Saturday, October 08, 2005

Let this be a warning about road tolls!

It's inevitable new motorways will charge tolls because that's the only way the government (and National)
think we can afford to build more roads.
Surprisngly, the local media has been quiet about what is happening in Sydney.
The new city tunnel is suppose to be drawing 90,000 cars a day.
No wonder. The toll is outrageous; the price of the toll for a one-way trip is $3.56 with an E-tag, and $5.16 without an E-tag. That's in Aussie currency and is over $10 if you drive in from the country without having got an electronic tag beforehand. We're talking a 2.1 kilometre journey where there are other routes.
This is the first cashless motorway in Sydney. Drivers who do not have an E-Tag and who use the tunnel need to phone the tunnel operators or go the tunnel's website after their journey, and pay the toll, plus an additional AU$1.60 administration fee. Those who don't do this will receive two warning letters, then a $130 fine.
The tolls will rise automatically each quarter.
A columnist in the Sydney Herald wrote: Taxi drivers already call it the "Ghost Tunnel". I can see why. I've travelled through Sydney's latest big infrastructure project, the Cross City Tunnel, and on the first trip, at 8.55am, I saw one other car. On the second, at midday, I may have glimpsed a van. We had the place to ourselves.
This is not the first time the NSW Government has backed a very expensive transport link that was immediately rendered irrelevant by self-evident stupidity. The absurdly priced, woefully underused city to airport rail link springs instantly to mind. It's a basket case.

So if the new NZ government thinks this is the solution, that would be very foolish. Take a trip across to Sydney and come back and get the electrification of rail moving!
On the iPod: >Road to Nowhere- Talking Heads


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