Summary of KCDC submission
These paragraphs are cut and paste from the submission which NZTA ignored.
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The Kapiti Coast District Council believes the most appropriate package of transport options is:
1. Two-Lane Western Link Road (WLR)
2. Rail System
3. Improvements to State Highway 1
The Council considers the motorway/expressway standard design is unnecessary and inappropriate
The KCDC proposal will deliver better solutions more quickly, at less cost and not impose unnecessary and detrimental effects on the Kapiti Coast community
The Council is of the view the NZTA proposals fail to demonstrate these economic issues have been addressed and that the economic rationale for the motorway/expressway standard road and the level of investment that requires is not supported by impartial analysis.
In effect, a motorway is to be built for traffic volumes that could be catered for by an integrated and controlled access four-lane carriageway over the next 50 years.
The NZTA analysis will be significantly affected by the quality of costings undertaken. There are a number of concerns, including:
a. flawed growth assumptions
b. an unexplained shift in the report of benefits of the initial scenarios to the options
c. shifting costings which are not explained;
d. underreported costs for the western alignment options.
KCDC would expect these issues are resolved and the information made public for further comment before the NZTA Board makes a final decision.
The low Benefit/Cost Ratio (BCR) support the Council’s position that the cost to the country and this community of a motorway/expressway through the District is not justified in terms of the traffic volumes that the road would carry.
KCDC believes that major interchanges will drag economic development away from existing centres as businesses chase access and visibility at transport nodes.
The implication for the Kapiti Coast is loss of infrastructure (private and public) investment already sunk into an existing centre and the significant risk of failure of its town centres.
The projected cost to the local economy of not proceeding with the integrated Western Link Road as planned, along with a modified SH-1 option (proposed or current alignment) and developing a western (Sandhills) Expressway option, is in the order of at least $300m by 2026.
KCDC recognise the environmental cost in terms of vehicle emissions and runs counter to wider national, regional and local climate change and transport policy.
Under these scenarios local traffic would be forced to travel down Te Moana Road on to the old Highway. There would be no local bridge access for the Beach, the long travel distances would continue and travel costs would continue to be an issue. Given that social services, such as health, are likely to be focused at Paraparaumu and that this is an adverse effect of such importance, this is a significant issue.
The Kapiti Coast District Council agrees that the issue of severance is a very significant one for the community.
In terms of social, economic and environmental impacts created by the severance effects and poor connectivity, the Council considers Option 3 (Sandhills Motorway) is absolutely unacceptable.
The visual and amenity impacts from the interchanges or over-bridges which will require approximately 200-300 metre approaches at each end rising to a height of about 7metres.
Irrespective of the final layout, there will need to be significant structures rising to 7m along the route or at right angles to it. Given that few buildings in the landscape are above 1-2 storeys and many are surrounded by vegetation, this will be a major impact.
The earliest time for construction to be able to start is estimated at five years if every thing proceeds without major objections. Full completion is estimated to be ten years from time of decision to proceed with this route
It is some fourteen years since the old designation for the Sandhills Motorway was let lapse and all property owners could have expected to be living in an environment which would have significantly lower impacts from the Western Link
The planning blight for properties not immediately affected by (as in requiring purchase) but adjacent to the proposed corridor. All properties from Raumati to Waikanae will experience effects generated by motorway/expressway standard design, rather than the 2-lane Western Link proposal;
There is no analysis of the net economic benefit derived from investment in the RoNS concept, the expressway model as a whole, or from the three options proposed.
Nor is there a clear analysis of a different combination of State Highway design and use of other modes to resolve congestion costs and deliver economic efficiencies, and deliver wider economic benefits.
Given the significant direct impacts that transport decisions can have on a national economy and an urban economy, the components of any economic analysis should include the following inputs – to be assessed as a net economic benefit;
- long term assessment of relative benefit of travel modes;
- benefit/cost in terms of investment over traffic efficiencies (traditional benefit /cost ratio);
- economic benefits and costs of options to the national (export) economy;
- direct economic benefit/cost to the local/regional economy – includes consideration of different design options;
The absence of this kind of analysis for such a large investment programme suggests that the RoNS concept is simply a paradigm that has not been tested, which has then been combined with an ‘off-the-shelf’ adoption of a roading design standard, equally untested in either the context of the government’s objectives or the Kapiti Coast.