Turning lane changes cause confusion
Changes to the road layout at one of Auckland’s busiest intersections have turned it into a confusing mess, a nearby resident says.
Auckland Transport has changed the alignment at the intersection of New North and St Lukes roads as part of a ‘‘traffic optimisation’’ project it is implementing in conjunction with NZTA.
Until recently traffic turning right from New North Rd on to St Lukes Rd could do so from two lanes.
Under the new arrangement only vehicles in the right lane can turn right.
St Lukes Rd resident Alison Curd noticed the change on June 23 and since then has had a couple of near-misses.
She says there has been no advertising of the change and no signage at the intersection.
‘‘There has been major confusion, it’s a major intersection,’’ she says.
‘‘There were three lanes and always the left turned left or straight, the middle went straight or right, and the right turned right only and fed into two lanes.’’
She says now those in the middle lane are directed only straight ahead, which is where the confusion begins.
‘‘What happens is buses now have to go from the far left to the far right lane if turning right, and other cars are not aware of the change.
‘‘If you sit there and watch the traffic you’re still getting lots turning right.
‘‘Every traffic phase cars and buses are making illegal turns from the centre lane.’’
This means those in the correct turning lane are finding themselves up against traffic they weren’t expecting to see.
‘‘There may be a valid reason for the change, I can’t see it but it would be useful if they put big signs up and made everyone aware.’’
Auckland Transport spokesman Mark Hannan says the change is part of a project to improve traffic move- ment on New North Rd.
The first step is to change the phasing of the New North Rd and St Lukes Rd intersection.
He says traffic engineers modelled the change and found an improvement of 10 per cent could be achieved in flow speed for citybound traffic.
An advertising campaign starts this week.