Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Waterview tunnel now open to traffic


Waterview tunnel now open to traffic

The country’s most ambitious roading project, the Waterview Connection, which connects Auckland’s Northwestern and Southwestern motorways, opened to traffic early this morning.

The first vehicle travelled through the Waterview Tunnel at 12.47 on Sunday morning, five years after construction first began on the $1.4b project.
The attached CCTV footage shows the first cars to enter the northbound tunnel, travelling from Owairaka to Waterview, accompanied by three police vehicles.

The NZ Transport Agency is encouraging motorists to avoid rushing to drive through the tunnel in the first few days after opening, to help ease traffic congestion and delays on roads in and around the Waterview Connection.

Auckland Highway Manager Brett Gliddon says as with any new piece of infrastructure, there will be a settling in period while people adapt their journeys and routes and get used to driving in such a long tunnel.

“When it first opens motorists should expect the tunnel to be very busy because we know many people are keen to experience driving it for the first time. The Waterview Connection will be a key part of the Auckland transport system for a long time now and there’ll be plenty of opportunity for everyone to use it.”

“We will be monitoring traffic flows carefully over the next few months and we’re asking people to bear with us while everyone gets used to the new route and driving conditions. Everyone can play their part by planning their journeys before they set out.”

The Waterview Connection is the final link in the Western Ring Route, one of the Government’s Roads of National Significance to support growth and development.
“The Waterview Connection will change the way people and freight move around Auckland and the rest of the country, offering a true alternative route that bypasses the city centre,” says Mr Gliddon.

The 48km Western Ring Route creates greater reliability and resilience, as well as more transport options with bus lanes and walking and cycling connections and creating efficient links to and from Auckland Airport.

While it’s not designed to remove peak time congestion altogether it will provide a better balance of traffic flows across the road network, including helping to remove cars from local roads.

These are the Transport Agency’s top tips for safe driving inside the tunnel:
• Follow the signs and get into your lane early, then stay in your lane to reduce the likelihood of an accident and delays.
• Dangerous goods vehicles, vehicles over 4.3m high and vehicles carrying uncovered loose bulk loads are not allowed inside the tunnel. Follow signs for the detour route.
• In addition to the specific instructions for the Waterview Tunnel, usual motorway rules such as appropriate following distances, no stopping, reversing or 'u' turns still apply.
• If there’s an incident in the tunnel and when traffic is stopped, stay in your car. You will be advised via the overhead signs, radio and/or PA systems of what is happening and any action you may need to take.
• Ensure your vehicle has sufficient fuel for your journey.
• Any vehicle stopped in a lane from accident, mechanical breakdown or otherwise, will be pushed or towed to a place of safety as quickly as possible.


The Waterview Connection was delivered by the Well-Connected Alliance made up of the NZ Transport Agency (the client on behalf of the NZ Government), Fletcher Construction, McConnell Dowell, WSP, Beca Infrastructure, Tonkin+Taylor and Obayashi Corporation. Sub-alliance partners are Auckland-based Wilson Tunnelling and Spanish tunnel controls specialists SICE.

For more information about the Western Ring Route and the Waterview Connection visit our website:http://www.nzta.govt.nz/projects/the-western-ring-route/waterview-tunnel

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Turei To Be Interviewed By MSD: Gordon Campbell On The Real Truth Deficit In Welfare

It has been astonishing to see the amount of time and energy being spent on what Greens co-leader Metiria Turei did or didn’t do properly as a beneficiary back in the early 1990s – as compared to how little time and energy is being put into the point of her personal example.

Turei was citing her case in order to query whether much has changed – especially when it comes down to whether the current benefit levels and targeting rules at WINZ are helping or hindering today’s beneficiaries to escape from poverty. More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Bojo Visit

British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson is in town, just over a year since his political career peaked… and then wobbled off into a grey zone of indecision… Currently, Johnson is touring the former colonies, talking up the historical ties. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Ed: Government Responds To Productivity Commission

The work programme will focus on four key areas. • Creating a more student-centred system • Meeting the needs of industry through relevant, responsive, and supportive teaching • Improving performance across the system • Enabling and encouraging innovative new models and providers More>>

ALSO:

PM's Science Advisor: Youth Suicide In NZ Discussion Paper

The paper discusses the multiple factors involved in youth suicide and possible and evidence-based approaches to prevention. It points out the very different context in which young people now live their lives and the challenges of the transition from childhood to adulthood. More>>

ALSO:

Drug Deaths: Accurate Information Is Vital

Drug Foundation: The spike in hospital admissions and reported deaths in Auckland as a result of people taking unknown substances is not being helped by an information vacuum. More>>

ALSO:

Backing Dunne & Seymour: National Signals Election Intentions

“We are encouraging National supporters to give their electorate vote to ACT candidate, David Seymour, in Epsom, and United Future candidate, Peter Dunne, in Ohariu – and their party vote to National." More>>

ALSO:

Climate Policy: Govt's New Proposals For ETS

“Last year, as a result of stage one of the review, we announced the phase out of the one-for-two measure in the ETS. I am now announcing further changes as a result of stage two of the review.” More>>

ALSO:

PM's Press Conference: Boris, Infrastructure, Immigration, Drugs

Prime Minister Bill English opened this week's post-cabinet press conference by revisiting that day's announcement of 'Crown Infrastructure Partners'... More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election