Once complete, the upgraded route from Wellington Airport to Levin is expected to deliver travel time savings of between 23 and 33 minutes during peak times and between 17 and 23 minutes during the day.
Following the 2008 election the Minister said he was not prepared to support funding for the proposal until he had seen a thorough assessment of Transmission Gully alongside the alternative Coastal Route.
Mr Joyce says Transmission Gully has been debated for decades but this is the first time a decision has come with the plan and the funding track to see it through.
If only this decision could have been made a couple of decades ago, when it would have been much cheaper. But better late than never and most Wellingtonians will be very pleased that Steven Joyce and the NZTA has made this decision.
Joyce also announced that his is part of a four lane expressway planned from Wellington Airport to Levin. Yay. Thi will include duplication of the Mt Vic and Terrace tunnels.
Finally, the route through Kapiti has also been announced, and it is basically along the existing Western Link designation – but four lanes instead of two. The current SH1 will become a local road.
There is finally a long-term co-ordinated plan for greater Wellington region. Again, this will be very popular with everyone but Sue Kedgley.