NLTP 2021–24 $4.2 billion target investment

We’re investing $4.2 billion in local road maintenance during the next three years to support local government to operate, maintain and renew the more than 85,800kms of local roads.

This assumes financing from the Crown and a $280 million provision for emergency works funding to restore the network following storm events.

On average, about half of each region’s funding will be used to maintain and operate the local road network, the remaining 50% being used to renew infrastructure at the end of its life.

Since 2015, the size of the local road network has increased by 2,340 lane kilometres and use of it by 12%, with demand from heavy vehicles increasing 16%.

Maintenance is a significant annual cost for councils, normally accounting for about 40% of their transport spend in any National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) period. A well-maintained roading network helps not only to improve safety but to protect the environment, as an efficiently operating network reduces carbon emissions, and builds greater resilience into the transport system by helping protect infrastructure from failure during natural weather events, such as cyclones and earthquakes. Investment in maintenance also plays a key role in keeping communities connected and getting goods to market.

Costs for local road maintenance have continued to rise during the last three years, including for base hourly labour rates, temporary traffic management, health and safety, and for materials. This activity class also now includes the replacement of bridges and structures that are at the end of their life and funding for ongoing travel demand activities.

Our investment in local road maintenance during the next three years is almost a 20% increase on the 2018–21 NLTP. This is aimed at maintaining current levels of service, accounting for network growth and the rising cost inputs described above.

Our planned investment will deliver 18,000 lane kilometres of sealed road renewals, more than three million cubic metres of metalling on unsealed roads and more than 1,900kms of drain renewals.