Posts by Russell Brown

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  • Random Play: They will come, so build it.,

    There's a fricken train station right across the road from Eden Park. If you think Eden Park was hard, how do you think it will be easier getting to a waterfront stadium in the city?

    Let's say it's a Friday. People in the city down tools at 5pm, have a drink and a bite to eat at any number of places in the Auckland CBD, including those clustered around the new stadium. They walk to the stadum.

    Afterwards, those who wish to continue their evening's entertainment walk across Quay Street to any number of clubs and bars. The others have easy access to motorways north, south and west, or take trains home from Britomart station.

    Even on weekends, nobody has to pick a route through narrow suburban streets to reach the venue, and there are thousands of carparks. North Shore buses stop outside the stadium, and festive ferries carry people to and from Devonport. There's even a ferry from Half Moon Bay.

    The various parties responsible are trying hard to make the Eden Park rail line work -- after Saturday night's game, there were actually trains running both ways but there was a hell of a crush. When there are three times as many people exiting a test match or a World Cup game, the crush will be a lot worse.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Wellington, you win,

    Fourth generation Auckland, first time caller..... I loved being able to park right where I wanted on Ponsonby and Parnell Roads in the glorious post-Xmas period. Bliss......

    I've only lived here for a quarter of a century, but it seemed particularly glorious this summer. The weather was great, the nights were warm, and there was hardly anyone on the roads. You could just trundle along and get where you wanted to be, really easily.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Random Play: They will come, so build it.,

    Slarty - you were not alone, I supported it as well. Having struggled getting to/from Eden Park for the last 2 international cricket matches (and trying to get food and drink at the Twenty20), the rubbishing the proposal got still annoys me.

    Me too. When people complained that the stadium would cut off the city from its waterfront, I thought ... have you seen the part of town you're talking about?

    I love the way that major facilities in Wellington are in the CBD. It's worth remembering that when the Wellington stadium was proposed, there was a group of concerned citizens who insisted it should be safely out in Porirua. I suspect even they don't agree with themselves now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Wellington, you win,

    Heh. What did I start?

    I should be clear: it was the combination of virtues on Thursday evening I found so winning: great band, wonderful atmosphere and then the chance to stroll over to a nice bar like the Hawthorn for a couple of drinks. It really was great.

    I used to go to the Dancing in the Streets shows in Auckland before the council had a panic attack about them, but they tended to be a bit crazier, with more out-of it-people. Which is fun in a different way, but ...

    On the other hand, I prefer the weather in Auckland. I know it rains more, but it's warm rain, which certainly wasn't the case on Friday night in Wellington.

    Then there's the beaches, both around the city and on the coasts. The array of live music you can go and hear on any given weekend. The brilliant harbour, the sense of connection to the Pacific, the more satisfying museum (fightin' words!), etc ...

    Apart from my many friends in the capital, the one thing I'd choose to transport to Auckland is the mighty Moore Wilson, both the fresh and wholesale sides. I have a Moore Wilson card and I don't even live there.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Make you crazy like datura,

    waking to this was a wee bit of a shock.

    Sorry, might have warned you ... I just found the posts interesting, and I didn't want to lead with a rant about the Herald.

    Without going into detail, Damian told me a fall-from-grace P story last night that just staggered me.

    Mekong Nuea was one of the little places I meant...god I miss the raw prawns, so much so that we've been trying to replicate them.

    Oh god, can't resist it ... don't come the raw prawn with me, mate.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Make you crazy like datura,

    Only if the road builders were prepared to skimp on the mitigation (and find some way of avoiding Pak n Save) would this option be significantly cheaper. And skimping on the mitigation is not what I want..

    Which is why the surface option left the picture some time ago. Depicting the tunnel option as some sort of parish-pump vote-buying exercise on the Prime Minister's part is just a silly fantasy.

    Completion of the western ring route is a mixed blessing for our household. It'll let me get to the airport from Pt Chev in as little as 15 minutes, but I can also see that it's going to saturate the northwestern motorway, which despite the Motorway Patrol madness, is a quick and efficient way in and out of town at the moment.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Strange Southern Superman,

    Re the Herald, I am still undecided as to whether or not they have a strong right-wing bias or simply a strong "it's-easier-to-bash-the-government" bias. I suppose given a 9 year Labour reign they could morph into a very similar thing...

    They'll be telling themselves it's the latter. And I think the Herald's reporting is still of a high standard -- Audrey Young is the best political reporter in the country, IMHO.

    It's the paper's editorial voice (including most of its senior columnists) that's bonkers.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Strange Southern Superman,

    And the proposed development seemed so poorly conceived that even Rudman was moved to comment: "I'm as wet and soft-centred as they come, but I would have objected too." Objections are not always based on socio-economic prejudice.

    I think Clark would have been remiss in her role as a local MP if she hadn't voiced residents' objections to that one. It was a large private boarding house that wanted to triple it its capacity by sticking an apartment block in its front yard, in a suburban street. There was already a demonstrable problem with some of the itinerant residents -- my friend who lived across the road with his daughter would have people creeping around his house.

    Clark's choice of words was, as I recall, unfortunate, but the grievance was for real. It went ahead, but I think the owner (the former bass layer for the Commodores!) was forced to reign it in.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Strange Southern Superman,

    The PM's speech gets a good review from ... Family First?

    Although Bob McCoskrie's claiming all the credit ..

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Strange Southern Superman,

    PS: You could also say that Labour hasn't done much new to shout about, and has had various calamities. But Clark's speech today reads very well -- much better than the drab effort last month -- and the policy seems sound and detailed. Key, by comparison, and even bearing in mind his short time to compose a response, was rubbish in the House today.

    The Herald editorial column firmly declared Key the winner in a contest of speeches that reached no great heights on either side last month. I'm interested to see how it reads tomorrow.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18844 posts Report Reply

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