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Decongestion can realise NZs economic potential

Decongestion can realise NZs economic potential

The decongestion of Auckland roads is critical to freeing the movement of freight and realising New Zealand’s economic potential, says Road Transport Forum Chief Executive Ken Shirley.

“NZIER’s report released today is a rather eye-watering assessment of the costs to New Zealand of Auckland’s congestion problems,” says Shirley. “An annual productivity loss of in excess of $1 billion is a serious problem that requires urgent attention.”

“As the report points out 16.2 percent of New Zealand’s freight movements are within Auckland and 25 percent of freight have an origin or destination in Auckland, so we are talking about a significant chunk of the overall logistics picture.”

“This report is particularly useful because it encourages evidenced based decision-making and goes beyond the usual political whims that so often contaminate discussion around transport.”

“However, the report is very clear that there is no single silver bullet to dealing with Auckland’s congestion issues. The answer lies in a combination of multi-modal solutions and demand management strategies.”

“Roading projects such as the East-West Link, a third or even fourth main rail line, central rail loop and congestion charging all have a role to play in freeing up traffic and freight movements.”

The Road Transport Forum implores local and central government to speed up the implementation of such initiatives.

“Congestion charging, for example, is something that could be accelerated right away. As the report highlights the need for decongestion measures is now, not in 6-10 years’ time.”

“Finally, I congratulate those organisations that commissioned this report, particularly our member association, National Road Carriers, for highlighting how pressing the need is to deal with Auckland’s congestion issues,” says Shirley.

ENDS

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