Main Highway, Ellerslie – Raised Zebra Crossing Main Highway, Ellerslie – Raised Zebra Crossing

Proposal status: Closed

Reference number: RSU2021-029

Proposal update

In February 2022, we proposed changes to improve pedestrian safety along Main Highway in Ellerslie by upgrading the existing crossing at 127 Main Highway. After reviewing all the feedback, we are proceeding with the work as proposed.

These works will help support our Vision Zero goal.

What happens next

We anticipate the changes will be constructed in 2022. We plan to begin construction before June 2022. However, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our construction schedule, by affecting contractor availability, labour, and construction material supply chains.

We will be in touch with residents and nearby businesses before any construction takes place.

Community feedback

Most respondents supported the changes. Residents told us that they believed the proposal would make walking in Ellerslie town centre safer, or that the crossing would make it easier to access the shops and nearby train station.

Many respondents suggested installing traffic signals instead of, or alongside, upgrading the existing crossing. Some people said that the existing crossing was sufficient, while others told us that a crossing update was overdue, as they'd experienced or seen near misses.

Here is a summary of the suggestions and queries from the community and our responses to them: 

Congestion in the town centre

  • Suggestion to install a signalised crossing to improve traffic flow.
    While traffic signals may help traffic flow in certain situations, they do not reduce the risk of death or serious injuries as they put responsibility entirely on drivers to stop at the signals.

    There have been a number of crashes at signalised intersections where drivers have run red lights and hit vulnerable road users. Traffic signals would take away the existing pedestrian priority crossing, reducing convenience and safety for people walking in the village. This often leads to people jaywalking.  

    Raised zebra crossings, as proposed, help reduce speeds along a road and ensure that pedestrians have the right of way when crossing the road. They make drivers slow down to a safe speed, limiting the potential impact force on pedestrians if a distracted driver fails to give way.

    This is what's called a "Safe System" approach to road design. It recognises that humans make mistakes and aims to reduce potential failure points in road infrastructure. Read more about Vision Zero and the Safe System approach.
  • Concern the proposal would worsen congestion.
    The main aim of this project is to reduce the risk of death and serious injuries along the road corridor. While we are briefly slowing vehicles down with a speed bump, we are not introducing any new pedestrian-priority crossings where drivers would be required to stop.

    The overall change in traffic flow is likely to be negligible.  
  • Concern people would begin to avoid driving down Main Highway and drive too quickly down side roads (rat-run), reducing nearby property values.
    The improvements are limited to a small section of the overall Main Highway corridor. While rat-running could happen, the surrounding road layout makes it more convenient for drivers to continue travelling along Main Highway.

    That is why we expect the total risk of rat-running to stay the same.
  • Suggestion to install some signage, such as "Give way to pedestrians on your side," or make it a staggered crossing to reduce congestion.
    The project aims to reduce the potential for death and serious injuries and ensure that pedestrians continue to have the right of way.

    There is no room for a staggered crossing at this location due to adjacent driveways. A staggered crossing would also result in the removal of more parking.
  • Suggestion to install a signalised intersection at the Main Highway and Ladies Mile intersection with a Barnes dance/pedestrian-only light phase and remove the existing zebra crossing.
    We do not currently see installing signals at this intersection as an appropriate change.

    One of the main criteria for installing signals is their visibility to approaching motorists. The visibility in the westbound direction is poor, as the section of Main Highway has a sharp bend in this direction approaching the intersection with Ladies Mile.

Proposed raised zebra crossing design

  • Concern the raised zebra crossing will reduce emergency services response times.
    We consult emergency services on all projects and have worked closely with them to ensure that raised crossings will not negatively impact response times. The proposed raised crossing complies with our agreed standards. 
  • Concerned about the removal of one on-street parking space.
    We have limited the loss of parking spaces as much as possible. One space will be removed to install the Swedish-style raised crossing.

    This type of crossing has a gentle down ramp. This provides a smooth ride for all vehicles and especially is especially important for the buses, emergency services, and heavy vehicles that drive along Main Highway.
  • Concern the crossing will create noise pollution.
    Main Highway is a reasonably busy corridor throughout the day, with a number of heavy vehicles travelling through Ellerslie town centre. We expect a minimal increase in noise, as the proposed raised crossing has a gentle exit ramp, and there is existing noise from the heavy vehicle use on the busy road. 
  • Concern that this speed bump would not be beneficial due to the poor design and installation of other speedbumps in the area.
    Raised crossings like the one proposed are standard safety interventions. They are proven to reduce death and serious injury type crashes by slowing vehicles at the zebra crossings.

    The proposed crossing on Main Highway will have a gentle exit slope that will provide a smooth ride to drivers, while improving safety for pedestrians by slowing drivers to a survivable speed in the event of any accident. 
  • Suggestion to install some flashing road markers at the crossing instead.
    Flashing road markers could raise pedestrian awareness, but they would not help to reduce driver speeds or reduce the risk of death and serious injuries.

    We will monitor the improvements following construction and make changes like adding flashing road markers if they could be beneficial.
  • Suggestion to retain the flush crossing and install speed humps before the crossing instead.
    A raised zebra crossing is more beneficial, as it is clear that pedestrians have the right of way and it is consistent with other raised zebra crossings throughout Auckland.

    It gives pedestrians, especially people with prams and wheelchairs, a convenient, footpath-level place to cross the road. It also reduces the chance of drivers speeding.

    Speed humps on either side of a crossing can lead to drivers accelerating after the first hump, right as they reach the crossing.
  • Concern sunstrike will make the raised crossing difficult to see.
    The detailed designs will include signage per our recommend design standards to give drivers advanced warning of the crossings.

