Saturday, December 2, 2023

MP: Wood misled Coromandel over SH25A

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National’s Transport spokesperson Simeon Brown has raised questions about the reconstruction of State Highway 25A. Photo Waka Kotahi NZTA

Former Transport Minister Michael Wood has been caught misleading the Coromandel community regarding the re-opening of the critical State Highway 25A reconstruction, National’s Transport spokesperson Simeon Brown says.

Brown, also the MP for Pakuranga, says in May, the then-Transport Minister Wood issued a statement saying the bridge replacement for the cyclone damaged road would be completed by early 2024.

“However, in response to questions from the National Party, Labour has confirmed the road could be closed until August 2024, with construction expected to take up to 14 months to complete,” says Brown.

“With construction yet to begin, this could be pushed out even further.

“Mr Wood has not only misled the Coromandel community, but he has also raised expectations that the road would be open much sooner than it will be.

“This is more devastating news for the Coromandel, with the community cut off for longer and more economic and social devastation expected.

“The Labour Government has mishandled the response to State Highway 25A, taking months to decide how to replace the road and is still to sign a contract for the road’s reconstruction.

“This should have all been done within days of the road collapsing, not taken months, furthering the delays and disruption further into next year.”

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