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Goff welcomes CRL funding decision

Goff welcomes CRL funding decision

Auckland Mayoral Candidate Phil Goff has welcomed the Government’s decision to bring forward funding for the City Rail Link.

While the Government has said it will consider what share it will pay, Mr Goff says it should consider the project as being the same as a Road of National Significance which the Government funds in full.

“The CRL is a vital component in helping meet Auckland’s transport needs. Rail patronage grew by 22 percent last year. The CRL will mean rail can double its capacity. It will allow much quicker and more frequent services.

“Bringing the project forward is essential. The Britomart Terminal is currently a bottleneck and it will reach full capacity by 2018.

“The Government’s commitment to infrastructure is vital. If Council has to meet the earlier suggested half share of the cost of the CRL, that by itself would potentially expand Auckland’s borrowing capacity.

“As welcome as the CRL is, that by itself is only one part of relieving Auckland’s traffic congestion.

“To prevent the City collapsing into gridlock as its population grows by a further half million by 2036, other infrastructure is vital.

“We need light rail, more busways, walk and cycleways which among other things can provide a safe alternative for students to get to school without having to be driven and roading improvements.

“Every transport report I have read acknowledges that at current levels of investment, congestion will get worse. Already the Productivity Commission reports that Auckland’s congestion costs Aucklanders and New Zealand one and a half billion dollars a year. That is money down the drain, a total waste.

“If elected Mayor, I will be committed to ensuring Auckland and Central Government work constructively together. If Auckland doesn’t succeed, with 35 percent of the country’s population and production, New Zealand can’t succeed. It was good to see the Prime Minister recognise that,” Phil Goff said.

ENDS

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