Posts by Russell Brown

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  • Speaker: The crisis is all around us,…,

    Squeezing or cutting funding, or the threat of this, is a powerful way for governments to punish, reward or otherwise influence publicly funded news.

    Which is why it was so disastrous for Clare Curran to even give the appearance of going around the system to influence the decisions of Radio NZ's board and CEO.

    Whether she was intending to do that or not, even giving the appearance of doing so at a time when the government has yet to announce what share of the $38 million it has put up for public broadcast funding will go to RNZ was very bad.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Sacha,

    I'm intrigued by the apparent attempt to spread blame to an MP who wasn't in government at the time.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Sacha,

    Just like all the homes in National’s SHAs were ‘likely’ to be built – until those canny developers figured they could make more by landbanking and flicking it on unbuilt. Who could possibly have foreseen another market failure!

    Quite. It's not realistic to pretend that the SHA model worked and got houses built (let alone affordable ones). It didn't.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I will say I’d like to see serious effort to improve the already good cycle infrastructure. This density will only work if residents don’t all have three cars that need to be parked on the public roads. The Carrington Rd crossing has to be fixed and the route by the creek has to become a commuter route and not just a Sunday ride playground.

    Yeah, it's a cert that the Carrington Road crossing will need fixing – but I'd really like to see them explore taking the crossing out of the equation and running the shared path under the bridge and directly to the Wairaka precinct.

    A couple of other things have occurred to me. One is that the impending revamp of Chamberlain Park to open it to the community that owns it is going to be pretty crucial.

    The other is that I fear the disruption is going to be a lot worse than it was for the Waterview project, where construction traffic was very well managed on the whole. Both routes to Carrington Road run through town centres and, ironically given its proximity to Waterview, there's no direct motorway access.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Neil,

    This land was an asset stripped from the mental health system. It could be an opportunity to redress that wrong by providing much needed long term supervised accommodation for those with major debilitating mental illness. With some of the original parkland for recreation and gardens.

    I've seen a couple of people say this – but I think it's important to acknowledge that by the time it was sold to Carrington Polytechnic by the Auckland Area Health Board in 1993, Carrington Hospital was a disaster – it featured heavily in the second Mason report. And even before that, its roster had plummeted.

    As things stand, the Mason Clinic (106 beds) will remain and there are community mental health facilities across the road. The system desperately needs more beds, but those should probably be at existing facilities.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Matthew Hooton,

    I think they have probably released all the detail there is, because it feels like it was scribbled up on Friday as an announceable for the weekend rather than being a serious proposal – again, in the best traditions of Nick Smith.

    You and Glenn are both right that there appears to be no more detail to be had. There's certainly not much on the MBIE site – they've even used Unitec's subdivision map, which I presume won't be the final layout.

    But the government is the sole purchaser and intends to build, and the zoning is enshrined in the Unitary Plan. There will be new housing there: a lot of it. I don't think there's a brownfield site of similar scale that could be done sooner.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Matthew Hooton,

    According to the government’s announcement, the cheap ones (which will only be 30-40% of them) will be $500,000 to $600,000 and the rest more. If it’s 4000 dwellings in total (1000 more than its zoned for), the population density will be 6x Hobsonville, but with a height limit of 27 metres. This just doesn’t add up. The announcement is total bullshit in the best traditions of Nick Smith.

    Twyford was careful to emphasise the “3000 to 4000” part this morning, and I suspect the final total will be far more like the former, which is what it’s zoned for.

    Which, to be fair, is 3000 more than your recent confident prediction of zero.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Neil,

    $600,000 – and probably a lot more once building is completed – doesn’t sound very affordable.

    It's cheap for a townhouse or terrace in central Auckland, but I'd imagine that apartments would be cheaper.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to James Dunne,

    The real question is how long before Occupy Garnet Road and She Who Must Not Be Named scent progress and descend on Unitec to ruin everything.

    I checked, and not yet.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Unitec project: Something…, in reply to Glenn Pearce,

    6x the intensification of Hobsonville Pt?

    What is proposed for Unitec is intensification on a scale unseen before in NZ. This will be nothing like Hobsonville Pt or Stonefields that people are likening it to.

    It seems quite unlike those – clearly, they're going to build up. The Unitary Plan gives them the ability to build to 27 metres on parts of the site.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22421 posts Report Reply

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