Fund­ing to solve con­ges­tion key

North Shore Times - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - ZIZI SPARKS

While Auck­land mayor Phil Goff won’t say which po­lit­i­cal party he favours, he can say what he hopes the new Gov­ern­ment will do.

Goff said the big­gest con­cern for Auck­land was fund­ing trans­port in­fra­struc­ture.

‘‘We all know that we’ve got to spend, in the next 10 years, in Auck­land, $27 bil­lion on trans­port in­fra­struc­ture, and that’s a huge chal­lenge, be­cause there’s still a $5.9 bil­lion fund­ing deficit to meet,’’ Goff said dur­ing a visit to the North Shore’s Kaipatiki Lo­cal Board. ‘‘Whichever party gets into Gov­ern­ment, we have to work through how we fund our share of the cost of that in­fra­struc­ture.’’

Goff said the coun­cil didn’t want to put the pres­sure on ratepay­ers, but wanted to work with the in­com­ing Gov­ern­ment around road pric­ing, whether through a re­gional fuel tax, tolling or con­ges­tion tax.

The mayor said he was ex­cited a num­ber of par­ties have recog­nised the need to in­vest in Auck­land.

‘‘Grid­lock in Auck­land is cost­ing us $2 bil­lion a year. That $2 bil­lion isn’t just a cost to us here, as Auck­lan­ders, but to all of us as New Zealan­ders. ‘‘If this city grid­locks, it can’t de­liver for New Zealand.’’

Goff said po­lit­i­cal par­ties were recog­nis­ing hav­ing 800 more cars on the road each week was a prob­lem that should have been ad­dressed years ago.

MATTHEW CATTIN/STUFF

Phil Goff wants the in­com­ing Gov­ern­ment to work with Auck­land Coun­cil to fund trans­port in­fra­struc­ture.

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