Cyclone Gabrielle: Government outlines how it will reconnect Coromandel

The government has revealed how it will reconnect Coromandel peninsula and has decided it will build a bridge. 

Transport Minister Michael Wood announced on Tuesday that following advice, building a bridge will be the fastest, most resilient solution.

"Coromandel communities and businesses need certainty that the investment will be made to repair and rebuild State Highway 25A. Today I can give that commitment."

The Transport Minister said the Government has committed to funding the bridge "straight away" and made the assurances the government "will make every possible effort to get the road open as soon as it is safe to do so".

Minister Wood said by early June a contractor will be ready to begin construction, with the bridge expected to be done by early next year.

"I know that for many in the community this will be a long time to wait to have this key connection restored. We’ve been working hard with the Thames-Coromandel District Council to repair and improve local roads ahead of winter and can confirm that the Tapu-Coroglen road will be open to light vehicles next month providing some extra connectivity across the peninsula. We’re also continuing work to repair and fully reopen other key roads such as SH25."

Minister Wood will be working with local government and communites to create an economic support package for businesses that rely on the direct route onto the peninsula. 

"We are acutely aware of the impact this road being closed has on businesses and will support them through this tough period."

Four-hundred businesses have received grants of up to $40,000 and tax relief for weather-ravaged businesses. 

"We’re also supporting families through temporary accommodation services, and have provided Civil Defence payments to 2421 people around the region."