The Auckland freight plan identifies the critical challenges for freight movement, desired outcomes, and an action plan to achieve those outcomes.
As Auckland’s population continues to grow, so too does the demand for goods and services. However, it has become increasingly difficult to deliver goods to customers. Managing competing network demands with the safe, sustainable distribution of freight is a critical challenge for Auckland.
In 2017/18, 76.3 million tonnes of freight were moved within, to, from and through Auckland. Freight in Auckland is expected to grow substantially over the next 30 years, with total freight carried in the region projected to increase to 108 million tonnes by 2046, influenced by population growth as well as trends in import, export and manufacturing.
Freight is a key enabler of economic activity and fundamental to the liveability of a city. Given so much of the freight that comes into Auckland stays within Auckland, this needs to be a core areas of focus for Auckland Transport.
About the Auckland freight plan
The Auckland freight plan has been co-designed with AT’s partners (Auckland Council, Waka Kotahi NZ / Transport Agency) and key freight stakeholders, including Ministry of Transport, Kiwirail, Ports of Auckland, Auckland Airport, Automobile Association, National Road Carriers Association, Mainfreight and Road Transport Association NZ.
The freight plan identifies the critical challenges facing the freight transport system in Auckland:
- Operating in a safer way which promotes human health.
- Dealing with congestion and the impacts of growth.
- Competing road space demands.
- Moving freight while minimising environmental impacts.
It then sets out the 6 desired outcomes for freight movement:
- Productivity – the importance of freight movement results in its movement being efficient.
- Competitiveness – the full supply chain is cost effective and reliable.
- Safety and security – removing risk in moving freight.
- Sustainability – freight moves to a more environmentally friendly set of technologies.
- Acceptance – the needs of freight are considered in the planning system.
- Smart freight – being innovative and customer focused.
To get to these outcomes, an action plan has been developed with our partners and stakeholders with actions grouped around the following areas:
- Building freight knowledge – to have informed decision making.
- Stronger relationships – to build a more cohesive approach and better behaviour.
- Smarter freight movement – to identify areas of concern on the network and address.
- Optimising loading and servicing – to improve the last mile issues.
- Aligning freight and strategy – to incorporate freight into the transport planning system.
The strategic freight network
One of the core outputs of the freight plan is a refresh of the strategic freight network (SFN). The SFN represents the most critical roads in Auckland for the movement of freight and where freight should be considered a modal priority (though not necessarily the only priority).
The SFN has been designed to:
- Link major areas of freight generation and attraction within the Auckland region, and to and from important locations outside the region.
- Minimise the impact of freight movement on the community.
- Provide roads and routes capable of accommodating the largest vehicles within normal legal limits.
- Offer convenient and reliable travel for freight between key locations.
In addition to the strategic routes, the SFN map also identifies the overweight and over dimension routes in the Auckland road network, as well as core freight areas. The hierarchy of the SFN is outlined below.
Table outlining hierarchy of road designations in the Auckland strategic freight network
|1A||Roads of the highest strategic value to freight movement, including the motorways and most of the state highways (typically the Waka Kotahi, NZ Transport Agency road network), being Arterials where efficient freight movements must be actively supported to maintain Levels of Service through active planning and design.|
|1B||Roads of the highest strategic value to freight movement being Arterials where efficient freight movements must be actively supported to maintain Levels of Service, where competing modes and land uses require active management.|
|2||Local freight networks within strategic freight areas where there are no competing land use demands i.e. the land adjacent to these roads are primarily used for industrial/commercial purposes and free from sensitive community or other residential impacts. Planning and design should consider the efficiency of freight movements.|
|3||Supporting freight networks connecting to/between strategic freight areas where planning and design should consider the efficient movement of freight, noting that land uses adjacent to the road are such that the impacts of freight movement requires active management.|