Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Auckland City Nights

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  • Russell Brown, in reply to Lucy Stewart,

    You get amazing service here, but it makes me a little sick every time.

    +1

    The tipping system always seems to me like a form of social control.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18707 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    I know this is RWC and expectations are it should be Olympics standards

    I think it should be clarified the RWC stands for RugbyWorld Cup not Rugby WorldCup.
    A subtle difference which means Global standards do not apply.
    ;-)

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4660 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The tipping system always seems to me like a form of social control.

    It fits perfectly into the US's whole blame-the-poor-for-their-poverty system, perhaps the most particularly direct expression of it.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Stewart, in reply to Lucy Stewart,

    I think it's the element of coercion that I dislike the most.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2008 • 653 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Yep, not keen on the tipping, myself . I was very glad however to see evidence in a shop I managed here, of it still having a friendly knowledgeable staff, with the product they sold.
    What I noticed too in the U S, one doesn't need to tip in the markets that sell cooked food, which actually made me just give it to the homeless peeps that were begging outside said markets and later going to a lunch where I was abused for not tipping enough. I guess I just wasn't used to tipping,
    If people feel worthwhile, they will actually do a better job and this will reflect on their treatment of others. I am sure, and will testify that I have achieved this.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 5993 posts Report Reply

  • Hayden East,

    I live right next to the K Rd overbridge and had high hopes for its redevelopment. But alas, not only is it a painfully grey and bland piece of typical Auckland urban design, it isn't even functional! The bus stops leak, there aren't any rubbish bins (which on K Rd inevitably means rubbish on the ground), and the use of space is just plain bizarre (especially the piss alley path way behind the shelters).

    Far from 'smartening up' K Rd, it's just made this end feel cold and lifeless.

    But hey, at least the council's consistently carrying out their greywash manifesto.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2010 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Hayden East,

    Also, I'm out of Auckland, but if it's a nice day tomorrow I'd encourage all lovers of beer and public spaces to enjoy a drink down on the wharf at Wynyard Quarter before the RWC liquor ban comes into effect on Thursday!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2010 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Hayden East,

    Far from ‘smartening up’ K Rd, it’s just made this end feel cold and lifeless.

    So, not just me then.

    I think most of the people who think it's great have only seen photos. It feels wrong in real life.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18707 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    weighing in on the waiters...

    A lot of our service industries don’t think because sales are down, it could be bad service.

    I've always thought that Kiwis were crap at giving good service because they'd never experienced it here...

    vista for visitors...

    It shouldn’t be too difficult to remedy the view blocking screens on the K Rd bridge

    Maybe they could paste up a big photo of the view?
    or maybe in keeping with K Road's other industries they could set up pay per peep booths...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4665 posts Report Reply

  • Hayden East, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Indeed, some of the materials they've used do look quite attractive in photos.

    But yes, it does just feel wrong. I think partly because it's so exposed compared to the rest of the street. The old overbridge was admittedly dingy, but so is K Rd, so at least there was some sort of continuity. And better still, it managed to provide shelter while still giving a great view of spaghetti junction and the city beyond. Those new white panels are bafflingly awful. They're straight from a Wairau Park call centre building, circa 1992.

    The few stalls that have returned in an attempt to rekindle the K Rd markets are further proof of how unworkable the space is.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2010 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Hayden East,

    The few stalls that have returned in an attempt to rekindle the K Rd markets are further proof of how unworkable the space is

    we can pretty much guarantee the street markets weren't part of the design brief

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16478 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Bennett,

    We used the old K-Rd over bridge as a key location in Sione's 2. I loved it's dinginess, and those motley colored tiles. Felt like an integral part of K-Road and Old Auckland. The replacement is just so bland and soulless. Sad.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 142 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Responsible agency Auckland Transport's media release about the overbridge includes this claim:

    The new design optimises views from the overbridge

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16478 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg, in reply to Russell Brown,

    tipping system always seems to me like a form of social control

    Uncomfortably so.

    I had a few drinks with a barman from Boston the other night who was telling that on a good night he can pull $2000 in tips and never less than $300 so I guess it works for some.

    And much of that is cash in pocket - I've yet to see or hunt out figures on this part of the US grey economy but it must be massive.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3203 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Simon Grigg,

    And much of that is cash in pocket – I’ve yet to see or hunt out figures on this part of the US grey economy but it must be massive.

    The fact that their whole revenue system is fscked is quite possibly their number one problem.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18707 posts Report Reply

  • recordari, in reply to Sacha,

    The new design optimises views from the overbridge

    Preposition fail.

    The new design optimises views of the overbridge.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Simon Bennett,

    We used the old K-Rd over bridge as a key location in Sione’s 2. I loved it’s dinginess, and those motley colored tiles. Felt like an integral part of K-Road and Old Auckland.

