The past, present and future of New Zealand Infrastructure

Chloe News

Every major development comes in stages. You need to recognise how you want things to change, conceptually think about what would enable this change, pinpoint the people you need to move forward and then plan your concrete action steps. A lot of planning must be done before construction can take place.

This is something that anyone involved in infrastructure is all too familiar with. While the actual labour provides much of the excitement for trade workers, the long planning process leading up to these moves is just as important. In New Zealand, we are now entering the action stage of the big infrastructure evolution.

Where were we?

For the better of the past two decades, New Zealand has been having big conceptual conversations about what role the state plays in development. Should infrastructure work be a job for private companies, should the government have a heavy hand in development, should it be a combination of both?

These conversations, while important, did come at the cost of development. New Zealand had begun to fall behind other developed countries in every area of infrastructure. This lag was demonstrated by poor public transport systems, blackouts across the country and shoddy broadband capabilities. As a response, the Government created the National Infrastructure Unit and delivered a National Infrastructure Plan to kick start the country into action.

Where are we?

The New Zealand government has committed to investing billions of dollars in various infrastructure projects over the course of the next decade and the Thirty Year New Zealand Infrastructure Plan 2015 aims to set out more concrete markers for infrastructure progress. According to the plan, some of the most significant projects and budgeted costs are:

  • Auckland’s Western Ring Route: $2.25 billion
  • Wellington Northern Corridor RoNS: NZTA, $2.5 billion
  • Puhoi to Wellsford State Highway: $755 million
  • Auckland City Rail Link: $2.5 billion
  • Auckland’s Second Waitemata Harbour Crossing: $4 billion
  • Christchurch central city rebuild: $5 billion
  • Tamaki Redevelopment: $1 billion
  • Ultra-fast Broadband: $5 billion
  • Auckland Central interceptor wastewater system: $965 million

Where will we be?

From efficient transport networks to reliable electricity and high speed internet access all the way down to clean, running water infrastructure provides the foundation of any major economy, and focusing on these crucial projects will help New Zealand lead the way among developed countries.

Infrastructure provides the foundation of any major economy.

With the Thirty Year New Zealand Infrastructure Plan 2015 in place our future is bright. Action plans and investments are in place, the development of a more collective infrastructure plan (between the private sector and the central and local governments) is underway and we have projected timelines.

There will be plenty of work for infrastructure companies and their tradespeople will have a direct hand in building the future of New Zealand. It’s a great time to get on board.