Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Assault by Monstrous, Cancerous Used Condom Destroys Auckland. And so on ...

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  • Mark Thomas,

    fair point, craig. is that what they mean by "statutory consents?"

    stadia comparison

    Eden Park
    Statutory consents are problematic given legal rights have accrued but not been exhausted through judicial process.
    Likely to need to legislate for the stadium design option which best mitigates height/shading issue (i.e. $385M option).

    Stadium New Zealand
    Statutory consents only realistic option in time available. Discussions with ARC and ACCv indicate that the negative environmental effects are “modest” relative to a residential development and could be substantially mitigated with sound planning.

    good old RMA eh. i guess it all depends on whether the local and government politicians feel that the majority of the population is behind them. we really should have been doing this five years ago

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 317 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Sorry, Russell, but if we're calling 'bullshit' on the Herald, perhaps you need to look a bit closer to home at your *ahem* rather dim view of the disdain Messers Mills and Banks had for the niceties of public scrutiny and planning law where their pet projects were concerned. What's the difference?

    A fair cop, to some extent Craig. But Mills' original Britomart plan was simply insane: an interest-free loan to a rather odd private developer, a council planner who led the push and then went to work for the developer, plans deliberately withheld from the minority on council, and sundry other follies. The eastern corridor plan would have wrecked an estuary and directly affected (as in, we're from the council, hand over your house) many more people than the stadium. It also had the significant problem of having no visible means of funding.

    Anyway, back to stadia: the Eden Park option will also require legislating over the Resource Management Act, and it will rise to a similar height, towering over neighbourhoods of single-storey houses. It will remain a transport nightmare, with severe restrictions on the type, frequency and hours of events that can be held there. It just doesn't make sense to me, and it certainly doesn't inspire me.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22839 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Mark:

    Fair question, and I suspect my position isn't going to be popular with anyone.

    If you don't like the law - and I've got massive problems with the RMA - then you either amend it for everyone, or repeal the whole damn thing and replace it following due process. (That means no b.s. 'extreme urgency' motions where the only real urgency is to get a difficult issue off the political radar without proper debate or scrutiny PDQ.)

    If Auckland City and the current Parliament think their own policies and regulations are crap, then they should have the integrity to front up, say so, and propose an alternative.

    What I don't find acceptable is legislators showing the middle finger to their own legislation when it's inconvenient. If anything is more destructive to respect for the rule of law - and encourages cynicism and apathy toward the political process from citizens - I'll be buggered if I can think what it is.

    As I've said ad nauseum (and despite the snarling from some pro-stadium columnists and bloggers), I'm not an anti-development, unpatriotic, tofu-sucking rugby-hating NIMBY girly-man who wants everyone to go to the ballet or die. I've even been knows to give the current Government credit where I think it's due. But this isn't the occasion; and I'd respectfully suggest to our host that there's plenty of foam-flecked hysterics coming from the pro-camp.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    I'd love nothing more than to see this whole debate now encompase the role of public transport in the wider urban context.

    I mean if they are able to rip up a whole multi lane motorway in Seol and return it to beyound it's former glory in favour of a pedestrian precint. If Vancouver can build rather funky sky trains and have an integrated public transport system, of which a lot of the debate has been centred around, perhaps this is time for Auckland to face the reality of it's mess.

    Vancouver is an even better example to hold up in that the city had massive population growth in the same time period of Auckland, but had some visionary leaders who foresaw some of the bigger issues, like inner city apartments being an integral part of the urban landscape, and the role of public transport.

    Mind you Auckland isn't without blame. In CHCH at the Uni in the 1980s one had to get to varsity by 8:30am for one of the thousands of bike stands. Now the bike stands are empty, trees and grass has been replaced for the car park and the like of Riccarton Road are a literal nighmare.

    Would it be tacky for me to mention the 5min rush hour here in Dunedin.

    Whops a little off track, but these issues all have to be tackled. Where is aucklands skytrain linking the city to the airport and major shopping centres. Just look what happened when the opened the new (?) shopping centre chaos.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Ray Dobson,

    RE the waterfront stadium you wrote:

    My soundings disclose that some of Brash's colleagues want.........to defeat the project and give Helen Clark another bloody nose, is how one National MP described the tactics.

