Infrastructure supports much of our daily lives – it’s the roads we drive on, the schools our children learn in and it delivers our electricity and water. It is a key driver of the economy, and public services. And investing in it creates jobs and offers training opportunities.
Since being elected in 2008 the National-led Government has committed billions of dollars for infrastructure. Investment in modern infrastructure is a priority and Government capital spending over the next five years is forecast to total $32 billion with major investments in transport, schools, hospitals, defence, and housing.
In Budget 2017 we announced an $11 billion increase in new infrastructure spending over the next four budgets.
Our infrastructure spending continues to boost productivity and help provide the public services we need for a growing country.
For example, the Waterview tunnel will open to traffic shortly, in the biggest change to Auckland’s transport system since the opening of the Harbour Bridge in 1959.
It is the final link in the $2.4 billion Western Ring Route – one of the Government’s seven Roads of National Significance. The Western Ring Route is a 48 kilometre motorway alternative to State Highway 1 and the Auckland Harbour Bridge, bypassing the city to the west. It will also help people get to and from the airport.
It is expected to produce wider economic benefits worth $430 million, through improved productivity and reduced travel time, and create more than 18,000 jobs.
The Western Ring Route is only one of many transport infrastructure projects this Government is investing in to support a growing economy.
There are significant transport projects under way right across New Zealand. For example, the northern and southern motorway improvements in Auckland, the Huntly and Hamilton sections of the Waikato Expressway, and the motorways into and around Christchurch.
Earlier this year we opened the $630 million Mackays to Peka Peka Expressway on the Kapiti Coast. The 18km, four-lane expressway opened four months ahead of schedule, delivering a long awaited road to the Wellington region. It is part of the Wellington Northern Corridor, one of the Government’s Roads of National Significance, identified as key to economic growth.
There are also many other provincial projects, including the Whirokino bridge replacement in Manawatū-Whanganui, the Awakino Gorge to Mt Messenger corridor in Taranaki, and the Mōtū Bridge replacement in Gisborne. This Government expects to open 540 new-lane kilometres of State highways over the next four years.
As a small, exporting nation, New Zealand relies on a robust transport network to move people, goods, and services safely and efficiently. This is what National is working hard to achieve and keep New Zealand moving and growing.
MP for Bay of Plenty
Authorized by Todd Muller, 3/9 Domain Rd, Papamoa