Proposal status: closed 1 March 2019, updated 3 April 2019
Reference number: MIP1819-074
We're proposing changes in your area
In April 2019, we proposed to install a signalised pedestrian crossing outside No. 31 Constellation Drive, to provide a safe place for pedestrians to cross on Constellation Drive. The proposal included pram crossings, tactile pavers and No stopping at all times parking restrictions (broken yellow lines).
This would have resulted in 4 parking spaces being removed outside number 28 Constellation Drive and 5 parking spaces being removed outside number 31 Constellation Drive.
Why the changes are needed
We are aiming to improve the safety for pedestrians trying to cross Constellation Drive, which carries approximately 26,400 vehicles per day. The street is a route for frequent bus services with a high frequency of business driveways.
As such, it can be difficult to cross the street during peak times because of these high volumes of traffic.
This project will proceed without changes to the next stage of detailed planning. Thank you to everyone who submitted feedback. A summary of this feedback and answers to community questions and concerns is below.
- This proposal received positive responses from community members and stakeholders who supported the improvement in pedestrian safety that the proposal would enable.
- Respondents asserted that the congestion on Constellation Drive will be significantly worsened by the introduction of a pedestrian crossing and the subsequent traffic restrictions. Our traffic modelling shows that queues do not extend to the traffic signals at the intersections of Constellation Drive with Apollo Drive or Parkway Drive. We do not therefore believe that the proposal will increase congestion.
- The respondent raised concerns around traffic design in the surrounding area, asserting that there are issues on Apollo Drive and East Coast Road. The respondent claims that traffic attempting to turn right onto East Coast road is currently tailing back to Apollo Drive and blocking the road to traffic wanting to turn left. Respondent also asserts that the T2 lane exacerbates this situation. We acknowledge the impact of the motorway on/off ramps on strategic arterials within Auckland and appreciate that the entire road network is operating at maximum capacity on a daily basis at peak periods. All motorway on/off ramps and associated signals are operated and monitored by the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) to ensure that the motorways operate at peak flows for as long a period as possible. This improves the safety and efficiency of traffic flow along the motorways but can lead to additional queues and delay on the approaches to the motorway.
- The respondent asserted that existing crossings should be sufficient for pedestrians. It should be noted that there are no other pedestrian crossings on Constellation Drive, between the signalised intersections with Apollo Drive and Parkway Drive, a length of approximately 700 metres.
When the T2 lane or clearway is operating (during the morning and afternoon peaks), pedestrians must cross 4 streams of traffic. Additionally, the central median can be heavily utilised by drivers turning into side roads and businesses on Constellation Drive.
Due to these factors, pedestrians find it difficult to cross this length of Constellation Drive and the proposed crossing will provide a safe crossing point when all 4 lanes are open to general traffic and there is high utilisation of the central median.
- Respondents suggested that the crossing be installed between Atlas Place and Vega Place, instead of the proposed location.
- The respondent asserted that the proposed location was too close to the Apollo Drive traffic lights.
- The respondent asserted that more people attempt to cross the road further west than the proposed location, due to those going to the Z station and the shops in Atlas place. In regard to an alternative location for the crossing, a location further west had been investigated at concept stage however our traffic modelling showed that moving the crossing west may adversely affect the traffic signals at the Constellation Drive/Parkway Drive intersection and potentially impact on the operation of the motorway on ramps and bus operation into Constellation bus station. As such, we are proceeding with a crossing at the location that was consulted on.
- The respondent requests that new traffic lights are installed on Atlas place also. There are currently no proposals to signalise the intersection of Constellation Drive and Atlas Place or any other intersections along Constellation Drive between the existing signalised intersections of Constellation Drive with Parkway Drive and Apollo Drive respectively.
- The respondent suggested that an alternative solution would be to create an overhead bridge to facilitate pedestrians and cyclists. In regard to an overhead footbridge across Constellation Drive, the current guidance regarding pedestrian facility design indicates that pedestrians should stay at ground level. Pedestrian journeys are then direct and people with accessibility issues can also use the crossing facility. Both underpasses and over-bridges result in longer walking journeys or include stairs, and as such are less likely to be used than crossing at ground level, resulting in pedestrians taking risks to cross busy roads unaided.
- The respondent requests that the access down the flush medium remains at the same level (ie: no raised island is installed) to allow for emergency access in heavy or stopped traffic. There are no traffic islands proposed on the central median so turning movements into/out of businesses and side roads along Constellation Drive is maintained.
This work will happen mid-2019 and will be completed within 6 months, but we will let you know if there are further changes or delays.
Our contractors will send notices to affected residents 48-hours prior to construction starting.