But don’t take my word for it. After all I live on Waiheke Island, safe from the worst excesses of the comrades who get paid megabucks to create this chaos. Here is the recent experience of Herald columnist Brian Rudman.
Years of traffic disruption has only just begun and bus routes already clogged.
Call me a cynic, but I couldn't help wondering what Auckland Transport knows that the rest of us don't, when it declared March "Walk Month", announcing it will be "encouraging Aucklanders to take to their feet and discover the many benefits of walking".
To offer prizes to people willing to leave their cars at home on the eve of the excavation of inner-city Albert St - a major bus artery - for the City Rail Link tunnel suggests the transport authority is not primarily worried about the state of our hearts. Rather, "Walk Month" is more along the lines of the World War II "Dig for Victory" campaign when the war planners feared the system wouldn't be able to cope and people would starve if they weren't persuaded to grow their own food.
Six years of major CBD traffic disruption has only just begun and AT is already conceding that preliminary work in Victoria St West moving underground utilities is "slowing traffic flows". AT's solution is to promise more dedicated bus lanes around the CBD at the expense of motorists, and ask commuters to cut their car trips into town, walking, biking and catching public transport instead.
Three weeks ago, coming home from the dentist, I caught the Inner Link bus at the bottom of Queen St around 2pm. Not a busy time of the day. It now runs up Queen St instead of up Albert St, in anticipation of the impending excavations. Trouble was, when we got to the bottom of Victoria St West to turn right, we couldn't. Nobody seemed to have told AT's traffic planners that their mates in AT's tunnel department had turned Victoria St into a construction site, narrowing it to a single lane each way. It took about 15 minutes to turn right and start crawling up the hill. The driver told me it was a disaster. He sensibly asked, if Victoria St was to be compromised for who knows how long, why the Link couldn't be routed up Wellesley St. As for the Outer Link, the much promoted, "every 15 minutes" service is, in my recent experience, a joke. Last Friday, as I pointed out to AT chairman Lester Levy in a grumpy message, I waited from 1.45pm until 2.23pm at the main Wellesley St stop for a bus heading west. By the time it arrived, there were so many waiting the driver had to leave several hot and bothered travellers stranded at the stop.
It happened three times last week.
On the eve of six years of major CBD traffic disruption, the knowledge that AT can't maintain a simple circuit service in normal times must be good news for shoe shops. But not for the rest of us.
Fortunately, a more prudent mayoral candidate, Vic Crone, is talking sense.
My key priorities as Mayor of Auckland will be to keep your rates as low as possible, get Council services back to basics, and address our significant transport and housing issues. Given Eden Park received around $300m of development for the 2011 RWC, and the Warriors are contracted to Mt Smart Stadium to 2028, the development of a waterfront stadium is simply not a priority right now.
We need to get this Council actually delivering good services for ratepayers and ensuring on-time, on-budget management of billions of dollars of infrastructure investments throughout the region. There are still neighbourhoods without footpaths and communities experiencing postponements for key local assets. With 750,000 more people coming to live here in the next 30 years and we have a lot of work to get through and we can't afford to stuff any of it up.
The transport planners couldn’t plan their way out of a paper bag. They are controlled by Generation Zero: zero vision, zero ability, in fact just one big, fat zero.