The proposed new route for the upgraded highway north from Auckland to the west of Dome Valley and onwards has “huge benefits for us,” says Kaipara Mayor, Greg Gent.
“I am thrilled to hear the news. Every kilometre that the road gets closer to the Brynderwyns is great for the fortunes of the western side of Kaipara,” he said.
“It makes Auckland’s population of 1.4 million people able to easily come north to our district as a weekend destination, with an economic flow on into our community, and of course opens a two-way flow for goods and services.”
The indicative route for continuing the link into Northland would join the Puhoi to Warkworth section of motorway near Kaipara Flats Road, travelling north to the west of the Dome Valley to the Hoteo river before heading east over SH1 to an interchange proposed at Wayby Valley Road south of Wellsford.
Another motorway interchange is proposed near Mangawhai Road, with the motorway then meeting the existing SH1 north of Vipond Road at Te Hana.
The New Zealand Transport Agency expects the location of the new motorway to the west of the Dome Forest, will be more reliable and cut serious crash injury rates by as much as 80 per cent.
Transport Minister Simon Bridges says the indicative route is a “significant step forward to connect communities, get people to places of work and freight to key export markets, which are all vital in helping Northland’s economy grow.
“It will reduce the overall travel time between Warkworth and Te Hana by bypassing town centres, and avoiding the steep and winding Dome Valley.”
Once built, trucks and heavy vehicles will be diverted around townships, reducing around 90 per cent of through traffic.
The indicative route is being shared with the public to further refine the route, with NZTA seeking to protect the route for future construction by applying for consents by 2018.
A series of public information days began on February 18, with meetings still scheduled this week:
• Feb 23 — Warkworth Masonic Hall, 3–7pm
• Feb 25 — Wellsford District Community Centre, 11am–3pm
• Feb 28 — Te Hana Hall, 3–7pm