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Waikato Expressway

The Waikato Expressway is the key strategic corridor for the Waikato region. Expected completion within 10 years.

All projects

The Ngaruawahia section of the Waikato Expressway opened in December 2013..

The Ngaruawahia section of the Waikato Expressway opened in December 2013.


  • Estimated start date

  • Estimated completion date

  • Location

    From the top of the Bombay Hills in the north, through to just south of Cambridge.
  • Project type

    Roads of national significance
  • Project status

  • Project contact

    Nicola Martin
  • Estimated cost

    $100 million +
  • Project website

Project purpose

To provide a continuous divided four-lane highway between Auckland and Cambridge that will improve safety and reduce travel times and congestion on State Highway 1.


The Waikato Expressway will:

  • reduce travel times between Auckland and Tirau by 35 minutes
  • significantly reduce the number of fatal and serious injury crashes
  • increase the highway's capacity and passing opportunities
  • reduce traffic congestion within smaller communities like Huntly, Ngaruawahia and Cambridge
  • reduce fuel costs route and contribute to economic growth.


The route generally follows the existing State Highway from Mercer south to Ohinewai, and then is mostly a greenfields project. The exceptions to this are the Longswamp to Te Kauwhata section at the north of the Expressway route, and around Tamahere on the Cambridge section in the south.

Other facts

*Estimated cost is $2.1 billion.