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Investment in land transport good news

18 May 2006

Investment in land transport good news for New Zealand’s economy

The increase in land transport spending announced in today’s Budget is good news for New Zealand’s national economy, according to the Property Council of New Zealand. Connal Townsend, National Director of the Property Council said the allocation of an additional $1.3 billion to guarantee the state highway programme and to speed up work on major projects will go a long way to relieving congestion in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch in particular.

“Unless we significantly invest in land transport infrastructure, New Zealand will not realise its economic potential. So the extra spending on land transport, which brings to total funding allocation to $13.4 billion over the next five years, will mean that critical roading projects can proceed.

“The Government is right to eliminate the projected shortfall in state highway funding. But the extra $425 million will enable other vital projects to proceed. The Property Council is very pleased with the

Government’s commitment to increase spending on state highways,” Mr Townsend said. Key projects that can proceed because of today’s funding announcement include:

1. a second Manukau Harbour Crossing; 2. Warkworth Improvements Stage 1; 3. Tauranga Eastern Motorway; 4. Christchurch Southern Motorway; and 5. the replacement of Arahura Bridge.

“All of the projects that can proceed thanks of the Government’s funding contribution will benefit the entire community, especially existing residents who suffer the daily grind created by congestion and gridlock.

“Years of underinvestment and poor planning have meant the deferral of vital projects. Today’s funding package means work can commence to provide build vital roads and state highways. The entire community contributes to the demand for land transport infrastructure. The entire community will benefit from the Government’s injection of funding. That’s a fair outcome, which is wholeheartedly welcomed by the Property Council,” Mr Townsend said.

ENDS


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