December 7 2001 Media Statement
Auckland Gets Transport Advocate
Auckland is to get its own government-appointed representative to work on Auckland transport issues, Transport Ministers
Mark Gosche and Judith Tizard announced today.
Grant Kirby is to the fill the new position, to be known as Auckland’s Transport Advocate.
“Grant will be responsible for making our plans for Auckland transport happen. He will work with all parties to remove
the barriers to progressing those plans,” said the two Ministers.
He will also keep aware of other exercises underway that directly or indirectly influence progress on Auckland transport
“Grant will report directly to me and Judith Tizard,” Mr Gosche said.
Ms Tizard said Mr Kirby had been involved with Auckland local government issues for many years.
“I am sure his appointment will be welcomed by the region.”
Mr Kirby, who is a land surveyor, was involved in Auckland local government administration at a senior level before
1993. Since then he has worked as a consultant specialising in local government issues. In that role he has managed many
large projects, including as project director of the Britomart project. He was also appointed by the government as
Commissioner of the Rodney District Council and was heavily involved with Auckland local bodies in that role.
The announcement was made at a sod-turning ceremony at Grafton Gully. The ceremony marked the first step of a $2 million
early works project to prepare the site for the major construction contract. The project is expected to cost $68 million
in total and the main construction programme will be underway next month.
“The Port of Auckland is the hub of the city’s commercial activity but the route to the Port has not been up to scratch
for a long time. This has major implications for our export and import industries, so this work represents a major
advance in improving Auckland’s roading network,” said Mr Gosche.