Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

The Public Transport Debate in Christchurch Needs An MRI

A major new Christchurch sub-division, built around an integrated transport hub.

That’s the vision of Anthony Rimell, Chair of the Christchurch Tenants’ Protection Association, and Riccarton Ward City Council Candidate.

“For some time local, regional and central politicians in Christchurch have agreed that ‘something needs to be done’ about housing and urban development: integrating where and how we live with how we get around our city. The answers to this have varied from letting the market decide through to pushing for an over-arching plan for the city.

So as a city we have agreed there is an issue, but cannot agree on how to tackle it - or even exactly what the issue is”, Mr Rimell said.

Mr Rimell went on to say “Recently we seem to be inching toward the view that the market alone cannot decide, and that we need an integrated plan. This has been helped by the impending fiasco that is the Northern Arterial Motorway that will dump more cars every rush hour onto the already congested streets of St Albans, in particular Cranford Street. The car parking of these additional cars is also a vexed question.

Groups such as the CHAT Club have sprung up, promoting the place of rail in any transport plan. And it is true that developing our city requires a genuine mix of vehicle options.

Aligned to this, the Minister of Urban Development has promoted the need for integrated housing mixes: new developments that include State/ Social Housing, low-cost rental housing, and whatever replaces/ augments Kiwibuild. Again, it is true that developing our city requires a genuine mix of housing options. As Chair of the Tenants Protection Association, I see the provision of high quality, affordable housing stock as a central issue.

So both issues require a proper mix; and sensible town planning. What is missing is a way to bring these two key issues together. Or rather, the will to do so in a city that has built its future around cars and private sector housing developments.”

Mr Rimell’s solution is a bold one.

“What we need is an initiative that encompasses the core tenets: one large enough to show how such a combined approach can work, yet sufficiently ‘boundaried’ that people are open to the investment required to make it work.

I’m suggesting Christchurch needs an MRI: The ‘Middleton-Rolleston Initiative’.

“Middleton is the name of the rail shunting yards in Christchurch where Kiwirail’s freight is redistributed. Local transport guru Brendon Harre has identified this spot for consideration for an infrastructure initiative because it is reaching its peak usage, meaning it will increasingly become a choke point for traffic on the roads surrounding the railyard.

“Rolleston is seeing a huge upswing in industrial/ commercial warehousing complexes. It is near enough to the city that it has convenience, but far enough out that land is available at affordable rates for development. There is space to construct a purpose-built freight facility with capacity for future growth. The Lyttelton Port Company opened up the Midland inland container port in Rolleston in 2016 for these reasons.

“What connects Middleton to Rolleston is the main trunk rail line and a soon to be completed highway”, Mr Rimell went on to say.

“The growing risk as Rolleston develops (industrially and as a housing community) is that the highway will see more trucks. But there is an alternative.

I propose that:
• the Middleton Yards be moved to Rolleston. A strong option would be for Kiwirail to co-locate with Midland Port. This allows Rolleston to build on what is already in place: cementing Rolleston’s position as the centre for rail freight in the Greater Christchurch setting.
• the Middleton area then be developed with a mix of State/ Social housing, affordable rental (for students) and affordable owner-occupied housing. The area is twenty five hectares in size. Brendon Harre has estimated that the area can accommodate 2,500 or so homes.
• Finally a heavy rail passenger train link be installed from Rolleston to Moorhouse Ave, stopping at Middleton, as the first link in a city-wide rapid transit network: installing a passenger train station in the new Middleton development creates a strategic hub.

With upgraded supportive infrastructures for cycling and Christchurch’s core bus-priority routes, the nearby large Westfield mall, the university and other destinations are easily accessible. For example, The Orbiter bus route can easily be amended to have a stop at the Middleton Train station.

The first link of the rapid transit network would allow passenger trains to travel to and from a new city centre train station somewhere on Moorhouse Avenue.

What this initiative will show is how it is possible to create a modern urban environment that delivers a wide range of housing options and promotes alternative transport options from as far as Rolleston and then on into the city centre/ a main shopping centre/ the University.

Christchurch will gain a new housing and urban development that promotes a range of housing options without increasing the city’s car dependency.

Rolleston gains a major commercial development that ensures the city can grow its rail transport system for another 50-100 years.

