INDEPENDENT NEWS

$178 million transport investment in the West Coast

Published: Tue 7 Sep 2021 10:20 AM
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency today announced $178 million of investment in the West Coast’s land transport system that will deliver a safer, more resilient transport system.
The planned investments are detailed in Ngā Kaupapa Huarahi o Aotearoa | 2021-24 National Land Transport Programme (NLTP), published today by Waka Kotahi - www.nzta.govt.nz/nltp
The planned $178 million investment in the West Coast is part of the Government’s wider $24.3 billion investment in the land transport system across Aotearoa during the next three years.
“Most of the investment on the West Coast during this NLTP period – more than $142 million - will be spent on maintaining and operating the state highway and local road networks,” says James Caygill, Director Regional Relationships for Waka Kotahi.
“This includes investing in maintaining road condition, drainage and structures, and specific river and slope protection works, critical in getting goods to market and keeping the network safe and open.
“Highways in the region are frequently closed by slips, rockfalls and flooding and this investment will help build resilience into the network to reduce the number of closures. A range of projects to improve the safety and reliability of routes are planned at vulnerable locations.”
Mr Caygill says $18 million will be invested in safety across the region, including at high-risk locations along 60kms of SH6 to help save lives, and $14 million on local road and state highway improvements.
Waka Kotahi will also continue to work closely with local government and the Franz Josef community to find sustainable ways to maintain access to the glacier and the town.
“To maintain and strengthen vital freight connections, planning will continue during this NLTP for the replacement of single-lane bridges on the region’s network, the next being at Stoney Creek. This follows the recent replacement of the single-lane wooden Ahaura Bridge with a new two-lane bridge.
“To support the freight network, 21kms of rail track will be re-sleepered, 15kms of track re-railed and other civil and track works carried out to improve the resilience and reliability of the West Coast’s vital rail links.
“During this NLTP, we will also investigate the best use of resilience investment along SH7 Lewis Pass and SH73 Arthur’s Pass to strengthen alternative links to Canterbury and the freight hubs at Christchurch International Airport and Lyttelton Port.”
Full details of the investments being made through the National Land Transport Programme, including detailed regional breakdowns, can be found at www.nzta.govt.nz/nltp

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