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Auckland City Council And Britomart Budget Blowout

Comment from David Thornton writer and commentator on local government matters

David Thornton is a former Member of the North Shore City Council. the Auckland Regional Land Transport Committee and the Greater London Council

Infrastructure Auckland Cannot Bail Out Auckland City Council And Its Britomart Budget Blowout

Auckland City Council must be dreaming if it thinks that funds from Infrastructure Auckland will solve all its traffic and transport problems. A report in today's NZ Herald suggests that the council will apply to Infrastructure Auckland for $91.5 million to help with the latest cost of the Britomat Transport interchange.

Add this latest application to the $70 million needed to meet some of the cost of the 'Rail Corridor" purchase, ( plus further unknown millions to pay for the repair of the woefully under-maintained rail-track) - and probably another $70 million towards the cost of the North Shore Busway - plus preliminary costs for the next Harbour Crossing - and suddenly all the money has gone,

Infrastructure Auckland only has between 200 and 300 million dollars in cash. The rest of its assets are in the form of shares in Ports of Auckland Ltd - and those shares would need to be sold to raise any further money. But those shares are Infrastructure Auckland's main source of income. Without them the total fund will quickly diminish to zero - and how will the Auckland region then be able to afford to pay the huge subsidies which the operation of a public transport system requires.

Before Auckland City Council contemplates building a transport interchange which includes a 'light rail station", it should look at where it will find the money to build and operate the light rail system.

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