Govt pledges $520M to Tauranga roads

  • 22/04/2016

The Government is pledging roading projects to ease congestion and improve freight links for Tauranga worth $520 million over the next decade.

The largest project, starting construction in 2018, will be the $286 million Tauranga Northern Link.

It will create a four-lane shortcut between State Highway 2 (SH2) to the Highway 29 toll road linking approaches to Tauranga with the main route from the coastal port city to Hamilton.

Another $85 million of safety improvements will also begin between Te Puna and Waihi.

Still 10 years away, but earmarked for up to $150 million of spending in the New Zealand Transport Agency's budget, is a project to extend the northern link between Te Puna and Omokoroa.

"A business case for extending the TNL from Te Puna to Omokoroa is expected to be completed toward the middle of next decade," said Transport Minister Simon Bridges.

It aims to reduce traffic through the townships of Bethlehem and Te Puna, provide a better commute into the city, and support industries in the Western Bay.

"We know that transport is an enabler of economic activity so we need to continue unlocking key congestion points to get people and freight moving efficiently around the country," Mr Bridges said.

The safety improvement work, which will start this year, will target high-risk areas on SH2 between Waihi and Te Puna, including median and side barriers, and intersection improvements.