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CEAC tells - “the whole story of Gisborne rail."

CEAC tells - “the whole story of Gisborne rail."
Oct 5th 2019.
Press Release: Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre

CEAC response to the following (unconfirmed) study report.

Firstly we note that Gisborne MP Anne Tolley clearly told her ‘views of caution’ about her support for rail in the Gisborne Herald article 2/9/19 entitled “ Signs study will favour rail line link”- featured in the Gisborne Herald.

While ‘Mrs Tolley’s cautious positive comments are welcome’, CEAC as a long serving involved community advocate for all communities is now obliged to tell the ‘whole complete story about the real Gisborne rail’s importance to all our East Coast communities along the route of this historic railway about this precious rail line service to the whole community of this country.

• On a warm summer day in 2002 before the Napier local body elections had begun, we among members of our Pirimai Residents Association Inc’ (PRA) were meeting our Napier ‘deputy Mayor Anne Tolley’ at a noisy residence alongside the ‘truck road to Napier port’ called ‘Napier Hastings Motorway’ then.
• As residents were becoming worried about heavy truck noise/vibrations and air pollution affecting our health, as we also lived in this community.

Anne Tolley sat on the back porch of this home discussing the noise of the trucks while having a cup of tea/coffee, while several residents asked Deputy Mayor Anne Tolley what she could do for the residents to mitigate against the health hazards from the 24/7 truck noise/vibrations and air pollution affecting our health.

Sadly after that encounter no resolution was ever given us as Anne as deputy Mayor said she had no power or control to offer any such mitigation.

Later that year CEAC had a Lawyer forward a letter to the Napier City CEO requesting urgent mitigation for residents based on their health concerns.

We were offered from NCC a simple wooden fence, but nothing of any real substance given then was ever satisfactory.

Then in 2003 residents approached a Labour MP Minister of Finance Sir Michael Cullen for assistance under the community group CEAC facilitated called Napier Heavy Traffic Community Forum, (NHTCF)2003.

Sir Michael was adamant to assist us and finally agreed to offer funds allocated to offer Transit NZ to place a “quiet smooth road surface” along parts of the truck road near residential communities.

Then we did get some real satisfaction, until around 2013 when the rail disaster occurred as Gisborne rail was closed after flood damage and the truck volumes began to rise uncontrolled to a level where residents sleep disruption & health was suffering again.

CEAC had earlier joined the Gisborne Rail Action Group (RAG) in 2010 on its formation to advocate for all communities in solidarity of those suffering from overuse of road traffic, to advocate for more environmental transport solutions.

We are now very proud that the years of action and advocating for “common sense transport solutions” has been taken on board as shown that bringing our support for health and wellbeing issues to everyone involved in restoring rail to its role as the best environmental friendly solution to our communities future is being supported and we hope Anne Tolley recalls our long suffering.

As a grandson of the farming Crispin family and disabled war veteran member who settled in Clyde bank after the first world war we are finally receiving support for the restoration of our precious railway from the BERL study just completed and the important factors included inside the way this report was carefully considered was the “Wellbeing of the community” that decided the tipping point of needing the railway restored to service again as after seven years without a railway the roads became so dangerous that they were literally falling apart unable to handle all the road freight, and the cost of roading maintenance was not sustainable.
The environmental sustainability was also being threatened.

CEAC on behalf of our community is grateful for the care given to ensure our rights to our “Community health & wellbeing” was included in the rail study.

© Scoop Media

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