Response to Steve’s Soapbox, published October, 20.



Have your SayYou make a major error in your comments against Len Brown by stating he is responsible for the lack of electrification to Pukekohe and that Auckland ratepayers should be paying for it, whereas it is the Government that owns Kiwirail and it is the Government who are responsible for the lack of electrification.
In NZ for some strange reason public transport is a Left/Right issue, the left supporting public transport and the right, roads. This is not the case in many other countries. eg the UK has been led by the Right Wing Tories, and during the recession one of the major spending initiatives they did was to spend billions of pounds on a new tube line ‘Crossrail’.
You would think London would have enough tube lines but the right wing Government knows the huge benefits public transport that is completely separate from the roading network can bring.
Already the land value around the new stations have risen quickly and it’s not even open yet.
Yet here in Auckland we are really lucky, we can go to a train network to a full Metro Network (with trains every five minutes, you just turn up and go) for a single 3.5km tunnel – most cities would love to be able to create a full metro network so quickly and easily. But instead of the National Party rushing in to support the CRL which will completely transform Auckland they are really dragging the chain and can’t even bring themselves to fund electrification to Pukekohe for 120 million. Instead the Government is willing to spend 140 million on the Kirkbride Road intersection to the airport.
Why spend a similar amount of money to remove a single intersection that may save a few drivers a few seconds instead of Pukekohe electrification which is such a no-brainer project? It will open up Pukekohe, an area that is expected to grow from 30,000 to 60,000, and importantly means AT can reduce operating costs by getting rid of all the diesel trains and run only the newer cheaper electric trains.
The main truck line is owned by Kiwirail and they should be paying for it, not Auckland ratepayers.
Adam Weller
Post Response: October 20 article
“You will forever be remembered as the Mayor who never electrified Pukekohe, even though it was not your fault. Mayor Brown you could have had the vision and the common sense to look after the whole of Auckland which you failed to do.”
You will note Adam that I indicated in the article that it was not the Mayor’s fault we don’t have electrification.

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