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Council votes to enforce street racing prohibition

22 June 2007

Council voted today  to accept staff recommendations to prohibit vehicles under 3500kg on four streets in the Templeton and Hornby areas after residents have complained of constant intimidation and noise from boy racers during weekends.

In an amendment to the original proposal, the hours when vehicles cannot enter Hasketts, Legget, Barters Roberts roads unless they have a lawful purpose are from 10pm to 5am on Thursday to Sunday and Sunday and Monday from 9am to 5pm. This will also include public holidays when the ban will be in force from 10pm on the day preceding the holiday until 5pm the next day.

A further amendment carried eight votes to six, states that in the event of similar activities moving to other streets in the city, Council will consider including such roads in the schedule.

Councillors were unanimous in their support of a further amendment that the Council invites the Minister of Transport, the Minister of Police and the Commissioner of Police to join with the Council and Community Boards to address “this issue of national importance’’.

Mayor Garry Moore says the problem with young people in cars is not just a Christchurch issue.

“It’s a nation-wide problem which happens in every town in New Zealand. We know what we are doing is a short-term measure, but we have to do something.’’

Cr Barry Corbett says  he wanted the issue to be addressed at a central Government level, but it was necessary to support the staff proposals to prohibit vehicles on these Christchurch streets.

“We are facing a community under siege. This is not just a matter of a group of car enthusiasts, we are dealing with violence and crime and it is important something is done. The residents need respite from this intimidation.’’

Council Transport and Greenspace Unit Manager Michael Aitken says “When people ring Council to complain about the cars, we refer them to the police. We know the police are doing their job, but because of the sheer size of the problem they have asked us for help. That is what the by-law is for.

“We have been working in close consultation with the police and we believe this bylaw will enable them to use their resources more effectively.’’


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