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Funding battles shouldn’t hold up transport changes

Megan Woods
MP for Wigram
Christchurch Transport Issues Spokesperson

1 February 2013

Funding battles shouldn’t hold up transport changes

Lengthy disputes over funding cannot be allowed to stall progress for Christchurch’s new transport system, says Labour’s Christchurch Transport Issues spokesperson and MP for Wigram Megan Woods.

“The rebuild is an opportunity for Christchurch to have New Zealand’s most advanced public transport system and to be a world-class city for cycling and walking. Cantabrians want to get moving, not squabble over the cheque.

“The process around the upgrade of Auckland’s transport fell victim to in-fighting which saw the brakes applied to some really worthwhile transport initiatives - all because of unresolved disputes over funding.

“Cantabrians don’t want these kinds of delays,” Megan Woods said.

Releasing her submission on the Christchurch Central Development Unit (CCDU) transport plan, Ms Woods said that while there were some exciting ideas in the plan, details of who would pay for what were missing.

“All the best ideas in the world will count for nothing if funding cannot be sorted out between central and local governments.

“CCDU has to deliver its final plan to Cabinet sometime in March, at which stage the cost of the proposal will be addressed.

“Hopefully a constructive conversation between Christchurch City Council, CERA, NZTA and Environment Canterbury is possible.

As I have said previously getting our transport network right is fundamental to us creating the best city we can. It is not just about vehicles and pedestrians, but also about our social, economic and community recovery.

“That recovery is dependent on getting a modern and sustainable transport network up and running as quickly as possible. For all of our sakes I hope this does not become a drawn-out squabble,” Megan Woods said.

ENDS

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