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Source: New Zealand Transport Agency

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is inviting the public to have their say on plans for a new highway to replace the closed State Highway 3 Manawatū Gorge route.

The main works resource consent applications for Te Ahu a Turanga: Manawatū Tararua Highway are now open for public submissions until 4.45pm on Friday 24 April.

“The Manawatū Taraua Highway is a crucial transport link that supports the needs of locals, businesses and travellers through the region so it’s important to us that people have the chance to tell us what they think of our plans,” Owner Interface Manager Lonnie Dalzell says.

“We are pleased that Horizons Regional Council has granted our request for the applications to be decided by the Environment Court, which will help speed up the process so we can get the highway built as quickly as possible.

“While all onsite activity has been suspended in line with New Zealand’s response to Covid-19, Waka Kotahi is continuing planning, engagement and design work so that we can keep the momentum going and be ready to get back onsite as soon as works can resume.

“Usually we invite people to face-to-face discussions during the engagement phase, but as part of the Covid-19 response we cannot hold public meetings. However, we are committed to ensuring that people can have their say and participate in this process, and submissions can be made via e-mail.”

The applications comprise seven volumes – assessment of environmental effects, design and construction report, drawings, technical assessments (two volumes), cultural impact assessments and management plans.

All submissions will be received by Horizons Regional Council who will supply them to the Environment Court as part of the process for making a decision on the applications.

All documentation and details about how to make a submission can be accessed at the Horizons Regional Council website bit.ly/consent-manawatu-tararua-highway

Alternatively, copies of the application on USB drive can be requested from Horizons Regional Council at consent.submissions@horizons.govt.nz

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