Friday, March 9, 2012

Eastern suburb bus passengers get food for thought - during the two hour wait - or long walk home

"Foodstuffs has announced it is building a new Pak 'n Save supermarket next to its existing store in Christchurch's eastern suburbs.

The Wainoni store has superficial earthquake damage and Foodstuffs says it will be cheaper to build another store rather than make repairs. The current store will continue trading while the new $25 million development takes shape. Building is expected to start this year."
- Radio New Zealand News Item

An interesting indicator of the revival of eastern suburbs post [we hope "post"] major earthquakes.

Foodstuffs obviously believe even with conversion of some riverside areas currently red zoned and likely to become parks or paddocks (or at least no longer residential areas) there will be plenty of demand for this strategically placed supermarket.

It is a sharp contrast to the Ecan/Metro stance, which has downgraded bus services to this area by over 50%, with residents using this supermarket between 9am and 3pm  expected to wait 30-120 minutes (yes two hours!) for a bus service to the surrounding areas in the middle of the day!!

Does anyone seriously expect the elderly or transport dependent to wait two hours for a bus to and from the supermarket?  With gaps between services this ridiculously large it will mean taxis or help fromfriends and relatives will still be on the agenda for many east-siders.  This is not a happy way to live - relying on others and having to request help is often humiliating for people whose self respect is closely linked to retaining maximum freedom of movement and independence.

And so much for paying Ecan transport rates!

As for those away from bus routes in Dallington, Avonside, Aranui etc hoping to get to work or school, No service for you at all. What a farce.

Meanwhile Dame Margeret Bazley pockets her $1400 per meeting to oversee the effective operation of Christchurch buses!!

What a bloody insult to those already disadvantaged, economically and by earthquake damages!! What a pathetic response ECan!


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