Construction of an NZ Transport Agency project to ease congestion at a significant bottleneck on Auckland’s Northern Motorway (State Highway 1) will start next month.
At a ground-breaking ceremony today, the Prime Minister, John Key, officially launched the project to widen the motorway northbound to three lanes between the Upper Harbour Highway and the Greville Road interchange and to upgrade the interchange.
The project is the first to start construction as part of the Government’s accelerated programme of works to improve Auckland’s transport infrastructure, and the Transport Agency’s Highways Manager, Tommy Parker, says this is a section of the motorway network that requires immediate attention.
“Already an average of 36, 000 vehicles use this section of our network daily in an area facing rapid commercial and residential growth.
“It is also essential to give people more travel choices by making this area safer for cycling and walking, and to improve connections to and from local roads and the motorway.
“It may be a small start, but the Upper Harbour Highway to Greville Road 3-laning project marks a significant step for the Transport Agency to accelerate the Government’s next generation of transport projects in Auckland,” Mr Parker says. “Drivers in Auckland and the rest of New Zealand will benefit from the better and safer connections we are delivering.”
The $19.5m project to widen the 2km section of the Northern Motorway and improve the Greville Road interchange will be delivered by the Auckland-based infrastructure company HEB Construction. Work starts next month and is planned to be completed in mid-2015.
Mr Parker says the project is the first part of a wider Northern Corridor programme the Transport Agency is developing to better connect Albany with the rest of the city, and beyond to the regions north and south of Auckland.
Key components of the Northern Corridor programme focus on creating a seamless motorway to motorway connection along the Western Ring Route – the Hobsonville, Northwestern and Southwestern Motorways (SHs18, 16 and 20) - between Albany and Manukau to the south, upgrading the Upper Harbour Highway to a motorway, and extending the successful Northern Busway from Constellation to the Albany park and ride station.
Investigation and scoping works for these components will take place during 2014 and 2015.