Pro­posal to un­clog One­hunga traf­fic wel­comed

Central Leader - - NEWS - By JOE DAW­SON

The ac­cel­er­a­tion of work to un­clog One­hunga’s traf­fic net­work has been wel­comed by those who ad­vo­cate for bet­ter trans­port links.

Prime Min­is­ter John Key last week an­nounced an un­ex­pected slew of spend­ing on Auck­land’s in­fra­struc­ture, in­clud­ing a speed­ing up of the work which will see the EastWest link be­come a re­al­ity sooner than first pro­posed.

In Fri­day’s speech Mr Key out­lined his rea­sons for want­ing to bring plans for­ward.

The Govern­ment has asked the New Zealand Trans­port Agency to tell it which ele­ments of AMETI – the Auck­land Manukau Eastern Trans­port Ini­tia­tive – and the East-West Link can be ac­cel­er­ated with ad­di­tional fund­ing and how that fund­ing can best be tar­geted across both projects.

‘‘The area be­tween One­hunga, Mt Welling­ton and East Ta­maki is home to a num­ber of in­dus­trial and lo­gis­tics busi­nesses that make a crit­i­cal con­tri­bu­tion to the Auck­land and national econ­omy,’’ Mr Key said.

‘‘About as many peo­ple are em­ployed here as in the CBD and there is con­sid­er­able po­ten­tial for more growth. How­ever, the trans­port links in and out of this area aren’t up to the job.

‘‘Truck driv­ers have told us they can get stuck in con­ges­tion at any time dur­ing the work­ing day and a sev­en­minute trip be­tween Metroport and the One­hunga wharf can take as long as 40 min­utes.

‘‘In com­bi­na­tion with AMETI, the East-West Link will im­prove con­nec­tions to the state high­way net­work, pri­mar­ily along the Neil­son St cor­ri­dor, and up­grade the links con­nect­ing to the eastern sub­urbs and East Ta­maki in­dus­trial area.

‘‘Re­solv­ing the trans­port prob­lems in this part of Auck­land is the Govern­ment’s next ma­jor fo­cus for the Auck­land trans­port net­work.’’

National Road Car­ri­ers ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor David Aitken wel­comed the an­nounce­ment as ‘‘great news’’.

He agreed Neil­son St con- ges­tion is at the heart freight sec­tor con­cerns.

‘‘Even more pos­i­tive is his con­fir­ma­tion that of Auck­land’s three high­est pri­or­ity trans­port in­fra­struc­ture in­vest­ment projects, the Govern­ment’s next ma­jor fo­cus is to re­solve the trans­port prob­lems as­so­ci­ated with the AMETI and East-West Link.’’

Long-time One­hunga ad­vo­cate Jim Jack­son says it is good to see the Govern­ment re­alise One­hunga’s im­por­tance as a busi­ness cen­tre.

‘‘The an­nounce­ments are a great start to link­ing th­ese

of very im­por­tant parts of Auck­land’s busi­ness com­mu­ni­ties, in par­tic­u­lar the pro­posed East-West link be­tween State High­way 20 and High­brook.

‘‘This area has the most ex­pen­sive in­dus­trial land in New Zealand and em­ploys a lot of peo­ple. It is th­ese busi­nesses and the em­ploy­ees that are the eco­nomic engine room of the coun­try.’’

He says the de­vel­op­ment also of­fers the po­ten­tial to im­prove cycling and pedes­trian ac­cess and con­duct trans­mis­sion lines and gas and sewer lines.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.