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Committee Condemns Auckland To Gridlock

23 March 2005

ARC’s Regional Land Transport Committee Condemns Auckland To Another 10 Years Of Gridlock

The Auckland Business Forum today slammed the Regional Land Transport Committee decision yesterday to adopt a roading package that means completion of the SH20 western ring route is pushed out well beyond 2016 at the earliest.

“The decision condemns Aucklanders to daily gridlock traffic for the foreseeable future,” said Co-Forum chair Michael Barnett.

To complete the western corridor by 2012 and release projected benefits to Auckland’s economy of $800 million a year, four sections need to be completed - Mt Roskill, Manukau extension to SH1, a widened Mangere Bridge and the Avondale section linking to the northwestern motorway.

However, the RLTC yesterday agreed to only three of the projects proceeding before 2016, leaving Avondale off the list.

“The RLTC decision is stupid, stupid, stupid,” said Mr Barnett:

- There is now no way that Auckland can urgently complete the western corridor and give motorway traffic an option to avoid the Spaghetti Junction and central Auckland;

- The residents of the western suburbs are condemned to another 10-years of “rat running” by through traffic clogging their local streets; and,

- The growth of Auckland’s economy will be ham strung and Aucklanders traffic frustrations have been locked in to continue indefinitely as a result of this decision.

Auckland’s transport solution involves a series of projects which together will give the region a coherent network. Without one of the last but key bits of the basic jigsaw Auckland is once again successfully shooting itself in the foot - and that’s a disgrace.

The Business Forum is looking at options to get the decision re-considered - “Our future economy is at risk and that is unacceptable to the business community,” said Mr Barnett.

ENDS


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