Duncan Garner: New Zealand has massive infrastructure problem, and we want progress, not spin

OPINION: New Zealand has a massive infrastructure problem.

Many of the key buildings, pipes, bridges, water facilities, and other various networks are not just ageing. They are at the end of their life.

It's like we were asleep at the wheel for 30 years and are now 30 years behind.

What did we do? Jack-shizzle.

Local and central Government politicians need a kick up the you-know-what. Years of these self-serving wallies looking after their fiefdom with a local project. Ad-hoc, no big picture. 

Big projects required a super effort, so they gave us what was called the Auckland super city - super sloth, more like it.

Six councils into one and agreement is still hard to achieve. Despite the name "super", it's been a slug.

The Skypath to cycle across the Harbour Bridge should have been built by now - but no. Sure we built the Waterview Tunnel, and that's been a revelation opening up Auckland's motorways, but much of what needs to be done hasn't been done or is only just getting underway. 

Shovel ready projects are no way near tooling up. The only tool insight is the marketing genius and the sooner they shove off the better - the public wants progress, not spin.

Now we have the latest infrastructure fail that needs to be fixed - our vast water network, which is a dog. It's such an old dog that it's time to put it down and start again. 

A staggering $185 billion is needed over 30 years to fix this. 

We could probably build 20 new modern harbour bridges with that money and most of this will be poured into the pipes under the ground. 

Deferring projects all those years ago may have saved money then - but no one thinks that now.

This working generation faces a daunting task to rebuild New Zealand.

Given that we've already borrowed heavily to weather the COVID storm, it'll be our taxes that'll pay for our water woes. 

Duncan Garner hosts The AM Show.