Big dreams, no delivery

Written By: - Date published: 6:58 pm, July 12th, 2009 - 12 comments
Categories: cycleway, john key - Tags:

Tv1 has revealed that our daydreamer PM had much much bigger plans for the cycleway. Like excited schoolkids, he and good mate Mark Weldon of the NZX drew up plans for a grand cycle race to be called the Sir Edmund Hillary tour that would go the length of New Zealand along the cycleway.

They slapped a $50 million price-tag on building the cycleway – apparently just made up off the tops of their heads (I’m told Key’s office could not provide any source for the costing in response to written questions). Key forced Bill English to allocate that exact amount to the cycleway in the Budget, which shows that no formal costing had been done – the budget was $50 million because that was what Key had said it would be, not because of any economic rationale.

But eventually reality came budging in. TV1 puts the cost at $33,000 to $500,000 per km. Major works like clip-ons for the harbour bridge would run into millions. $50 million, if it is all spent on construction, which it won’t be, might get you 100km of cycleway. A cycleway the length of the country could cost a billion dollars. The Standard, of course, revealed within an hour of the cycleway idea being announced that the $50 million budget was complete fantasy.

Yet Key still seems to think that the national cycleway and the grand tour raced on it will eventually be a reality. He doesn’t even seem to get that you don’t race a cycle tour on a narrow cycleway.

Labour’s Chris Hipkins was in the report calling the cycleway a joke. It certainly is (Eddie cracks up at the slightest mention) but the scary thing is it’s also the biggest idea this over-promise and under-deliver Key government has managed to come with.

For the tens of thousands of Kiwis who are losing their livelihoods, that’s no laughing matter.

12 comments on “Big dreams, no delivery”

  1. lprent 1

    Weren’t the first cycleways meant to be getting started by the end of June according to the cabinet papers? Could it be that they’re late?

    Bloody stupid idea for the whole thing

  2. Anita 2

    Marty G writes,

    TV1 puts the cost at $300,000 to $600,000 per km without any major works.

    TVNZ actually seems to say $33,000 to $500,000 without any major works, linky here about 1 minute in.

    P.S. Feel free to update your post and delete this comment.

  3. RedLogix 3

    In the meantime, Wellington City Council and GWRC are onto it.

    • Anita 3.1

      Have they finally managed to get the councils on board? Way to go!! 🙂

    • jagilby 3.2

      “As once [SIC] of the most frequent users of the Petone to Wellington” – Trevor Mallard, Hutt South MP and [FORMER] Environment Minister


      Not just ‘frequent’ but “most” frequent.

      Huge call Trevor. Huge call. That is a fairly well used stretch of road for cyclists. What percentile of ‘frequency’ would you that fall into.

      I do quite like the idea of a harbour cycle way though (subject to costing).

  4. ak 4

    Let’s not be too critical; probably just a simple mix-up. Obviously, he meant to say “north of fifty” here, and promise everyone a biketrack a week as a tax-cut.

  5. deemac 5

    BTW I still can’t believe Key got away with referring to pacific people as “children” on his tour

    • BLiP 5.1

      I’m not sure that he did but will happily bow to a link that proves otherwise – from what scant coverage there was of the trip it would appear The Goober was using the “child” metaphor to dodge a question about which nation’s kava he preferred.

      Of more interest to me is why the John Key National Government Inc chose not to take its current pet PI Sam “double-dipper'” Lotu Iiga with them on the trip? Bit of a slight, I would suggest.

  6. Bill 6

    Lost yer job? Times tough? On yer fuckin bike Marty!

  7. Akldnut 7

    Don’t be a “hater” Bill there’s enough of them running this govt. and surfing the blogosphere without your help.

  8. Craig Glen Eden 8

    Key is a total bloody nut job! This guy couldn’t run a social club, let a lone a cycle race. A cycle race on a cycle track running the length of NZ. God save us please!
    But hey its all good Micheal Jones thinks he has great vision.

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