The 3.8 km stretch of highway to be upgraded extends from Schnapper Road/Bush Road intersection in the south to the Albany Expressway in the north.
Project status: Construction
Project zone: North
Albany Highway is a regional arterial road that serves the North Harbour industrial estate, five schools, Massey University and residential estates. The highway is an important connection to other areas of Auckland and a vital transit road for commuters and industry.
Traffic volumes on the highway are expected to rise from 15,000 to 20,000 vehicles a day by 2021.The upgrade is important to reduce congestion, improve safety (including the area’s 5,000 students) and encourage the use of transport modes.
The Albany Highway North upgrade is part of a wider strategy to improve transport links on the North Shore. It will help cater for projected growth in the Albany area and assist the general flow of traffic.
See a map of the Albany Highway update project area (.jpg 271KB)
The upgrade will see the highway more than double in capacity which will help to cater for projected growth in the Albany area and assist the general flow of traffic. The upgrade will provide:
- Faster, more reliable travel times for multi-passenger vehicles and public transport by provision of Transit lanes.
- Improved traffic flows, pedestrian safety and accessibility by provision of new signalisation at 3 intersections along the route.
- Improved efficiency, catering for more diverse modes of transport including bus, walking, cycling, heavy vehicles, over-dimension vehicles, multi passenger vehicles and general traffic.
- Road safety improvements in the local community by provision of dedicated foot paths and cycle paths encouraging cycling and walking as a recreational or travel option.
- Better and safer access to schools with new mid-block signalised pedestrian crossings and cycling and pedestrians’ improvements, encouraging children to walk or cycle to school.
Milestones and costs
The Albany Highway North upgrade will cost $38 million and is AT’s biggest roading project on the North Shore since the Northern Busway.
Contractor Fulton Hogan will deliver the project. Construction will begin early November and should take two and a half years to complete.
Two traffic lanes in each direction, including one general traffic lane and a T3 transit lane. The T3 lane (for vehicles carrying three or more people) will provide faster, more reliable travel times.
October 2014 update: The T3 transit lane proposal has been amended and we now plan to install a T2 lane (vehicles carrying two or more people) for a trial period. The change has been made after refining plans for a New Network for buses focusing on more public bus services on other routes. There will be public consultation on this proposal in mid-2015. Modelling shows that T2 lanes will move more people in both cars and buses in the shortest time. The Albany Highway T2 lanes will be monitored and may change to T3 or Bus-Only lanes in future if necessary.
- On and off-road cycle routes and wider footpaths will provide a safe environment and encourage children to walk or cycle to school instead of being dropping off by car.
- A new bridge over the Oteha Stream.
- Replacement of three major roundabouts with signalised intersections at Rosedale Road, Bass Road and Wharf Road will provide safe crossing points and improve traffic flow.
Other features include:
- Mid-block signalised pedestrian crossings to make the road safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
- Segregated pedestrian footpaths and cycle paths where practicable with a shared path provided elsewhere to provide a safe environment and encourage active modes of transport.
- Landscaping in the central median and grass berms where practicable to make the road safer and more attractive.
- Stormwater improvements to help reduce pollution from the road flowing into local streams.
- Relocation and undergrounding of main utility services (gas, water, telephone and electricity) to enable road widening to proceed and to improve road safety and street appeal
- Street lighting upgrade using LED lanterns to improve energy efficiency.
- Offsite mitigation work on third party property.
- Mitigation planting and acoustic fencing along property frontages where required.
Photos of how the area currently looks when looking north, and the project's landscape and urban designers' impressions of what it will look like (images provided by Isthmus):
Albany Highway near intersection with Rothwell Avenue
Albany Highway near intersection with Appleby Road
Intersection of Albany Highway with Rosedale Road
View looking north, at bridge
View looking north, at the cemetery
Reducing congestion on the highway
Reducing the number of vehicles using the highway will help to ease congestion, when the upgrade is under way and in the future.
Consider whether taking an alternative mode of travel is an option for you. We recommend:
Catching a bus
With the creation of the T3 lane, buses and high occupancy vehicles will be able to avoid much of the queuing that forms on the highway during peak hours.
School buses currently run between local schools and Devonport, Northcote, Greenhithe/West Harbour, East Coast Bays, and Coatesville/Kumeu. Pupils should contact their school for information about these services or see public bus timetables and route information on this site.
Where possible take passengers or visit Let's Carpool website to find or share a ride. Carpooling can be an attractive option for people travelling to the same location or general area. Benefits to carpooling include saving petrol and money, reducing emissions and meeting new people.
The new T3 transit lane will increase the people-carrying capacity of the highway, so carpoolers with three or more people in the car will have a quicker journey time along the route.
Walking or cycling if you live nearby
There are many benefits to walking and cycling. Not only can it help increase your fitness, but choosing to walk or cycle over driving your car is better for the environment. Fewer cars on the road means cleaner air and less congested roads.
New segregated footpaths and cycle paths along the highway will help promote walking and cycling to school, with off-road cycle paths catering for young riders going to and from school.
Where it is not possible to separate footpaths and cycle paths, wide “share-with-care” paths will be constructed to ensure uninterrupted walking and cycling facilities along this length of the highway.
Over 100 people attended the Albany Highway North Upgrade open days organised by AT on 29 October and 1 November 2014. People met with the project team, viewed plans and discussed the upcoming activities planned during construction.
In 2005 North Shore City Council proposed an upgrade of Albany Highway to reduce congestion and improve safety.
The initial proposal included constructing a four-lane highway with improved pedestrian, cycling and public transport infrastructure, and staging construction over a number of years.
In 2007, the council sought community feedback on this proposal. The council received 179 responses, with the majority strongly advocating for:
- upgrading the designated stretch of highway in one go – completing it in stages would be too disruptive,
- more emphasis on improving safety for school children, particularly those who walk or cycle to school.
This feedback, along with significant council and governmental policy changes and the need to minimise adverse effects while balancing the future needs of traffic and the community, led to a comprehensive redesign of Albany Highway in 2007.
In 2010, the council went back to the community to ask for its input on a new design. Information leaflets were distributed, open days were held, a library display was set up and there was coverage in the local newspapers asking locals for their feedback. Meetings were also held with property owners directly affected by the works.
The council received 59 responses and as a result a number of changes were made to the design concept.
In November 2010, the project was transferred to Auckland Transport.
In August 2012, the designation decision was approved for the roadworks.
In September 2012, the building consent for the upgrade of Days Bridge was approved.