Getting The Message


It was great to see Auckland’s new Mayor Len Brown point out to John Key yesterday’s AKT post that rail patronage had gone up in September.
When AKT broke this news yesterday, I posted a headline: “Rail up a staggering 18.2%”

Last night at Brown’s inauguration in the Auckland Town Hall, the prime minister was present -and the new Mayor doesn’t miss a trick.

The speech he delivered included a last minute line, not included in his original speech notes,  as a result of that story here!

His speech as delivered went: “We will build an inner city loop. We will have rail connecting the city to the airport. And we will bring rail to the North Shore.

“And it’s important because today we hear that rail patronage has gone up a staggering 18.2%.”

Good on you Len. The prime minister needed to hear that news.




  1. Matt L says:

    I admit, I really didn’t think that Len would push that hard for the rail projects and would try to do so behind closed doors to little success but so far I am impressed. He is bringing it up all the time and helping to build pressure.

  2. karl says:

    Well, you can’t be a politician all your life without knowing some tricks of the trade. Politics is backroom dealing AND public consumption-material.

  3. Chris says:

    Well done Jon. If they weren’t before, every smart person at the Transport CCO will be reading your blog first thing in the morning.

  4. dave s says:

    Saw an interesting quote from the former mayor of Bogota Colombia, who is now in charge of p.t.—-quote:no city in the world has solved it’s problems by building more and bigger roads. ATT. central government.

  5. antz says:


    A a country full of drug dealers, crime and poverty seems to know that motorways don’t help. damn.

  6. Nick R says:

    @antz, thats pretty offensive to Colombians. Colombia isn’t ‘full of drug dealers, crime and poverty’ any more than New Zealand is full of sheep shaggers, stoners and dole bludgers….

    Although I guess your point is how can a developing nation with limited political resources make that realisation while a rich, developed economy with an efficient government can’t.

    Colombia is currently undertaking a massive expansion of their interurban freeway network, including some serious tunneling through the andes. However, they apear to have given up on futility of freeways inside cities and are focussing on innovative bus transit, underground metros and some interesting things like the Medellin gondola transit system.

    Bogota used to be one of the most car dependent places in the world, but they seem to be turning that around.


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