Widespread economic damage
The economic effects of the Monorail and Tunnel proposals are far reaching and varied, to the serious detriment of local, regional and national economies.
Debunking the myth
The creation of a Monorail or a Tunnel is not going to attract overseas visitors to New Zealand. What does attract visitors is the Clean Green New Zealand concept – the corner stone of which is our National Parks and World Heritage areas. Inappropriate development has cost other countries dearly when their World Heritage Status has been revoked. (The Elbe Valley in Germany is a prime example.) UNESCO is already investigating these concession applications and how they would compromise of our World Heritage Status.
Local economic harm
On a local level, any system which bypasses a town will have a negative effect on the infrastructure and economy of that town. This is a well documented fact. Any of the low end jobs that the tunnel or monorail proposals generate will not offset the significant loss of visitor nights to the tourist town of Te Anau which is bypassed by both proposals.
Any short term gain in employment during the construction phases of either development will be of little benefit to the local economy. In fact, many of the workers required for construction jobs of this nature will have to come from outside the region – placing a strain on the local infrastructure which comes at a cost to the rate payer.
Te Anau is an important attraction on the Southern Scenic Route. Te Anau traffic feeds into the Southern Scenic Route which directs tourists through spectacular countryside along the bottom of the country. Bypassing Te Anau with a Monorail or Tunnel project that feeds visitors back to Queenstown will have a knock-on effect for the whole lower South Island.
Is high speed tourism good for anyone?
There are faster ways to get from Queenstown to Dunedin than the Southern Scenic Route. As with a tunnel direct from Queenstown to Milford Sound, faster isn’t better – for the tourists or New Zealand. The Southern Scenic Route is important for the regional economy and for tourists. A planned route, such as the Southern Scenic, directs tourist traffic to the highlights of an area and improves the quality of their experience. These quality experiences are lost through any form of bypassing.
Stand up and say "No!"
Now it's time to stop the monorail and tunnel; take action!