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V8s a great idea in the wrong place

21 May 2004

V8s a great idea in the wrong place

The V8 car races planned for central Auckland from 2006 are a great idea in the wrong place, according to Western Bays councillor and Auckland City mayoral candidate, Bruce Hucker.

"The city needs large events, particularly following the loss of the America's Cup and stopovers for the Volvo and Global Challenge round-the-world yacht races," said Dr Hucker. "The V8 races are an exciting opportunity and would be good for Auckland if they weren't going to disrupt business, commuters and city dwellers.

"The Mail Centre in Victoria Street and New World supermarket by Victoria Park are just two businesses which would suffer from the race where it's planned. A street race by tradition should be held near the city centre but I wish those promoting it would look at an alternative circuit which doesn't block the major route into the CBD for all those North Shore and other city workers.

"Huge benefits are claimed but this is at the expense of disrupting the operations of many businesses and their staff as well as inner-city residents.

"There are certain requirements for a successful event including adequate motor vehicle and passenger access to the inside of the circuit, both for workers, residents and emergency vehicles. This requires tunnels and/or bridges at a number of access points.

"Then we need adequate spectator facilities, good space for the pits including lengthy pit lanes, prime spots and access for race marshalls, pace cars, emergency vehicles and so on. Perhaps we should be looking further east to avoid the likely chaos for Harbour Bridge traffic and for businesses and residents inside and around the proposed Victoria Park circuit," said Dr Hucker.

ENDS

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