Ati­a­muri bridge will en­hance lo­cal econ­omy

South Waikato News - - OPINION -

The past fort­night has been busy, both in Welling­ton and back in the elec­torate. Last week­end I at­tended the cel­e­bra­tion of con­struc­tion of the new Ati­a­muri Bridge, a $24.3 mil­lion project on State High­way 1 in South Waikato. What a great cel­e­bra­tion of some­thing that will re­ally ben­e­fit South Waikato.

It’s im­por­tant to im­prove the flow of New Zealand’s key freight routes be­cause the freight task is fore­cast to in­crease by 70 to 75 per­cent over the next 25 years. The bulk of this in­crease will be car­ried on our roads.

The re­gional and na­tional ben­e­fits of well-per­form­ing trans­port cor­ri­dors and projects such as this will stim­u­late eco­nomic growth here in South Waikato.

Some more great news is the an­nounce­ment of the faster broad­band for many more schools across New Zealand, in­clud­ing here in South Waikato.

In ad­di­tion to the ul­tra-fast broad­band roll-out for schools, Na­tional is also com­mit­ting $300 mil­lion to our Ru­ral Broad­band Ini­tia­tive, so ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties won’t miss out ei­ther. Two schools in South Waikato which will ben­e­fit and be con­nected to high speed in­ter­net as part of the Ru­ral Broad­band Ini­tia­tive are Lich­field School and Te Waotu School.

Faster broad­band means that schools will be able to share scarce re­sources like physics and IT teach­ers, and stu­dents will be able to take part in vir­tual class­rooms and cour­ses that might not be avail­able at their own schools, and con­nect with the world and pre­pare for liv­ing and work­ing in the 21st cen­tury.

By July next year, more than 410,000 stu­dents at nearly 1500 schools around the coun­try will be con­nected. Our com­mit­ment means no school will miss out once the roll­out is com­plete.

Ul­tra-fast broad­band is a vi­tal part of Na­tional’s plan to build a more com­pet­i­tive and pro­duc­tive econ­omy – one of Na­tional’s four key pri­or­i­ties for our sec­ond term.

For more de­tails, if you would like to re­quest more in­for­ma­tion, or need as­sis­tance with an is­sue, please phone the elec­torate of­fice on 07 886 5554 or email Up­ston.sth­waikato@ par­lia­ment.govt.nz.

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