write “…we Wellingtonians don’t want it…”
I’m a Wellingtonian and you don’t speak for me.

I’m all in favour….

Seamonkey Madness
14 - 07 - 08

Mobsta,

That is just the reverse of Peter Dunne doing the speaking for the people.

The only people he is doing the speaking for, are the minority who want this waste of money and resources built. Apparently, according to Dunne, everyone else is an idiot.

I too would also like some hard data before reassessing my position on the “new design” for TG. i.e. are the grades still as steep and still 3 times as long as Ngauranga Gorge?

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

Seamonkey – I’m not sure whether you are agreeing with me or not?
Can you please clarify?
Are you saying that Maximus is taking a stand against Peter Dunne?
I’m not sure….

Alex
14 - 07 - 08

I’m a Wellingtonian and I don’t want it. The only time I go that way is the odd trip to the mountain and 1 or 2 times a year on holidays. The only problems I experience at those times is God-forsaken Otaki. Bypass that damn town!

People shouldn’t commute 50km each way to work and expect other people to pay for it. It’s irresponsible and selfish.

However, 10 years ago I would have been partial to it.

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

Oh, and do you grow all your food in your back yard Alex?
And those consumer items you buy – they just turn up in Wellington by teleporter?

A lot more stuff than just commuters come into Wellington by that route.

Disclosure: I have a house on the Kapiti Coast.
No, I don’t commute, but would be happy to pay to do so…

And just because you only use the road 3 times a year, you don’t want to pay for it. Isn’t that being selfish?

Alex
14 - 07 - 08

I doubt that freight would use the gully, if the steepness of the road is as reported. The fuel costs and wear on the engine brakes etc would put truckers off let alone the option of a toll-free alternative if TMG is tolled.

Just look at Route J in Tauranga as an example of truckies avoiding toll roads if there isn’t an obvious cost advantage in using it.

I supported TMG in the past when it was cheaper and do think there is merit in an alternative route in a disaster, plus I get the jollies from large construction projects. But it’s not worth $1b.

I can’t see commuter traffic from the coast increasing. I already pay for the other road and the railway, and from my experience ever since the Mana bridge upgrade it serves its purpose. I dislike suburban sprawl, I wouldn’t want any of my rates encouraging it.

maximus
14 - 07 - 08

Mobsta – you’re quite right, i can not speak for all the people of Wellington. Nor do i give a toss about Peter Dunne, in any form.

What I’m saying is that, for Wellingtonians who live and work in Wellington, spending a billion dollars on Transmission Gully will achieve nothing for us, and so we are unlikely to want to pay a local tax for it. I’ll rarely / never use it: if I go on holiday, as a Wellingtonian, I either fly north, or ferry south. Make it to P North once every 3 years. Its a total waste of time an money for me, and, i imagine, thousands of other Wellingtonians. When I go north, I take the train or the Rimutaka road to the Wairarapa.

Those that use it – or who would use it if they could, are the Kapiti Coast dwellers who haven’t quite got to retirement age yet. And I’m saying: if they want it, they can pay for it.

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

Well it’s a good thing that individuals don’t have power of veto over capital expenditure….
“Hey – I’m not going to use it and gain any direct benfit – so I’m not paying for it….”

Fortunately society doesn’t work that way and benefits to a society as a whole are taken into account.
The macro instead of the micro….

As I mentioned before, as a (sometime) dweller on the Kapiti Coast I would be happy to pay to use the road.

Seamonkey Madness
14 - 07 - 08

Happy to pay up to $10 (each way? Can someone correct me on that?) when there is a perfectly good existing road there, that we have already – and continue to – pay for, for free??

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

I’m not sure if that was a question Seamonkey, but will take it as one…

I have not heard a figure of $10 each way – that does sound a bit high to me… but yes, I would be happy to pay to use the road if it got me to where I wanted to go in quicker time and less hassle than the current road.

There’s only so many times you can stare in wonder at the beautiful view on the Coastal Highway, or look into people’s houses at Pukerua Bay as you crawl past….

The price is the crux of course.
There would be different tipping points for everyone (I suspect that people’s tipping points would be slightly higher if it was an e-ticket type system like they have in Melbourne and Sydney, where you just drive and hear little beeps as you go, brilliant and no hassle – just a bill at the end of the month….)

mobsta
14 - 07 - 08

… and I do take issue with your “perfectly good existing road…” comment.
If it was perfectly good they wouldn’t be looking to supplement it with another road.

