Neilson Street and Alfred Street, Onehunga – Signalised Intersection Neilson Street and Alfred Street, Onehunga – Signalised Intersection
Proposal status: Closed
Reference number: RSU2021-121
In February 2022, we proposed changes to improve safety at the Neilson Street and Alfred Street intersection, as there have been several accidents at this location. After reviewing all the feedback, we are proceeding with this proposal and are going to investigate the feasibility of:
- Providing a dual crossing on the Neilson Street east approach and on the slip lane
- Widening the new footpath between the slip lane and the existing footpath of Waikaraka Park.
We are investigating these in response to community concern. These works will help support our Vision Zero goal.
What happens next
We anticipate the changes will be constructed in the year ending June 2023. We will be in touch with local residents and businesses prior to any construction taking place.
In the feedback, people reported that the intersection is currently unsafe and that lots of near misses and accidents occur here. Respondents told us that the changes would improve road and pedestrian safety. Here is a summary of the additional comments and queries we received, and our responses to them:
- Request to install advance stop boxes on Alfred Street to make it safer for cyclists.
We will install advance stop cycle boxes on Alfred Street for cyclists travelling in both directions.
- Request for the crossings North-South across Neilson Street to be dual walking and cycling, with kerb ramps and lead-in cycleways.
We will nvestigate the feasibility of set up the dual crossing on the Neilson Street east approach in the next phase of this project. The preferred east-west cycle route for the area is Church Street, as fewer heavy vehicles use it than Neilson Street. This would make the riding experience nicer.
Many heavy vehicles use Neilson Street, so we do not encourage cycling along Neilson Street.
- Request for bike lanes on Alfred Street for cyclists accessing the cycleway along the harbour via Alfred Street.
Request for a protected cycle lane or dedicated cycle lane on Alfred Street, especially heading north from south Albert Street (across the intersection). At times there is no footpath and the road has large vehicles travelling on it.
Request to install improved cycling facilities, such as protected cycle lanes leading up to the intersection and clear road markings for cyclist traffic passing through the intersection.
Our project budget does not include a fund for incorporating protected bike lanes as part of this proposal. We cannot currently consider this request as part of this project.
This project aims to mitigate the main safety risks identified at this intersection. We note that the preferred east-west cycle route through Onehunga area is along Church Street, which is parallel to Neilson Street, as many heavy vehicles use Neilson Street.
- Suggestion to install a roundabout here instead, as Neilson Street is a main access route with hundreds of trucks using it every day. A roundabout could improve safety by slowing down traffic heading towards Victoria Street.
We considered this option during the investigation stage of this proposal. However, we did not proceed with this option, as the roundabout would have an unusual layout because of the geometry of the intersection with offset side roads.
This option requires a larger turning area for the many heavy vehicles turning at this intersection. It would also be difficult to achieve the speed calming required due to the location's layout.
Far more traffic uses Neilson Street than Alfred Street, which means that it is not a suitable candidate for a roundabout.
- Suggestion to install a roundabout to address traffic congestion and visibility issues at the intersection, as it would ensure that traffic flows. Concern that traffic lights will only worsen existing traffic congestion.
We considered a roundabout during the investigation stage, but did not proceed with this option. The existing intersection layout and limited space would make it difficult for a roundabout to work safely and effectively.
Results from our traffic modelling assessment predicted that traffic signals would operate without major delays. We could also coordinate signal phasing and timing with the adjacent signalised intersections along Neilson Street, so people would move through Onehunga smoothly.
- Request for an additional set of traffic lights or a roundabout at the Church Street and Alfred Street intersection.
This proposal focuses on signalising the intersection at Alfred Street and Neilson Street. We'll pass on this request to the relevant team so they can investigate and prioritise it.
- Concern that there are already crossings for pedestrians to use, so this proposal is not needed.
