Of­fi­cials agree with pro-high­way ap­peal

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

Porirua mayor Nick Leggett and Kapiti mayor Ross Church have applauded the decision of the NZ Trans­port Agency to ap­peal the Board of In­quiry’s re­jec­tion of the Basin fly­over ap­pli­ca­tion.

The trans­port agency has lodged an ap­peal to the High Court on sev­eral points of law to pro­vide di­rec­tion for the plan­ning of trans­port in­fra­struc­ture, around the Basin and through­out New Zealand.

‘‘ We ap­plaud this move be­cause the project has many ben­e­fits for the wider re­gion,’’ Leggett said.

‘‘ This is about an ef­fi­cient eco­nomic high­way that sep­a­rates lo­cal and re­gional traf­fic be­tween Wellington air­port and Manawatu/Ran­gi­tikei, which in re­al­ity is a con­duit for pros­per­ity for the lower North Is­land.

‘‘ Easy ac­cess to Wellington Air­port and hos­pi­tal is vi­tal to Porirua res­i­dents, not to men­tion those on the Kapiti Coast and Hutt Val­ley.’’

Church said the new MacKays to Peka Peka Ex­press­way would be much more ef­fec­tive if there was con­tin­u­ous traf­fic flow from Kapiti.

‘‘ An ef­fi­cient high­way that al­lows traf­fic to flow unim­peded from Kapiti through Wellington City to key fa­cil­i­ties such as the air­port is re­ally im­por­tant and this can’t be achieved at the Wellington end if there is con­ges­tion around the Basin Re­serve,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s crazy spend­ing over a bil­lion dol­lars on a road of na­tional sig­nif­i­cance from the air­port to Levin and not solv­ing the worst bot­tle­neck in the city, when there’s no vi­able al­ter­na­tive.

‘‘This is about look­ing at the whole re­gion and the ob­vi­ous eco­nomic spin-offs of elim­i­nat­ing all the bot­tle­necks and not just shift­ing them fur­ther down the line.’’

Leggett said a key con­cern was also the preven­tion of projects that flow on from the Basin Bridge decision, such as bet­ter pedes­trian/ cy­cle­way ac­cess, im­proved pub­lic trans­port sys­tems and the dou­ble tun­nelling of Mt Vic­to­ria Tun­nel, which is at ca­pac­ity.

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