21 Aug 2015

Concerns over rural road upgrades

6:28 am on 21 August 2015

Federated Farmers said it was unclear if the government intended to upgrade dangerous rural roads as part of its 30 year Infrastructure Plan.

The plan released yesterday highlights the need for investment in school buildings and the water network, as well as a new initiative to develop data standards for roads.

Federated Farmers vice-president Anders Crofoot said in recent years money had been stripped from budgets to repair dangerous rural roads.

"Because they're in environments where things move, slips coming down on them.

"Tarseal extensions that could be done or once they're done they need to be repaired.

"As trucks get approved for carrying heavier weights there are a number of bridges on rural roads that actually aren't capable of taking those heavier weights safely.

"Much of the (rural) infrastructure was put in 20 to 50 years ago and it's beginning to wear out."

He said rural communities were worried the government's roading priorities focused on Auckland, at the expense of the provinces.

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