Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Monday, July 25, 2005


I've just sent the following letter to the Dominion Post:
Vaughan Maybury (Letters, July 25) claims that development of land adjacent to the Transmission Gully route should be counted as a side benefit.

Yes, that's exactly what we need: more sprawling dormitory suburbs and "lifestyle" blocks, far from public transport and services. More car journeys; more greenhouse emissions; more storm water run-off; more demand for car parks and "bypasses" in central Wellington; more countryside and productive farmland sacrificed in favour of cul-de-sacs and toy farms; more property-value-obsessed residents to complain whenever something actually useful (such as a wind farm) is proposed for the land.

It's bad enough that increasing traffic capacity to the Kapiti coast will accelerate unsustainable patterns of development on the coast itself, but Maybury's letter reveals the extent to which such development will despoil the very "natural beauty" that he claims will draw residents to the Gully. Urban sprawl is not a benefit of motorway development: it is the underlying problem that drives the calls for such costly and damaging road projects in the first place.


At 8:03 am, December 21, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rather disputable.

At 8:40 am, December 21, 2005, Blogger Tom said...

Which part? That urban sprawl is the cause of calls for more roads?


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