City supports National Party on Whenuapai airport
North Shore City supports National Party on Whenuapai airport
November 29 2007
National Party leader John Key’s opposition to the use of Whenuapai airbase as a commercial airport has been welcomed by North Shore City Mayor Andrew Williams.
Mr Key – also MP for the Helensville electorate, in which the airport is located - has said he and his caucus is "totally opposed" to using the base for commercial, joint commercial/military use, or housing.
Mayor Williams says this endorses and supports the policy adopted by the newly-elected North Shore City Council, and the council welcomes such a strong commitment which will also safeguard the interests of North Shore City residents.
He says commercial operations at Whenuapai airport would have adverse effects on the environment, as well as health, social and negative economic impacts.
“This sends a clear message to the airport supporters that there are now significant areas of opposition from both local and central government politicians. I understand the idea of commercialisation doesn’t rest easily with many people in government - and nor is the Air Force fully committed to relocating to Ohakea airbase near Palmerston North because of staff retention problems and the very high capital costs involved,” says Mayor Williams.
North Shore City Council has withdrawn its support for the commercialisation of Whenuapai, and is pursuing the ending of its involvement in North West Auckland Airport Co Ltd, which was formed to proceed with planning and development for an airport at Whenuapai. North Shore City does however support the airforce remaining at Whenuapai airbase.