Ohariu MP Peter Dunne says he is happy to see Transmission Gully is finally making progress and he is looking forward to the start of work.
The proposed inland motorway between Linden and McKays crossing is currently the subject of a Board of Inquiry which is expected to announce its decision by June.
Mr Dunne says he first started pushing for the road in 1991 and, so is pleased that after more than two decades concrete action is not far off.
“I feel it’s on track. The Board of Inquiry is the last big hurdle. But it’s not quite plain sailing. But we are getting to a point where we are likely to see some finality."
While the route was given priority under the former Labour-led Government, it did not progress because of a $600 million funding shortfall which the region was required to close.
However, Mr Dunne says the National-led Government’s decision to include Transmission Gully in its Roads of National Significance programme has meant the route will be fully funded by central government. “There should not be any funding obstacles.”
Mr Dunne says he is comfortable with the proposed route starting in Linden, rather than the Takapu valley. While in places the road will be steeper than the Ngauranga Gorge, Mr Dunne says the route’s design is feasible and realistic.
He says the Board of Inquiry process – which has effectively fast-tracked the project – is appropriate, given the length of time it has taken to get to this stage.
“I’m just keen to get the board’s decision. I hope to see construction start in 2015.”