Transport officials must take heads out of sand

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 05 March, 2014, 4:12am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 05 March, 2014, 4:12am

Concerning congestion and related roadside pollution, our government appears to copy the ostrich.

It is projected that the number of mainland visitors will grow massively and, at the same time, the Planning Department is looking at raising urban plot ratios for redevelopment by 20 per cent ("Planners look to cram in even more people", February 19).

We are getting bad international media attention, because the increasing number of private cars is making it more difficult to cut pollution levels.

I was therefore gobsmacked to read the report ("Tunnel drivers face three more years of jams", February 19).

Our transport officials are making us a laughing stock. We have spent a lot of taxpayers' dollars on getting a professional consultant's report, which came to the same conclusions that any thinking citizen could have given in five minutes. However, our transport officials still delay in order to reach a consensus. Adjusting tunnel fees is not rocket science. Have our bureaucrats never heard of management by trial and error? By progressively raising the fees for private cars at the Cross-Harbour Tunnel, we would soon arrive at the optimum throughput level.

Fudging until 2017 is unbelievable. Though road pricing schemes first crossed transport officials' desks in the 1970s, only now are we being promised "consideration" of a pilot scheme. I note that this is not a decision but just a "consideration", probably to have a consultation in order to reach a consensus.

Bureaucrats should realise that there is a growing frustration within this city at the ever-increasing levels of congestion, and our public transport system is already exhibiting stress and strain. Transport officials appear in gridlock and need to take their heads out of the sand.

P. C. Law, Quarry Bay