“The initiative allows us to see how this approach will work in practice in a relatively short time (we could see the moving of the shunting yard and the commencement of housing development by the end of 2023); giving all key players achievable targets to work towards.

“There’s a lot more to this proposal that needs to be worked out. But I believe it needs serious consideration.

“I’m calling on the Christchurch City Council, the Selwyn District Council, the Minister of Housing and the Minister of Transport (and Urban Development) to work together to prepare a strategic plan to assess the feasibility and viability of this initiative in a timely manner.

“Christchurch – and New Zealand – needs to improve the way it integrates housing with transport. We need this MRI”, Mr Rimell concluded.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Why Todd Muller Needs To Own The Privacy Leak Scandal


Whenever a political scandal breaks, party leaders have two basic options. They can confess to being in boots and all, and try to brazen it out : nothing to see here, move on. This tended to be the John Key approach. Very hard to pull that off in this case, given that it involved violating the privacy of sick New Zealanders for party political gain.
The other option is to claim innocence of this terrible, no good, highly regrettable “error of judgement” and apologise profusely for the sins of others, while absolving your own good self of any responsibility. This has been Todd Muller’s chosen path.... More>>
 

Govt: Statement From Rt Hon Winston Peters

Deputy Prime Minister and New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters has announced he is taking a short stint of medical leave this week. More>>


Isolation: Government And Air NZ Agree To Manage Incoming Bookings

Bookings for seats on Air New Zealand flights into New Zealand will be managed in the short term to ensure the Government is able to safely place New Zealanders arriving home into a managed isolation or quarantine facility, says Housing Minister Megan ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: New Investment Creates Over 2000 Jobs To Clean Up Waterways

A package of 23 projects across the country will clean up waterways and deliver over 2000 jobs Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Environment Minister David Parker announced today. The $162 million dollar package will see 22 water clean-up projects ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: David Clark Resigns As Health Minister

The Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has accepted David Clark’s resignation as Health Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Election 2020: Green Party Unveils Income Policy

The Green Party is today unveiling its Poverty Action Plan, which includes a Guaranteed Minimum Income to ensure people have enough to live with dignity. The scheme resets income support payments to ensure everyone not in full-time paid work gets at least ... More>>

ALSO:


Conservation: New Protection For Dolphins

Extensive new protections are being put in place as part of an updated plan to look after New Zealand’s native Hector’s and Māui dolphins, announced Minister of Fisheries Stuart Nash and Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: Water Consent Referred To Board Of Inquiry

Environment Minister David Parker has today “called in” Auckland’s application to the Waikato Regional Council to take an extra 200 million litres of water a day from the lower reaches of the Waikato River for Auckland drinking water and other municipal uses... More>>

ALSO:




Covid-19 Patient Info Leak: Hamish Walker - A Personal Statement And An Apology

I have spoken to National Party Leader Todd Muller and informed him that I passed to members of the media, by email, information containing Covid-19 patient details that was given to me by a source. I did this to expose the Government’s shortcomings ... More>>

ALSO:

PM: Labour Will Extend Loan Scheme 'lifeline' For Small Business

Labour has announced its plans to extend the Small Business Loan Cashflow Scheme and spend $162 million on a waterway clean-up package. More>>

ALSO:


Biosecurity: Winston Peters On EU Travel: 'We're Not Going To Compromise Our Country's Health'

Foreign Minister Winston Peters says New Zealanders who head to Europe on holiday should pay for their two weeks' hotel quarantine when they return. More>>

Economy: Infrastructure Investment To Create Jobs, Kick-Start COVID Rebuild

A new package of infrastructure investments will help kick-start the post-COVID rebuild by creating more than 20,000 jobs and unlocking more than $5 billion of projects up and down New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Infrastructure Minister ... More>>

ALSO:

Covid-19: Isolation System To Be Beefed Up After Stress

A range of improvements are already underway to address issues identified in the rapid review of the Managed Isolation and Quarantine system released today, Housing Minister Megan Woods said. The review was commissioned just over a week ago to identify ... More>>

ALSO:

Election 2020: Parties Get Into Gear

ACT has today announced its list for the 2020 General Election. “The calibre and experience of our candidates will impress voters of every persuasion. We have candidates from all walks of life. People who have built their homes, families and businesses ... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels