After 103 years, we finally have Transmission Gully!!!

Transmission Gully is now open, 103 years after it was first proposed by the Otaki MP in 1919. After decades and decades of Governments that did almost nothing about it, Steven Joyce made it happen, announcing it in December 2009. Thank you Steven.

Every election I can recall (so 1975 to 2008) local candidates and MPs talked about Transmission Gully and how they wanted it to happen. The previous Labour Government approved a route for it, but no money for it (which is a very Labour thing to do). It was Steven Joyce and the Key Cabinet who actually funded it, and without funding a road is a just a piece of paper.

Honourable mention should also go to Peter Dunne who pushed tirelessly for both Labour and National Governments to make it happen.

The cost is around 20% more than the original quote, but to be honest that isn’t too bad as construction projects go. Consider the Town Hall refurbishment that was meant to be $46 million and ended up as $150 million.

This means we now have four lanes from The Terrace Tunnel to Pekapeka, and soon to Otaki. This will make a huge difference, On a two lane road traffic moves at the speed of the slowest car. On a four lane road, traffic flows closer to the speed limit. And no more huge queues as traffic merges into one lane.

The road also provides greater resilience for Wellington in case of earthquake. And it makes life more pleasant for residents of Pukerua Bay and other coastal suburbs who will have less traffic flowing through.

Now we just need to sort out the Terrace Tunnel, the Basin Reserve and the Mt Vic tunnel and we’ll finally have what is so badly needed – four lanes from the airport to Otaki.

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