Thursday, May 23, 2024

Transporting NZ calls on Govt to fast-track roads consent

Transporting New Zealand is urging the Government to put the Roads of National Significance (RONs) at the centre of its impending Fast-track Approvals Bill.

The Bill, which is currently at select committee stage, would provide a one-stop-shop consenting process for major development projects.

Transporting New Zealand Interim Chief Executive, Dom Kalasih says there is a strong case for RONs to be immediately referred to the fast-track’s Expert Panel for assessment.

“The RONs programme has a strong public mandate, having been campaigned on by the National Party in the general election,” said Mr Kalasih.

“These key connections are also highly consistent with the Bill’s eligibility criteria: delivering regionally and nationally infrastructure; presenting strong economic benefits, supporting adaption and resilience, and supporting the primary industries and natural resource development.”

Transporting New Zealand has identified five projects to be prioritised for fast-tracking: An alternative to the  Brynderwyns; Tauranga’s Tauriko West SH 29; Auckland’s East West Link; a Second Mt Victoria Tunnel and Basin Reserve upgrade; and Belfast to Pegasus motorway and Woodend Bypass in Canterbury.

Mr Kalasih says that without fast-tracking, the RONs programme risks “being mired in lengthy consenting delays and impractical consent conditions, demonstrated by the East West Link and Mt Messenger Bypass projects”.

“The RONs programme will strengthen regional connections, improve road safety outcomes, and ensure our roading network is resilient in the fact of increasingly severe weather. Let’s get things underway,” he said.

Latest Articles