The AA, Roading New Zealand and the New Zealand Contractors' Federation are welcoming the just released interim report of the NZTA Road Maintenance Task Force.
The task force has come up with suggestions to reduce the costs and improve the effectiveness of road maintenance in New Zealand.
It is crucial that efficiencies are found in the sector. Future available maintenance funding is predicted to reduce in real terms over the next decade meaning the costs of road maintenance are going to outstrip the available funding without action being taken.
"This is a really challenging issue and we congratulate the taskforce on its work," says Roading New Zealand Chief Executive Chris Olsen.
"Finding savings is never an easy task but we have to find better and smarter ways of doing things.
"Keeping our roads safe and usable is crucial to our country and we need these Task Force changes to make sure we can keep maintaining the roads to the standard they need to be."
Some of the key recommendations include more collaboration between different road controlling authorities, having a national system of road classifications to help prioritise roading investment, and smarter asset management practices and ways of using contractors to carry out the work
AA Motoring Affairs General Manager Mike Noon says the interim recommendations seem to have the support of the road maintenance sector and we look forward to seeing the final recommendations after consultation roadshows are held around the country over the coming month.
"Like many nations all over the world, New Zealand is experiencing tight financial times and these recommendations reflect that we have to get more efficient. Once the final recommendations are made they will need to be urgently implemented to minimise the risk of any road deterioration and to focus funding on key strategic routes
"Good maintenance is essential to the safety of our roads and the AA has been concerned over the maintenance budget into the future.
"The AA will be monitoring this area closely to make sure our roads are being maintained to the standards they need to be."
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