INDEPENDENT NEWS

Govt transport programme puts Melling at risk

Published: Fri 31 Aug 2018 04:38 PM
Chris Bishop
MP for Hutt South
31 August 2018
Govt transport programme puts Melling at risk
Hutt South MP Chris Bishop says the Government’s new National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) is bad news for important Hutt transport projects, particularly a new Melling interchange.
“Two weeks ago Phil Twyford turned up for a photo-op at Melling and said the project ‘certainly ticks all the boxes’. It must be embarrassing for him that his own NLTP today doesn’t list the project as occurring in the next three years, and says it is ‘being re-evaluated’.
“This is terrible news for the Hutt Valley. The new interchange is vital for so many reasons – safety, congestion, and for the revitalisation of the CBD.
“National committed to this project in mid-2017 and it’s very disappointing it’s now under threat by Labour’s new policy settings, which consist of a $5 billion cut in state highway funding to make way for billions of dollars in investment and taxes for trams in Auckland.
“There is also bad news for two projects critical projects for the Hutt - the Petone to Grenada Link Road and the Cross Valley Link.
“Petone to Grenada is now all-but dead. NZTA recently issued a statement saying a ‘shift in Government transport priorities prompts fresh look at P2G’ confirming it has been essentially consigned to the dustbin. P2G would significantly add to regional roading resilience in the region, while unlocking productivity and commercial opportunities for the Hutt Valley.
“P2G is a vital project for the Hutt, and should be developed contemporaneously with the Cross Valley Link (CVL) road in the Hutt to link to the east of the Hutt Valley where heavy industry is located. This would take pressure off the already jammed Esplanade. The CVL was first mooted decades ago and it’s time has come.
“Sadly despite much political rhetoric the Cross Valley Link doesn’t appear even appear in the Council’s Long Term Plan, and doesn’t have a hope of being funded under the Government’s new NLTP.”

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