Second Mt Victoria tunnel plan unveiled20 June 2013
A second two-lane tunnel through Mt Victoria could be open to traffic within a decade, NZ Transport Authority announced recently. The agency has planned a second tunnel and widening of Ruahine St and Wellington Rd to connect to the new NZD 90M (USD 72M) Basin flyover.
The plans for the second tunnel show it would sit directly along the northern side of the existing tunnel. It would provide two lanes for east-bound traffic, along with a separate pedestrian and cycle facility linking to the flyover. On the Hataitai side of the tunnel, Ruahine St will become four lanes, and will also sport a pedestrian and cycling path.
Heading towards the airport Wellington Rd will be widened to six lanes and traffic lights will be installed at the intersection with Ruahine St.
"Currently, traffic along Ruahine Street moves at snail's pace during peak hour and there isn't much provision for pedestrians and cyclists. Doubling the capacity of Ruahine Street, putting in a new facility for people travelling on foot or by bike, and linking it all to a second Mount Victoria Tunnel will make a world of difference to everyday travel," said Jenny Chetwynd, regional director, NZ Transport Agency.
The transport agency plans to seek resource consent late next year, with an aim to building the roading projects between 2018 and 2022.
The projects are all part of a NZD 800M (USD 641M) improvement project from Ngauranga to the airport, and the announcement sits alongside new details about the flyover project and a the reveal of a major public transport study for Wellington.