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Phil Twyford’s refusal to confirm in Parliament that either of the proposals for Auckland’s light rail will go directly to the airport shows the project has gone totally off the rails, National’s Transport spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“Auckland’s light rail project has become KiwiBuild 2.0. It’s yet another broken election promise from Labour, overseen by Phil Twyford.

“Not only did the Transport Minister fail to confirm light rail would actually stop at the airport, he also wouldn’t say whether the NZ Infra bid would be able to carry 11,000 commuters per hour, the equivalent of four lanes of motorway.

“Phil Twyford said in the past this would be a major benefit of light rail, but he seems less certain about the benefits now that the chaos surrounding the project has been exposed.

“Labour promised voters at the last election that it would have light rail between the city and Mt Roskill done in four years, before extending to the airport. But after two years of excuses and dithering, the Government hasn’t even completed the basic first step of a business case.

“The Government appears to have little-to-no idea about what it’s trying to accomplish, how it will achieve its objectives, who will deliver the project, and how much it will cost.

“The longer this debacle drags on, the more it will cost taxpayers. Treasury has already warned that getting it wrong could see the $6 billion project cost balloon significantly.

“Yet more evidence that Labour can’t be trusted on transport.”

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