Greens support cross-harbour public transport tunnel

Auckland Green Party MP Keith Locke supports a public transport tunnel in any future Waitemata harbour crossing.

Transit and Auckland Regional Transport Authority have announced three potential options for a crossing – two connecting with the city side at Wynyard Wharf, the other at Grafton Gully.

The first option is exclusively for public transport, while the other two options would allow for varying combinations of public and private transport.

“It is sensible to set aside land for a possible harbour tunnel, which the Green Party believes should be dedicated to public transport, as outlined in Option One,” Mr Locke says.

“We favour extending rail beyond Britomart to the North Shore, which could only be done with a tunnel.

“However, there is no urgency in building a second harbour crossing, because car traffic is likely to decline on the harbour bridge as motorists see the North Shore Busway providing faster and cheaper travel to the city.

“Buses will be zooming past crawling rush hour traffic when the Busway comes on stream next year.

“North Shore commuters will also increasingly choose to leave their cars at home as petrol prices rise with the approach of peak oil – the point at which oil production starts to decline.

“A new harbour crossing is not an immediate funding priority. On the North Shore money is needed for bus priority systems on roads feeding the Busway; on the CBD side of the harbour the emphasis should be on electrifying and extending the passenger rail network,” Mr Locke said.

For more information:

Keith Locke, MP, 04 470 6710, 021 593 399

Megan Hubscher, Media Officer, 04 470 6719