Govt won’t fund $150m, so move on
Re: ‘Fix the track, give it back' — May 27 article.
We are going into year 10 now since the line was closed, and I guess the Gisborne Rail Action Group (GRAG) has been formed for eight years.
KiwiRail CEO Greg Miller should tell the Government the $600,000 Berl report's $36 million cost and 18 months to open the Gisborne to Wairoa line was just a joke, it's more like $150m-plus . . . will they foot the bill?
The answer will be “No”, so give up on it and the GRAG can get on the steam train and travel out to Muriwai as often as they like. Or get on a rail bike and ride to Beach Loop — now, that is an amazing trip.
The GRAG may even wake up and see how they have been wasting time and taxpayers' money trying to get the line rebuilt.
Get Mayor Stoltz plus the few supporters to go as well. They may see that the line to Beach Loop will not take the weight of a steam engine or a small loaded train.
On May 19 TGH ran a photo of a KiwiRail train travelling along Blacks Beach in March 2012. A former council planner had told councillors to seize the opportunity to restore rail. Like the Mayor and the GRAG, he hasn't got a clue how much damage there is.
GRAG's Gillian Ward took over two-thirds of your story, and also instigated the May 27 article with Maurice Fraser, civil engineer of Fraser Geologics-Total Rail Solutions — whose suggestion was welcomed by Mayor Stoltz. I guess he was trying to justify the $36m and 18 months to open.
Gillian, Mayor Stoltz and your reporter should sit down with Mr Fraser and a photo of the Tikiwhata blowout, and ask how he is going to get a rail line across the 70m gap that is 50m deep? How long will it take? How much will it cost?
Your reporter should also visit me — I can show him a heap of information the Gisborne public are not getting access to from GRAG.
I can also prove why it will take $150m and four years.
Gisborne, you need a public meeting.