Less than perfect areas –
The two lanes into one merge at Whenua Tapu; the 50km/h Pukerua Bay; the carnage on the Coastal Highway (alleviated now thank goodness…but still possible in some areas); the 50km/h area at Plimmerton; and the potential traffic lights at Plimmerton.
All choke points that infuriate coasters and truckies each and every day….

maximus
14 - 07 - 08

Without the benefit of official figures, the calcs are difficult: but if we assume that there are at least 30,000 trips per day on the road, then over a year there would be about 11 million. Averaging a bill of $600 million over that many trips, at $1 per day it would take 54 years to pay off. At $10 per day, only 5.4 years. So, perhaps $5 per day would allow payment over 11 years.

But i have a suspicion there are more than 30k trips per day.

kegan
14 - 07 - 08

Maximus,
Transit have some limited traffic figures online (URL: http://www.transit.govt.nz/technical/traffic-volumes.jsp).

According to Transit, the average daily traffic count for SH1 at Paekakariki in 2007 was 22959, estimated 6.5% heavy (3.5T +). (This is the combined total for northbound and southbound traffic.)

jayseatee
14 - 07 - 08

I’ve seen several references to the necessary toll being in the 12-15 range, but they have not been sourced so I am sceptical of their accuracy.

I will admit to being worthless at economics, but the 600 million dollars left over that will have to be financed will come with additional financing costs, so the tolls don’t have to cover the 600 million dollar deficit, but probably more like 1.2 billion. So 1.2 billion, divided by 25,000 trips per day over 10 years is about 13 bucks. If you are knowledgeable about these things, please feel free to correct my erroneous reasoning.

But there is also the additional maintenance costs, as I assume both roads will continue to be maintained?

I’ve been told of an interesting concept when it comes to deciding on big ticket purchases that will result in new monthly payments (larger house, new car, etc.)
You should figure out what the new payments will be – say it will be 500/month more than you are currently paying. You start a year in advance and take that extra money and pay it into a savings – to get an idea of what it’s going to be like to live with the change in finances. Then when it comes time to buy you have a down payment.

So I think they should institute a 15 dollar toll between pukerua bay and paekakariki for a few years and see how many people decide the trip is worth it.

maximus
14 - 07 - 08

brilliant deduction jayseatee…. we should start gathering revenue tomorrow – i’m sure when your reasoning is explained that there will be no dissention.

DavidP
14 - 07 - 08

>because apart from weekends away in Waikanae, we Wellingtonians don’t want it

I’m not convinced that a proper upgrade of the existing highway isn’t a better option, but…

…Half the population of Wellington seem to leave the city on a Friday night. I visit my folks in Waikanae every so often, via train to Paraparaumu and then vehicle north, and the traffic is bad even in winter. The traffic is always significantly worse on a Friday.

If Wellingtonians don’t want to be linked to the rest of the country by modern roads, rather than ones designed for 1940s vehicles, 1940s traffic levels, and 1940s attitudes towards road accident death, then they should stay home at the weekend. especially if the weekend is a public holiday.

jayseatee
14 - 07 - 08

“i’m sure when your reasoning is explained that there will be no dissention.”

reasoning? If this decision was going to be made with reason than I don’t think we’d be talking about it.

mobsta
15 - 07 - 08

I’m not sure that $13 would be palatable to commuters or truckies.

I’m also not sure of the 10 year time frame mooted. The Auckland Harbour Bridge had a toll for exactly 25 years before it was abolished (1959 – 1984). (It also started as 25 cents and was reduced to 20 cents after 15 months, ahhh those were the days….)

I think that DavidP says it very well – “If Wellingtonians don’t want to be linked to the rest of the country by modern roads, rather than ones designed for 1940s vehicles, 1940s traffic levels, and 1940s attitudes towards road accident death, then they should stay home at the weekend. especially if the weekend is a public holiday…”
Other countries in the world have no problems building roads of a scale that is required.
We seem to have a quaint antipodean way of doing things – “hmmm our national highway into our capital city – let’s make it a dual carriageway…”

maximus
15 - 07 - 08

oh dear. sarcasm never was my strong point: what I really meant was that there would be massive dissention, which I think was your point also.

