Waterview Tunnel Plan Confirmed Despite Protests

 

tunnel

For those following the controversy over the Waterview connection for  the  Western Ring Route, National’s planned surface / tunnel plan is definitely going ahead despite the political and public p rotests.
The NZ Transport Agency board has just confirmed the combined surface / tunnel alignment, won’t change as a result of all the public consultation which began in May.
No real surprise there.

Transport minister Steven Joyce, welcoming the decision, says  the $1.4 billion project “strikes a fair balance between the needs of the local community and those of the country and the economy.”
In January the Minister asked officials to investigate alternative options for building the Waterview Connection after a business case prepared for the previous government released in December showed the total cost of the proposed twin tunnel option was $2.77 billion. The Transport Agency claimed that the Waterview Connection could be built for considerably less and selected the $1.4 billion alignment.
Says the Minister:

“Given these numbers and the increased government commitment to state highway investment through the National Land Transport Fund, the project will be built using the fund.  This means it won’t be financed by borrowing, as envisaged by the previous government. While this option is considerably less expensive than the $2.77 billion bored tunnel plan, it is still New Zealand’s most expensive project by a considerably margin. It will also provide  better links for business and freight between key industrial hubs in the cities of Manukau, Auckland, Waitakere and North Shore.”

The proposed route includes building the motorway as a tunnel under Great North Road and in a second tunnel under the Avondale Heights.  The resulting underground sections represent around 60% of the road’s length. The route chosen protects the Oakley Creek Reserve and the Phyllis Street Reserve.
It was a major issue during the Mt Albert by-election with Labour and Greens joining in public protests.

 
 
 

2 Comments

 
  1. Jezza says:

    So much spin I’m dizzy… Not financed through borrowing even though the government is borrowing $9 - $12 billion a year over the next few years…

    There is no way they are building this for $1.4 billion unless the VPT comes in far less than $440 million, waterview is far more complicated and 11 times the length…

  2. jarbury says:

    I thought VPT and the Newmarket Viaduct widening were meant to fix congestion in the CMJ. If they do, then why do we need this to fix the fixed congestion? If not, then why are we bothering with those projects?

 

Leave a Comment

 




XHTML: You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>