Skip to Main Content
Auckland Transport

Lake Road improvements Lake Road improvements

Auckland Transport (AT) is investigating how to improve the efficiency and reliability of travel along Lake Road, between Takapuna and the Devonport peninsula.

Project status: Investigation.
Project zone: North.

Project overview

Lake Road is the only arterial road in and out of the Devonport peninsula and serves as the main connection to the rest of the North Shore and Auckland for people living and working in the area.

The local community has raised concerns about the unpredictability of travel conditions along Lake Road during weekday peak times and at the weekends.

We want to improve the accessibility, reliability, and availability of travel choices to and from the Devonport peninsula, and make it easier and more convenient to travel to local shops, parks, beaches, and community centres.

We propose using a mix of new and re-purposed transit lanes (for higher occupancy vehicles and public transport), walking and cycling facilities, and technology solutions to improve available trip information.


  • Increase the amount of people able to move through the corridor.
  • Improve access to local destinations.
  • Improve the reliability of trip times.
  • Improve the access to alternative transport options, including public transport, walking and cycling.
  • Encourage use of higher occupancy vehicles and buses.
  • Accommodate dedicated, safe cycling and walking facilities and improve connections to the parallel green ways.
  • Relieve pressure on the network through travel-planning measures.


  • Mid 2017 - Public consultation on proposed improvements.
  • Late 2017/early 2018 - Development of the business case.

Proposed approach

We are considering a range of possible solutions to best address these issues. Our investigation found that a variety of improvements would work best to maximise the existing infrastructure and services, while providing greater access to alternative transport options.

There are multiple congestion points along Lake Road and people accessing the motorway are often affected by the conditions of Esmonde Road.

Our proposed approach focuses on improvements to Lake Road, Esmonde Road, and Bayswater Avenue. It includes:

  • Using a mix of new transit lanes (for higher occupancy vehicles and public transport).
  • Walking and cycling facilities.
  • Changing the existing bus lane on Esmonde Road to a transit lane, providing easier access to the motorway for higher occupancy vehicles.
  • Improved bus and ferry services and infrastructure within the peninsula.
  • Greater use of technology to convey up to date travel information, so travellers can make the best choice before heading out. This could be through smartphone applications showing rideshare opportunities and travel conditions, and also electronic roadside signs with information on travel conditions.

Walking and cycling improvements

We know that a large number of trips made along Lake Road are short local trips (within the peninsula) and these short trips are more suited to be made by alternatives to the car, for example the bus, walking or cycling. This will help free up Lake Road for longer distance trips or other trips that are more likely to be done in a car.

There are a number of local activities and destinations along Lake Road, and making walking and cycling a more viable option will help ease traffic demand on the road. To help with this, we are planning to provide safe cycling facilities along Lake Road, and the supporting green ways.

We’re also looking at walking and cycling improvements for Bayswater Avenue, and efficiency improvements at key intersections along the corridor. We will continue to work with larger organisations (such as the Navy and schools) on travel planning to help reduce the need for car trips in busy times.

Investment levels

In developing our approach, we are considering 3 levels of investment: low, medium and high.

Each investment level would result in different improvements in journey times, reliability, and integration of bus and ferry services, along with improvements to walking and cycling facilities. Each level also has different costs, benefits, disruptions, and timeframes for delivery.

All the investment levels include: a transit lane on Esmonde Road, travel planning initiatives, bus/ferry improvements, and technology initiatives.

Parking impacts and changes through local centres will also need to be investigated in more detail once we’ve chosen a preferred investment level.

Lake Rd investment level illustration

Image: Illustration of how the 3 investment levels would work. A more detailed design will be developed once we’ve considered the community’s feedback and are able to secure funding for the preferred investment.

Low investment - around $10M


Re-marking the road within the existing kerbs to create new segments of transit lanes, whilst retaining the existing cycle lanes.

The bulk of the cost will be to change the existing westbound bus lane on Esmonde Road into a transit lane and provide safe walking and cycling facilities along Bayswater Avenue (between the ferry terminal and Lake Road).


Least benefits but easier to achieve.

Impact analysis

Minor community disruption.

Funding and delivery timeframes

Quicker to secure funding and deliver; likely within 5 years.

Medium investment - around $30 to $40M (preferred option)


Shifting some kerb lines to create width for extended sections of transit lanes and cycle lanes along Lake Road.

As with the low-investment option, we will look to change the existing westbound bus lane on Esmonde Road into a transit lane and provide safe walking and cycling facilities along Bayswater Avenue (between the ferry terminal and Lake Road).

The changes would also enable improvements at a number of intersections along Lake Road to improve the traffic flow.


Moderate benefits but less risky than high-investment option.

Impact analysis

  • Moderate community disruption and delivery risk.
  • All work within existing road space.
  • Power line undergrounding if possible.
  • Possible flush median removal in some locations.
  • Take longer to achieve than the low-investment option.

Funding and delivery timeframes

Moderate time to secure funding and deliver. Likely 5 to 10 years.

High investment - more than $70M


Widening Lake Road beyond the current property boundaries to achieve room for all transport modes.

This option would achieve the best opportunity for a wider range of design improvements to Lake Road. However, the high cost and need for land acquisition from adjoining properties make it a more disruptive and complex option, which would take much longer to deliver.


More likely to deliver maximum benefits.

Impact analysis

  • High cost and community disruption.
  • Need for property acquisition, which impacts time and cost.
  • More feasible to underground power lines.

Funding and delivery timeframes

More time and complexity in obtaining funding, consents and approvals. Likely 10+ years.

Public engagement

From 10 June to 8 July 2017, we sought feedback on our proposed approach, the levels of investment, and ways to improve the efficiency and reliability of travelling along Lake Road.

After careful consideration of all feedback and project constraints, our preferred option is for developing the medium investment approach further in the next phase, the detailed business case (DBC).

This phase will involve developing specific design proposals and more detailed costs and benefits. The proposals will most likely include:

  • Targeting specific locations for road widening, within budgetary and spatial constraints, recognising that a major road widening project is unlikely to be cost effective but targeted widening may be necessary.
  • Conversion of the existing bus lane along Esmonde Road to a transit lane to the ramp signals, as part of an existing investigation with NZTA.
  • Targeted use of transit lanes along Lake Road (likely between Roberts Avenue and Napier Avenue).
  • Continuous cycle facilities (physically separated if possible) along Lake Road (between Seabreeze Road and Hurstmere Road), connecting to a supporting local network being investigated by AT’s Cycling team.
  • Physically separated cycle facilities along Bayswater Avenue (between Lake Road and the ferry terminal).
  • Technology to assist with real time journey information, (for example, real time journey planner apps and websites, traffic advisory apps, public transport tracking app) and investigating roadside variable message signs.
  • Improved bus/ferry integration and roll out of the New Network for North Shore.
  • Continued delivery of travel planning programmes with local schools and key organisations, in particular the Navy.
  • Intersection improvements.

Feedback report

Download the Lake Road improvements feedback report (PDF 1.3MB, 77 pages).

Next steps

Specific suggestions from the public feedback will be further considered in the DBC phase. For more detailed responses to themes and suggestions, see the ‘Detailed suggestions from feedback’ section of the feedback report (page 28).

We will consult further with the community once design proposals have been developed.

We expect to start the DBC shortly after completion of the current (indicative business case) phase - late 2017/early 2018.

Indicative business case

Download the Indicative business case draft report (PDF 1.4MB, 74 pages).

For more information on this project

Contact Auckland Transport