NZTA com­mit­ted to road projects

South Waikato News - - RURAL DELIVERY -

The 2012-15 Na­tional Land Trans­port Pro­gramme (NLTP) aims to im­prove the ef­fi­ciency and safety of Waikato’s road­ing net­work, max­imise freight move­ments and re­duce deaths and se­ri­ous in­juries on the roads.

The NLTP is a part­ner­ship be­tween lo­cal au­thor­i­ties ( who in­vest fund­ing from ratepay­ers and pro­pose ac­tiv­i­ties and projects for fund­ing) and the NZ Trans­port Agency which de­vel­ops the pro­gramme and in­vests funds from road users through the Na­tional Land Trans­port Fund.

NZTA re­gional di­rec­tor Harry Wil­son said the in­vest­ment in the Waikato re­gion will also en­sure the re­gion’s No 1 pri­or­ity, the Waikato Ex­press­way, stays on track for com­ple­tion in 2019.

“Ap­prox­i­mately $590 mil­lion will go to the on­go­ing con­struc­tion of the Waikato Ex­press­way, the Waikato re­gion’s Road of Na­tional Sig­nif­i­cance,’’ Mr Wil­son said.

“We also ex­pect that be­tween 2012 and 2015, the Te Rapa, Ngaru­awahia and Ran­giriri sec­tions of the ex­press­way should be com­pleted and sig­nif­i­cant progress will have been made on the Tama­here and Cam­bridge sec­tions.”

He says the com­ple­tion of the ex­press­way will pro­vide long-term ben­e­fits, re­duc­ing the time of the jour­ney for freight and other road users by 20 min­utes be­tween Auck­land and Cam­bridge.

“The con­struc­tion of the ex­press­way also pro­vides more im­me­di­ate ben­e­fits, such as real jobs for real peo­ple.”

Mr Wil­son says other re­gional high­lights from this round of the NLTP in­clude:

$485m to be in­vested in main­te­nance, op­er­a­tions and re­newals on the whole net­work, with $300m of this on lo­cal roads, an in­crease of 7.6 per cent on in­vest- ment in the 2009-12 pe­riod.

Be­tween $100m and $150m of NLTP in­vest­ment in new in­fra­struc­ture used on a num­ber of other state high­way and NZTA­part­nered projects across the Waikato re­gion, in­clud­ing the de­vel­op­ment of the Hamil­ton Ring Road.

The re­place­ment of the Ati­a­muri Bridge on State High­way 1, im­prov­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity for HPMV (high pro­duc­tiv­ity mo­tor ve­hi­cles) trav­el­ling be­tween Toko­roa and Taupo which will en­sure road se­cu­rity and im­prove road safety.

$25m for the op­er­a­tion of the Waikato pas­sen­ger trans­port net­work.

De­liv­ery of the Safer Jour­neys ac­tion plan as part of the de­vel­op­ment of the SH2 and Coro­man­del safe sys­tem pro­grammes, which has in­volved con­sid­er­able in­vest­ment in the re­gion’s road safety ed­u­ca­tion ac­tiv­i­ties, and in road polic­ing ac­tiv­i­ties.

These ac­tiv­i­ties will su­port the nu­mer­ous safety and traf­fic im­prove­ment projects pro­grammed to be com­pleted across the re­gion.

Work will continue on pro­vid­ing a more se­cure and re­silient trans­port net­work through the es­tab­lish­ment of a re­gional net­work plan.

The in­vest­ment in the Waikato re­gion is part of a $12.28 bil­lion in­vest­ment in New Zealand’s land trans­port sys­tem set out in the 2012- 15 NLTP in­clud­ing $9.38b from the Na­tional Land Trans­port Fund.

Mr Wil­son said the 2012-15 NLTP fol­lows the di­rec­tion out­lined in the Gov­ern­ment Pol­icy State­ment on land trans­port fund­ing (GPS), with a fo­cus on cre­at­ing trans­port so­lu­tions that will sup­port eco­nomic growth, im­prove safety, pro­vide peo­ple with a range of trans­port choices and de­liver the best pos­si­ble value for money.

‘‘While the 2012-15 NLTP rep­re­sents a sig­nif­i­cant in­vest­ment in New Zealand’s trans­port sys­tem, with the coun­try fac­ing tight eco­nomic con­di­tions, not all pro­posed ac­tiv­i­ties could be funded (from) New Zealand’s econ­omy.

“That doesn’t mean we’ve lost sight of the pres­sures that fund­ing our roads puts on in­di­vid­ual house­holds, we know these are tough times.

‘‘ How­ever, build­ing our econ­omy is im­por­tant even dur­ing a re­ces­sion.

‘‘ En­sur­ing our road­ing net­work is safe, ac­ces­si­ble and se­cure for all road users in­clud­ing freight, is es­sen­tial in achiev­ing this for all New Zealan­ders.

“We’ve also been work­ing closely with our coun­cil part­ners to en­sure that fund­ing is care­fully tar­geted to the ar­eas and the ac­tiv­i­ties where it is needed the most and where it will de­liver the best out­comes for the great­est num­ber of peo­ple in the re­gion.”

Mr Wil­son said the 2012- 15 NLTP has been in­formed by the Waikato Re­gional Trans­port Com­mit­tee.

“We’d like to thank them for their hard work and ef­fort that has led to this sig­nif­i­cant in­vest­ment in the re­gion’s trans­port sys­tem,” he said.

“We will continue to work closely with coun­cils as the NLTP is im­ple­mented over the next three years.”

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