31 Aug 2018

Government to invest $16.9 billion in transport over next three years

5:46 pm on 31 August 2018

Transport Minister Phil Twyford has announced a $16.9 billion investment in land transport over the next three years.

Transmission Gully construction

Transmission Gully construction Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

The 2018-21 National Land Transport Programme (NLTP), published today by the NZ Transport Agency, marked a invesment increase of 18 percent over the previous programme and a 44 percent increase from 2012/15.

"This record investment in our transport system will help grow our regions, make it easier to get around our cities, and save lives on our roads," Mr Twyford said.

"It will deliver the best results for our transport dollar."

Mr Twyford said safety was a priority in the NLTP and most roading investment will go to the regions, rather than big cities.

"$4.3b of investment will go into programmes and projects that will save lives by preventing accidents or reducting their severity.

"This will include revamping intersections to stop collisions, installing median barriers in high-risk areas, and increasing road policing."

The roads set to receive safety upgrades include Dome Valley, Drury to Paerata, Waihi to Tauranga, and the Hawke's Bay Expressway.

"This reverses the situation in the last three years, when most of roading investment went to the metro centres," he said.

"In total, our neglected regional roads will receive $5.8b of funding, a $600m increase.

"This compares to $5b for roading in metro areas. A further $300m will be invested in the regions in non-roading projects.

"This will create new economic opportunities and make travelling safer."

Mr Twyford said there would also be significant investment to improve freight connections to ports, airports and distribution centres.

Close to $4b would be invested in public transport, rapid transit and rail in the cities.

A further $390 million was earmarked for walking and cycling investment.

"This will fund projects like the AMETI busway, renewal work on Wellington's rail tracks, the Skypath and Seapath walk/cycleways, and investigation of a new commuter ferry service in Queenstown," Mr Twyford said.

Mr Twyford said the government would also invest $3.5b in new state highway projects such as Puhoi to Warkworth, Transmission Gully, the Mt Messenger bypass, the Manawatu Gorge replacement, the Waikato Expressway, and the Christchurch Southern Motorway.

He said a further $2.2b will be invested in state highway maintenance.

The New Zealand Transport Agency has welcomed the government's announcement to invest in New Zealand's roads.

Transport Agency's chief executive Fergus Gammie said the investment would provide a safer, more accessible and more affordable transport system.

"We are committed to giving New Zealanders a range of safe travel options, and creating a transport system that is more resilient and accessible," Mr Gammie said.

"This is an investment in the transport system as a whole, and it aims to make all parts of the system work better together to provide the greatest benefits to people and communities."

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