Infrastructure investment welcomed
The confirmation of large scale infrastructure investment in the lower North Island will boost connectivity and resilience in the region, Kāpiti Coast District Mayor K Gurunathan says.
The Government today announced where it will spend $12 billion of new infrastructure funding, with at least $6.8 billion committed to transport.
Funded projects include the four lane highway from Ōtaki to north of Levin by 2029 and a $211 million investment in the region’s rail network by 2025.
Road construction is expected to start in 2025.
“This is great news for Kāpiti and the wider region and will bring significant improvements for our people, communities and businesses, although an earlier start to construction would make sense,” Mayor Gurunathan says.
“A north-south road connection between Ōtaki and Levin that connects with the Kāpiti expressways and the forthcoming Transmission Gully will reduce travel times, make doing business easier and, crucially, improve our resilience.
“Residents in both Kāpiti and our neighboring districts have been crying out for this project to go ahead for years. We welcome this commitment to action.”
Ōtaki Councillor and transport portfolio holder James Cootes says better road links will also make getting around the region safer.
“The difference in driving experience between the new roads we have and our older ones is stark,” Mr Cootes says.
“It will be great to have some improved safety elements on this regionally and nationally important link. With growth in both Kāpiti and Horowhenua set to continue in the coming years it is absolutely vital we have the infrastructure we need to manage this and maximise opportunities.”
Mr Cootes says more investment in rail would have been welcomed.
“Late last year Greater Wellington Regional Council put forward a $415 million business case to boost capacity as our communities grow. We supported this proposal and look forward to seeing how this might progress.”