Victoria Park Tunnel Flows Smoothly


By 9 this morning, 10,000 vehicles had used the new Victoria Park tunnel which opened just before 5am.

NZTA says traffic is flowing smoothly through the tunnel.

Major road works were completed over the weekend to enable the tunnel to be opened. These included building 500 square metres of new motorway from scratch to form the connection between the existing motorway and the tunnel.

NZTA estimates today’s tunnel opening means that 55,000 northbound vehicles a day will now go under rather than over Victoria Park.

Some lanes of the Victoria Park tunnel are now open

With northbound traffic gone from the Victoria Park flyover, work will start immediately to reconfigure the Victoria Park flyover for southbound traffic. The flyover, which has been a major traffic bottleneck in central Auckland for many years, is due to open in its new configuration in January.

The third and final release of new motorway capacity will be in March when the third tunnel lane and an additional northbound lane through St Marys Bay open to traffic.




  1. Evan J says:

    One thing I am going to miss is the vistas of the Auckland harbour, the bridge, and the yacht masts in the marina, as I drop down over the Victoria Park Viaduct. The concrete canyons of the tunnel and its entrance and exit just don’t the same for me.

  2. richard says:

    Unfortunately , or fortunately, I suspect this work will again demonstrate if you build a road traffic will appear and fill it up almost immediately. This work will allow traffic to race faster to the next bottleneck.

    The motorway system in central Auckland would function much better if they closed half the on and off ramps, I am surprised they are keeping Wellington Street in particular…’s not far to go down to Fanshawe Street as an alternative.

    Recently I was using the Port to North Shore link in the afternoon and traffic was banked up to the Strand!!! Why? The terrible design where traffic from Wellesley St going to the NW and Port to North have to cross each other on the hill. To add to insult at the Northern merge point of course there were their magic stop go lights……..pathetic. Next time I will go via the waterfront as of old.

    The only way to ease congestion is to have good public transport and more cycle-ways to REDUCE traffic, don’t feed a fungus.

  3. max says:

    “Unfortunately , or fortunately, I suspect this work will again demonstrate if you build a road traffic will appear and fill it up almost immediately. This work will allow traffic to race faster to the next bottleneck.”

    If it clogs up right “at the next bend”, I will be very happy. The worst thing that could happen is for massively more car traffic on the WHOLE network.

    Who wants to bet that on the day it starts clogging again, we will start having tons of propaganda saying we need a 2nd Harbour Crossing. And NOW - scrap any further train works, we need to complete the motorway network first. Lalalaa…

    So predictable these blokes. Claim one thing until it happens, and then cast off all restraint and claim another thing.

  4. Gary Young says:

    I join the Southern M’way at Mt Wellington every day at 4:30pm heading north. For many months now the sign giving the transit times has typically shown 25 to 30 minutes to Nelson St.

    Today it was showing 44 and actually took over 50. I could see nothing along the way to explain the slowdown. I hope this was merely an unfortunate coincidence but I shall watch the traffic flows this week with interest.

  5. Jon C says:

    @Gary Fascinating. Please keep us updated during the week. Hope it improves for you.

  6. tbird says:

    For me the traffic was the longest I’ve ever had to sit through!

    I got to Redoubt at 5:15pm, and it was busy from Otahuhu right up to the Nelson St turnoff (and probably beyond).

    Ninety minutes. That’s how long it took me. (It’s 25 minutes with no traffic). I assumed it was the tunnel. I was quite pissed off that the traffic girl on the radio was saying things were pretty good!

    I was wishing I’d trained in to work today, but for me it’s better to drive and get home late, than train and arrive late.

  7. Jon C says:

    @tbird With the trains delayed because of some signal problem at rush hour tonight i am not sure trains were a better option!

  8. Evan J says:

    You want to try driving north on the Southern Motorway after 10 pm. The motorway is closed at Market Road for works associated with the Newmarket Viaduct, and traffic is directed up the Market Road off ramp. Problem is, the traffic lights are still on their usual timing favouring traffic on Market Road, which is virtually non existant. They let about six vehicles through before they go red again for about the next minute. Then those six vehicles are held up at the Great South Road lights for about another minute. The diversion directs the traffic to the motorway again at the Gillies Ave on ramp, but there is the same problem again at the Alpers Ave-Gillies Ave lights which favour non existent traffic in Gillies Ave. Back onto the motorway, and you are off at Nelson Street because of motorway work. So follow the arrows down Nelson Street, into Wellesley Street West and into Victoria Street West and Beaumont Street, only to find the motorway is closed at Fanshaw Street and you are directed around the block and up College Hill to Ponsonby, then along Jervois Road to Curran Street, also with every light at red. I have nothing against the road works, but let’s get everything co-ordinated and turn off the lights and put in traffic controllers. Just for the record, the quickest way through town between 10pm and midnight would probably be to get off at Greenlane and head along St Lukes Road to Western Springs. There either head north-west via the North Western Motorway, or east to the Ponsonby off ramp and head to Curran Street via Ponsonby Road.

  9. Paul Q says:

    There’s no increase or decrease in capacity through the tunnel area so all this congestion is purely the typical rubberneck thing of people looking around at a new bit of roadway.

    Once the rubbernecking dies down, the flow will get back to normal and when the third lane opens, then things “should” improve over the pre-tunnel layout.


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