    If sunstrike is an existing issue, then it's likely that pedestrians are hard to see at the current crossings. This shows that we need to raise these crossings to slow vehicles down and prevent potential deaths and injuries. 
  • Concern that the raised zebra crossing would disrupt the Ellerslie town centre aesthetic.
    The proposed zebra crossing is similar to the existing crossing in the town centre . The only difference is that it is raised.

    This allows pedestrians to cross level with the footpath, and would slow down drivers, making it safer to walk around and visit the shops in Ellerslie town centre.
  • Suggestion to retain flush zebra crossing but paint it red to alert drivers.
    The project aims to reduce the potential for death and serious injuries, while increasing pedestrian comfort and convenience by ensuring they have the right of way.

    If we do not install a raised table, speeds will remain high, which increases potential impact forces in a crash. This would not meet the goals of the project.
  • Request for a gentler slope than the raised crossing near St Mary's School on Main Highway.
    The raised table ramps have been designed based on the types of vehicles that drive along Main Highway and the existing footpath levels.  The approach ramp with a 1:10 slope and departure ramp of 1:40 allows drivers to accelerate after they have slowed down for the up ramp. 

Safety in Ellerslie Town Centre

  • Suggestions to reduce the speed limit in the town centre.
    We have started the third round of our speed limit investigation process. Main Highway is not included in this part of the Speed Limit Bylaw prioritisation process.

    The prioritisation process considers factors like the number of crashes, safety risk, traffic speed, and land use. Main Highway will be included in future tranches, depending on the prioritisation outcomes. 
  • Suggestion to slow through traffic further by installing raised or signalised crossings on the approaches to the Ellerslie Town Centre. For example, they could be near the train station and Ellerslie School, near Amy Street bus stop and Ellerslie Domain, on Ladies Mile, Arthur Street, and Ramsgate Street).
  • Concern that AT should focus on improving safety at the Robert and Main intersection instead.
  • Suggestion to remove parking on one side of Main Highway to introduce cycleways as the road has no safety allowances for cyclists.
    These suggestions are outside of the scope for this project. We will investigate them as part of the wider Connected Communities improvements to the corridor.
  • Suggestion that additional signage is useless as there are already many visual distractions in the area.
    The signage requirements are based on NZTA Waka Kotahi standards. We will assess them as part of the detailed designs.
  • Suggestion that the seat outside of the chemist should be removed as it distracts drivers.
    We will look into this as part of the detailed design phase.

Safety in the wider area and other suggestions

  • Request that the speed bumps near St Mary's School are fixed.
    We have requested an investigation of these speed bumps by our maintenance team.
  • Concern that AT should be focused on improving the Panmure Bridge instead.
    The goal of this proposal is to reduce the potential for death and serious injury crashes on Main Highway. However, we have recorded your concern about the Panmure Bridge for future investigation.
  • Concern that AT should be focused on improving safety at Kalmia Street bend instead.
    We are currently working on safety improvements on the Kalmia Street bend as part of another proposal.
  • Suggestion to schedule construction during school holidays as otherwise the congestion will be very disruptive.
    Thanks for your feedback. We will take this into consideration.
  • Suggestion that AT request feedback from the Ellerslie Business Association.
    As part of the consultation process, we request feedback from key stakeholders like emergency services and local business and community groups. The Ellerslie Business Association was asked for feedback and submitted their support for the proposal.

We're proposing improvements in your area

We are proposing to upgrade the existing zebra crossing at 127 Main Highway in Ellerslie to a raised zebra crossing.

We are proposing to:

  • Install a Swedish-style raised zebra crossing, which is a pedestrian crossing on top of a flat, wide speed bump with a gently sloping exit ramp for a smooth ride.
  • Reconstruct the crossing’s traffic islands at the centre and sides of the road. This will remove one parking space along the north side of Main Highway.
  • Add tactile pavers to the footpath and on the traffic island. These are yellow guidance markers which help people with visual impairments find their way.
  • Install streetlights, signs, and new road markings to support the upgraded crossing.

Download the proposal drawing for Main Highway, Ellerslie (PDF 1.84MB)

The existing crossing point has a history of crashes with three minor injury accidents in the last five years. We are proposing this crossing upgrade to improve pedestrian safety and access to the Ellerslie shops.

The raised crossing would slow drivers to a safer speed and improve driver awareness of the crossing. Its height would match the footpath height so it is comfortable for everyone, including people with prams and wheelchair users, to cross.

This crossing upgrade would involve removing one car park. To ensure the speed bump is comfortable to drive over, especially for large vehicles like buses and freight trucks, we have proposed a raised crossing with a gentle slope, which requires more space on the road. We understand that on-street parking is a valuable asset for the community, so we have made sure to minimise its removal as much as possible.

There will be further upgrades to Ellerslie-Panmure Highway in future, as part of the Connected Communities project, which is in its early stages. For more information, visit the project webpage.

If you would like to post in your feedback, download and print our feedback form template, fill in your details and send it freepost using the address details on the form.

What happens next

  • We’ll consider all the feedback we receive, and then decide the best way to move forward.
  • We’ll post the outcome of this proposal and a summary of community feedback on this webpage.
  • We can email you the proposal outcome as soon as it’s ready – just select that option when you fill in the survey.

More information

This proposal is supported by the Auckland regional fuel tax.

Ellerslie: Safe with us

Auckland Transport cares for your safety. We want to make our roads safe for everyone, people walking and cycling, especially for our kids and senior citizens and people driving. Projects like this one around the Main Highway are another step towards our goal of achieving no deaths or serious injuries on our roads. We are guided by the Vision Zero approach to transport safety, which prioritises human safety over other measures (like minor time saving).