Two Victories In One Day, One “Loss” - & Time For A Re-think

Auckland Mayor John Banks needs some thinking time

Auckland Mayor John Banks needs some thinking time

Two silly typically Auckland rushes- to-the-head projects have been axed in one day. That’s awesome.

The Queens Wharf project contest that was rushed, under budget by many millions, given a restrictive brief, poorly conceived, an odd mixture of commercial and recreational objectives but unsure what its purpose was is on hold and the Auckland City’s plan to introduce night parking meter charges in the CBD was also dumped, as foreshadowed here yesterday.

All involved in the two ideas, including Auckland Mayor John Banks, need some thinking time to come up with something that works for everyone.

After today’s Auckland city council transport committee meeting, which voted to axe the parking idea after overwhelming opposition,Transport Committee chair Ken Baguley says the council will instead work proactively with Auckland’s business associations and other key stakeholders to identify potential solutions for specific parking capacity problems.

Councillor, time for a prayer

Councillor, time for a prayer

He said the proposal had been designed to help drivers seeking evening access to retail, hospitality and entertainment businesses in the central city.

“It’s no secret that in some parts of Auckland, the demand for on-street parking far outstrips availability, and we need to consider how best to address the issue. Council will continue with a limited trial in the Viaduct area to monitor occupancy rates and will evaluate the results in February.” Council’s role will be to work alongside stakeholder groups like the CBD board and Heart of the City to help establish targeted parking solutions which encourage more Aucklanders to access the city’s entertainment precincts.”

But that meeting did not go so well for the City Vision - Labour councillors present.

They’re upset that the Citizens & Ratepayers majority group voted to make huge cuts to local road safety improvements, school travel plans, community road safety education and power line undergrounding.

Auckland City Council transport budgets have been hit hard by the Government’s transport funding now being ploughed in to “Roads of National Significance” - such as the holiday Highway to Wellsford - at the expense of a range of local road safety projects.

The left wing councillors complained that C&R councillors could have maintained the current range of very successful local road safety programmes but chose not to do so.

Councillor Denise Roche argued that while it was tough trying to do more with less government money, getting children to school without loss of life was more important than building more roads.

Richard Northey said the road safety and community education programme, the school travel plans and the undergrounding of  street lighting should be exempted from the cuts because they are relatively inexpensive and deliver huge safety benefits particularly for children.

Graeme Easte attempted to save the power line undergrounding programme but the vote was for it to be axed once existing commitments are completed.

“I am bitterly disappointed that Auckland City residents will lose out because this Council will not pay its fair share. I understand that the Manukau and Waitakere City Councils will continue their undergrounding projects but Auckland will miss out.”




  1. Jeremy Harris says:

    What are the big advantages of power line undergrounding..? Surely maintainance would cost more..?

    How cheap is it..?

    I’m really happy about Queens wharf, when I heard Murray MacCully and Gerry Brownlee (two well known Aucklanders - yeah right) were involved I thought we’d get something cheap and nasty for sure…


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