INDEPENDENT NEWS

Government Funding A Green Light For City Biking Projects

Published: Tue 25 Oct 2022 02:07 PM
Hamilton City Council has welcomed the decision from Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency to help fund biking and scootering improvements across the city’s transport network.
Confirmed in late September, the funding of $1.9 million – of which Waka Kotahi are providing 51% – is for the development and design of the Hamilton Biking and Micromobility Programme. This forms the first part of Waka Kotahi’s endorsement of a $140 million 10-year programme of projects.
The initial funding will benefit the city by helping kickstart Council’s 30-year vision for safe, well-connected biking infrastructure in Hamilton.
Deputy Mayor and Infrastructure and Transport Committee Chair, Angela O’Leary, was delighted to see the funding approved for Hamilton’s biking and micromobility projects.
“This news is very welcome; we have been working hard to increase funding for projects, aimed at improving how all Hamiltonians can move safely and easily around our city,” Deputy Mayor O’Leary said.
“This decision means we will be able to accelerate works aimed at assisting a wide range of road users, and in doing so, help reduce traffic congestion and transport-related emissions.”
Council’s Public Transport and Urban Mobility Manager, Martin Parkes, was responsible for helping deliver the business case to Council and Waka Kotahi and is pleased to see the funding now approved.
“Our Biking and Micromobility Programme will enable us to make significant improvements across different parts of Hamilton Kirikiriroa, helping to make it safer, easier, and faster for people to get where they need to go using active modes of transport,” Parkes said.
“The programme covers biking and scootering but will also benefit people walking. It will both fund new facilities as well as link key parts of our citywide transport networks including biking, walking, and shared paths.”
Waka Kotahi Regional Manager System Design, Jess Andrew, is also pleased with the funding decision.
“Waka Kotahi NZ Transport is working in partnership with Hamilton City Council to improve biking outcomes and support a strong walking and cycling programme while also enabling better access for other forms of micromobility,” Andrews said.
“Together, we’re committed to supporting the Government’s transport priorities and the New Zealand Emissions Reduction Plan to create a healthier and more accessible city for everyone.”
The initial $1.9 million will fund the development and design for new infrastructure and facilities across the city, as well as provide budget for different levels of community engagement in delivering the programme over the short term.
The Hamilton Biking and Micromobility Programme aligns with Council’s recently updated transport strategy, Access Hamilton Ara Kootuitui Kirikiriroa.
This funding is part of the 2021-24 National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) announced in September 2021, under which Waka Kotahi guaranteed funding of $163.5 million for transport projects in Hamilton. Under the NLTP, Waka Kotahi co-invests 51% of the cost of approved projects with Council funding the remaining 49%.

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