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Project introduction

The Southern Links project aims to develop an effective transport network of state highway and urban arterial routes to support Hamilton’s planned growth. The route has been designated but the project is still in early stages of development and no decision has been made about construction timeframes

  • Estimated project cost

    $100 million +
  • Project type

    Road management
  • Project status

    Investigation

Project updates

Project update – November 2018
Project updates, (PDF)
Southern Links bat research breaks new ground
Media release,
Project update – June 2017
Project updates, (PDF)
Project update – July 2015
Project updates, (PDF)

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Purpose

To ensure that future state highway routes are well integrated with the local arterial road network, and to allow for planned growth in the city.

Benefits

The main aim of the project is to plan for the long-term needs of the city, particularly the projected growth and development in the Peacocke, Tamahere and Hamilton Airport area. Identifying and protecting the future transport network will enable good long-term planning to be carried out for the city.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and Hamilton City Council (HCC) are working together to ensure that the future state highway routes will be well integrated with local roads, and the planned residential and industrial developments. When constructed the Southern Links project will reduce congestion, improve safety on SH1 and SH3 in the Hillcrest and Melville suburbs of Hamilton, improve freight flows and be a key part of the city’s urban arterial network integrated into the HCC Access Hamilton Strategy.

Southern Links will also complement the Waikato Expressway by providing the main southern access linking Hamilton city and the expressway.

About the project

Southern Links is a $600 million transport network of state highway and urban arterial routes linking SH1 from Kahikatea Drive in Hamilton to the Waikato Expressway at Tamahere and SH3 from Hamilton Airport to central and east Hamilton. 

The project ties in with the projected growth and development in the Peacocke, Tamahere and Hamilton Airport areas.

In 2013 the route protection designations were lodged by Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and Hamilton City Council with the relevant councils.  At the same time, resource consent applications to Waikato Regional Council for the key new bridges over the Waikato River and Mangakotukutuku Stream were also lodged.

More than 80 submissions were received and a hearing was held before four independent commissioners in 2014.

The commissioners later issued their recommendations to Waka Kotahi, and decision to Hamilton City Council, on their respective parts of the project.  The recommendations/decision were to confirm the designations and approve the resource consent applications, subject to conditions, with a lapse period of 20 years.

Waka Kotahi made its decisions on the Commissioner’s recommendations in December 2014 and two appeals were lodged with the Environment Court. The appeals were resolved by negotiation between the parties, with the subsequent Designations being included in the Waipa District Plan on 1 June 2016 and in the Waikato District Plan on 18 August 2016.

Southern Links is still at an early stage of development and no decision has been made about construction. Waka Kotahi does not currently have funding allocated for the project. Getting the designations in place protects the network so it can be built when required in the future.

Project Contacts

Erin Rangi-Watt – Southernlinks@nzta.govt.nz
More contact info
  • Southern Links Communication, Consultation and Property Liaison Manager
  • Phone: 07 958 7220
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