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$2 million for Whanganui roading projects - with focus on employment

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Three Whanganui roading projects will be fast-tracked and immediately redeploy workers affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19 after an announcement by Regional Economic Development Minister, Shane Jones, yesterday.

The Provincial Growth Fund is providing $5.52 million to the Whanganui-Manawatu region to create employment for local workers, and $2,040,000 has been allocated to Whanganui to fund three of the Council’s long-term plan roading projects, Whanganui Mayor, Hamish McDouall, says.

"This is a substantial chunk of our regional allocation," Mayor McDouall says. "We are delighted to receive this support from the Government for projects that we can have underway in short order."

The projects to receive funding are the Rapanui Road Underpass project, the Whanganui River Road Guardrail project and the Fitzherbert Avenue extension.

Mayor McDouall says the focus for this funding is very much on redeployment. "While these projects will have immediate benefits in terms of local connectivity, environmental resilience and safety, they will also provide employment opportunities for local people straight away - and that’s great for our recovery."

He says, "From a local government perspective it’s vital that we push forward in the provinces and stay on track with our work programmes. This was at the forefront of our minds when we deliberated on our Annual Plan in a post-COVID environment.

"Having central Government support and partnership at this critical moment in history is much appreciated, and we look forward to seeing the immediate and real benefits for our people and communities here in Whanganui."

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