Mayor Len Brown says he is keen to undertake a joint venture with the Government in building Penlink.
The mayor revealed at an AUT press conference that Hibiscus Coast rates would have to rise if just the Auckland Council undertook the project. Brown says he will be looking to make Penlink a ‘‘two for the price of one’’ package deal with the Government, including it with the motorway extension from Puhoi to Warkworth.
Residents have been pushing for the alternate route between the Whangaparaoa Peninsula and Redvale to unclog Whangaparaoa Rd and give them an alternative route out of the peninsula.
Calls for the project, first proposed by the Rodney District Council in 1996 and not expected to be built until 2021, were renewed following the fatal headon collision on Whangaparaoa Rd in January which killed Coral Jobis and blocked the peninsula.
Penlink has been left outside Auckland’s 10-year budget and the subject is a popular topic on social network site Neighbourly.
When asked why this was the case, the mayor said the decision came back to the local community and its desire to keep rates low and manage debt levels.
When asked whether Penlink would pay for itself through tolls, Brown says ‘‘there’s not enough people in Whangaparaoa to recover the debt‘‘.
The project is expected to cost between $370 million to $380m.
– Kendall Hutt is an AUT journalism student
Source website link (please search article title – Mayor keen for Penlink joint venture with govt)