Yesterday I said I would post an alternative to what is floating around as proposals for Auckland‘s Transport Projects – rather than having a whine and participating in the Stalinist vs Neo Liberal Cock Fight that sprung up.
Today I begin a new Mini Series – covering my Alternative Auckland Transport Plan that I personally think would be not only economically and socially viable, but deliver greater benefits to Auckland without breaking the bank on the way out. I will be primarily drawing on my own submission to The Draft Auckland Plan which I submitted to Auckland Council last year, but also given the ever-changing environment in Auckland – re-adapting my work to reflect changes especially with the Port of Auckland.
In today’s Mini Series post I will post extracts from my original submission into Auckland’s Transport before posting up the modified version reflecting the current environment (and costs) plus full break downs of each individual project mentioned and then in the final some commentary on both mine and Auckland Council’s different versions of Auckland’s Transport Plans.
Excerpts of the Original Transport Section of my submission
The full submission can be found HERE
In brief this is what I proposed and the three-tier priority system that went with it.
From the Transport Section Introduction:
I agree with most of the transport projects in Chapter Eleven of The Draft Auckland Plan, I believe some alterations are need to what should be done/built, what shouldn’t be done or built and moving projects backwards or forwards time wise.
The city as a whole needs to be creative while absolutely realistic in paying for these transport projects. We as a city cannot entirely rely on rates, debt and central government to constantly stump up the funds needed. Alternatives such as tolling, public-private partnerships and even maybe a poll tax need to be seriously considered and debated maturely (something our left-right wing factions inAucklandseem they cannot do on a regular basis)
We as a city need realise some cold hard truths about our city, how we live, move and conduct our affairs, and where we want to end in 2040!
Before I go on with my alternative objectives forAuckland’s Transport, some truths need to be realised first. These truths not only come from evidence sourced academically, but from one’s experience and reality of living and working in Auckland and interacting with fellow Auckland citizens in the same regard. In my opinion, it is ones experience and (perception of) reality of living and working in Auckland that would form the best foundation for planningAuckland’s transport needs. In simple terms every single Auckland citizen and business would be a transport planner, each uses a mode of transport (if not multi-modal) and can give what they think needs to be done to make their (and often others) transit trips easier and more efficient as they are the ones (rather than relying on planners solely in their Ivory Towers) that would be using the transit system. My submission for Auckland Transport is more based on my experiences and perceptions of reality of the Auckland Transport system rather than using overseas models (as one former Prime Minister said: (“Neither Keynes or Marx, nor indeed [Milton] Friedman, was a New Zealander and the one economic truth that every Minister of Finance should accept is that you cannot take a blueprint from some other economy, slap it on this country, and expect it to work”- Sir Robert Muldoon) – the same applies to planning and transport principles)
From the Transport Rationale
Maps 11.1 and 11.3 in Chapter Eleven of The Draft Auckland Plan illustrate the Auckland Transit Network and projects through to 2040. In this submission I am tweaking around Council’s vision into something I believe more viable (economically, environmentally and socially) for the city. My rational acknowledges the fact that I do not agree entirely with the compact city ideal of The Draft Auckland Plan. Rather than this 75:25 split between brownfield/intensification and greenfield split which I see as driving affordability out of households and businesses reach, I advocate (which is also constant with my Land Allocation/Development/Utilisation section of my submission) more of a 50:50 split between the two LADU fields. This 50:50 split would achieve the following: choice of housing and business locations, affordability and economic progress – so as a result transport would be moulded around the 50:50 split.
Apart from a few major things/changes, again I agree mostly with The Draft Auckland Plan’s vision for Auckland Transport system. Therefore the transport section of this submission deals with those major things/changes and my priority system of what should be done over the next thirty years in Auckland. Again for brevity, this submission focuses on the Central Business District and south (but including areas near the Eastern Rail Line).
