Will the Skypath ever make any money?

With the main contractor ditching the Skypath project because it appears there is no money in it there appears to be scant regard to all the reports in existence that show clearly that this project was marginal at best and a fraud on the ratepayers at worst.

What is revealing is the Auckland Council Transport committee meeting agenda.   Note some of the names involved, and also some of the commentary as to the financial viability.  

That was 2013, so you have to ask what improved since then that allowed the Council in 2016, under new Mayor Phil Goff to approve Skypath funding?

If the contractor isn’t interested in a PPP then who the hell would be.

Once you start digging into the finances you can see that it will never make money, even with heroic assumptions.

So, over 20 years this project ends up costing the ratepayers $27 million, but that is based on simply heroic patronage numbers.

The trust promoting the Skypath reckons they will make $40m over 20years, and EY reckons the Council will lose $27m over 20 years. I know who I believe and it isn’t the lycra clad weirdos pushing this project.

EY noted the below, it is also worth reading some of their comments.

So how much? Well, that is the classic how long is a piece of string question. But alarm bells should be ringing that the PPP partner has walked.

This has been variously reported as a ‘free’ ‘self-funding’ project for the ratepayers on the premise of this being a ‘private’ project but it would appear to be none of those. The phrase is littered through AT and Council reports, so much so it has become a truism along with “critical missing link”, despite there being a regular ferry service that serves the Northern landing site for walkers and cyclists to the ferry terminal in downtown.

And there is plenty more information available on this, much publicly available or via LGOIMA, OIA on

  • how much has been spent by council, NZTA and other govt entities
  • conditions surrounding the proposed Auckland Council underwrite,
  • the HoA entered into between Auckland Council and other parties
  • the structural capacity of the Auckland Harbour Bridge

It seems that this is yet another case of councillors ignoring professional, and presumably expensive, advice from experts that this project isn’t a winner. They voted to spend ratepayers cash on a dog that condemns the council to losing money forever.

I haven’t yet linked Skypath with the proposed and more expensive Seapath project that EY recommends links to Skypath to make the project less of a dog, but still a dog nonetheless.

The councillors who approved this really need to be held to account, but who is going to do this?

It seems most of the media are cycle loving tools just as much as the councillors.

The muggins ratepayer are the ones on the hook, yet again.

Source Document and EY report:

AC Transport Committee Agenda Items 1to10 2013 02 13 by Cam Slater on Scribd


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