One of the things country folk really like about Auckland is the big wide footpaths and all the activity on them. People of all shapes, colours and sizes all bustling somewhere past crowds of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants, particularly in the City suburbs like Ponsonby, Parnell and Grey Lynn.

The variety of modes of transport for this rich range of humanity on the footpaths just makes it even more interesting to watch from a sidewalk café.

Sadly, the ogre of public safety seems to want to attack this, somehow unaware that it is at the very heart of the appeal of the city. Silly old councillors like Christine Fletcher intoned about being nearly knocked over by some scooter rider, when the truth probably was that it was some irate ratepayer trying to exact revenge for some forgotten foolish rule voted in by her in the past.

Just ask a country person how they would love to be able to cycle, scooter or skateboard on the loose metal verge on their roads which they have to share with speeding logging trucks big enough to vacuum you into their path.

Rich vibrant street life is exactly what might make Auckland the most liveable city and this won’t happen when all the old, conservative, no-change, fun police types get their way. How many of those bleating about the safety of scooters actually ride them? When will our reporters put the ACC claims into perspective. Way, way more money is spent on repairing people involved in car accidents. Are we planning to ban these?

If safety and hospital costs are so important, why then the reluctance to ban sugary soft drinks, pies, chips, and all the other parts of street life that inevitably lead to the obesity problem that is more of a cause of footpath crowding than the healthy movement of walkers, bikers, skateboarders and scooters that brighten the city.

This, of course doesn’t even mention booze, that wonderful addition to city life that offers so much fun and danger. Far better to have those that overdo it on a scooter than in a car, but that’s another story.

This, of course doesn’t even mention booze, that wonderful addition to city life that offers so much fun and danger. Far better to have those that overdo it on a scooter than in a car, but that’s another story.

Editor

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