Last week, the Ngauranga to Airport Governance Group flew in via private charter flights and met with a number of the groups who had been closely involved in the Basin Reserve flyover hearings – including Save the Basin. We had been pressing for a meeting with the Governance Group, which has been given the responsibility by the Regional Transport Committee for making decisions about post-flyover transport options around the Basin precinct, for some time, and we were pleased that it finally agreed to meet with us and other groups.

Prior to these meetings, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson called a number of groups together to develop a common approach to the engagement and transport planning processes – a process reflected in this press release from Grant Robertson. Save the Basin was one of the groups that signed on to the letter which Grant Robertson sent the Governance Group.

The meeting itself was brief but constructive. After Save the Basin reiterated our desire for a genuinely consultative and open process to decide on the best transport options around the Basin precinct that also maintained and enhanced the Basin’s significance in terms of heritage, landscape and urban design, the Governance Group assured us that they were committed to the same process, that they found much to agree with in the proposal that Grant Robertson had sent them, and that there was no intention to reintroduce flyover plans by stealth.

So that’s encouraging, but it’s very much early days, and words need to be matched by deeds. Provided the Governance Group’s deeds live up to its words, Save the Basin will be keen to continue to engage with it in 2016.