Revealed preferences of political hoardings

04/09/2013 § 1 Comment

Wellington is proud of its green space. From its early days, the wise and good of the city planned a Town Belt to provide healthy outdoor space for the citizens. Oh, and if Wikipedia is to be believed:

the New Zealand Company did not just have public health in mind. The Company wanted to keep land prices high in the areas known in the plan as “town acres”, thus ensuring more favourable returns for its investors (the owners of the “town acres”).

The green belt continues in this function today — limiting space for housing, limiting options for building roads to more housing, generally constraining supply in the face of increasing demand. We know what that does.

Which is why the political hoardings made me laugh this morning. It’s election time, and the candidates’ signs have gone up. Three of the four signs I could see at the stoplight leaving Karori had candidates’ headshots superimposed over panoramic pictures of … downtown. Buildings! Glass! Waterfront! Even the Green candidate used the harbour view, although it did have the Oriental Bay fountain.

What are they selling? A vibrant city economy. Jobs and businesses.

And not a native bird or bush among them.

§ One Response to Revealed preferences of political hoardings

  • Eric says:

    Ah yes, but the density that allows for a vibrant city was created out of that green space- so everyone wins. the Green party gets to save the fauna and flora, and the others get to show that WLG is a business powerhouse.

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