Money for Auckland Roads Peaks in 2007
Money for Auckland Roads Peaks in 2007 then Declines then
17 August 2005
The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development says Transit NZ plans for Auckland’s roads show an initial spurt of increased expenditure until 2007 and then quite a significant decline in spending until 2011.
A graph of Transits 10 year capital improvements forecast clearly shows that planned expenditure for Auckland roads actually declines each year between 2007 and 2011 by which date a start is expected to have been made on the Avondale project.
The main reason for the forecasted decline in spending is that Transit doesn’t expect to be in a position to start the SH20 Avondale project before 2010 because of RMA constraints and the need to gain community support for tolls.
While some projects have been advanced in Transit’s latest forecast update, comparison with the same time last year shows that much of the additional money allocated by Government has been absorbed in increased project costs.
It is pleasing to see better progress than was the case before, but NZCID thinks a greater sense of urgency is needed for critical projects like the Avondale connection.
The reality is that NZ lags significantly behind comparative nations, like Australia, who are investing much more heavily in infrastructure development, building them much quicker, and prospering as a result.
The obvious solution would be for Government to use the powers provided under the RMA amendment act which was recently passed to “call in” strategic projects of national importance and streamline the approval processes.