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Babies back Option3

Babies back Option3

3 April 2006

A group of parents who support transport campaign Option3 have produced a photo to highlight those who will be affected most by short-sighted transport decisions.

Present plans for Wellington's Western Corridor allocate 91% of funding to major new roads (including Transmission Gully) and only 9% to public transport and other forward looking options.

"This does nothing to prepare our economy for the end of cheap oil or the challenges of climate change," said Rosie Crocker, one of Option3's spokespeople.

"We have one opportunity per generation to choose the direction of major transport investment. While many of us plan to be close to retirement by the time Transmission Gully opens in 2015 or later, these children will be about to enter the workforce.

We owe it to them to build an economy that will allow them to live the highest standard of living possible and that's not what current plans offer.

"Fuel prices are rising quickly and all commentators are telling us the era of cheap oil is over. New Zealand needs to prepare for this by investing in energy efficient transport options and planning for a future where economic activity depends less on travel."

Ms Crocker says current plans offer our children little in 20 years time, forcing them to pay again to fix up the costs of our mistakes. She says the region's decision-makers seem to be stuck in the failed 1950s style mindset of heavy investment in motorways and sprawl.

"The current generation of Aucklanders is now stuck with traffic jams, sprawl and inadequate public transport let's not do that to our kids.

Option3 says, by contrast, investment now in public transport, easier walking and cycling, cheaper, faster internet access and safer roads will benefit today's generation and future generations.

"Globally New Zealand is ideally placed to find a niche market in ICT services We have a well-educated, innovative work-force that is English speaking and awake when much of the rest of the world is asleep. Locally, teleworking, teleshopping, and other innovations become real alternatives.

"Public transport is more cost-effective and can be improved much faster than major roads can be built. It frees up space on existing roads, benefiting everyone," said Ms Crocker.

Ms Crocker says our kids deserve a better coming of age present than clapped out trains,

ENDS

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