Keown ready to fight for lights

In June, city councillor Aaron Keown offered $100 to anyone who could name a more dangerous intersection than Gardiners, Breens and Harewood Rd - now he has the chance to fight to have traffic lights installed at the intersection.

Aaron Keown could finally get his wish to have traffic lights at a controversial Bishopdale intersection – but he will have to put up a fight.

Options to upgrade the Breens, Harewood and Gardiners Rds intersection will be put to a vote by the Fendalton-Wairmairi-Harewood Community Board on Monday.

But the battle is just beginning as the preferred first and second options that will be sent out for public consultation do not include traffic lights, but instead road markings and a pedestrian crossing.

The third option included installing traffic lights.

“If you go by what the public wants, it’s the traffic lights,” Cr Keown said.

“In that last Long Term Plan, the public submitted to wanting those traffic lights, and now they come back and recommend something else. They’re not listening.”

He said he would move to amend the third option to keep Harewood Rd with two lanes on each side, rather than reducing it to one, as was proposed.

“Otherwise we’re reducing the road, and it plays into their hands in saying this reduces traffic flow on Harewood Rd if we put in the lights . . . I know I’ve got the numbers to at least get option three through with an amendment. I’d be surprised if anyone goes with the preferred option.”

Cr Keown said the next steps would be to ensure residents were listened to.

“The line the council will always pull out, and that’s how they stopped the traffic lights last year, is saying ‘that’s not the process’ . . . they always use the word process, and what that means is the council is using that to cover their butts all the time.”

“I believe the process is the enemy of democracy.”