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Greens, Labour co-host Smart Transport Conference

Greens, Labour co-host Smart Transport Conference

What: Smart Transport for New Zealand Conference (programme attached)
When: Tomorrow, Friday 19 August, 12:30 - 5:30pm
Where: Beehive Theatrette, Parliament Buildings, Wellington
Who:
* Green Party Transport spokesperson Gareth Hughes, Co-leader Russel Norman
* Labour MPs Shane Jones, Jacinda Ardern, & Phil Twyford
* Dr Paul Mees, Senior Lecturer in Transport Planning at RMIT University, Melbourne and author of Transport for Suburbia: Beyond the Automobile Age
* WCC Mayor Celia Wade Brown, Local Government New Zealand president and Mayor of Hastings District Lawrence Yule
* Dr. Rhema Vaithianathan, Assoc. Professor of Economics, University of Auckland
* Steven Selwood, Chief Executive, New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development
* Bill Rosenberg, Economist and Director of Policy, NZCTU
* Transportation and urban planning experts

Green and Labour MPs are co-hosting a transport conference entitled Smart Transport for New Zealand at Parliament this Friday and Saturday.

Over 100 people and numerous groups have signed up to attend the conference that will feature presentations from transport and urban planning experts, specialists in economics, and representatives from local government and the New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development.

The Keynote speaker will be Paul Mees, Senior Lecturer in Transport Planning at RMIT University, Melbourne and author of Transport for Suburbia: Beyond the Automobile Age.

"New Zealanders want and need smart green transport investment," said Green Party transport spokesperson Gareth Hughes.

"The Government continues to waste billions on new motorways, but there are transport alternatives that deliver healthier and more vibrant communities and cheaper, easier and greener ways of getting around.

"We invited the Minister of Transport Steven Joyce, or other representatives from the National party, to attend the conference, but unfortunately they declined, I think because they don't want to hear that their motorway plans aren't smart.

"Smarter transport will be better for our economy and create more jobs and it is also better for our environment," said Mr Hughes.

"Out of the approximately 3 billion dollars that this Government has allocated to transport projects across New Zealand, only 0.7% goes into public transport infrastructure. For a country that prides itself on being at the forefront of global innovation and conservation, this is simply unacceptable," said Labour list MP based in Auckland Central, Jacinda Ardern.

"Public transportation in New Zealand has long been neglected and it's important that we start looking at ways in which we can build smarter transport networks in order to boost economic competitiveness and productivity.

"It's time that the Government realised that investing into smarter transport solutions could have some positive long-term effects. Not only are we investing in infrastructure which will make our cities more liveable, we're also preserving New Zealand's environment and living up to our clean, green image" said Ms Ardern.

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