The Major Transport Projects
As mentioned in the Outline, this submission will focus on what are considered major transit links needed in Auckland to improve the efficiency of the regional transit network. These links are however not limited to:
- Eastern Highway and AMETI
- Inner City Rail Link
- Westfield Rail Diamond Realignment
- South-to-Manukau Rail Link completion
- Rail Station re-deployments/additions (where required)
- Bus route reallocation and priorities
- Future Proof the following lines:
○ Airport Line (from Onehunga-to-airport-to main line at Wiri)
○ Botany Line
○ South West Line
○ North Shore Line
These links again would be constant in providing an efficient transit network for a city and LADU allocation around the 50:50 Intensification/Greenfield development split. These major transit links would also assist in the Plan’s main goal around affordability (and economic progress). However again for the sake of brevity and limited resources, this document will only be focusing physical infrastructure development, adding bus or ‘T3’ lanes on existing infrastructure will not be mentioned unless necessary.
Detail, ideas or alternatives mentioned in this submission for The Draft Auckland Plan are in summary form only. Full technical details and implementation strategies of transportation mentioned in this submission will be in a (separate) submission for the Auckland Long Term Plan.
The (Original) Three Tier Priority System
The Priority System
As resources and capital is scarce, a priority system is needed best allocate those scarce resources and capital to extend Auckland’s Transport System. This priority system in this submission will be brief with extended details provided in a separate submission to the Auckland Long Term Draft Plan.
Priority One (To be completed by 2018)
- Building of the Eastern Highway (to the Sub-Regional Standard Option as mentioned in Section 3.5 of the EASTDOR Final Report
- Realigning the Westfield Diamond
- Relocating or adding rail stations
- Re allocating bus routes, improving bus feeder systems to rail stations or bus RTN systems
- Feasibility Study of the Airport Rail Line including freight option
- Starting the bus RTN roll out especially along State Highway 20, 20A and 20B
- South-to-Manukau Rail Link Completion
Priority Two (To be completed by 2025)
- Completion of Inner City Rail Link
- Third Rail Line from Port to Papakura
- Airport Rail Line (if deemed feasible)
- Second Harbour Crossing
- South West Rail Line (if freight is still moving to Northland)
- Rail Electrification to Hamilton (not mentioned or included in this submission)
Priority Three (To be completed by 2040 or optional)
- Botany Rail Line
- North Shore Rail Line
- Upgrade Eastern Highway from Sub Regional Function option to full Regional Function option
This priority system was created in attempt to create an idea on how transportation projects should be rationalised and built over the next thirty years with scarce resources and capital. Priorities can change as the transportation needs change for Auckland.
Concluding Remarks on Transport
The “vision” behind the transport proposal in this submission was designed to move away from the Pro-This or Pro-That style of politics that has seen and marred Auckland’s Transport for over fifty years. Thus items about Auckland’s Transport in this submission were designed to recognise that car (especially), bus, truck and rail will be with the city for a long time to come and that people should be allowed travel choice (bearing responsibility and consequences for their choice as well). As a result a more balanced multi-modal alternative transport “vision” was written in this submission that included both road and public transport infrastructure provisions. These provisions are ultimately designed to complement the dual (Centralised Master (Community) Plan and Semi-Liberal Planned District) Land Allocation/Development/Utilisation models of land use over the next thirty years.
So you can see I went for a mixed approach for transport projects from the CBD to Papakura, because of the limited time I did not comment on other projects such as the Second Waitemata Harbour Crossing or the Puhoi/Warkworth Motorway Extension. However in the Mini Series, those two projects and a few others not mentioned will be included in my Alternative Transport Plans.
I will also be splitting the Plan into two halves, one reflecting Port of Auckland staying where it is and one with POAL moving to South East Auckland.
You could say with me going flat-out on Land Use and Transport commentary AS WELL AS posting quite comprehensive alternative policy proposals I could be running for Office at any given rate – the question is – AM I or have the “desire” to do so?