And yes, David, I agree that half of Wellington seems to travel up the highway on Friday nights. And perhaps for a once a week trip you would be happy to pay a toll. But my point is: its Kapiti dwellers that would have to pay that toll every trip, every day. And therein, dissent may come.

mobsta
15 - 07 - 08

Actually Maximus – I got your sarcasm. I was replying to jayseatee.
Yeah I agree – there would be major dissention wilth $13.

As a sometime Kapiti dweller $3 or $4 each way would be fine for me.
$6 or $8 a day would be my limit I suggest…

artandmylife
15 - 07 - 08

Maybe if you kept the toll in line with whatever the train fare would be? Discounts for car sharing etc? As I only very occasionally go into Wellington now I’d pay a toll. Whats intersting is the local bodies and regionl councils are still hurtling down the track of continued high rate of growth in Kapiti which I don’t think is really sustainable.

DavidP
15 - 07 - 08

>But my point is: its Kapiti dwellers that would have to pay that toll every trip, every day.

I’m not convinced that sort of commuting is a normal pattern for Kapiti residents. There are a lot of retired people there, and a growing number of young families working locally. Anyone working in the city would be mad not to take the train, and they’re pretty much full at both rush hours. So how many people would drive every day? I’m guessing not many.

There are plenty of reasons to connect a capital city up to the rest of the country via modern infrastructure: commerce, tourism, movement between regional centers (but not in to or out of the CBD), transport of goods and services (you’re not going to keep Wellington city supplied by freight train, especially when less than 20% of NZ’s freight is carried by rail), etc etc. If you decide that you’re going to rely on a dodgy single carriageway road built in 1940, which runs through the center of Pukerua Bay and Plimmerton and wobbles along the base of a cliff with narrow lanes, AND you’re going to keep adding population, then you’re going to have to get used to a pre-1940s standard of living.

Europeans “get” this. I lived in Amsterdam for a while and it is often held up as an example of good environmental management. Greenpeace have their HQ there. They have about the same population as Auckland but have a couple of ring motorways and ten or so motorways radiating away from the city. The A4 has about 5 lines each direction for some of its length. Compare with Auckland that has a bit of inner city motorway but is connected to the rest of the country by two single carriageway roads.

jayseatee
15 - 07 - 08

“oh dear. sarcasm never was my strong point: what I really meant was that there would be massive dissention, which I think was your point also. ”

I got the sarcasm. I was just trying to express my opinion that if reason was going to make an appearance in the discussion of to build/not to build, then there would not be much of a discussion because most of the debate on both sides is emotional, and the financials just don’t make sense – particularly in a world where the US is teetering on collapse into the next great depression, the UK might not be far behind, but what the hell, what’s a billion so we can go to the beach?

maximus
15 - 07 - 08

David P, while I agree that New Zealanders should have excellent roading, and yes, the existing coast road is sub-standard, I disagree that a sub-standard roading gives us a sub-standard of living. My life is not dictated by the road down which i travel….

Point is, at the end of the day, when you get down to it, quite simply: can we afford it?

A comparison with Amsterdam is informative: the Netherlands is a densely habited and very flat country, with a network of small hamlets connected by pleasant walking and cycling paths over a number of centuries, and more recently, an extensive network of rail and motorway for pushing around a population of 16.4 million (whole country), set within a Europe of several hundred million people. The Dutch density is approx 400 persons/km2 (whole country is just 41,500 km2), while the density of Amsterdam (population 750,000 and land area 166km2) is 4459 persons/km2 .

Wellington, by comparison, is 290km2 in area, with population 190,000 (so density is 655persons/km2), and very hilly. Mt Victoria is probably several sizes bigger than anything in their whole country. NZ as a whole is 269,000km2, with population of 4.3 million, giving density of just 15 persons/km2. So our whole country is 26 times less densely populated than theirs, and our city is 7 times less dense. Auckland, of course, would be worse, as they are even more profligate on space.

