Auckland Transport creates safer town centres for everyone

In 2019, 40 people died on our roads and an additional 567 were seriously injured. In each of these crashes, the speed at which the driver was travelling determined the seriousness of the injury.

Auckland Transport (AT) is working hard to bring down this unacceptably high rate of death and serious injuries on our roads to zero.

As part of this work, today new permanent 30km/h speed limits have been unveiled in three northern Auckland town centres - making them safer places to shop, study, live and work.

The town centres with changes coming into effect today are Orewa, Mairangi Bay and Torbay.

80% of all road deaths and serious injuries occur on 50km/h local urban roads. Nearly half of those deaths and injuries involve vulnerable road users – children, the elderly, people walking and people on bikes or motorcycles.

AT is committed to making our roads safer for all road users and these changes will help improve safety for people walking and for people on bikes - including school children.

Auckland Transport’s Executive General Manager of Safety, Bryan Sherritt, says the speed limit changes will make these busy areas much safer for everyone - but particularly for children and the elderly.

“Research has shown that the maximum speed the human body can withstand during impact is 30km/h. Any faster than this and the chance of surviving, or being able to walk away from a crash without a serious injury, is significantly reduced. We want all people to be able to return home to their friends or family at the end of the day.”

Mr Sherritt says town centres generally have higher pedestrian numbers than other urban areas.

“AT and our partners embrace Vision Zero principles where we are putting safety at the heart of our business to make our road network safe for all users. As town centres become increasingly busy, we will provide more people-focused streets where families feel safer.”

Gary Brown, Chair of the Hibiscus and Bays Local Board, says the board supports the changes to make town centres in the area safer for all.

“We believe town centres are places for people and should be viewed as destinations rather than thoroughfares. Everyone should feel comfortable moving around the town centre and visiting local shops and businesses. Roads aren’t just for cars and safer speeds encourage people to share the road.”

Find out more about the town centre safe speeds programme.

Find out what we are doing in each of the town centres below: