Pūhoi to Warkworth highway will deliver great benefits - AA

Media Release: 16 June 2023

Pūhoi to Warkworth highway will deliver great benefits - AA

16 June 2023

Pūhoi to Warkworth highway will deliver great benefits - AA

The opening of the new Ara Tūhono - Pūhoi to Warkworth section of State Highway 1 will be a long-awaited leap forward for safer, shorter and more reliable travel between Northland and Auckland, says the AA. 

A ribbon-cutting event to mark the completion of the project is to be held on Friday morning and the road is expected to open to traffic any day now.

“It has been a long wait but we’re sure all regular users of the road will be delighted that it’s finally open and will make their travel better and safer,” the AA’s Northland District Chair Tracey Rissetto said.

“State Highway 1 between Auckland and Northland is Northland’s lifeline and economic connection to the rest of the country. The new road brings our regions just that little bit closer together and provides a huge step-up in resilience compared with the old State Highway 1 route.”

“Congratulations to Waka Kotahi and the NX2 project team for getting what has been a large and challenging project to the finish line”, Tracey said.

“It’s great that the new road will be so much safer to drive” the AA’s Auckland District Chair Mark Yates said.

 “There have been six deaths and 20 serious injuries on the old road over the last five years which puts it among the higher risk stretches of highway throughout New Zealand”.

“The AA’s recent research on the safety benefits of new roads indicates that the new highway will mean around two fewer people will be seriously hurt or killed from crashes every year along this route”, Mark said.

“The Warkworth community will be relieved that the road has ended the gridlock traffic locals have had to endure – particularly at long weekends and public holiday times”, Mark said.                                                     

“For the people of Northland, finishing the road is a great milestone but it’s far from the checkered-flag”, Tracey said.   

“The rest of NZ has become familiar with the vulnerability of our part of State Highway 1 to weather events and too many people are losing their lives or suffering serious injuries in accidents on this road. It’s important to make a start on upgrading the next section ASAP”.

Pūhoi to Warkworth extends Auckland’s Northern Motorway 18.5 kilometres from the Johnstone’s Hill Tunnels to just north of Warkworth and is expected to shave around 11 minutes travel time off the trip compared to the current State Highway 1.


For more information contact:
Martin Glynn
NZ Automobile Association
Policy director, Policy and Advocacy Team
M. 021 757 238

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