NZ Upgrade Programme kept on track

 NZ Upgrade Programme kept on track
  • 26 out of 32 projects go ahead unchanged
  • An additional $1.9 billion invested in programme to assist with COVID cost pressures and support economic recovery
  • Some projects re-scoped to reduce carbon emissions

The Government is increasing its investment in the New Zealand Upgrade Programme (NZUP) to support New Zealand’s economic recovery.

Over two thirds of the projects will proceed as announced despite increased costs due to COVID, with modifications being made to others.

“NZUP is already supporting over 1,000 jobs with 13 projects underway, helping to secure our economic recovery,” Grant Robertson said.

“COVID-19 has increased construction costs around the world, and we’ve done the work upfront to understand the impact on NZUP projects which were announced pre-pandemic.

“Fully funding the new estimated costs for every project would have cost up to $6 billion extra on top of the original $6.8 billion, so instead we’ve taken a balanced approach with a mix of additional investment and a handful of projects being re-scoped while also keeping a lid on debt.

“We are using an additional $1.9 billion set aside in the multi-year capital allowance to support our targeted investments – this is being used so we can keep delivering projects and creating jobs across the country to support our recovery,” Grant Robertson said.

Michael Wood said in light of the increased costs and climate commitments, it was important to take another look at the programme. 

“Recognising the need to decarbonise our transport system, we’re rebalancing the package to increase investment in rail, public transport and walking and cycling. 

“If we had proceeded with Mill Road as originally scoped, it would have cost up to $3.5 billion and at peak produced six tonnes of CO2 emissions a day. Instead, we’ve focused on delivering important safety improvements to Mill Road, upgrades to SH1 and rail, and new rail stations connected to public transport, walking and cycling infrastructure. This rebalanced package helps manage debt, reduces emissions and supports housing growth.

“The Marsden Point rail spur will be a strategic investment in Northland’s future prosperity, getting heavy trucks off the road to make the highway safer, and reduce emissions. We know safety on SH1 is a concern for locals, so there will be targeted safety upgrades, including median barriers, along the route.

“Meeting our commitment to decarbonising transport means that we have to start doing things differently. This re-balanced NZUP package shows our intent, and to guide future investment I intend to amend the Government Policy Statement on land transport to provide Waka Kotahi with the clarity it needs to make investments consistent with our country’s decarbonisation goals,” Michael Wood said.

Media contacts:

Grant Robertson – Chris Bramwell 021 581 149

Michael Wood – Tom James 027 308 6010

Notes for editor:

Table of projects going ahead without changes below. Fact sheets on the changed projects are attached. 

ProjectFunding Allocation Total($ million)Project status
SH58 safety improvements105Under construction
SH1/29 roundabout40Construction starts 2022
Takitimu North Link Stage 1655Construction scheduled to begin in 2021
Canterbury Package300Construction scheduled to June 2021
Queenstown Package115Construction starts 2022
Wiri to Quay Park (third main rail line)318Under construction
Papakura to Pukekohe rail electrification375Enabling works underway
Wellington Railway Station safety improvements88Expected to be completed in 2024
Wairarapa Rail Upgrades156Expected to be completed in 2024
Capital Connection Interim replacement rolling stock26Expected to be completed in 2022
Melling420Construction scheduled to begin in 2023
Penlink830Construction starts 2022
Ōtaki to North of Levin1,500Construction scheduled to begin in 2025
SH6 Tatare Bridge Franz Josef safetyimprovements (West Coast)1.5Complete
SH12 and Rawene Road intersectionimprovements (Northland)0.7Complete
SH1/11 Kawakawa roundabout and resilienceproject (Northland)6Under construction
SH11/10 intersection Puketona Junctionroundabout (Northland)14.9Under construction
SH2 Tahaenui Bridge (Hawke’s Bay)2.2Under construction
SH5 Tarukenga to Ngongotahā safety and SH5/36 roundabout improvements (Bay of Plenty)14Under construction
SH2 College Road to Silverstream(Hawke’s Bay)12Under construction
SH43 Forgotten World Highway improvements(Taranaki)13.5Under construction
West Coast state highway single-lane bridgessafety retrofit (West Coast)5Under construction
SH8, SH79, SH80 Mackenzie Basin, pull-overareas (Canterbury)5Under construction
SH67 Granity seawall (West Coast)3.6Construction scheduled to begin in 2021
SH1 Kakanui flood mitigation improvements(Otago)2Construction scheduled to begin in 2021
SH6/SH8B Junction Cromwell intersection upgrade (Otago)8Construction scheduled to begin in 2021

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