The latest in the Kapiti Expressway saga is that the Kapiti Coast District Council has apparently dispensed with the services of Opus, an engineering company that had been working on the Western Link Road because it is also doing work for the New Zealand Transport Agency and is therefore "conflicted". (See: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/local/2815982/Council-adviser-axed-over-conflict )
It's fair enough to avoid conflicts, but two points arise:
(i) aren't KCDC and the NZTA supposed to be on the same side - providing safe efficient and reliable roading systems to service the needs of Kapiti and the country as a whole; and
(ii) isn't it a bit hypocritical of the Council to allege a conflict because Opus works for NZTA, when it has been quite happy to pay an "urban designer" who has previously (and possibly still is) working for a property developer with specific private interests relating to the Western Link Road?
Perhaps conflicts of interest are only an issue for the KCDC when the Mayor doesn't like something.
Isn't it time that the Council stopped its petty politicking and started thinking about what's best for the district? And yes, shock horror, it might be that an expressway IS actually for the best, if it creates safe local roading options as well as options for inter-regional traffic to traverse the district safely. Believe it or not, an expressway might actually lead to better outcomes across social, environmental, health and transport areas!