    Come on! Who was the Nat MP? When and where did he or she say this? Anyone else but you heard it? Methinks was but a figment of your overheated imagination.
    WRD

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    and I'd respectfully suggest to our host that there's plenty of foam-flecked hysterics coming from the pro-camp.

    And I think I'd be on strong ground in saying that the hysteria has overwhelmingly come from the anti-stadium lobby - so much of the language has been plain daft.

    The anti-stadium rhetoric generated in that meeting yesterday just defied reason. Cancerous? Used condom? Please ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22839 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Come on! Who was the Nat MP? When and where did he or she say this? Anyone else but you heard it? Methinks was but a figment of your overheated imagination.

    Read more closely sir. That was an extract from Fran O'Sullivan's column. She knows loads of National MPs.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22839 posts Report Reply

  • Insolent Prick,

    You bloody socialists won't be satisfied until you have spent every dollar of the surplus on wasteful projects with no economic return as a justification for not giving us tax cuts.

    The waterfront stadium is a colossal waste of money. On the other hand, so too is the other option of throwing $350 million at Eden Park; the latter example still won't produce a world class stadium.

    However, if Mallard can get it right, and can contain costs, at least we will have a world class stadium facility on the waterfront. Still a waste of money, but a much better waste of money than a gazillion other mindless things that you pinkos will inevitably buy with our money. And it will have a much longer-lasting benefit.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Gary Hutchings,

    Whops a little off track, but these issues all have to be tackled. Where is aucklands skytrain linking the city to the airport and major shopping centres.

    Although Vancouver only got its airport link approved (RAV to be Canada line) when they got the 2010 winter games, The original skytrain turned up to link Canada place to the science centre for Expo `86

    I too agree the little blue tub boats are the best, but false creek is a heap less choppy than Ak Harbour :)

    Auckland *needs* some form of rail link to the airport but short of tunneling all the way, it will have to roll through Epsom or Mt Eden which I suspect will draw more objections that Eden Park,

    BTW: has anyone heard if the space on the wharves will be replaced by additional reclaimation, or is the port just expected to "get over it"

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 108 posts Report Reply

  • Trevor Nicholls,

    A little exercise for you: try reading most of the anti-waterfront arguments while mentally substituting The Bridge. "Cancerous growth into the harbour", "spoiling the view", etc. Too funny.

    Have Aucklanders given up on "the vision thing"?

    Wellington, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 324 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    I think there is a larger cultural issue at work here: New Zealanders tend to have a problem with Bigness.

    Nice insight, Raffe, though I'd tend to put it slightly differently: NZers have a problem with urbanity. With a few exceptions, NZ went from country towns to sprawling suburbia without long experience of living in real cities. NZers are happy with big cars, big mountains, big-box retail ("Big is Good!") and big motorways, but not with density, diversity and verticality. Some of that manifests itself as a fear of bigness, as when anything bigger than a two-storey house gets automatically labelled "a monstrosity".

    Having said that, a stadium is not exactly easy to integrate with urbanity. It'll require great design skill and political will to ensure that the edges are active, and it will inevitably be a very long walk around the perimeter, since it won't provide the opportunity to switch routes as you're walking around it. But I still think it's much better there than at Eden Park or in the wilds of the North Shore.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1040 posts Report Reply

  • Gary Hutchings,

    Speaking of "Vision thing"

    from the Sisters of Mercy

    ..Slamming through
    Slamming through
    What do we need to make our world come alive?
    What does it take to make us sing?
    While were waiting for the next one to arrive?
    One million points of light
    One billion dollar vision thing..

    All a bit prophetic, mabye Eldritch has taken up writing speeches for Trev Mallard, nah....

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 108 posts Report Reply

  • Mike Fistonich,

    And I think I'd be on strong ground in saying that the hysteria has overwhelmingly come from the anti-stadium lobby - so much of the language has been plain daft.The anti-stadium rhetoric generated in that meeting yesterday just defied reason. Cancerous? Used condom?

    so someone rolled out the cancerous word again , they meant it will be ugly. Hardly seems worthy of the hysterical response to it.
    But its a good point that there is a lot of emotion being shown against the stadium ,as opposed to the wtf lets just build it attitude.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Insolent Prick,

    Tom:

    A bloody port isn't easy to integrate with "urbanity". A stadium is even harder to integrate with "suburbanity", as Eden Park is, than with "urbanity".

