Auckland motorways ramp signalling contract
Auckland Regional Office
26 July 2006
Transit lets Auckland motorways ramp signalling contract
Transit New Zealand has let a contract for further extension of its comprehensive traffic management system for Auckland - the installation of ramp signals on the Southern Motorway.
Ramp signals will help improve traffic flow on the motorway during peak periods by managing the rate at which vehicles merge from on-ramps onto the motorway. The result will be more predictable and reliable journey times and safer merging.
The work, which will be undertaken by Transfield Services NZ, includes the physical elements of the ramp signalling system - including placement of traffic lights on all on-ramps, installation of electronic sensors in the road, and in some cases widening the ramp - together with technical work to integrate the ramp signalling with the existing traffic management systems operated by the Auckland Traffic Management Unit.
Transit regional manager Peter Spies says the first ramp signals will begin operating at Papakura in October, followed by ramps in Central Motorway Junction (CMJ) later in the year.
"The work at Papakura will improve a number of capacity and safety issues affecting this part of the Southern Motorway, and will be followed by the progressive commissioning of a series of ramp signals within CMJ as the project there is completed later in the year."
Several locations will include bypass lanes to give priority to trucks, buses or high occupancy vehicles.
Transfield's contract provides for the $27 million installation of ramp signals at all 31 on-ramps on the Southern Motorway, from Curran St in the north to Papakura in the south, and with progressive funding from Land Transport New Zealand would be extended to include the Northwestern and Northern motorways. This, along with the Western Ring Route ramp signalling project included in Transit's latest State Highway Forecast 2006/07, would see ramp signals operating across the entire Auckland motorway network.
"The introduction of ramp signals on Auckland's motorways is one of a number of traffic management and traveller information tools aimed at reducing traffic congestion and helping deliver more consistent overall journey times for motorists," says Mr Spies.
"The letting of this contract underlines Transit's commitment to demand management and is an acknowledgement that in addition to building new roads we also need to look at ways to improve the operation and efficiency of the existing road network," he says.
The introduction of ramp signals across Auckland's motorways follows a successful trial on the SH20 Southwestern Motorway on-ramp at Rimu Road.