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Wood to meet Banks on Vic Park and V8s

1 September 2004

Wood to meet Banks on Vic Park and V8s

North Shore City Mayor George Wood will meet his Auckland City counterpart John Banks to discuss the Victoria Park flyover transport project and the V8 Supercar Racing Series. Mr Wood says the mayoral dialogue will be helpful in addressing some of the issues facing both projects. "John and I have worked closely together on a range of regional issues over recent years.

Now, more than ever, we need to work through some major roadblocks and move forward," he says. Back in May, George Wood issued a statement calling for the Victoria Park flyover to be fixed by 2006 - before street cars start racing in downtown Auckland. He asked Auckland City to work with Transit and his council to help solve the main congestion bottleneck frustrating North Shore-based and bound commuters. "It's time for Auckland City and North Shore City to support the roading and public transport improvements needed at Victoria Park.

The flyover is not simply North Shore City's problem. It's a regional issue requiring a regional response, and the sooner the better." Mr Wood reiterates that North Shore City is not opposed to the V8 street car race, but is worried about the impact of it on the estimated 9000 people an hour who travel across the harbour bridge at peak time.

"I'm no traffic engineer, but it's clear that we need to sort out to everyone's satisfaction how this is going to work."

Keen to keep the process moving, George Wood says information from the council's own experts is being exchanged with the promoters and Transit New Zealand in an effort to find a way forward.

North Shore City Council welcomed the decision by independent commissioners to give joint applicants IMG and Auckland City Council more time to gather evidence about the effect of the proposed event on traffic.

"It paves the way for us to continue working through the issues with the applicants and Transit New Zealand to get the best outcome for everyone," he says.

"One of the lessons we've all learned from this process is that there was not enough time for anybody to properly consider the impact of the event. Our hand was forced - we had to take a stand on it so we could put forward our concerns."

George Wood says he appreciates that the V8 event is important to Mayor Banks and says he feels the same sense of urgency about fixing the Victoria Park flyover.

"We need to work together and our meeting will bring good progress," he says.

ENDS

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