The Akaroa Mail. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1914. A RAILWAY TO AKAROA.
Sl few months ago when the Hon. K. 3eaton Rhodes, Postmaster General, risited Akaroa to lay (he foundation itone of the new post and telegraph rffice, he made on that occasion a statement to effect that the Goverp. nenfc Survey Department intended to make a survey of the proposed exfcen sioa of the railway lino from LiUle River to A baron. Mr- Rhodes has no doubt kept the matter steadily before the proper authorities, and when itw-is announced that he bad succeeded so far as to havo a survey of the line made a good deal of gratification was felt by those who have been keenly in terested in this matter. But, unfor tunately, a3 far as we know (he Survey has not been made, and the matter of having an estimate macie of the probable cost cf construction of (ho line to reach Ihe wafers of Akaroa Harbour is as far off as eve - . Wo must say that Peninsula residents fcberu selves have shown no great entbu siasm in the project, though ib would probably mean the opening up of Akaroa Harbour, nnd would mean direct shipping minus tbe cost of the present transhipping and tunnel charges through Lyttelton. The people in this district have now a right to demand recognition from the Government in this matter, as the income from the railway reserves of the Little River-Christchurcb line has paid off the original cosb of that line, i and is now accumulating for the pur pose of extending the Jina ou to Akaroa. Iα this matter, therefore, we have a guarantee to offer the Government of a repayment fur tbe loan which will construct the new portion of line. The Govern* ment has deciu. i to go in for a. rail way loan of £8 200,000 for bringing Che New Zealand railways up so the greatest efficiency. We cannot help t linking that by giving Canterbury another outlet for its exports and por o for its imports through Akaroa the Government would only be doing what would be a national benefit to I the province, The iine to Akaroa would be self supporting, inasmuch as the cost of its construction bus been provided for out of the reservos set aside for that purpose on the shores of Lake Ellenmere, Just before last olec tion. Sir Joseph Ward, then Prime Minister, put a scheme before the House for completing possible lines at their probable length and cost of con struction. In this estimate the Little j River to Akaroa line was set do vn as' covering 23 miles at a cost of £115,000. Mr Rhodes should again be app.oached concerning this matter, so that he may urge tbe Minister forßailv.iy3 to make a new survey of the proposed Akaroa line and an estimate o£ tbe cost. We are sure that tho whole matter only needs pushing to bring it under the notice of the Government, and a little enthusiasm by residents would no doubt result in tbe c:.i3truo tion of the line being authorised. We are sure that a beautiful harbo v , like Akaroa possesses cannot lie iilla for many more years, but will, wj hope, be in tbe near future another port for Canterbury, The construction of the line would not, at any rate, approach the Co3fc of duplicating the Ljiteltou tunnel.