There are currently no pedestrian priority crossings across both Neilson Street and Alfred Street. Our proposal includes 4 new pedestrian crossings at this intersection. 2 will be on Neilson Street and 2 on Alfred Street.
These new pedestrian crossings will make it safer to cross the road at this intersection.
- Concern that the proposed traffic lights are too close to the existing traffic lights and crossing at the Captain Springs Road and Neilson Street intersection.
The Captain Springs Road and Alfred Street intersections are approximately 550m apart, which is considered appropriate.
- Concern that there is no need for a traffic light crossing to be installed at this intersection as it is in an industrial area, with little pedestrian or cyclist traffic and not near any bus stops or train stations. There are no known safety issues at this intersection or data to back up the need for change.
Based on crash records from the Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency database, 37 crashes have been recorded here from 2014 to 2018. These include 2 serious and 11 minor injury crashes.
Five more crashes were reported from 2019 to 2021. One of these resulted in a serious injury.
There is a clear crash trend caused by turning and loss-of-control at this intersection. We expect the proposed changes to make this intersection safer, by controlling all movements through the intersection and giving vulnerable pedestrians safe places to cross.
- Concern that AT has already increased traffic congestion at Mount Smart Stadium with unnecessary traffic lights and this proposal will be the same.
Our traffic modelling assessment predicts that this intersection will perform at an acceptable level of service. We will also coordinate the signals with adjacent signals along Neilson Street to make these roads more efficient.
- Concern that the traffic lights will increase fuel usage and travel times, and cause more crashes with drivers running the lights.
This proposal aims to make this intersection safer by controlling all movements through the intersection with traffic signals.
Auckland Transport Operation Centre (ATOC) will monitor the signals to ensure that all of Neilson Street operates optimally.
- Concern that this proposal will increase congestion, especially with the large number of trucks and heavy vehicles travelling through the intersection. Concern that it will cause traffic queues to back up and block the motorway.
Traffic modelling results predict that this intersection will work without major delays. We will also be able to coordinate the signals with nearby traffic signals along Neilson Street to improve Neilson Street's efficiency.
This proposal is unlikely to create extensive queueing that will affect the motorway.
- Concern that Neilson Street should not be used as a major through way for heavy vehicles as congestions issues are already significant.
Neilson Street's primary function is to move people and goods. This contributes significantly to the social and economic wellbeing of our region and beyond.
That's why we must maintain freight and vehicle movements along Neilson Street.
- Concern that what needs to be addressed on Neilson Street is the back up of traffic due to poorly managed traffic coming both onto and from the motorway on/off ramps, particularly during rush hour.
Motorway interchanges fall under the jurisdiction of Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency. We are working with Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency to actively monitor and manage traffic operations at motorway interchanges, including on-ramps and off-ramps.
- Request to raise the intersection, or to install speed bumps on Alfred Street and Mays Road to prevent these residential streets from becoming arterial routes for heavy vehicles.
We considered a raised safety platform for this intersection. However, as Neilson Street is a strategic arterial and major freight route, it is not a suitable candidate for changes like this. That's because motorists might reroute to nearby smaller, local roads, and not use the roads as intended.
While we understand that some sections of Alfred Street and May Road service residential housing, these roads also service industry and business zones. May Road is also an arterial road, so we would expect more heavy vehicles and traffic on both routes.
- Suggestion that Neilson Street and Alfred Street is not a suitable route for heavy vehicles or high volumes of traffic. These movements should be discouraged by tightening the corner radius, raising the intersection, or installing speed bumps.
Neilson Street's main function is to move people and goods. This contributes significantly to the social and economic wellbeing of our region.
Alfred Street is classified as a Heavy Industry and Light Industry zone, where access for heavy commercial vehicles is expected. Because of the strategic nature and surrounding land use of the roads at this intersection, these movements are needed to give these heavy vehicles access at this intersection.
We've tightened the corner radius of the intersection where possible, while considering the tracking required by heavy commercial vehicles.
