Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development
The delivery of Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) supported road upgrades in Tairāwhiti is proving a major boost for the region, Regional Economic Development Shane Jones says.
There has been significant progress on the delivery of the $137 million Tairāwhiti roading package, which was announced in September 2018.
“The Gisborne District Council tell us 97 jobs have been created already thanks to the investment in roads – which was widely identified as being essential to unlock the region’s full economic potential,” Shane Jones said.
“Earlier this month I announced the start of work on the $4.5 million upgrade of Rakaiatane Rd – the access road to Gisborne’s port. The main part of this work is now complete with the two kilometre length of road now resealed.
“The work to lay the 3500 tonnes of asphalt concrete along the busy road involved council contractors working around the clock for a full week, in quite a complex project which involved significant coordination with the busy Eastland Port.
“The PGF has also funded the upgrade of roads in Gisborne’s inner city – the first major facelift of the city’s roads since 1999.
“Work to resurface inner city roads is now complete after being enabled by PGF investment, which meant the Gisborne District Council was able to rapidly scale-up this work.
“Local businesses and the wider community are incredibly positive about the upgrades – which has the inner city looking better than ever. This is particularly important given the focus on Gisborne for the Te Ha Sestercentennial commemorations in October.
“Support from the PGF and the National Land Transport Fund has also meant the sealed part of Waimata Valley Rd has now been extended by two kilometres making it more resilient and reliable after previously experiencing regular washouts.
The PGF is also investing $3.3 million for heavy metalling projects across Gisborne’s road network, of which about $1 million worth of work has been completed to date.
“Heavy metalling will be a huge improvement for logging operators who have in the past had to deal with large potholes and corrugates on roads.
“Already the PGF has funded an additional 1800 tonnes of heavy metal which has been laid onto rural East Coast roads. This work is already making a big difference to local people and businesses.
“The delivery of these roading projects shows the impact of the PGF – without which the scale and speed of delivery would not have been possible. Local people can see and understand the impact of these investments, which are lifting pride and morale across the region,” Shane Jones said.