ARC welcomes clarity on transport package
ARC welcomes clarity on transport governance package
30 March 2004
The Auckland Regional Council welcomes today’s announcements from the Government as major step towards addressing Auckland’s transport problems through more funding from Government, aligning funding with the regional transport strategy, and the establishment of a regional transport entity to implement the strategy.
The new entity, Auckland Regional Transport Authority (ARTA), and a regional asset holding entity, Auckland Regional Holdings (ARH), will both be established under the ARC once legislation is passed.
Council Chair Gwen Bull, who was in Wellington yesterday, said that the announcement has provided the ARC with more clarity to allow it and the rest of the region to get on with making things happen.
“We have been making good progress over recent months,” she said. “We now have the start of the legislation that ARTA and ARH will operate within, but there is still a lot of work to do to ensure that both entities are established by July.”
“We are entering a significant transition period and the region now has the framework it needs to work together to bring a stronger regional and more integrated approach to addressing Auckland’s transport problems.”
Over the coming months, the ARC will be working closely with Infrastructure Auckland to allow assets to be transferred to ARH once it is established. Assets to be transferred include an 80% shareholding in Ports of Auckland Limited. “There is a lot of debate going on at present about the future of a considerable amount of waterfront land, and the sale of Westhaven and Hobson West,” says Chair Gwen Bull. “As representatives of the wider regional community, the ARC will need to balance a range of public interests, both as a future shareholder and as a regional organisation.”
The ARC will also be working with the Establishment Chair of ARTA, who will be appointed by the Government to provide oversight of the work needed to establish ARTA, to ensure that the new organisation is up and running as soon as possible. The Establishment Chair is expected to be appointed by the end of April.
Gwen Bull also said that the ARC is working with the region’s local authorities, and other parties, to achieve long-term benefits for the people of the region.