Wellington Needs the Whole LGWM Deal - Chamber
Wellington Chamber of Commerce welcomes the endorsement of the Let’s Get Wellington Moving project by both the regional and city councils but is disappointed they didn’t vote to include the whole plan.
Chief Executive John Milford says the extra tunnel at The Terrace and the cut-and-cover of State Highway One through the top of Cuba Street are vital components of Option D, which was favoured by a vast majority of businesses and by the public.
"But these have been left out, and that’s a shame.
"They’ve done half the job, and that means those two links remain over 30-years down the road.
"As reluctant major funders for this project, they could have and should have done better, but didn’t.
"Transport is a major issue for voters in the upcoming local body elections and we will continue to hold councillors to account.
"This was a chance for councillors to stand up and show they’re serious about getting a better transport deal after the Government’s announcement put all the early priority on buses, which we welcome, but relegated improvements for motorists to the distant future.
"At least there were two regional councillors, Ian McKinnon and Daran Ponter, who acknowledged the inadequacy of the plan by successfully putting forward a motion noting that a 10-year delay for Basin Reserve improvements and the duplicate Mt Victoria Tunnel is unacceptable, and that the council works with LGWM to identify ways to bring those components forward.
"It’s a pity that city councillors didn’t see fit to follow suit, because the only way we will get this to work is if we present a united local front to central government.
"Business will continue to watch and to advocate on this and seek reassurance that these projects will proceed with all haste.
"With congestion increasing by the day, we cannot afford anything less."