Water­view tun­nel passes test with fly­ing colours

Central Leader - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - STAFF RE­PORTER

Auck­land’s Water­view tun­nel passed its first work­day test with fly­ing colours.

Traf­fic flowed freely de­spite the rainy weather as com­muters took to the new stretch of mo­tor­way on Mon­day morn­ing.

Pen­ina Mo­moi­sea said the tun­nel had shaved about 10 min­utes off her school run – one third of her over­all jour­ney.

‘‘I live in Man­gere Bridge and my son goes to school in Grey Lynn. So we’d usu­ally have to go through the back roads of Mount Al­bert to get to Grey Lynn; it would take 30 to 35 min­utes,’’ she said.

New Zealand Trans­port Agency spokes- man Brett Glid­don said it had been a ‘‘great Mon­day morn­ing’’ on Auck­land’s mo­tor­ways.

‘‘Traf­fic has been free-flow­ing through the tun­nel as well as on State High­way 16 and State High­way 20.’’

By mid­night on Sun­day, 78,000 ve­hi­cles had trav­elled through both tun­nels since they opened early on Sun­day morn­ing. Its open­ing date was kept a se­cret due to con­ges­tion fears.

The Water­view tun­nel is the fi­nal link in the 48km Western Ring Route, which is ex­pected to re­duce in­ner-city traf­fic. It also pro­vides a di­rect mo­tor­way link from Auck­land’s air­port to the cen­tral city.

DIANNE SMITH/SUP­PLIED

The Water­view tun­nel opened to pub­lic traf­fic at 12:47am on Sun­day.

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