26 April, 2001
Moves to progress Transmission Gully and improvements to State Highway 1 north of Wellington are already well under way Transport Minister Mark Gosche said today.
"Transmission Gully is a large project requiring alternative methods of funding if it is to be built sooner."
"Government is about to consider new options for transport projects that communities want fast tracked."
"However people need to understand the regulatory framework that kicks into play when new roads are built anywhere in New Zealand."
The current planning requirement for the Gully requires eight years of ecological mitigation works to be carried out before construction on the motorway can begin.
"This is an RMA matter and the route and this requirement are already subject to an appeal to the Environment Court including appeals from local residents who vehemently oppose the proposed southern terminal of the proposed gully."
"In the meantime Transit is purchasing properties for the route - so far 13 of the 62 properties needed have been bought."
"Transit was congratulated in the recent Coroners Report for making State Highway 1 safer ¡V millions have been spent and I would like to highlight the specific improvements that are planned."
- Paremata to Plimmerton: Severe congestion, safety issues in Mana. Transit has proposed constructing a second bridge and operating peak time clearways on the existing road, with traffic lights to improve pedestrian safety. The resource consent for this project is subject to an Environment Court appeal, which was heard in August 2000, the decision of the court is pending.
- Plimmerton to Pukerua Bay: Worst accident rate on the highway. Transit is constructing a realignment and four-laning, including median barrier, for the highway that will be completed in August 2001.
- Pukerua Bay: Congestion and safety issues. Transit has proposed a bypass for Pukerua Bay.
- Pukerua Bay-Paekakariki: Safety issues. Transit has instituted low cost safety improvements to this section of highway.
- Paekakariki: Safety issues. Work is to commence later this year to improve safety at the key intersection. Transit has a proposal for a longer-term solution, including grade separation south of Paekakariki.
- Paekakariki- McKays Crossing: No serious congestion, safety issues. Transit has a proposal to realign the bend south of McKays Crossing.
- McKays Crossing: Significant congestion and some safety issues. Transit is involved in detail design for an overbridge to remove the rail crossing and pursuing resource consents to enable construction to start in the next year. This project is being designed to ultimately connect with Transmission Gully.