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Transit completes consultation on ALPURT B2

Auckland Regional Office Media Release

3 September 2004

Transit completes consultation on ALPURT B2 as a toll road

Transit New Zealand today confirmed it is now in a position to apply for upfront construction funding and an Order in Council for ALPURT B2 as a toll road, following the completion of consultation on the proposal.

At its meeting on Wednesday, the Transit Board accepted the four recommendations of the Consultation Hearing Panel Report issued last week, and considered the wider findings of the Panel. It also reviewed the results of the community support survey, which showed that almost two-thirds of respondents were supportive of the proposal for ALPURT B2 as a toll road, with just over a third opposed.

The Transit Board resolved that on the basis of the combined results of the consultation recommendations and the affected communities survey it would proceed to finalise its toll proposal for consideration by the Minister of Transport.

“The results of wide public consultation, which included hearings in front of a panel, and the results of the more narrowly targeted community survey are both important,” said Transit’s Auckland regional manager Wayne McDonald.

“All of this information will be included in the material presented to the Minister of Transport for consideration in determining whether or not he recommends an Order in Council giving permission to construct and operate ALPURT B2 as a toll road.”

Transit plans to have final documentation ready for the Minister by early December.

In accepting the Consultation Hearings Panel’s recommendations, Transit is committed to:

Publishing a summary of all information on the toll road proposal required for the Order In Council, explaining the context and relevance of each part to the overall process (October) Continuing to work with the Rodney District Council on the management of and improvements to the current SH1which will be the alternative free route when the ALPURT B2 toll road is opened; Investigating practical payment alternatives for infrequent users; and Ensuring that the proposed location for toll collection facilities avoids adverse effects, particularly obtrusive noise and/or light

“In addition to its recommendations, the Panel also made a number of findings that indicate there is a need for further clarification around the project and we are committed to providing that clarification moving forward”, said Mr. McDonald.

Under the Land Transport Management Act 2003, Transit must apply to the Minister of Transport for an Order in Council to establish a toll road. In considering the application, the Minister must take into account a number of matters, including the consultation conducted and whether he is satisfied there is a high degree of support for the toll road from ‘affected communities’. A community support survey was conducted to specifically capture the views of this group, and has been in addition to the extensive consultation process. The survey results showed that just under a third of the total (32%) of respondents were in strong support of the proposal, just under a third (31%) were somewhat in support. Just over a third (35%) either somewhat (12%) or strongly opposed (23%).

“We are pleased with the overall results of the survey, which indicate that many in the community support the proposal and want to enjoy the benefits of the new road sooner by advancing ALPURT B2 through tolling,” said Mr. McDonald.

Mr McDonald said now that consultation was complete and the Board had accepted the recommendations of the hearing panel Transit could apply to Transfund New Zealand for its share of funding for the project.

Transit is hopeful the Transfund Board will begin consideration of the funding application when it meets at the end of September.

The full reports on the consultation and the survey are available on www.transit.govt.nz/alpurt_B2/ “Consultation”. They are:

Consultation Hearing Panel Report to Transit New Zealand - (including a summary of submissions)

Survey report: Assessing the Level of Support from Affected Communities

ENDS

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