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Wellington will benefit from Govt transport spending: Mayor

Thursday 28 June 2018

Wellington Mayor Justin Lester is backing the Government’s spending on transport measures aimed at boosting the economy and easing congestion.

Cabinet has approved a new 10-year plan for transport which, it says, will unlock record investment in the roads, rail and public transport.

The Government Policy Statement (GPS) 2018 on Land Transport increases investment from $3.6 billion in 2017/18 to a record $4 billion in 2018/19. It will continue to rise to $4.7 billion a year by 2027/28, Minister of Transport Phil Twyford announced today.

The Government will also invest $700 million this year in specific projects and councils will invest a further $1 billion a year.

Mr Twyford says more commuters will be able to leave the car at home because of investment in public transport, walking, and cycling.

The Mayor says the approach fits perfectly with Wellington City Council’s own goals.

Let’s Get Wellington Moving, a joint initiative between the city and regional councils and the NZ Transport Agency, will later this year reveal its plans to reduce congestion and make Wellington a more liveable city.

“We want to give people more options to take public transport, cycle or walk so people also have the option of leaving the car at home,” the Mayor says.

“Mass-transit south of the central train station would also add to the city’s already well-used public transport system.

“We look forward to working with the Government on how to make our plans work and ensure Wellington continues to be the most liveable city in the world.”

The Government Policy Statement also includes a series of reporting measures to track the progress of transport goals, including reliability of freight and average passenger travel times on regional networks, tourist routes and metropolitan areas.

“Wellington has a good history of public transport, both in usage and variety,” the Mayor says.

“It is imperative trains, buses and light rail run on time so people can have confidence in using them. We cannot be a world-class city without reliable public transport.”

The Mayor says he also supports the Government’s spending in the regions.

“Wellington relies on the areas to the north for a lot of its economy. A more efficient regional network means more export and import activity can flow through the capital.”

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