Duncan Garner: The monumental task of moving Auckland's port

Opinion 12/11/2019

It's the bombshell report that has senior ministers in this Government really thinking. 

Now a huge decision looms as the expert group, set up to look at the future viability of Auckland's waterfront port, says "scrap it" and "move it".

It's thrown a bomb at it, and said take it north as early as next year. 

It would take 10 years to move and $10 billion because moving a port is not the easiest of gigs.

But this is the nuclear bomb someone has to deal with and a move of some sort seems inevitable and necessary, but a massive task. 

It would mean all the goods that arrive in Auckland now would go to Northport, south of Whangarei. 

So here are my questions. If we move the port, how will we then move all of Auckland's imported goods back into Auckland? New railway capacity would be needed, and surely new roads would be needed too; upgrade State Highway 1 north of Warkworth or forget it.

Don't kid yourself, this will be New Zealand's largest infrastructure project and then some. 

It will be seven times bigger than the Waterview Tunnel. Afterwards? Think more trucks, more goods, and more rail carriages coming into Auckland from the north. 

Oh, great. It's a nightmare as it is but Winston Peters wants it and Shane Jones does too. Both are northern boys trying to create jobs in an area desperate for a lift. 

Auckland gets its trillion dollar waterfront opened up for the first time ever, then Phil Goff can build his stadium, Eden Park can become housing and the Black Caps can play at Western Springs, while the speedway? They'll have a home in south Auckland.

Great, everyone catered for, deal?

Duncan Garner is host of The AM Show.