I steal the following from the Sydney Morning Herald:
A CONTROVERSIAL plan to build a second bridge across Iron Cove looks set to join the Iemma Government's long list of troubled transport initiatives as construction costs blow out by $100 million - all for a 50-second saving on the time motorists wait in traffic.
In a mid-2006 report on the proposed upgrade of Victoria Road - one of the most congested routes into the city - the Roads and Traffic Authority estimated it could spend $44.8 million building the second four-lane crossing, with a city-bound bus lane from the western end of Iron Cove and better access for pedestrians and cyclists.
The report, just released under freedom of information laws to residents campaigning against a second bridge, said the extra lanes would improve bus times. It would also cut the time taken by traffic heading to the city in the morning peak by an average of more than 50 seconds per vehicle.
Since then the Government has expanded the project to include wider improvements to Victoria Road from Drummoyne to Rozelle, new traffic arrangements in those suburbs, bus bays and an outbound bus lane.
That, and higher construction costs and underwater surveys, have lifted the bill to $150 million, says the RTA. It says the 2006 report was a concept only and never endorsed by its executive. However, the Victoria Road Community Committee said that after spending $150 million, the Government would have done nothing to improve overall traffic flow on Victoria Road by 2011.
If you then flick your eyes less than 3 inches to the right you find the following with the headline We're fat because we have to drive:
AS Morris Iemma released a shame file yesterday exposing the fattest areas in the state, some of his targets blamed his Government.
Exercise more, the Premier urged families, as he revealed the extent of the worsening obesity crisis in NSW, but residents of the fattest urban area in the state pointed to a chronic shortage of public transport as a reason behind their sedentary lifestyles.
Back in June 2001 the then Carr Government, published a report called the Christie Report which tabulated and detailed suggestions and costings for an integrated rail network to be built by 2010. That can be found here: http://www.aptnsw.org.au/christie/
To date, we've had a half-arsed attempt to build half of one of the proposed railway lines and no attempts to build the other 5 suggested in the report. Since then we've had the M7, The M5 East, the Cross-City tunnel and the Gore Hill freeway open; all with tolls on and none of which have actually solved any traffic problems but shifted them from richer to poorer suburbs.
Can anyone else see a problem? These are the facts:
1. We have a government that supposedly wants to encourage public transport use.
2. That same government has encouraged less public transport use by building four private motorways.
3. We have a public who wants to use public transport.
4. The results are obesity.
Let's fill you in on something from another government institution - CityRail. In one advert they proclaimed that "every 8-car train helps to keep up to 2000 cars off the road". If those 2000 cars (or 10000 cars and hour) weren't on the road in the first place, then the road bridge would not have had to be planned in the first place. This was subject to a plan that was made 7 years ago!
Dear Mr Iemma, this is your spineless fault. If you'd done what your own damn planing ministers had suggested then there wouldn't be a problem now. Not only that but we'd have a decent train service by now but no... someone needs a decent smack upside the head. Build the damn railway line!
For shame! BOO!!!
One Word Weather With Nelson Mandela
It's a pity you only have one word Mr Mandela. I'd add "very" to that.