In this third post on the Shelly Bay shambles, Peter Jackson releases a commissioned report that shows the need for approximately 34,000 heavy truck movements to support any development. Again, he raises more questions on the back of previously unanswered questions, but the Council remains silent.
Your officers seem disinterested in examining the impact on the fragile coastal road, that will be caused by the proposed Shelly Bay development.
So I’ve commissioned a Quantity Survey company to estimate the number of heavy truck journeys required, based on the current Master Plan.
They estimate 34,000 – 35,000 return journeys.
Even over a period of four to five years that is a potentially significant amount of introduced traffic that would have to travel an already extremely narrow road, that is frequently impacted by work on seawalls (because the sea level is rising, remember), that then feeds onto one of the most congested arterial routes into the city.
If you want outrage, then someone notify the various Oriental Bay residents associations because there is a strong likelihood that a lot of those movements would have to head around the bays because of the likely contaminated material being removed from site forbidding them to move through the Mt Victoria Tunnel.
But that’s conjecture as is the local, persistent, rumour that there is apparently quite the issue of asbestos on the existing site and how that is going to be managed. But when are missing facts.
Whilst the coastal road was the primary consideration when commissioning this report, can the WCC please provide ratepayers with information about exactly where these trucks will be coming from (with building materials), and where they will be going to (with building site refuse – some of which might well be contaminated)? Are they using the Mt Vic tunnel? Around the Basin Reserve? Then where?
I’m sure that everyone will agree that 34,000 truck journeys is going to add yet more chaos to our quickly deteriorating traffic flow – and it’s distressing that the WCC is taking so little responsibility for this kind of traffic impact.
Well, we don’t know what the Council position is at all, on traffic, or any other issue, because they’ve gone to the ground despite multiple promises that they are going to produce the facts. The only person who appears to be producing any facts right now is Peter Jackson, who is reaching into his own pocket to get answers.
It’s equally distressing that our three Eastern Ward councillors (Sarah Free, Chris Calvi-Freeman and Simon Marsh) are happy to sit back, and allow 34,000 heavy trucks to be added to our traffic flow for the next three … four … five years.
Unfortunately, we have no idea what the Eastern Ward Councillors think about the Shelly Bay issue despite Chris Calvi-Freeman holding the portfolio for Transport. Somewhat ironic. Surely under that title, you’d expect him to allay fears and produce facts around any potential development.
Perhaps he doesn’t know?
Perhaps no report on the traffic impact of the development was ever created?
What we also know is that both Chris Calvi-Freeman and Sarah Free, according to their frequent social media posts, are avid supporters of cyclists and alternate forms of transport, other than the car. They must have concerns about the impact. And penguins, everyone is worried about penguins.
It seems they have been gagged.
Frankly, we think their lack of response to what is a massive issue on the lips of not just Eastern Ward residents, but most of the city is very poor form. It is a massive failure, in my opinion, on their part that they have not fronted this from day one, and it is not helping their profile.
There are increasing calls for candidates to stand up now and replace the existing Councillors. We have only one known candidate, sponsored by Labour, who has announced the attention to run against them. Frankly, a relatively high-profile or two candidates who took this issue head-on would have a very good chance of knocking either Sarah or Chris out of the Council this coming election.
Regardless, Peter Jackson is likely to continue to ask questions and keep the fire alive. Until those questions are answered, and facts laid out by all parties, Shelly Bay will continue to be the raging elephant in the room.
Perhaps the WCC have done their own traffic impact assessment of this nature, in which case I’d ask you to make it public.