Roads of National Significance moving at pace

Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news that the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) is getting on with the Government’s first seven Roads of National Significance (RoNS) projects expected to begin procurement, enabling works and construction in the next three years.

“Delivering on commitments in our coalition agreements, we are moving at pace to progress a new generation of RoNS across the country to support economic growth and get people and freight to where they want to go, quickly and safely. There is plenty of work to be done, and I’m pleased to see NZTA taking the first steps to deliver upon the Government’s ambitious plan for New Zealand’s transport network,” Mr Brown says.

The Government is prioritising 17 Roads of National Significance which were recently highlighted in the Government Policy Statement on Land Transport (GPS).

“NZTA has now appointed project teams to accelerate consenting, property acquisition, and design. They are engaging construction partners to progress the first phase of seven RoNS projects, with an aim to begin procurement, enabling works and construction in the next three years.

“Takitimu North Link Stage 1 is already underway with Ōtaki to North of Levin to begin construction next year. NZTA is now adding to the Roads of National Significance pipeline with the next phase of projects which include Belfast to Pegasus (including the Woodend Bypass), the Hawke’s Bay Expressway, SH1 Cambridge to Piarere, SH29 Tauriko, Takitimu North Link Stage 2, Mill Road, and Warkworth to Wellsford.

“NZTA intends to approach the Northland Roads of National Significance as a single strategic corridor, with Warkworth to Wellsford the first section being focussed on.

“In addition to the first phase of seven RoNS projects, investigations and project planning for the remaining eight will also start in the next three years. We are committed to delivering a significant pipeline of transport infrastructure which will unlock economic growth and productivity across New Zealand and help Kiwis get where they need to go quickly and safely.

“New Zealand needs fast-track legislation to ensure that we have a pipeline of consented infrastructure projects, such as the Roads of National Significance. The previous government abruptly stopped that infrastructure pipeline, which left us with Warkworth to Wellsford as the only new major roading project with a consent.

“Investments in these essential corridors will make it easier for New Zealanders to get where they need to go, create a more productive and resilient transport network, drive economic growth, and unlock land for thousands of new houses.

“The RoNS projects previously built by National are some of New Zealand’s most successful State Highway corridors, reducing congestion and improving safety. Moving at pace to build a new generation of RoNS signals our Government’s focus on prioritising investments that deliver real value to commuters and businesses.”