$1.4 billion to save lives on our roads

Transport Minister Phil Twyford and Associate Transport Minister Julie Ann Genter have announced a 1.4 billion-dollar, three-year programme to make New Zealand's highest risk roads safer.

The Safe Network Programme will make 870 kilometres of high volume, high-risk State Highways safer by 2021, with improvements like median and side barriers, rumble strips, and shoulder widening.

The state highway projects already identified for the Bay of Plenty region include State Highway 2 Wainui Road to Opotiki.

The programme will target an estimated 600 to 700 million-dollars state highway safety improvements and 700 to 800 million-dollars of local road safety improvements.

A programme of local road safety projects is already under development, with the first projects expected to begin next year.

Emma Griffiths