The NZ Transport Agency has announced plans to relocate its Wanganui office to Palmerston North and to set up a new office in New Plymouth as part of a review of the agency's services in the Central region.
The NZTA’s Central Regional Director Jenny Chetwynd says the Wanganui office, which largely focuses on the operation of the state highway network, will be combined with the agency’s Palmerston North office to provide a more integrated approach to improving transport in the region. The relocation will affect 15 staff members.
Ms Chetwynd said bringing the NZTA’s regional business functions together in a single location would have a number of benefits.
“Bringing this expertise together in Palmerston North will bring us closer to a number of our key stakeholders and to the centre of a major transport hub. It will also allow our regional highways team to work more closely with staff from other NZTA business groups, which will help us develop a more integrated approach to improving transport in the region.
Ms Chetwynd says the move will not affect the NZTA’s service levels on the highway network, and that the presence of a small NZTA office in New Plymouth will give the agency better access to the busy Taranaki region and help improve the NZTA’s understanding of that region’s needs.
“Having looked carefully at several options we think this is the set-up that will ultimately provide the best outcomes for the public and for our stakeholders across the region.”
Ms Chetwynd said NZTA staff and stakeholders had been consulted as part of the review.
“We know that a move like this is not easy for our people, and we’ll be working closely with them during the transition process to make this move easier for them and ensure the new arrangements work effectively.”
“Our Wanganui staff have an outstanding work ethic and they have made a great contribution to improving the state highway network in Wanganui over the years. The region will continue to benefit from that expertise under our new structure.”
Ms Chetwynd says the review was not about cutting jobs or costs, and that affected staff will be offered direct redeployment into Palmerston North. She says the NZTA will also offer all staff assistance to relocate.
The move is expected to happen early in 2011.