Friday, November 9, 2012

Boost for Trains in South

On the basis that Canterbury represents 12% of the population and about 15% of the tax paid in New Zealand, it has always deeply disturbed this blogster that spending on rail and busways in Auckland and Wellington is so utterly grossly tilted in their favour. In fact between 20 and 30 times more, per capita, on infrastructure. At a rough estimate almost $300 million "public transport dollars" have taken out of Canterbury pockets to build rapid transit corridors and associated infrastructure in these Northern cities. Poor old Ecan was beginning to really struggle to attract commuters even before the earthquake, with its almost non-existent rapid transit support infrastructure.  Basically it is pretty much a 1950's style public transport with nice buses and a few techno nobs on it, but hardly the great environmental leader or 21st century flagship in quality public transport.

Our brilliant leadership in Ecan and the CCC (well paid because they are worth it !) in over a decade scored virtually no funding at all towards creating faster, vastly better integrated and more sophisticated public transport, and even now,  at a time of the great post quake rebuild have been given only a pittance in real terms (there will be much more pumping north than received here). Compare the cost of SUBURBAN stations in Auckland - New Lynn $160 million, Panmure $28 million, Newmarket $85 million, Swanson - serving a population of less than 10,000? - $20 million; or busway stations paid for by the then North Shore City Council four for $84 million ...and then look at Christchurch commitment to public transport - the city didn't even set enough money aside for bottom level bus and cycle lanes.

So, it was  great relief to see this headline - Boost for Trains in South -  in the NZ Herald this morning

....I must have misjudged the astute Bob, Tony and Dame Maggie!

1 comment:

  1. Firstly, great blog. Nice to hear what is happening down in Chch. Hope it's not too shaky.
    I am a little put off by, what seems to me anyway, as the anti-Auckland feeling on here. Those that support PT in Auckland have been vocal about the Christchurch rebuild plan and the lack of any real PT spending. It seems that Christchurch is having the same problems with the govt that Auckland is - the overbearing reliance on building new motorways. From what I have read Christchurch is a bit like Tauranga, in that only a minority seem to care about PT and those do not include any local body politicians. The only reason Auckland is getting PT attention is because for a few years now some local body reps (like Mike Lee) have been campaigning for PT. Get the residents jumping up and down over it and get representatives elected on the basis and you might get somewhere because sure as hell, the minister of transport (and the Christchurch rebuild) doesn't give a damn about PT.