New Zealand was settled not with small hamlets set walking distance apart, but largely by boat – 1 or 2 days travel apart. We have a very sparsely populated countryside, and a very small population to pay for a lot of very long roads connecting places. While Amsterdam at times copes with influxes of tourists and a fair few truckers passing through etc, of the several hundred million of Europeans, NZ still just has the same 4 million, and in Wellington, just the same 23,000 coming from Kapiti to Wellington to see their grandchildren. Our roading bill, by comparison, is massive – per person.

And the argument that some have put forward here is: with petrol at $2/litre or more, spending a billion plus on a road that is really only needed by Wellingtonians for 2 hours every Friday and Sunday night…. well, it just doesn’t stack up to me.

I can think of a lot more exciting things to spend a billion dollars on, instead of diesel for graders and a whole lot of gravel. And hopefully more on that on a new post soon…..

mobsta
16 - 07 - 08

I think that “just the same 23,000 coming from Kapiti to Wellington to see their grandchildren… (and)… on a road that is really only needed by Wellingtonians for 2 hours every Friday and Sunday night…… (and) … what’s a billion so we can go to the beach….” are red herrings and completely disingenuous.

More than just the blue rinse brigade goes up and down that road every day and more than just holiday-homers go up and down on a Friday and Saturday night.

A main road into a (capital) city is a lifeblood to that city. It brings food, fuel, essential items, consumer stuff etc. Not just people.
(I’ve also seen ambulances trapped in the traffic, lights blaring, unable to move both ways. Not a good sight…)

By just mentioning certain sectors you are ignoring some of the major users of the road.
Just because it doesn’t stack up for you doesn’t mean that it doesn’t benefit society as a whole.

guy
16 - 07 - 08

I note that in today’s Capital Times, they poll the eight candidates for the Wellington Central seat, whether they are in favour or not of Transmission Gully: Bernard Darnton, of Libertarianz (who they?) says that the “project is a wildly overpriced boondoggle” – so congratulations to Jayseatee for promoting the use of this word to the general public.

electric
16 - 07 - 08

The only delays now are where the lanes merge at McKays crossing and Pukerua Bay. It’s a great shame that they didn’t just build the Pukerua Bay bypass (it was planned and the land set aside) and four lane it right the way from Mana to Paraparaumu. Extending centennial highway out into the sea would be childs play and a heck of a lot cheaper. If this had been done, the road would be basically a free run the whole way. The land that was set aside for the bypass has now been “accidentally” sold for McMansions.

I predict this project will not ever be completed due to spiralling fuel costs and a crunch in government expenditure. Hopefully they’ll do the useful bits near Wellington first and abandon the Kapiti parts.

jayseatee
16 - 07 - 08

“so congratulations to Jayseatee for promoting the use of this word to the general public.”

woohoo! I finally have a legacy.

A legacy heavily linked with irresponsibility, blind grandiosity and potentially nefarious activities.
the jokes just write themeselves.

guy
17 - 07 - 08

not so hasty Mr Legacy – more definitions of Boondoggle from the Urban Dictionary include:

• Some sort of deformed toy made from parts of other different toys

• The colorful plastic lace one uses to make lanyards, key fobs, handcrafted wallets and purses, etc.

• Sneaking up on a woman from behind and groping her

• To be ripped off, suckered or screwed over.

• A person who is dumb enough to ask the mirror to perform sexual acts for them.

and

• B.O.G. word meaning uneccessary

all avail on http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=boondoggle

jayseatee
17 - 07 - 08

One of those definitions most definitely does not fit into my legacy.
The others….eh…

guy
17 - 07 - 08

Seems to be big in the world of Scouting perhaps, ie woggles and wickerwork and wonderful things made from plastic ‘gimp’. http://www.boondoggleman.com/what_is_it.htm Not gimp in any other sense you may be thinking of.

I’m actually quite keen that they go ahead with Boondoggle Gully, so i can buy a big V8 and go hooning.
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hoon (all but definition 5 perhaps).

I blame all those reruns of Mad Max recently. Time to put the pedal down!

mobsta
3 - 09 - 08

Huge support for improved Gully route
KERRY WILLIAMSON – The Dominion Post | Wednesday, 03 September 2008

The improved Transmission Gully route appears to have huge support, with nearly 90 per cent of the almost 2400 submitters giving it the green light.

The New Zealand Transport Agency said yesterday that it had received 2360 submissions on the preferred route, announced two months ago after two years of investigations and geotechnical studies.