- Concern that drivers travel down Neilson Street at a fast speed, posing a safety risk to vulnerable pedestrians (such as the elderly or children) crossing the road. Request to install some speed bumps to address high traffic speeds, as the road is on a hill.
As part of our proposal, we've included electronic warning signs (driver feedback signs) on both Neilson Street approaches to encourage driving at safe speeds to and through the intersection.
We've also proposed high friction surfacing, to improve the skid resistance of the road surface and make drivers more aware of the intersection.
Speed bumps are not appropriate at this location, as Neilson Street is a freight route used by many heavy vehicles. Speed bumps could deter these drivers from using Neilson Street and cause them to reroute to local roads.
Victoria Street and Neilson Street intersection
- Request to paint red "NO STOPPING" road markings at the Victoria and Neilson Street intersection for traffic coming from the motorway.
This suggestion is out of scope for this project, but we've recorded it for investigation at a later date.
- Concern that the traffic lights would make accessing the Z station difficult and affect customer numbers.
The proposal does not affect any vehicle movements into and out of the petrol station, so access and operation will likely stay the same.
- Concern that the safety issues are at the intersection of Victoria and Neilson Street, and that these need to be addressed as Victoria Street has a higher traffic volume than Alfred Street.
Suggestion that either traffic lights or a roundabout should be installed at the Victoria and Neilson Street intersection as there is no protected area for vehicles to wait, it is difficult to cross, and it is difficult for vehicles to exit safely from Victoria Street heading east or west.
Suggestion that traffic lights at the Victoria Street and Neilson Street intersection would assist businesses, by slowing down high traffic speeds to make turning into and exiting businesses easier and safer.
Our proposal only focuses on addressing the safety issues identified at the Neilson Street and Alfred Street intersection. We'll consider your feedback for further investigation and prioritisation.
We'll also monitor the intersection of Neilson Street and Alfred Street after implementing this proposal.
- Concern that the changes should be installed at Victoria Street, where a pedestrian crossing would serve the growing residential community on the street.
We are prioritising and proposing these changes at the intersection of Neilson Street and Alfred Street as 37 crashes were recorded here from 2014 to 2018.
Five more crashes have been reported from 2019 to 2021. One of these resulted in a serious injury.
There is a clear crash trend caused by turning and loss-of-control at this intersection. We expect the changes to make this intersection safer by controlling all movements and giving pedestrians safe places to cross.
Victoria Street runs parallel with Alfred Street, and it is only a short walk to the intersection of Alfred Street and Neilson Street. We believe that the proposed traffic signals will make Alfred Street a more attractive location for pedestrians, as it will be safer to cross.
- Request for there to be 2 traffic lanes on Alfred Street heading South (onto Neilson Street), one for traffic turning right/straight, and one for traffic turning left.
Our traffic survey showed low traffic demand existing the Alfred Street north approach. That's why we proposed a single lane exiting Alfred Street. We expect it to be adequate, based on traffic modelling results.
- Request for a left-hand turn lane into Alfred Street from Neilson Street.
Our traffic survey showed that left turn demand from Neilson Street into Alfred Street is low. That's why we proposed a shared lane.
We usually provide an exclusive left turn lane when is lots of movement turning left.
- Request to remove the slip lane from Neilson Street into Alfred Street to reduce the crossing distance for pedestrians and cyclists.
We investigated removing the slip lane during the investigation stage of this proposal. However, removing the slip lane would likely create a much longer crossing distance, as we would need to accommodate heavy vehicles turning from Neilson Street into Alfred Street.
The raised zebra crossing was preferred as it offers a short crossing distance across the slip lane, reduces vehicle speeds, and improves pedestrian safety.
- Request for an onramp to be introduced onto the South-Western to take traffic off Neilson Street earlier.
The motorway and State Highway fall under the jurisdiction of Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency. Please send your request to them by phone or their online form.
- Why does the right-hand turn lane get priority over vehicles going straight?
