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At last! Auckland speaking with one voice

17 January 2003

Media Release

“At last! Auckland speaking with one voice to solve transport gridlock?”

Today’s Auckland Mayoral Forum workshop to develop a united position and strategy to fund faster completion of the region’s transport networks is a long overdue initiative.

Michael Barnett, Chief Executive of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce, said it has been obvious for years that Auckland urgently needs to complete its roading and public transport networks, but a funding shortfall has been holding back progress.

“Today’s Mayoral Forum initiative to seek ways to fund network completion from all available sources, and then advocate this to Wellington, is a logical step forward.”

“If Wellington can’t or won’t provide the money needed to solve Auckland’s transport issues, we must think outside the square and bring forward our own solution,” he said.

“At the end of the day, Auckland has enough assets around which, if properly organized, could assist in the funding of a multi-billion dollar package.

Mr Barnett, who is also chairman of the Auckland Business Forum, said it was especially important that today’s workshop expressed an intention for the Mayors to join forces with private sector interests who will be included in the advocacy process to Wellington.

“With all Auckland groups and interests singing from the same song sheet on the solution to this issue, Auckland starts the year with a more united sense of shared purpose and optimism than ever before.”


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