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Cup Transport Nightmare a Real Possibility

Cup Transport Nightmare a Real Possibility

Sunday 19 November For Immediate Release

The 2011 Rugby World Cup could well become a transport nightmare for rugby fans and locals alike if Auckland's sustainable transport options are not dramatically improved beforehand, say a coalition of Auckland transport groups.

The groups - which include the Campaign for Better Transport, Cycle Action Auckland, Walk Auckland and 21st Century Transport - say that regardless of which stadium is chosen for the World Cup, major investment in Auckland's public transport network, and its walking and cycling infrastructure is imperative.

"For Auckland to be the world class city it claims and wants to be, and to cope with the visitor numbers, there needs to be urgent public transport infrastructure investment as well as attractive walking environments, Said Andy Smith of Walk Auckland.

"Our rail network needs electrification, and integration with bus services," said Cam Pitches of Campaign for Better Transport, "we urgently need integrated ticketing and timetabling."

"There should also be new stations, and an extension of the rail line to the Airport, to cope with expected visitors in 2011 and for the longer term, added Mr Pitches.

"The gloss that goes with a flash Auckland stadium will be lost if we leave thousands of visitors and locals gridlocked in traffic jams on the big day. Proper public transport, incorporating safe and pleasant pedestrian and cycling access to and from the venue, is as essential as the venue itself, agreed Bevan Woodward of Cycle Action Auckland.

"We have an opportunity to showcase to the world a vastly improved transport system," said the groups "or we can face the international embarrassment of a substandard and unsustainable transport mess."

"Investment in sustainable transport will continue to serve Aucklanders well into the future as we seek to find solutions to our ever worsening traffic congestion, the social and health issues arising from car dependency and our increasing climate change emmissions,†concluded the coalition.

Ends

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