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Avoiding a flyover at the Basin

by Tim Jones
For a long time, since the final defeat of the Basin Reserve flyover proposal in 2015, all we’ve had to go on are private assurances that whatever plans eventually emerged would not include a new Basin Reserve flyover. But it’s taken until the past few weeks, with the release of a slew of Let’s Get Wellington Moving reports and technical documents, to get some idea of what those plans entail.

The good news is that those private assurances have now been backed up by the publicly released information.

The roading changes proposed around the Basin do indeed seem to avoid bridges or flyovers – though there is an underpass proposed for walking and cycling use for those entering the ground from the north, and without careful design, underpasses can be exactly the sort of places pedestrians and cyclists don’t want to go.

basin-scheme-1 [1]
The red line is the light rail/trackless tram/mass transit route. Click on the map for a bigger image

basin-concept-oct-2018 [2]
Click on the map for a bigger image

The redoubtable and well-informed Leviathan has put up an excellent and very informative post on the Eye of the Fish blog [3]about LGWM’s plans for the Basin Reserve area, evidently drawing on the recently-released trove of LGWM documents, and including the two diagrams above plus drawings of how these might look in context.

The diagrams released by LGWM were developed on the assumption that Karo Drive undergrounding would be included in the funded package – but it wasn’t. So a question is: what if any design changes near the Basin will result from that?

While the overall picture of Let’s Get Welly Moving with regards to the Basin is encouraging, the level of detail available to the public remains vague enough that continued vigilance is needed – just as it is to ensure that the project meets its overall goals of reducing transport emissions, reducing dependence on private cars, and promoting walking, cycling, public transport and rapid transit.

Tim Jones is spokesperson for the Save the Basin campaign.