Clark sticks her oar in

Helen Clark Digital Image credit: Technomage

Rumours abound that Helen Clark is going to throw her hat in the ring for the Auckland mayoralty. Certainly, she has been very vocal on Auckland issues recently, although that could be the result of being bored and irrelevant nowadays. Here she is again, this time adding to the voice of Shane Jones who objects to a car parking facility at Ports of Auckland. A newspaper reports: quote.

Former Prime Minister Helen Clark has weighed into another high-profile planning proposal for Auckland, describing a bid for a car park on Bledisloe Wharf as “mind boggling” in its lack of vision.

Clark took to Twitter last night to let her 185,000 followers know of her distaste for a five storey car park scheduled to be erected by the Ports of Auckland (POAL) in 2019. end quote.

The car park is to be a ‘car handling facility’ for the storage of cars that come into the port. Clearly, there is a significant need for this facility to be built. quote.

“What city with a vision for its waterfront would want a car park occupying prime land on it! Whatever one thinks of the stadium proposal, the Ports of #Auckland proposal for constructing a permanent car park on Bledisloe Wharf is mind boggling. #AucklandCanDoBetter @simonbwilson” Clark wrote at 11.14pm yesterday. end quote.

She would probably prefer the stadium to be built there because it would move concerts and sports games away from Eden Park, which is close to where she lives. There may be a vested interest in this attitude. quote.

The tweet was in response to an article by Herald journalist Simon Wilson that revealed the 17 metre “car-handling” facility was included in POAL’s “30-year masterplan”, and would essentially scrap any possible Auckland harbour-side stadium. end quote.

If it goes ahead… but presumably, it still has to go through the resource and planning application processes, so nothing is determined yet. Submissions will no doubt be called for, and she can have her say then. But no. She has to stick her nose into it now, and inform her adoring followers that she thinks it is unsuitable. quote.

The car-park, which will extend about a fifth the length of Bledisloe Wharf and just over a third of its width, will also have a hotel built between it and Quay St if Auckland Council approves it in the coming months.

The post received 42 retweets and over 200 likes in the 12 hours since it was written, with Clark providing the additional comment that Auckland Council “is disempowered by current legislation. Maybe this is the opportunity to change that!” end quote.

She thinks she can change the legislative process now? Has no one told her that she is no longer in government? quote.

It is not the first time in 2018 Clark has had her say on big Auckland issues, after she fought against plans to hold a Waitangi Day appeal concert at Eden Park.

A Mount Eden resident, Clark said in July this year she was relieved the “Million Babies” Waitangi Day LifePod Appeal concert was rejected by the Eden Park Trust.

The former Labour PM had argued the concert would be a “Torjan Horse” [sic] to provide a precedent for future music concerts at the suburban Auckland stadium. end quote.

Credit: SonovaMin

We have covered this, of course, but her nimbyistic attitude towards a charity concert was disgraceful. Her complete lack of generosity was mortifying. I always thought that stadiums were built to hold concerts. What else are they there for?

It is time for Helen to step out of the limelight because she is long past her use-by date but Helen herself clearly does not think that. Watch out for her having a run at the Auckland mayoralty next year. Maybe if she loses that, she will realise that it is time to disappear from public life and, not before time.


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Accountant. Boring. Loves tax. Needs to get out more. Loves the environment, but hates the Greens. Has been called a dinosaur. Wears it with pride.

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