    I think it really got me on Saturday night because I've walked over the bridge so many nights. The footpaths were wide, wide enough to swerve around drunken munters and crazy people. Which is an excellent feature on K Road.

    The replacement is just so bland and soulless. Sad.

    Solution: commission an Askew piece for the north side screen at least. That would look like K Road.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18707 posts Report Reply

  • Patrick Reynolds,

    Yes the Herald is getting seriously schzio these days; perhaps there is some sort of power struggle going on in there?... or perhaps when Roughan heads off on his long drive home to the distant 'burbs composing op-eds in his head about how people shouldn't mow their lawns on Sundays [really] some naughty upstart slips in an editorial not from the 1950s?..... Or more likely they're now doing that typical thing of shamelessly getting behind the obvious success of the very things they've been opposing in their small-mind Citz-n-Rats way [shocking waste of ratepayers money etc!].

    In some happy future when Joyce has slithered back to whatever lair his snake eyed master found him in and we finally have our quality rail system, I fully expect Roughan and co to be congratulating themselves for the sophistication of our city..... Still, happy to have them saying the right things, even if it doesn't ring true. [admin-still got that post I wrote answering Roughan's attack on public transport?]

    As for Norf Wharf; give em a chance.

    And K'rd, very poor, and what's with the motorway shame? Why hide it, man? That's your top shelf place wrecking motorway orgy down there, we pay for it, it hacks our city to bits; now we can't even look at it? Overdesigned fail.

    What we need there is a lift down to the disused off-ramp [embarrassing as, NZTA] and let's turn it into a long curving bar [with real good air-con] so we can sit there supping drinks and look upon the poor souls out there stuck in their cars on the motorway....

    Auckland • Since Jan 2010 • 35 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Patrick Reynolds,

    What we need there is a lift down to the disused off-ramp [embarrassing as, NZTA] and let's turn it into a long curving bar [with real good air-con] so we can sit there supping drinks and look upon the poor souls out there stuck in their cars on the motorway....

    Sounds like a viable business proposition (sadism being evergreen); could fit well with the proposed park on the ramp.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16478 posts Report Reply

  • recordari, in reply to Patrick Reynolds,

    [with real good air-con]

    Reckon. Or you'd have to call it 'Silt Bar'. Or the 'Hydrocarbon Cabana' maybe? 'CO Espresso' even?

    There has to be some viable use for it though. Apart from bus storage.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Further thoughts on the K Road folly ...

    When I saw it on Saturday night, I was flabbergasted, because it seemed that the metal screen cut off the entire view from the bridge, but it gets lower towards the middle.

    This says to me that the architects had no idea what people actually do on K Road. Had they ever been there at night?

    People congregate in that space in front of the Rising Sun. The footpath is about 8 metres wide, and there's seating and people can smoke. Granted, the people who congregate may not always be in a sober state, but that's not illegal.

    The new screen closes down that space. Although the glass was murky, you could see across to Hopetoun Bridge. You can't now.

    Also: did they really not think that a long, white metal screen might be tagger bait?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18707 posts Report Reply

  • Patrick Reynolds,

    It wouldn't be an open air park you'd want to visit..... Seriously the K'rd bridge should be like the olde London Bridge or the Ponte Vecchio in Florence: shops and bars built out over the air space... haha try getting that past the 'creatives' at NZTA. Soooo creative, traffic engineering, anyone with a particularly dull witted son [yes- men only], here's the career arc for him: NZTA or MoT, a pocket full of pens, an ability to count vehicles, produce a chart and extrapolate an infinite increase in said vehicle counts- once you've built the road capacity for them- repeat ad infinitum. At no point look left or right, must not consider impact on quality of place, likely exhaustion of resources or any other impact on humans. In fact human cease to exist unless in a vehicle.....

    Oooops sorry, bit of a rant, think I need a drink.....

    Auckland • Since Jan 2010 • 35 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to recordari,

    'Hydrocarbon Cabana'

    very good. gas-mask on entry

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16478 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    This says to me that the architects had no idea what people actually do on K Road. Had they ever been there at night?

    I'd hate to think what Opus would bill for the overtime.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16478 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    I have a theory about K Road overbridge. I reckon it's designed specifically for how K Road will be used during the RWC. That is, post-match crowds will walk along there on their was to Party Central. So the bus stops have been separated from the pedestrian route so that people waiting for a bus won't have to deal with hundreds of rowdy fans streaming past, blocking their view of the buses. Ok, so during the RWC, that actually would be quite sensible, but what happens after that? K Road gets stuck with something that isn't designed for how people normally use the space.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1851 posts Report Reply

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