A petition with 2337 signatures has been lodged today calling for a halt on planning for more houses in the western Bay of Plenty.

The petition, organised by the Fix the Bloody Road campaign, calls for the transport corridor north of Tauranga, including State Highway 2, to have a firm timeline and budget for capacity upgrades before local councils continued any planning that would further increase the area's population.

It was submitted to SmartGrowth, a collaboration between the sub-region's three councils, as feedback to its Future Development Strategy, which details how the sub-region will grow over the next three decades, predicting population increase of 250,000 requiring 43,000 new homes.

"State Highway 2 capacity from Tauranga to Katikati is already inadequate," petition organiser Matthew Farrell said.

Matthew Farrell, Fix the Bloody Road campaign. Photo / George Novak
Matthew Farrell, Fix the Bloody Road campaign. Photo / George Novak

He said that while the NZ Transport Agency had agreed to build a two-lane Tauranga Northern Link partially bypassing the highway, the work did not yet have a timeframe or funding.

"Thus, at this point, this submission stands for consideration for SmartGrowth member councils and reminds the partners of their responsibilities to lobby central government for this infrastructure investment," Farrell said.