Submissions on the route closed last week and staff are now analysing each one, with minor changes to the route expected before a final plan is taken to the Transport Agency’s board at the end of the year.
They offer unequivocal support for the cheaper, environmentally friendly route, with 88.5 per cent of submitters saying they support the proposal and another 4.2 per cent saying they “don’t mind”.

Slightly more than 7 per cent – or 173 submissions – oppose it.

“It’s nice to see that people agree with the work we have done,” project manager Rob Whight said. “We’ve asked them `do you agree?’ and they’ve come back and overwhelming said `yes’.”
The preferred route would cost $1.02 billion, $275 million cheaper than the previous designation.

It would take almost eight years to build, and studies suggest it could blow out to a “worst-case scenario” figure of more than $170 million over budget. It involves fewer bridges and viaducts and hugs ridgelines rather than passing through valleys, affecting the environment less.

But it affects 93 property owners, 30 more than the previous designation. It would also have an impact on the viability of Battle Hill Farm Forest Park, prompting calls for compensation from Greater Wellington regional council.
Mr Whight said the submissions process would lead to some minor changes to the designation, but “99.5 per cent” of it would remain unchanged.
The Transport Agency has started work on the resource consent process – despite no decision on whether the inland highway will be built. Resource consents could be applied for late next year.

Hmmm… Maximus – this kind of puts paid to “We wellingtonian’s don’t want it…..”

Maximus
3 - 09 - 08

Mobsta – so, 88.5% of the 2400 submitters want it, out of a total of 200,000 odd Wellingtonians, none of whom expressed interest in putting a submission in for it. The 2400 that did support it – what’s the bet that most of those live in Kapiti, and have to drive in every day? Of course they’d support it – as long as someone else pays.

I’m happy to be proved wrong – but you seem to have missed my point: most Wellingtonians will not use it, regularly, or much at all. Government has said it will not fund over the current level. Therefore the remainder will have to be paid by locals – either local government, or local tax, (either way: rates go up massively), or by toll (probable horrendous cost – you’ve seen the fuss Maurice Williamson got into over a proposed $5 toll each way, each day).

If the cost does come down to locals, most of whom won’t be using it, then expect a bloody fervent of people suddenly very much saying they do not want it. Just because they’re too dull or disinterested to say they don’t want it now, does certainly not mean they support it.

If the question was put to all Wellingtonians: “Do you support it, on the basis that your rates will go up by $500 a year” or some such amount, then I reckon the answer would be dramatically different.

So i stand by my words – Wellingtonians will not want it, if they have to pay for it…

mobsta
3 - 09 - 08

I see what you’re saying…. but….

That’s a pretty general assumption – “…most of those [submitters]live in Kapiti…”
Can you prove this?

I think your phrase “…none of whom expressed interest in putting a submission in for it….” is pretty telling.
People have no right to protest if they are apathetic. If the other 197,600 odd Wellingtonians put in a submission (opposing Transmission Gully) that would send a pretty clear message.

I also stand by my earlier words – a lot of goods and essential services travel into Wellington via that road. It’s not just Kapiti dwellers and holiday makers.
There is an economic benefit to Wellington that benefits Wellingtonians AS A WHOLE.
It’s not just an individual thing.

Greg
3 - 09 - 08

mobsta: The article is a bit misleading. The submissions were not open ended; submitters were asked which of the two proposed routes they preferred. There should be no indication taken from the study of how many people agree that TGM should be built, because that is not what was being studied.

Maximus
10 - 10 - 08

Ha ! Why does this article not surprise me:

“Wellington threatens to withdraw Gully backing
KERRY WILLIAMSON and MATT CALMAN – The Dominion Post | Friday, 10 October 2008”

http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominionpost/4721804a23882.html

As I’ve said before, there are few advantages for Wellington, and a lot more for other councils. If they want to pay for it, they can do what they like with it. Wellington is not going to be foisting a $1billion tax bill on their ratepayers.

And if you’re thinking that the incoming (possibly/probably) National government is going to find the funds for it, then just a reminder: tax cut bribes are to be funded from cutting infrastructure. Do you really think that infrastructure cut will be coming out of the Auckland electorate?

The Gully is a Goner….