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Ramp signals heading north

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The first ramp signals on the Northern Motorway will become operational during May, beginning the next step north in the delivery of the NZ Transport Agency’s comprehensive traffic management system for Auckland.

The ramp signals on the two Esmonde Road northbound on-ramps will be commissioned together with those at the Northcote Road and Tristram Avenue interchanges. The northbound off-ramp at Northcote Road is also to be widened and realigned.  This initial phase will include provision of a bus-only priority lane on the northbound ramp from Upper Harbour Highway, designed to assist northbound buses between the Constellation and Albany busway stations.  Subsequent stages of the work in the southbound direction will include bypass priority lanes on the Greville Road and Constellation Drive on-ramps.

Ramp signals are traffic signals at on-ramps that manage the rate at which vehicles move down the ramp and onto the motorway. They help improve traffic flows and safety on the motorway, while enabling more consistent speeds, safer merging and more predictable travel times. Ramp signals operate only when needed during busy periods. At all other times they remain switched off.

NZTA has successfully installed 31 ramp signals at on-ramps on the Southern Motorway and is in the process of installing another 15 on the Northwestern Motorway.

“With the ramp signals in operation, we are seeing an overall 15% improvement in travel speeds and a 5-15% increase in the rate of vehicles flowing on the motorway. As part of these improvements, peak traffic volumes on each of the individual ramps have also increased by up to 150 vehicles per hour compared to the same period before the ramp signals were installed,” says NZ Transport Agency Regional Director Wayne McDonald.

“Our operators will have a range of cameras giving them a real time view of traffic operations throughout the areas where ramp signals are operating on the Northern Motorway. At the same time, the NZTA will work closely with North Shore City Council to manage and assist traffic flows on the local approaches to the on-ramps,” says Mr McDonald.

NZTA’s current project, being undertaken collaboratively with Auckland’s local and regional councils and the Auckland Regional Transport Authority, will see 61 ramp signals operating on the Southern, Northern and Northwestern motorways as part of a comprehensive motorway management system due for completion later this year.

For more information please contact:

Ewart Barnsley
Auckland Media Manager
NZ Transport Agency
T    64 9 368 2142
M   027 213 7616
E    ewart.barnsley@nzta.govt.nz
 

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