Right turn lanes do not get priority over vehicles going straight. Vehicles turning right on Neilson Street would enter the right turn lane so they would not obstruct through traffic.
- Concern that accidents at this intersection are related to the camber and surface of the road. There have been no reported accidents since the resurfacing of the road a few years ago.
Records from our Road Assessment and Maintenance Management (RAMM) database show that Neilson Street was last resealed in 2018. Records from Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency's crash database show 5 crashes took place at this intersection between 2019 and 2021. Two of these were loss of control type crashes.
There are 2 key crash trends at this intersection: Loss of control and turning type crashes. While road surfacing might help cause soe loss of control crashes, turning type crashes are unrelated to the camber or surfacing of the road.
It is unlikely that resurfacing alone would address these crash issues. Our proposal includes both signalisation and improving the road's skid resistance.
- Suggestion that an overbridge should be installed for pedestrians and cyclists at the intersection, to ensure that traffic flow isn't affected.
An overbridge is a major capital work requiring significant investment and land space. We only consider it in exceptional circumstances, usually due to severe site constraints.
That's why we cannot consider this suggestion or include it in this proposal.
- Request to remove or trim the vegetation on the corner of Alfred Street looking East, as it obstructs drivers’ visibility at the intersection.
Where required and possible, vegetation trimming is part of the proposal.
- Suggestion to prevent cars from parking on the berm at 2/30 Alfred Street to improve visibility at the Neilson and Alfred Street intersection. When vehicles are parked here it blocks drivers’ visibility of oncoming traffic on Neilson Street.
Our proposal does include turning part of the existing concrete area into grass berm to discourage illegal parking activities at this corner.
- Request for a shared path connection to be installed from the intersection to Waikaraka Park.
Our project budget does not include a fund for incorporating a shared path connection from this intersection to Waikaraka Park, acknowledging that Alfred Road is a local cycle route.
However, our proposal does include a new footpath connection from the slip lane to the existing Waikaraka Park footpath.
- Request to address the safety issues at Onehunga Mall and Neilson Street intersection as well.
This proposal focuses on addressing safety issues at the Neilson Street and Alfred Street intersection.
We'll pass on your feedback to the relevant team so they can investigate and prioritise it.
You can always tell us about network improvements that you would like to see in your area using our feedback form.
We're proposing improvements in your area
We are proposing to improve safety at the Neilson Street and Alfred Street intersection, by installing traffic signals to help control the movements of vehicles and people through the intersection and to slow down driver speed.
We are proposing to:
- Install traffic signals at the existing Stop-controlled, staggered intersection
- Install new traffic islands, a grassed kerb area, and road markings and signage to support the new traffic signal controls. Signage will include electronic warning (also known as driver feedback) signs.
- Install 4 new pedestrian controlled crossings at each leg of the intersection plus a raised zebra crossing on the left-turn slip lane into Alfred Street south to help people cross safely
- Install skid resistant surfaces on both Neilson Street approaches to the intersection.
- Install new footpaths on the southeast and northwest corners of the intersection to connect the new pedestrian crossings with the existing footpaths
- Paint green cycle advance stop boxes where people on bikes can safely wait before the lights.
Download the proposal drawing for Neilson Street and Alfred Street, Onehunga – Signalised Intersection (PDF 1.6MB)
Between 2014-2018, there were 37 reported crashes at this intersection, including:
- 2 serious injury
- 11 minor injury
- 24 non-injury
The most common being loss of control and failure to give-way when making a turn. Neilson Street is also a busy arterial and freight route that can be difficult for pedestrians to cross. By installing traffic signals, we will be able to control all movements through the intersection. This will make it safer for turning vehicles as well as cyclists and pedestrians. The cycle stop boxes will also help improve road safety by making cyclists more visible to people driving.
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.
- This proposal is supported with funding from the Regional Fuel Tax
Onehunga: 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 Neilson Street and Alfred Street 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).