NAG spokesperson Maury Purdy says the more people are aware, the more pressure there is for reform.
Northern Action Group (NAG) took a new tack in its campaign to secure a better deal for north Rodney late last month, with billboards featuring a naked woman “enjoying” a bath in one of north Rodney’s numerous and deep potholes.
NAG spokesperson Maury Purdy is at pains to point out that the billboards on State Highway 1, close to Warkworth’s Mahurangi River bridge, have not been photoshopped in any way and have have already garnered plenty of attention.
The billboards highlight the fact that Rodney continues to endure 700km of unsealed roads and insist the region should not be treated as an “afterthought”.
Mr Purdy says it’s crazy that there are hundreds of kilometres of unsealed roads in the Auckland region, in what is supposed to be one of the world’s most modern cities.
“It’s just the continuing story of the rural sector being ignored. I know guys in four-wheel drives who go through a set of tyres in 10 to 12 months,” he says.
He adds that with the amount of forestry going on in some areas, roads are being cut up especially badly.
He says the idea of the billboards is to make people more aware of the problem, including “city folks” passing through to holiday spots in Matakana, Leigh and Omaha.
“We’re hoping as more people become aware, more pressure goes on Auckland Council and the Rodney Local Board for reforms,” he says.
So far, NAG has erected three billboards related to road issues in the north Rodney area. It also has billboards expressing opposition to the proposed landfill in the Dome Valley.
Mr Purdy says the billboard campaign represents a change in tactics for NAG, which has long fought for an autonomous north Rodney, independent of the Auckland supercity.
He says currently there is little chance of North Rodney becoming independent, so NAG is instead focusing its energies on securing a better deal for the area with perhaps limited autonomy.
In addition to the billboard campaign, NAG has also proposed a re-drawing of the Rodney Local Board electoral boundaries to ensure better representation for rural residents.
NAG is on the lookout for further pictures illustrating the dire state of north Rodney roads, and plans to create a billboard out of the best picture
. Send your picture(s) to email@example.com with “Rodney Roads” in the subject line. Competition closes January 13.