Flyover not just about traffic

02:56, May 29 2014

Whether or not a flyover is built by the Basin Reserve is not just about traffic, a board of inquiry has heard.

Michael Hartley summed up the position of the Mt Victoria Resident Associaton during the groups closing submissions at the hearing today. 

"The MVRA maintains that the roundabout is not the problem. In fact the roundabout is a heritage item all on its own, being the hub of Wellington city providing connectivity in all directions," he said. 

"We should use the hub rather than slash right through it with a flyover."

He urged the four-person board to reject the New Zealand Transport Agancy's application to build the $90 million bridge 20 metres north of the cricket ground. 

"Building more roads is not the vision for Wellington. We are a future city."

The flyover would be "sterile" and "unpleasant" and would detract from the heritage of the area and impact negatively on property values,  he argued.

Members of the public had repeatedly appeared to describe the "specialness" of the Basin to the city and the area, he said. 

"They should remove any doubt from the board'a mind about the heritage value of the Basin Reserve and its environs. Their words have been compelling."

Earlier in the day, lawyer Kerry Anderson summed up on behalf on the Wellington City Council and the Basin Reserve Trust. 

Both supported the construction of the flyover, so long as the game of cricket could continue unaffected, she said. 

"Aside from that issue, the council and the trust's support of this proposal remains, due to the overall benefits to the city's transport network and general consistency with the strategic direction in he relevant regional and district planning documents."

However, that support was contingent on a 65m long pavilion being built that would help block the flyover from view. 

NZTA has favoured a shorter pavilion being built. 

Both a 45m and 55m pavilion are also being considered. 

Anderson said the longer option was necessary to avoid visual distraction for players, and preservation of the cricket ground and its international status should be given "significant weight" by the board. 


The Dominion Post