Auckland port is in the only place it can be

Phil Goff is the latest politician to suggest moving the port. But it is damn expensive to move a port.

Now some idiots are suggesting that Manukau Harbour is the preferred option.

A leaked draft report into the future of Auckland’s ports has revealed it could be relocated to the Manukau Harbour.

But that option would cost billions of dollars, and there are concerns it might not even be safe.

Auckland’s port is a hive of activity right in the middle of the CBD. But as more and more freight comes in, there’s less space for it.

“The first decision is: are you going to expand out into the harbour or are you going to find an alternative location?” says mayoral candidate Phil Goff.

In a draft report leaked to The Nation, the Port Future Study panel examined alternatives like expanding the current port and relocating it.

The preferred relocation option is Manukau Harbour, followed by Thames and Muriwai.

Mr Goff wants it moved. He says expanding into the Waitemata isn’t an option, nor is staying put.

“Those 75 hectares can be used for far better revenue-raising purposes — high-value residential and commercial public space,” he says.

But the Manukau option has its pitfalls. The channel would need to be dredged to make it deeper, and that would cost billions of dollars. Also the mouth of the harbour is a well-known danger zone for shipping.

Only a moron or a person from Wellington (are they the same thing) would suggest Manukau Harbour as viable. If it wasn’t a viable port when sailing ships were coming from England west to east then it certainly won’t be now. The only country that the Manukau Harbour now faces for trade is Australia. On top of that the narrowest part of the Manukau harbour entrance is about the same distance as from the current port to Devonport, the major difference being that at the harbour entrance ships would be travelling far faster than while docking.

Trucking company chief executive Chris Carr says building a port there would be a big mistake.

“What you’ve got with the Manukau Harbour, it’ll be the ultimate ship-less port because no shipping company is going to send their vessels through the Manukau Bar. It’s just not going to happen.”

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters has another idea.

“Go to the place where you’ve got the best natural facilities in the whole darn country; that’s north port.”

Relocating to Northland isn’t even on the study’s shortlist. Transporting the freight from the port to Auckland would require expensive infrastructure.

“Well, just because you’ve got a ‘retarded’ group down in Wellington who don’t understand the structural investment that’s required, there’s no need for us to go into the future with no plans,” says Mr Peters.

While the leaked draft report points to Manukau being the top choice, it also states “none of the options being considered are regarded as desirable or consentable”, so a decision is far from being made.

Winston and Chris Carr are spot on.



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