Auckland Transport’s board last Thursday approved plans to reduce speed limits for more than 1600 roads, covering 19 percent of Auckland’s road network and roughly 90 percent of Waiheke Island.
The changes follow a safety review that found the majority of Waiheke’s speed limits are no longer safe or fit for purpose. So in phase three of AT’s safe speeds programme, the new norm for Waiheke roads will be 30kph rather than 50kph. Speed limits of 80kph are also being ditched on roads such as Cowes Bay Road and Man o’ War Bay Road, both notorious for their uneven surface – which will soon have a 40kph limit.
The new speed limits will come into effect in stages between December 2022 and March 2023. Auckland Transport executive general manager of safety Stacey van der Putten says the new speed limits will save lives and prevent serious injuries.
“In Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland we have a shocking number of deaths and serious injuries from road trauma. It’s just unacceptably high. Evidence shows speed is a factor in more than 70 per cent of injury crashes in New Zealand. We need to do everything we can to create safe school neighbourhoods, so parents feel confident their children can walk, bike or scooter to school.” • Paul Mitchell
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