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Active transport funding for long-awaited footpaths in Otāne and Pōrangahau

20221204 Transport Choices Announcement Otane

New, active ways of getting around are on the way for Otāne and Pōrangahau. 
Today Minister of Transport Michael Wood announced national funding by Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s Transport Choices Programme, which in Central Hawke’s Bay will provide up to $4M of funding for nearly four kilometres of footpaths and safe crossings in the centre of Otāne, and 250m of footpaths along the main road to the local school in Pōrangahau.  
The final detail of the projects, including funding decisions by Waka Kotahi, will be confirmed in coming months.
Central Hawke’s Bay Mayor Alex Walker says “In a small district like ours, funding constraints mean that footpaths are often characterised as ‘nice-to-have’ rather than a necessity. But this new funding is truly transformational for people living in Otāne and Pōrangahau, who have been asking for these improvements for many years. 
“They want to be safe, active, and connected, with good access to public services like schools and parks for both young and old. Availability of transport choices is just as important in small towns as it is in the cities as we try to move to being a more climate-resilient society.” 
Acknowledging the significance of the announcement for Central Hawke’s Bay, a small group met with Deputy Mayor Kelly Annand in Otāne this afternoon after the Minister’s announcement to celebrate the news. 
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, Manager Urban Mobility, Kathryn King says she is pleased Central Hawke’s Bay District Council has received funding as part of the Transport Choices programme. 
“The Transport Choices programme is supporting councils to give people more options in the way they travel. I’m pleased to say we received an outstanding response from councils around the country, embracing the opportunity to provide greater transport choices for their communities. 
“Funding criteria specified projects that would deliver strategic cycling/micro mobility networks; create walkable neighbourhoods; support healthy school travel; or make public transport easier to use. 
“The aim is to open up streets so everyone can get where they need to go in ways that are good for their health and the planet.” 

The construction phase of the Transport Choices programme, once finalised with Waka Kotahi and communities, will take place through 2023. 
Walking or cycling instead of driving short distances is good for the environment, good for health and good for community connections – meeting several of Project THRIVE’s aims, including that of durable infrastructure. 
This announcement of up to $4M in Transport Choices funding follows $1.5M of funding for the Waka Kotahi for Streets for People programme for safety enhancements along the main street of Waipawa.


Transport Choices funding is currently indicative until Waka Kotahi works with Councils to explore how projects can be progressed in line with Transport Choices timeframes. Funding allocations may be adjusted after this consultation.

Central Hawke's Bay Council’s vision for active transport is underpinned by: 
The Central Hawke's Bay Integrated Spatial Plan, which enshrines the principles of connecting people to spaces and places and to each other, a cleaner environment and improved sustainability, and optimising how we live, work and play. 
Hawke's Bay's Regional Land Transport Plan, which has as its vision a vibrant, accessible, and sustainable carbon-neutral Hawke's Bay. 
Council’s Environmental and Sustainability Strategy, which recognises that our whole community will have a part to play in meeting New Zealand's emissions reductions by 2050, and that Council has an important leadership role in that goal. 
In 2017 Council signed the LGNZ Climate Change Declaration, committing Council to developing and implementing ambitious action plans that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support resilience, including the promotion of active transport options.


Photo: Members of the Otāne community met on Sunday afternoon with Central Hawke's Bay Deputy Mayor Kelly Annand, Cllr Kate Taylor, Cllr Pip Burne and Council staff to hear the good news about long-hoped-for Otāne and Pōrangahau footpaths - hopes now much closer to being realised.


4 December 2022

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