New direction signs on Auckland motorways to make using Western Ring Route easier


Motorists will start to notice changes to some motorway direction signs in preparation for the opening of the Waterview Tunnel in April and the greater Western Ring Route.

A new Western Ring Route logo and direction system is being installed on around a dozen signs across Auckland motorways over the next couple of weeks, to help guide motorists and give them consistent information about the general direction they’re travelling in.

280 signs will be updated or installed before the tunnel opens in April

A total of 280 signs will be updated or installed before the tunnel opens in April.

The Transport Agency’s Auckland Highway Manager Brett Gliddon says the biggest change is that the signs will not necessarily reflect the compass direction which is what motorists are used to. 

“People will now see a North or South direction name on signs that used to say East or West. This is because the new system gives motorists a compass direction name that reflects the actual direction they are travelling at the location of the sign. For example, SH16 from Waterview to SH18 at Hobsonville Rd Interchange, is a north/south route but SH16 between Waterview and the City Centre remains as an east/west route.” 

“The exception is on the Northwestern Motorway which runs East and West and so East or West will be shown on signs between Waterview and the city.” 

“Most regular users of these routes already know where key destinations are and as well as being accurate the new direction signs are also designed to help those not as familiar, to navigate the wider Western Ring Route.” 

“The Western Ring Route will give drivers a direct motorway to motorway connection all the way from Manukau to West Auckland and the North Shore, helping them to skirt around the city and will be another option in addition to State Highway 1.” 

“Because it takes in several motorways including State Highway 16, 20 and 18 and connects at either end with State Highway 1, the new logo is designed to help motorists easily identify that they are on the Western Ring Route.” 

The routes to Auckland International Airport will also be better signposted and key tourist routes including the Twin Coast Discovery, Pacific Coast Highway and the Thermal Explorer will be signposted from the airport to help visitors find and travel these key routes more easily. 

The Waterview tunnel and State Highway 20 extension, known as the Waterview Connection, is due to open in April and will be a key link in the Western Ring Route. The 48-kilometre Western Ring Route is one of the Government’s Roads of National Significance because of its benefits to New Zealand’s economy. 

For more information on the Western Ring Route visit: link)