    Pseudo-intellectual nonsense aside, a great stadium is a great stadium. Eden Park will never come up to scratch. Stick it on the waterfront, replace that bloody eyesore of a port with a big, hulking monolith of a stadium, annoy a few local residents, but enjoy the facility for the next fifty years.

    And starve the socialists of $500 million to spend on stupid, mindless liberal causes.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Mike Fistonich,

    $500 million ? and the rest

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • hudsie,

    What a shocker this stadium "debate" has become. It reflects poorly on everyone involved, from the Government's suspect timing in raising the issue, to the intransigence of all the parties with a vested interest, and the sheer bloody mindedness of the casual observers.
    We have heard repeatedly that the model used to illustrate the concept is in no way a final reflection of the concept, but now we have people on the verge of tears talking it up as a monstrosity.
    If the Government had invested more time and thought into the initial concept, then it would have been easier to get people to get behind the project.
    Even more worrying is that the All Blacks no longer looked the goods on the weekend. Is Leon MacDonald really a better fullback than Conrad is a centre?
    It is all pretty deflating really.

    Since Nov 2006 • 19 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    A bloody port isn't easy to integrate with "urbanity". A stadium is even harder to integrate with "suburbanity", as Eden Park is, than with "urbanity".

    I agree, which is why I've always thought that a CBD edge site is best for the stadium. But a stadium is not usually the best use for a waterfront, nor does it usually work well with a human-scaled, pedestrian-friendly quarter of the city, which is what that part of the waterfront could be if developed intelligently. That's why I've been saying all along: build it there, but make sure the edges aren't blank, and make sure the place is usable more than a dozen times a year.

    Pseudo-intellectual nonsense aside

    I'll ignore that.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1040 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    hudsie,

    don't be so dispondent. The ABs were always going to come up against a better french side (but in the end that was debateable).

    McDonald is a good fullback, one can have an off day, we excuse these of Dan Carter and Richie. His game came back thorugh out the match and his line break was decisive in creating a try, plus what a tackle to knock the ball from the french dude. My concerns are still with 2nd five. Major is a better defender no doubt, and has a kicking game (which all 2nd fives should have), but he is getting older and slower.

    My admiration goes to the Irish at the moment.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Insolent Prick,

    Tom,

    The port isn't currently pedestrian-friendly. I agree that the waterfront option could be done very well.

    The alternative for the waterfront stadium is not to create some new open-space design; the stadium is the only means to wrestle the land off the port. Additional community infrastructure can be built around that, but there's no way that if the port area is not used for the stadium, that some grand plan to turn it into a seaside village will ever come off.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    he port isn't currently pedestrian-friendly

    Hence my use of the phrase "could be".

    The alternative for the waterfront stadium is not to create some new open-space design

    Anyone who knows me will know I'm not exactly a fan of "open-space designs" either! Build the stadium, but make it more than the usual fortress-like block.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1040 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    Tom,

    as this is a canvas that is still being added to, the latest comments and suggestions from Warren and Mahoney do address your concerns of

    make sure the edges aren't blank

    Sticking a beach at one end for I Prick to impress the chicks is a great idea, along with the proosed restaurants inside the concourse looking out over the waterfront.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    whops Proposed, but you get the idea.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Mark Thomas,

    Even more worrying is that the All Blacks no longer looked the goods on the weekend.

    We've been spoilt. A 23 - 11 victory over the winners of the six nations, is great by any standards. except our own, of course. sack the coach!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 317 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    Compie: yes, it looks like W&M are doing a great job of addressing that. Let's hope it doesn't get lost in the rush!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1040 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Mike Fistonich:

    But its a good point that there is a lot of emotion being shown against the stadium ,as opposed to the wtf lets just build it attitude.

    Excuse me? I've read ad nauseum that if this stadium doesn't go ahead Auckland is condemned to being a third world backwater and international laughing stock, all thanks to a pack of visionless, unpatriotic rugby-hating elitist NIMBYs. It's "iconic"! "National pride" is at stake!

    Sorry, but if you think that's not draft and hysterical I have to wonder if Denial is a river that empties into the Waitemata. Call me old fashioned, but I agree with Samuel Johnson that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel and some folks need to be reminded Field of Dreams is fiction, before they start chanting "build it and they will come".

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

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