Blair Anderson, on the hustings 'canvassing for opinion'

Blair Anderson, on the hustings 'canvassing for opinion'

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Urban planning 'Evolutionary'

The word for Christchurch has to be 'evolutionary'. It will evolve, just as it evolved to become what we liked about it (and there were lots to not like too) and it will evolve into what our kids will make it. Athfieild and some of the others I have seen discuss this fail to understand that it is not his or his design committee's city. It is not Parker's or Council's. You can wish for what you want but if Bankers, Insurers and Investors are not lined up around 'risk' of both financial and physical (read: natural forces) nothing will come of these grandiose plans.

The place to start is not in the central CBD of the city at all, rather it is to rethink what it is that creates a city around its people.
 A Fastway bus in the guided bus lane on Southg...Image via Wikipedia
I would begin by scrapping the tram and relegating it to beachside tourism or better still, turn it into a cable car for Lyttleton. It is a USELESS piece of non-essential (and expensive crap) that no longer is fit for purpose dominating a new cityscape...

Never before have we had the potential to redesign urban transport and create a public people (and stuff) mover across the fabric of the city like we have now. Put people on the move cheaply (and this will never be cheaper to implement than now) and commerce will follow the networks.

Mercedes Benz O 405 N guided bus of MVV Verkeh...Image via WikipediaAs a mayoral aspirant I spoke of the merits of guided bus ways evolving into light rail. As events unfolded with Sept and Feb I have seen and critical observed how bus ways would have been durable, efficient movers of people as well as priority corridors for ambulance, fire and police 'around and bypassing' the traffic. That alone gives the idea merit.... get over this talk of rebuilding what is broken...  when in all honesty, it wasn't working very well before. The Commercial developers ie: Ballantine et al vision for the city is a shopping experience..... in a world where people want to buy less and less.

Get over it, the old school is deadwood. The focus for the city 'ratepayers' should be on what benefits the ratepayer... and to do that we have to rapidly increase the rate base across the city... high value commercial property with high social values. I would progressively ring the city with high-speed guiderail bus routes feeding into the four avenues from hub stations at the existing mall developments, university airport, hospitals, etc I would open the idea of hubbing light freight by autonomous 'carriers'  and as this network enhances the city hotels and service centers etc could grow peripheral too the CBD.

Integrated use of land available (under emergency provisions and townplanning etc) creates a tourism and service centre on hte south side of Hagley integrating the heavy rail networks... (yep, the saleyards! take em back... they used to service 52 regional railway stations...100 years ago).

The only way to Green this city is to tackle the hard stuff now... get the networks right and the added value to the city will come....

Be vigilant and carefully scrutinize the burgeoning  political and civic epithets...they are covers for 'I used to be relevant'. 

Blair Anderson 
ph nz  (643) 389 4065   nz cell 027 265 7219

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