People concerned about the state of State Highway 2 are being encouraged to attend a public meeting in Omokoroa this weekend.
Organised by Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller and National’s transport spokesperson Jami-Lee Ross, the aim of the meeting is to address concerns over the “lack of investment into the Tauranga Northern Link”.
“Our community has waited patiently for this road for many year, and just as it was due to commence Labour has pulled the rug out from under their feet,” says Todd.
“This is New Zealand’s deadliest stretch of State Highway, yet somehow it doesn’t seem to be a priority for the Government. How many more accidents do we need to see?
“Those who drive this road can’t afford to wait for a change of Government to get the job done, but with Transport Ministers Phil Twyford’s priorities clearly lying in Auckland it’s clear they are going to have to.”
“It is simply not good enough.”
“The local community is rightly concerned over the direction the current Government’s transport policy has taken and what that means for the planned upgrade of the Tauranga Northern Line, one of New Zealand’s most dangerous road,” says Jami-Lee.
“National committed to the stretch of State Highway 2 by investing $520 million in 2016.”
“This included $286 million to upgrade the Tauranga Northern Link, $85 million worth of safety improvements designed to reduce death and serious injury crashes and up to $150 million to provide for future traffic growth, paving the way for an upgrade between Omokoroa and Te Puna.”
“At the election last year we also committed to upgrade the road between Tauranga and Katikati to a four lane expressway engineered to the highest standards to become a much safer and more efficient stretch of highway.”
“In contrast, the current Government has ripped over $5 billion out of the state highway budget, placed further work on upgrading this road under review, has halted the procurement process and has promised only $87 million over five years for safety improvements.”
The public meeting is being held at the Omokoroa Settlers Hall on Sunday September 16 from 4.30pm onwards.