Auckland Transport

Trial of a new lane control system on Whangaparaoa Rd

Auckland Transport is to trial a new lane control system on Whangaparaoa Road. A dynamic control system is due to go into operation early next year.

Randhir Karma, Network Management and Safety Manager at Auckland Transport says; “The dynamic lane trial is an initiative to explore the more efficient use of existing roads such as Whangaparaoa Road, where people travelling to and from the Whangaparaoa Peninsula are delayed through a constrained part of their route. It is an innovative travel solution with the potential to improve people’s travel times during peak periods.”

Dynamic lanes on Whangaparaoa Road will use traffic control devices and an adaptive LED light system in lieu of traditional painted on-road markings.

LED lights will show road markings that can change configuration quickly and safely, creating an extra lane during peak hour traffic. Traffic control gantries will clearly display which lanes motorist are to use.

Around the world different kinds of dynamic lane controls have been used to enable traffic to flow at peak times. In Auckland similar arrangements are in operation for the Panmure Bridge and Auckland Harbour Bridge. As part of a plan to improve travel times during peak periods, AT has been investigating the appropriateness of dynamic lanes on road corridors since August 2014. Safety is a key consideration and has been reflected in the design of the dynamic lane trial.

“They will be relatively quick to build and cost effective compared to road widening. This allows for the better use of existing road space, a better travel experience for people travelling during the peaks and may reduce the need to widen roads or build new roads, which brings a significant cost to ratepayers and often take many years to fund.”

Whangaparaoa Road, between Hibiscus Coast Highway and Red Beach Road has been selected as a suitable location for this trial, as the road has two lanes and a central flush median making it equivalent in width to three lanes in total. In addition, this stretch of road has pronounced tidal traffic movements during weekday peak periods. The installation of dynamic lane controls along Whangaparaoa Road would also require relatively low use of surrounding road reserve land, which will minimise disruption to residents.

“The outcome of this trial will be used to determine the suitability of dynamic lane controls for this section of Whangaparaoa Road as a permanent feature as well as its suitability in other parts of Auckland.”

Find out more about the Whangaparaoa dynamic lane controls trial.