Phil Goff launched his re-election campaign for Auckland's mayoralty on Sunday, warning it is a battle of "starkly contrasting" visions for the future of the city.
Taking aim at rival John Tamihere, Goff said he would focus on clean transport, protecting the environment and tackling climate change if he wins another term - whereas a Tamihere mayoralty would "set Auckland back".
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"Aucklanders have a clear choice this mayoral election," Goff said in a statement on Sunday.
"My opponent is stuck in the past, and has no answers for the congestion, pollution and climate change challenges Auckland faces now.
"Spending more time in traffic jams while our city chokes on petrol fumes is not the future Aucklanders want, but that will be the result if my opponent is elected."
Goff's key policies for his second term would include:
- Auckland Council only purchasing electric or hybrid passenger vehicles
- accelerating the conversion of Auckland's bus fleet from diesel to electric
- accelerating train electrification between Papakura and Pukekohe
- working with central Government to reduce carbon emissions.
"Part of leaving a good legacy for future generations is acting on our most pressing issue - climate change. Transport emissions make up 47 percent of overall carbon emissions. That has to change, and we need to take responsibly and lead that change," Goff said.
"Contrary to what my opponent says, there is no war on cars, but there is one on the congestion that hinders people from getting around the city, and on pollution.
"Clean transport is a key part to tackling our climate change and environmental challenges, as well as making our city a better place to live. I am the only candidate in this election showing leadership and vision on these issues."
Meanwhile, Tamihere has proposed beefing up the city's Harbour Bridge to 18 lanes.
"A new 10-vehicle lane harbour crossing, which will carry cars, rail, pedestrians and cyclists, can be completed within six years on the existing bridge piers, replacing the existing bridge," Tamihere said on Friday, claiming its construction will have "minimal disruption to traffic".
"My team have looked at overseas structures and costs and it is very doable," he added, without providing an estimate of the cost.
Tamihere also vowed to complete the Whangaparāoa Peninsula's Penlink highway, which isn't scheduled for construction for almost another decade.
"I will personally guarantee and commit to the Penlink Highway because it is the right thing to do," he said.
"Ratepayers and motorists on the North Shore need certainty, not hollow promises and backside covering."
Tamihere has emerged as Goff's main rival in the October vote. Both are former Labour Party MPs.