How much of the whole Wellington region’s transport budget would be needed to deliver the Let’s Get Wellington Moving (LGWM) package is an immediate question now that the plan is out, says the AA.
The AA welcomes the release of the long-awaited plan, which has put forward some bold ideas for Wellingtonians’ to consider, covering the future of the city’s public transport, roads, and walking and cycling.
“We need to be taking a wide view looking at all the transport modes that Wellingtonians’ use in their daily life,” says Geordie Cassin, Chairman of the AA’s Wellington District Council.
“This isn’t about just focussing on one big project like light rail or a new tunnel and thinking that will fix all Wellington’s transport issues.”
One of the AA’s immediate concerns is how the LGWM package will be funded, and where this leaves funding for the rest of the region’s transport projects.
“The simple fact is there isn’t enough transport funding to go around nationally,” Mr Cassin said.
“We have some serious concerns at how much money will be left for the rest of the Wellington region if the full Let’s Get Wellington Moving proposal goes ahead.
“Is there enough money to cover basic maintenance of roads and public transport services, let alone transport improvements that will be needed as our region grows?
“We think officials in Hutt Valley, Porirua, Kapiti and the Wairarapa will be looking at this with some caution.”
Recent decisions to postpone major projects such as improvements to the Melling intersection on SH2 and plan a Petone to Grenada link road show how stretched the transport budget already is. The projects cannot get funds to progress, even though they have been judged to be needed for the region.
“It’s taken a long time to get to this point but there is still a lot more work ahead to consider what’s being proposed and weigh up some complex issues,” Mr Cassin said.
“Wellington’s transport future is too important to jump to quick conclusions. The Let’s Get Wellington Moving plan has just been released and it’d be foolish to think that it will have all the solutions right now.
For more information contact:
AA Wellington District Chair
New Zealand Automobile Association
M. 027 208 5583