A pause for thought today : evidently the silly season is still with us. Point in case the front page of the Dom Post today – and cub reporter Julian Lee tries to argue the case for a bridge – or tunnel ! – across the Cook Strait is a viable thing. Both possible options are as silly as each other, both are physically impossible, and both would be total financial idiocy.

I’m surprised that the editor of the Dom Post did not veto the article outright, it is so ludicrously stupid, and if they are happy calling the Island Bay Cycleway a disaster, then they may want to think up some new words to describe clusterfucks of mammoth proportions.

Let’s list some of the problems, shall we?
23km wide at the narrowest point.
65km wide at a slightly more convenient juncture.
Spans between two islands, yes, but these islands also encompass two completely different continental shelves as well, with a known and highly active series of fault lines running between. Wellington is currently stuck solid at the junction between the subduction of Australia’s plate and the Pacific plate.
Massive great 8 earthquake overdue on the Southern Alps, likely to destroy all but Te Papa and the Beehive when it eventually goes bang. You really want to put a bridge over that?

Even more scary – would you really want to tunnel under that?
No, I thought not.
For a city which can’t even agree on building a much overdue better tunnel through the simple, solid mass of Mt Vic, to propose a tunnel under the Cook Strait – some of the most dangerous waters in the world, one of the deepest straits in the world, through hard, broken, brittle rock – is just sheer lunacy. Must be a brainwave thought up in last week’s super blue blood red wolf moon last week.

But the best is yet to come: what would the tunnel be for? Small, thin, fast, efficient high speed trains? No, I fear that foolish young Julian Lee is pushing for a two lane public highway each way. So, probably two tunnels needed, maybe three.

The Chunnel, a very shallow tunnel carved with ease through layers of stable sedimentary chalk, bankrupted the Channel Tunnel company and nearly bankrupted both Britain and France. This hare-brained piece of silliness would bankrupt New Zealand many times over, before it all collapsed ignominiously into the sea.

We already have a bridge. It moves from one side of the Strait to the other.

It’s called the InterIslander.

Tagged in: