Joint media release: NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport
A wide range of feedback was received on the preferred approach for the East West Connections transport project, from providing cycling on the seaward side of the new foreshore road to design suggestions to improve transport performance.
The NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport would like to thank everyone who gave feedback on the preferred approach to improve transport connections into and out of Onehunga-Penrose and the reliability of bus services between Māngere, Ōtāhuhu and Sylvia Park.
About 1,700 feedback responses were received and approximately 250 people came to the open days. All the information is still being analysed. A summary of feedback, and how it has been used, will be released later in the year. In the interim, these are some of the key themes that have been noted:
- Suggestions regarding the design of the route with the aim of improving transport performance. Key points include the desire to reduce the number of traffic lights and intersections (particularly to assist with heavy vehicles movements), changes to the design of the Neilson Street Interchange and also the interchange at SH1.
- The East West Connections project continues to maintain opportunities for achieving future rail connections in the area, including rail to the airport.
- That the project should improve access to the harbour and Onehunga Wharf.
- Walking and cycling facilities should be provided along the seaward side of the new foreshore road (with connections back into Onehunga). Opportunities for improved walking and cycling connections should also continue to be explored. For example connections to Māngere Bridge, Onehunga Mall, Mutukaroa-Hamlins Hill and Orpheus Drive.
- Natural features such as Anns Creek and the Hopua Tuff ring should be protected and that potential impacts from the project on water quality, air quality, and noise need to be carefully considered and managed.
- Support for proposed bus and cycle lanes between Māngere, Ōtāhuhu and Sylvia Park, but some concerns that the bus lanes would be shared with freight vehicles.
The NZ Transport Agency’s State Highways Manager, Brett Gliddon, says the responses will help refine the agencies understanding of what needs to be considered as the project progresses.
“We are still in the early stages with the concept design for the preferred approach. The feedback will be used to help us make decisions as we move from concept through to detailed design. For example identifying where cycle lanes should be located,things we need to consider when designing intersections and how we can improve access to the harbour.”
Auckland Transport Key Strategic Initiatives Project Director, Theunis Van Schalkwyk, says the feedback is part of an ongoing conversation with the community that the Transport Agency and Auckland Transport will continue as designs are further developed.
“We’re very pleased with the level of support we’ve received around the proposed improvements to speed up bus journeys between Māngere, Ōtāhuhu and Sylvia Park. The feedback will be used to help develop the designs for the bus priority lanes and cycle improvements.”
The Transport Agency’s Brett Gliddon says the next steps for the project will be to undertake further investigations on the preferred approach and confirm the land needed to protect the route. If people have feedback, thoughts or ideas at any time we would encourage them to contact the project team on firstname.lastname@example.org”.