Candidate: Forget Rail, Use Pods


It’s that time for nutcase ideas.

Point To Point shuttle systems are the best and most cost effective solution to Auckland’s public transport woes according to Auckland’s independent  mayoral candidate Colin Craig today.

He says the systems, which are now being installed in the United Kingdom, Poland and the United States would make Auckland a leader in the future of public transport, rather than a city that is still catching up to others.

“The shuttle system is much cheaper to install and run than our current rail network. We could have a shuttle system running to all over Auckland- up to Silverdale, through the CBD, out to the Airport and down to Papakura and Pukekohe for less cost than one single rail extension.”

“It’s unreasonable to expect Aucklanders to use public transport when a car is better and easier. Let’s have a superior system that they actually want to use.”

Mr Craig says that not only is the shuttle system cost effective, but also environmentally friendly.

“Auckland has the potential to be a truly beautiful city. We have the harbours, the hills and a temperate climate. The environmental impact of the Point To Point shuttles would be extremely minimal and if we choose to use this system instead of trains, the overseas examples have shown there would be a significant reduction in our air pollution.”

“The proposal by the other candidates to continue with the same old thing when it comes to public transport is another example of what is going wrong. Too many dollars spent with little real benefit.”

Mr Craig says that the Point To Point shuttle system will provide ratepayers and public transport users with a better value public transport alternative.

Here is how he sees it working

While you are there check out where mad ideas come from  (hat tip CD)




  1. Matt L says:

    Good riddance Colin

  2. Anthony M says:

    Stupidest idea for a long time.

    “The proposal by the other candidates to continue with the same old thing when it comes to public transport is another example of what is going wrong. Too many dollars spent with little real benefit.”

    what the hell? trains can actually move thousands of people in a short time! unlike shuttles which can create even more congestion.

  3. Cam says:

    This is quite honestly one to the dumbest things I have ever read. This shows a lack of even a basic understanding of how effective public transport works. I suspect the fact this guy has never been anywhere (according to a Herald article he has never left NZ and has no desire to) or experienced what proper first world transport systems are like in cities overseas means he has no idea what he’s talking about when it comes to this subject.

    He thinks what are effectivly publicly funded taxis would be more efficient than rail that’s actually pretty funny in a tragic sort of a way. Most depressing of all in the tradition of past Auckland leaders he likes this idea because it’s the cheapest. Wow what vision.

  4. Akarana says:

    It gets to a point where I grow tired of people complaining and trying to find ‘alternatives’ to an efficent model of a public transport system and keep with the same old creature comfort habits of private motor vehicles. The key word is public here people. Let’s face it Aucklanders are notorious private vehicle users, in fact New Zealanders are. Yes public transport doesn’t get you from A to B as efficently or as quickly as a car but we can’t use that and the fear of standing or sitting next to someone you don’t know on a train or bus when peak oil is looming. I mean plenty of other cities around the world have public transport as a way of life not a last resort.
    I wish we would get some leaders with an effective vision not a hair-brained scheme to make paper headlines and look outside the urban sprawl which is Auckland to overseas models. Rail not Roads.

  5. JBR says:

    Night night Colin.

  6. Doloras says:

    Isn’t Colin Craig’s big issue that he’s in favour of relegalising child-beating?

  7. Ian says:

    What is the shuttle? Is it a van and trailer like the airport shuttle or similar caught up on congested roads? Good on Colin for being different but he’s onto a real loser here.

  8. Cam says:

    @Ian well i guess it’s like a bus only with far less capacity so therefore you need a lot more of them. Yes Colin Craig sure is “different”

  9. Eric says:

    @Doloras, Colin Craig merely supported the government listening to citizen initiated referendums. If you look at his website you will see that one of his major policies is holding referendums on major issues. Which will probably mean that he will do quite a bit of consulting before diving into any fancy shuttling system.

    @Ian, I suggest you click on the link at the end of the blog and find out. It is not a shuttle like the airport shuttle it is more of a light rail system then anything else.

  10. AdG says:

    Talking about nutcases - did anyone see/read the article by Owen McShane regarding broadband over rail? Whilst better broadband speeds are of course needed here, he seems to think that everybody aspires to his lifestyle - that of living in the wop-wops and never wants to go anywhere physically. Forget rail he says invest in the the future - high speed broadband!

  11. Ian says:

    @Eric. Thanks, I didn’t see the link but clicking on it shows a system that I think would be a lot more expensive to install than simply modernising what Auckland has already with a few additions to the network.

  12. Sam says:

    he’s really dreaming here… 2 billion would not possibly buy:
    - hundreds of km of mostly raised track
    - tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of vehicles for them- necessary if he wants to replace trains and many buses- if they go anything like the car did most people will travel by themselves
    - a massive amount of planning and land
    - some ‘super-Britomarts’ , built to handle some thousand vehicles per minute (Britomart handles a few hundred per minute during the peak I imagine- and thats before this revolutionary system triples the catchment, and pulls everyone away from cars though its ‘efficiency’)

    I imagine our trains are actually pretty efficient these days, and only getting better…and our really low density is a myth. I read somewhere that the average number of people on an Auckland train is about 125- that cant be bad. Surely 600 on a 6 carriage trains is far better than 400 individual ‘shuttles’, at at least a frequency of one every 2 seconds to keep the capacity, of course.

    The other candidates say ‘we need to stop building roads, and work on rail, as clearly what we are doing now isn’t working’- they’re right… thousands of people spend hours in traffic jams every day, and the government then spends millions to widen roads- only to find that it just re-arranges the traffic jam a bit. Colin seems to copy this, but for rail- the difference is though that rail is working; with very little spending we have seen growth of over 1600%, and a full train into Britomart every 3 minutes during peak time (with the small exception of the Onehunga line). Hardly any of the shuttles would be fully occupied (and therefore less efficient than he predicts)…. just like cars are today.

    Vandalism is another major issue- you cant have a security guard in a room watching 100000 screens at once.

  13. Steved says:

    Yesterday at 1.38pm I boarded a train at Newmarket to Onehunga. I took particular notice as to the future in respect of “Double Tracking”, which when required, the needed space is there, and yes it was for me an enjoyable ride. Just a quick comment to our transport issues, I believe more and more people in our City will use public transport for the very reason, that it is a far better in time travel, meaning one gets to where ever in less time than travelling in a car. Just my Thoughts.

  14. Loic Rampal says:

    Colin Craig is an idiot.

  15. Cam says:

    Just clicked on the link he’s talking about PRT like skycabs. This is and always has been a daft idea for moving people around a city. If thinks this would be cheap he’s dreaming. The level of ignorance he displays with regards to his “problems with rail” is truly staggering things like Auckland’s too hilly or that Auckland has one the world’s most spread out populations. I don’t think even the road transport forum bothers dredging up these old myths. It really does make you shake your head.

  16. Jon C says:

    Someone has pointed out where mad ideas come from (hat tip CD)

    @AdG I had a go at that in the post on it being time for airport rail

  17. Andrew says:

    Even that atricle seems to talk about PRT as a short range solution - between Heathrow 5 and its carparks. Or within a central business district.

    The San Jose example (proposed, not built) is to use PRT between the airport terminal and local transit hubs - at which point you’d transfer to bus/train for the rest of your journey.

    Applied to Auckland, PRT as explained in that article could make sense within the Manukau or Albany CBDs and maybe fringes, but it would be a likely massive failure to try to use these things for anything longer distance or covering a wider area.

  18. Nick R says:

    The fact that he claims a prt system would be better value is a huge red flag that signals he’s done no more reasearch than looking at a couple of flashy websites and obviously has no idea what he’s talking about.

  19. karl says:

    He’s just trying to raise his profile with daft but flashy ideas (like Banks and the Olympics).

    I would sympathise (it must be hard to compete against the big names) except that I don’t really see why somebody should come out of nowhere with no political expertise (you know, the stuff needed to be of any actual use once elected) and expect to be taken serious. I LIKE my politicians to have been around the block once or twice, or they will just be puppets.


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