Shap­ing fu­ture trans­port so­lu­tions

South Waikato News - - OPINION - By NORM BARKER

En­vi­ron­ment Waikato councillor

What will the fu­ture be for the South Waikato District when the Waikato Ex­press­way is fin­ished just south of Cam­bridge?

What will the fu­ture be if the Port of Tau­ranga be­comes New Zealand’s pre­miere deep sea con­tainer port as seems likely?

These are just two ex­am­ples of trans­port plan think­ing among the trans­port team at En­vi­ron­ment Waikato.

Un­der the Land Man­age­ment Act the Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil is leg­is­lated to pro­duce a re­gional land trans­port strat­egy with a 30-year hori­zon.

Can you imag­ine what trans­port will look like in the Waikato in 2041?

Al­ready we know that the Waikato is in the pro­duc­tive heart of New Zealand’s eco­nomic growth.

Al­ready we know that road safety is a ma­jor con­cern.

Al­ready we know that peak oil is ei­ther here or soon will be.

Al­ready we know that for our coun­try to re­main com­pet­i­tive with ex­ports we need to have world class trans­port in­fra­struc­ture and that this in­fra­struc­ture needs to be in­te­grated across road, rail and the ports.

Over the last cou­ple of years the Re­gional Trans­port Com­mit­tee, which I am priv­i­leged to chair, has been work­ing hard to get our heads around these big pic­ture trans­port is­sues.

With great sup­port from the staff of our var­i­ous coun­cils we have come up with an ex­cel­lent doc­u­ment which sets the strate­gic di­rec­tion to be fol­lowed in the Waikato, an­swer­ing some of those high level ques­tions and con­cerns.

This doc­u­ment can be viewed in its en­tirety at

It has been avail­able to view since early Novem­ber.

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