Banks vs Brown On PT
Brown promised the CBD rail loop, airport rail and rail to Albany in 15 years while Banks promised a CBD rail loop.
The two leading supermayor candidates, Auckland’s John Banks and Manukau’s Len Brown debated on TV3′s Campbell Live tonight – and were asked about public transport.
Brown accused Banks of retreating on the issue of public transport while Banks said we should do only projects we can afford.
Here’s for the record – so we can remind them later- is exactly what they said in two parts of the debate when transport came up.
Brown opened by fingering transport as the election’s key issue.
Brown: The one thing this city needs is real backbone around our transportation delivery and that’s the issue our people and our communities have given me most of their view on. We need to deliver on transport. My opponent who has been has been very supportive of my transport policy & the spending within that has started to soft shoe on this issue. I’m not. I’m totally focussed on the one thing Auckland is united on and that’s transport, especially public transport.
Banks: We’re talking about taking making it work from day one, taking very tough decisions from day one about ordering priorities: about affordable progress, about making no reckless promises. Committing to transport yes; committing to motorway network yes but within a budget. Ordered priorities because we’re coming out of the second bounce of a global recession and people have no spare cash and I’m not going to use the ratepayers of Auckland as an ATM machine.
Brown: It’s just wishy washy backdown. This is showing a lack of backbone in the most critical issue that our community is delivering a message on this election, aside from the issues of the virtues or otherwise of leadership. It’s about transport. That type of positioning is not going to deliver the transport type we need. It’s got to be firm and resolute and it’s not in this case.
Banks: There’s been no mayor in NZ that’s put more efforts into building roads, roads ,roads in my first term here 2001-2003 and integrated public transport 2007-2010.There’s more investment going into bus transport, ferry transport and integrated train transport with electrification, modern rolling stock so we can get people out of cars and into modern transport.
Campbell (to Banks): If it’s about getting people out of their cars… where was the public transport prioritisation earlier on?
Banks: It wasn’t to be absolutely fair. I had a focus on roads, roads roads and there’s been more roading built in the last 10 years than in the last 50 years and we have a programme to complete Auckland’s motorway network as well as integrated public transport. That has to happen as well as integrated public transport.
Vox pop punter: What are you going to do to get public transport better in Auckland?
Campbell: It ought to be better.
Banks: Over the next 10 years, finish the motorway network build. Push through the Britomart so we have a train set that goes through the Britomart. We don’t drag trains out so we go back to Mt Eden, we get 36 trains an hour. Finish the busway network.
Campbell: Just a minute. 36 trains an hour?
Banks: We have 18 trains an hour going into the Britomart We’re pulling them out backwards, underground. They’re diesel trains.We’re going to electrify them, we’re going to have double tracking, we’re going to push through the Britomart, up Albert St. under K Rd, back to Mt Eden and we can carry a lot of people. We’re having huge success with integrated public transport. Buses alone we’ve been able to get an 18 per cent increase in buses alone. If we took everyone out of buses this morning and let them drive cars into the city, we’d have another 19,000 cars on the road in CBD in Auckland this morning.
Brown: Total commitment to three primary projects.
- First of all, we’re going to complete that inner city loop that John has been talking about.
- Secondly, we’re going to do rail to the airport.
- Thirdly, we’re going to do bridge across the harbour as our second crossing. And we’re going to put rail through to Albany.
We want to do that in a 15 year timeline. Got to be commited.This is a transformation of Auckland’s transport projects.