Conversation with a traffic engineer

This is so true!Traffic engineers need to be part of the solution to the transport problems we face, but most of the time I really think that they’re actually the biggest part of the problem. I know there are traffic engineers out there who read this blog – please please you need your profession to do better!…
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The temporary speed limit that ‘cried wolf’

Doing some inter-city driving over the past few days has reminded me of one rather annoying and disconcerting element of New Zealand’s road signage – and that is the good old temporary speed limit. This thing: Now to NZTA’s credit, there aren’t many road works actually going on around the country during the holiday period – at least not on busy inter-city highways.…
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Bypassing Warkworth

Despite what the Minister of Transport says, it is clear that one of the main reasons for the Puhoi-Wellsford road of national significance becoming a priority is to alleviate traffic congestion that happens north of Auckland during holiday times. Of course that’s not the only reason for the project becoming a priority – that seems to be a delusion (in my opinion) that saving 5-10 minutes off a trip between Puhoi and Wellsford is going to make the world of difference to Northland’s economy.…
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Bashing rail, the NZ Heralds other favorite pastime

Following on from the completely unsurprising story about the holiday traffic the other day by the NZ Herald it seems they have now taken to another of their favorite pastimes, bashing rail. Today in their editorial they have attacked the current rail shutdown for electrification works and questioned the validity of upgrading the network.…
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Surprise, surprise

As I predicted a couple of days ago, the NZ Herald reports on yesterday’s traffic jams around Warkworth: Bumper-to-bumper traffic stretched almost the length of the 7.5km toll road between Orewa and Puhoi for three hours from late yesterday morning. Some hot and frustrated drivers and passengers got out of their cars to stretch their legs and cool off.…
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Rail upgrade work underway

The NZ Herald reports that the rail upgrade work taking place over the next couple of weeks – which will involve significant improvements to big chunks of the network in preparation for electrification – has swung into action: About 200 rail workers threw themselves into a hectic summer construction programme throughout Auckland yesterday, including erecting the first of 3500 power supply masts for the $1 billion electrification project.…
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Don’t drive north tomorrow

Tomorrow there will be a huge traffic jam heading north of Auckland, particularly as the result of the Warkworth bottleneck. The same thing happens every December 27th, everyone says how horrible the traffic jam is, and the “need” for the holiday highway is supposedly underlined.…
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Merry Xmas

Well Merry Xmas everyone. I’ve finished with work for the year and a couple of weeks of very nice holidays beckon. It’s likely that my posting will reduce in frequency over the next couple of weeks, particularly in early January as I’m going to be out of Auckland for a few days.…
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“Hop” confirmed as name for Auckland smart-card

Well it seems like the rumours were correct – Auckland’s equivalent of London’s Oyster Card and Hong Kong’s Octopus Card is going to be called the “Hop Card”. The NZ Herald ran this story today: London has its Oyster public transport card, Hong Kong an Octopus and Wellingtonians their Snapper, but Aucklanders will be hopping on to dry land with their new ticket to ride.…
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