Northland-based Government MPs should have done more to put the four-lane highway from Whangarei to Auckland at the front of the queue for funding, according to a road safety advocate.
John Bain, chairman of the Northland Regional Transport Committee, said he was gutted after learning a $28 billion transport programme had been unveiled yesterday for Auckland, only a week after the Government said it would not continue with a plan to four-lane SH1 south of Whangarei.
"There is plenty going to Auckland to solve their traffic problems but once again Northland has been left out in the cold," Bain said.
"Currently south of Whangarei is not a highway, it's almost a killing road which needs to be brought up to scratch."
Transport Minister Phil Twyford said passing lanes and barriers would be put in place to make the road safer. But Bain said that would not be enough and Northland-based MPs should have pushed harder for the four-lane option.
In his opinion Northland MPs in Government Kelvin Davis had remained silent on the issue, which was disappointing, as had Shane Jones, Winston Peters and Willow Jean Prime.
"I'm disappointed there has been no assistance from the elected Members of Parliament who say they are proud Northlanders. They could have stood up in Parliament and fought for the project."
Part of the funding allocated would be $500 million for Auckland's Mill Rd over the next 10 years. The road was described as a vital artery in South Auckland and was essential in the surge in growth in the southern corridor.
Bain said the $500m was the coast of four lanes from Whangarei to Port Marsden Highway.