Eddington’s tunnel vision

Some things never change.

Rod Eddington is still spruiking the east-west road tunnel, even though his own report in 2008 said it would return just 45c in benefits for every dollar spent on it.

We can now see that the assumptions underlying the East West report were flawed.

Metlink reports that public transport use grew to 1.4 million trips a day in 2010, a level Eddington said would not be reached until 2031.

Meanwhile, federal government figures show that overall car travel in Melbourne has not increased since 2004.

Additional car trips in the outer suburbs have been offset by fewer trips in the inner suburbs where Sir Rod wants to put his tunnel.

These trends are ones we should encourage if we want our city to suffer less congestion and pollution into the future.

Building a big tunnel to encourage more road traffic is an idea that belongs in 1960.

Tony Morton
Secretary, Public Transport Users Association

— Published in the Herald Sun, 12/11/2011