Newsletter #43 - 13 July 2017
The election campaign is in full swing and politicians are out trying to secure your vote. Voters often whinge that politicians aren’t listening to them. We wonder whether voters are speaking out when given the chance.
NO, THANK YOU
Several political polling companies have been targeting Snells Beach over the past six months. If you receive a call from a reputable research company, please spare the time to answer their questions. If you hang up, to get their quota the pollsters ring someone else who might not have the same opinions as you.
The questions being asked by the pollsters are insightful. Infrastructure and traffic congestion has emerged as a major issue.
Just so you know, the main polling companies are: Colmar Brunton (who poll for TV1), Reid Research (TV3), Roy Morgan New Zealand, UMR Research (for the Labour party), and Curia (for the National party). If you are dubious of a call, ask to speak to the supervisor.
We’ve been chatting regularly with the people trying to get Penlink built. At the local body elections, Whangaparaoa residents revolted, voting in politicians on a ‘Build Penlink’ ticket. It will be interesting to see what happens this election as Whangaparaoa is also in the Rodney electorate.
Many of the problems that the Whangaparaoa Peninsula are experiencing have many comparisons with the Mahurangi Peninsula. We recommend that every Mahurangi Peninsula resident go for a Sunday drive along Whangararaoa Road.
The distance between the Hill Street intersection and Snells Beach Road is similar to between Silverdale’s Whangaparaoa Rd/Hibiscus Coast Highway intersection and Stanmore Bay Road. Notice the speed limits, the number of cul-de-sacs branched from it, and the congestion. The number and proximity of accessways along the road corridor is a nightmare, causing a ripple effect of vehicles slowing down and rubber necking.
Snells Beach’s 50km/h zone has extended. For a population of only 4500, it is now 6 kilometres long. Due to ‘safety concerns’ (i.e. too many new lifestyle blocks' entrances), the 80km/h zone has extended to south of the Sandspit Road/Mahurangi East Road intersection.
The problems experienced at Silverdale is a preview of future attractions for Warkworth. Whangaparaoa residents often use Red Beach Road to avoid congestion, much like Mahurangi Peninsula residents use Sharps Road now.
The failure to address the inevitable and avoidable congestion of Whangaparaoa Road has meant that a bypass needs to be built, called Penlink.
WHY ARE THEY WAITING?
A lot of people are scratching their heads as to why Penlink is stalled. One clue is to look at what isn’t stalled.
To be blunt, the clear message of Whangaparaoa residents has been undermined. On one hand, residents and developers on the highly desirable peninsula have been demanding Penlink to address the congestion and growth. On the other hand, developers in the less desirable Silverdale side of Hibiscus Coast Highway are cramming in as many cookie-cutter houses as they can flog off.
Warkworth will resemble Silverdale while the Hill Street intersection is ignored. During that time, tradespeople will commute from Mahurangi Peninsula, doubling traffic on Sandspit Road. Developers on the peninsula will still try to squeeze in as many houses as possible in the more desirable coastal communities.
Whether the Mahurangi Peninsula residents will tolerate becoming another Whangaparaoa Peninsula is purely up to them.
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