Joint road plan to cut costs

ALESSANDRA GRAHAM
Last updated 14:29 11/08/2014

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Waikato ratepayers could save $16 million under an ambitious road maintenance plan being discussed by the Waikato Mayoral Forum and councils.

The joint roading project was initiated by the Hauraki District Council and now includes Waikato, Matamata-Piako, Hauraki, Waipa, Otorohanga, Waitomo, Thames and Coromandel district councils.

Hauraki Mayor John Tregidga said the joint project would allow councils to work together to achieve cost savings.

In the past 12 months councils had saved $750,000 in their reseal programme.

The joint roading project is being supported by a $250,000 grant from the NZ Transport Agency.

Tregidga said councils were looking at plans that could lower costs by at least $8-16 million over the first three years.

"Each local authority does it [road maintenance] differently, [and] if we combine we could save a lot of money," he said.

"We are happy to commit funding to the project."

NZTA's contribution will go towards the road rehabilitation projects.

"Obviously NZTA wouldn't donate if they didn't see potential in our project," Tregidga said, adding councils were investigating future projects such as using LED street lighting across the region.

Change to LED lights would generate significant savings as well as being much more energy efficient.

"It's all about cost. We have to look at the short term and long term," Tregidga said.

Alessandra Graham is a communications student from AUT

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- Waikato Times

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