The NZ Transport Agencys new southbound on-ramp bridge at Onewa Road and the final 890 metre section of the Northern Busway will open on Monday 15 September. The new bridge will take motorists from Onewa Road south onto the motorway towards Auckland City.
The NZ Transport Agency’s new southbound on-ramp bridge at Onewa Road and the final 890 metre section of the Northern Busway will open on Monday 15 September. The new bridge will take motorists from Onewa Road south onto the motorway towards Auckland City.
Motorists and buses have a lane each on the new bridge from the intersection of Onewa Road and Sylvan Avenue. The bus-only lane will merge into the busway before the end of the on-ramp. Citybound buses will have an uninterrupted run alongside the motorway past the Onewa Road Interchange on the new busway before rejoining traffic just ahead of the Auckland Harbour Bridge.
Steady progress on a $40 million upgrade of the Onewa Road Interchange means the new bridge and final section of the busway will open well ahead of schedule. A new southbound off-ramp bridge will open later this year to take traffic from the Northern Motorway onto Onewa Road. Together the bridges will improve motorist safety and motorway access.
Planning is underway for a weekend closure next month of the northbound and southbound on-ramps to complete the new bridge and busway. The on-ramps will close at 10 pm on Friday 12 September and reopen at 5 am on Monday 15 September. Motorists can use Esmonde Road and Northcote Road as alternative on-ramps to get on to the motorway. The northbound off-ramp from the motorway onto Onewa Road will be unaffected.
Upgrading the interchange started in March last year and the NZ Transport Agency has been working around live traffic to minimise disruption to motorists on the motorway and local roads. The southbound off-ramp closed in May last year to allow construction of the new bridges. The addition of separate lanes in Onewa Road for northbound and southbound traffic in March this year has already helped improve motorway access.
The $40 million upgrade is part of Stage 2 of the Northern Busway project to add 2.5 kilometres of single bus lane from Exmouth footbridge, just north of Onewa Road, to the Auckland Harbour Bridge. A 1.6 kilometre stretch of the bus lane is already open. Stage 1 of the Northern Busway opened in February this year and has been a significant contributor to the recent 4.4 percent increase in public transport across the region for the year ended 30 June 2008.
The NZ Transport Agency says the upgrade will improve safety and access for motorists and it thanks them for their ongoing patience and cooperation while construction continues.