Record transport investment in Draft GPS 2021

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineMarch 20, 2020

Transport Minister Phil Twyford has released the Draft Government Policy Statement (GPS) 2021 on land transport, which sets out a record $54 billion investment in transport over the next decade.

The GPS 2021 covers the period 2021/22 to 2030/31 and is the government‘s guide to the NZ Transport Agency for the allocation of more than $4.5 billion a year raised through the National Land Transport Fund towards roads, rail, walking and cycling infrastructure, coastal shipping and public transport.

The draft GPS 2021 outlines four strategic priorities for land transport: safety; better transport options; improving freight connections; and climate change. It supports investments being made through other government investment programmes, such the New Zealand Upgrade Programme and the Provincial Growth Fund.

“The Draft GPS 2021 signals that we will make a record investment in transport of $48 billion on top of our $6.8 billion from the NZ Upgrade Programme, which will help give the transport construction industry certainty during the current global economic headwinds,” said Twyford.

The minister notes there is no proposal to raise petrol tax and that safety remains the government‘s top priority. In the first three years, Road to Zero will invest nearly $3 billion in safety infrastructure like median barriers, safety campaigns, and road policing. The regions will get an extra $1.2 billion in road upgrades through Road to Zero in the first three years.

“We‘re planning to invest $10 billion in our strategy to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on the road by 40%,” said Twyford.

The GPS aims to tackle climate change through ‘unprecedented investments in public transport and walking and cycling improvement‘. “Compared with the previous government, public transport investment is up 163% and walking and cycling is up 227%,” Twyford said.

GPS 2021 will also fund rail and coastal shipping to help take pressure off roads and reduce emissions. “Building alternative transport options for people and freight is a vital part of achieving the Government‘s goal of net zero emissions by 2050.”

The Government is now seeking feedback from local government, the transport sector, community groups and the wider public on the draft GPS 2021. To read the draft GPS 2021 and give your feedback go to: http://www.transport.govt.nz/gps. Engagement on the draft GPS closes 27 April 2020 and the Draft Rail Plan will become final when this GPS is finalised in the second half of 2020.