Latest update September 2012
A $54 million upgrade of 4km of Albany Highway includes widening the road for cyclists and creating T3 lanes on both sides.
The New Zealand Transport Agency, which is funding the upgrade, estimates the highway corridor from State Highway 18 to Dairy Flat will cost $90m in total.
It was announced as part of a $12 billion three-yearly National Land Transport Plan for 2012 to 2015.
Auckland Transport spokesman Mark Hannan says the upgrade will create ‘‘four lanes of traffic – of which the two kerbside lanes will be T3 lanes operational during peak periods only – to improve capacity, reduce congestion and promote and provide for sustainable modes of transport (buses and car pooling)’’.
Roundabouts along the highway will be scrapped and signalised intersections installed, he says.
A new four-lane bridge will be built over Oteha Stream through Albany Village.
Power and telecommunication lines will be put underground.
Auckland Transport is currently working on two Albany Highway projects – the northern and southern upgrades – with the latter not being funded in the 2012 to 2015 plan.
‘‘The NZTA estimates construction to be about $30m but this figure is likely to change by the time construction is funded in the next threeyearly NLTP.’’
The project is nearing the design phase but Auckland Transport still needs to complete ‘‘land purchases, obtain building consents, finalise land owner agreements as well as obtain NZTA funding approval before construction can begin,’’ Mr Hannan says.
NZTA’s Ewart Barnsley says over the next three years ‘‘there will be funds of just over $51.2m for the design and construction of the highway’s upgrade between Schnapper Rock Rd and SH17’’.
‘‘Funds of about $2.7m are likely to be available over the next three years for investigation and design, as well as some property acquisition, for the highway’s south upgrade between Sunset Road and SH18.’’
Construction will not begin until next June and will take between two to three years. Auckland Transport estimates 15,000 vehicles, including cyclists and pedestrians, use the highway every day.
The project was started by the former North Shore City Council in 2005 but was transferred to council-controlled organisation Auckland Transport in 2010.
NZTA has dedicated $3.4b to Auckland transport projects.
Auckland highways will receive $1.6b of funding in the plan. An upgrade of the highway is essential for reducing congestion and improving safety for all road users, Mr Hannan says.
for more information.
Source: North Shore Times 13 September 2012