In November 2016, Waka Kotahi awarded a Public Private Partnership (PPP) contract to the Northern Express Group (NX2). Under the partnership agreement, NX2 agreed to finance, design, construct, manage and maintain the motorway for 25 years after its completion. Full ownership of the motorway remains with Waka Kotahi.
This agreement meant construction could get underway earlier than if funding had to be secured through the normal process of being prioritised in full at the beginning of the project. The National Land Transport Programme will still fund the project, but the costs are spread over time.
We need to finance the motorway over the 25 years after its opening; tolling will help us to make the payments to NX2 who will ensure the road remains safe and well maintained.
An initial assessment in 2011 found that tolling could be used to fund the project and tolling the road in the future was an option. Another assessment completed last year confirmed that Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Warkworth is suitable to be a toll road.Close
Modelling has shown that a toll of $2.40 for light vehicles and $4.80 for heavy vehicles could generate $361–547 million over the proposed 25-year period.Close
The revenue collected from the toll would be contribute to the annual amount we need to pay the PPP over the 25 years following the opening of the motorway. It would free up money from the National Land Transport Fund to invest in other important transport infrastructure projects.Close
Without the proposed toll, the money associated with the PPP payments over the 25 years following completion of the motorway would come from the National Land Transport Fund. The net revenue from the proposed toll could reduce the annual amount by around 20%, freeing up money from the National Land Transport Fund to invest in other important transport infrastructure projects.Close
The project has a 25-year repayment schedule associated with the PPP. After the 25 years, it is proposed the toll will be removed from the road.Close
Yes, the Northern Gateway Toll Road opened in 2009, and that toll will be in place for up to 35 years. We are currently consulting on the proposal to toll Pūhoi to Warkworth; if this toll is implemented, there will be two tolls.
People travelling northbound from the Northern Gateway Toll Road will be able to exit at Pūhoi if they choose to travel on the free route.
There is no southbound exit from the new motorway before the Northern Gateway Toll Road. This means southbound travellers would not be able to choose the toll-free option using the current State Highway 1 (SH1) and scenic Hibiscus Coast Highway (formally State Highway 17) via Ōrewa if they joined the new motorway before Warkworth at the northern end.Close
The legislation that governs the tolling of new roads or sections of road means that we can only use the money raised from a toll to pay for that section of the road.
Revenue collected from the Northern Gateway Toll Road can only be used for the costs of that length of road and cannot be applied to any new motorway. If Pūhoi to Warkworth were tolled, the revenue for tolling would only be associated with the costs of the new motorway.Close
Waka Kotahi currently has three toll roads: The Northern Gateway Toll Road north of Auckland, the Tauranga Eastern Link Toll Road and the Takitimu Drive Toll Road, both in Tauranga.Close
Every new state highway and significant upgrades to existing state highways in New Zealand, are assessed to see whether they meet the criteria to be tolled. The tolling assessment for Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Warkworth shows how the motorway meets that criteria, including any potential impacts of tolling.Close
The tolling modelling indicated the amount of traffic forecast to use Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Warkworth and the alternative route for a range of toll rates. These forecasts were used to identify the proposed toll rates and the effects on the project benefits and the wider network.
Key locations in the network were also investigated to identify the effects of a range of toll rates. These locations include Grand Drive in Orewa and Hill St in Warkworth.
The views expressed in public consultation may identify other effects we have not yet considered.
Refer to the Tolling Report for more detail.
If tolling is in place when the new motorway opens, the traffic volume on SH1 is still expected to reduce from the current 24,000 to 10,000 vehicles each day by 2022.
If tolling is not in place when the motorway opens, the traffic volume on SH1 is expected to be 5,000 vehicles each day by 2022. The assessment shows that a difference of 5,000 vehicles/day creates no significant impacts to the network and is well below the current number of vehicles travelling on that route today.Close
The effects of tolling on the following project outcomes were assessed:
Refer to the Assessment for more detail.Close
The new Ara Tūhono - Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway is expected to deliver a 23% reduction in the annual number of injury crashes from 22 injury crashes per year to 17 injury crashes per year.
Tolling may marginally reduce the safety benefits of the new motorway as the assessment shows that due to the diversion of those choosing the alternative route there may be a 3% safety disbenefit meaning a reduction from 22 injury crashes per year to 17.7 injury crashes per year.
The internal rate of return looks at the set-up cost for tolling compared with the expected toll revenue. It does not include the costs associated with constructing, maintaining or operating the road which the toll revenue would contribute towards.Close
The estimated first year toll revenue is $7–11 million. Over the proposed 25-year tolling period, the estimated revenue is $361–547 million. The revenue changes over time, reflecting increasing traffic volumes and forecasted increases in the Consumer Price Index.Close
The range is from the 5th to the 95th percentile based on the risks inherent in forecasting tolled traffic volumes, including land use growth and people’s use of the toll road.
The mid-point expected toll revenue is $447 million, and if the risks resulting in low revenue eventuate then the expected revenue is $361 million. If the risks resulting in high revenue eventuate then the expected revenue is $547 million.Close
The assessment places the tolling of the new Ara Tūhono -Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway within a comparable context of existing toll roads in New Zealand. As all existing toll roads have a toll term of up to 35 years, the assessment includes a 35-year toll term for the purpose of this comparison.Close
Yes, the Land Transport Management Act requires that a feasible and free alternative route is available. The current SH1 will be a free route for road users. At the same time as we are consulting about tolling the Ara Tūhono - Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway, we are also formally consulting about improving the safety of the alternative route by lowering speed limits on the section of SH1 between L Philips Road (SheepWorld) and Pūhoi.
If a toll is in place, people travelling northbound from the Northern Gateway Toll Road will be able to exit at Pūhoi if they choose to travel on the alternative route.
There is no southbound exit from the new motorway before the Northern Gateway Toll Road. This means southbound travellers would not be able to choose the toll-free option using the current SH1 and scenic Hibiscus Coast Highway (previously State Highway 17) via Ōrewa if they joined near Warkworth.
If travelling south and there was a toll in place on Pūhoi to Warkworth, you would need to plan your route in advance if you wish to take the toll-free route. Your route options will be well signposted.Close
Waka Kotahi is working to ensure safe, resilient and reliable travel between Pūhoi and Warkworth.
We acknowledge that the new motorway and the current state highway are and will continue to be linked, and we want to ensure transparency on our proposals across the area and coordinate feedback from the community on each of these. We also want to ensure that people can give informed feedback by understanding both the speed and the tolling proposals in the area.
Speed review proposal and how to have your say(external link)
As it does for the current toll roads in New Zealand: free-flow electronic toll gantries and automated toll accounts and payment methods similar to what is in place on the Northern Gateway Toll Road.
This system uses automatic number plate recognition technology to identify vehicles as they pass under the tolling point. It provides the greatest time savings, ease of use and convenience for motorists.Close
We are exploring options for the location of the toll gantry. These include installing a new gantry somewhere between Pūhoi and Warkworth on the new motorway or using the existing gantry on the Northern Gateway with new sensors at the Pūhoi ramps to identify vehicles exiting the motorway to use the SH1 free route.Close
Yes – If you’re paying by account, you will see two transactions. If you pay as you go, you will need to complete two transactions.Close
We acknowledge that this is a difficult and uncertain time for everyone. We also understand that COVID-19 will have economic consequences for New Zealand.
The opening of the Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway will play a critical role in the economic recovery of New Zealand, and the proposed toll will free up money from the National Land Transport Fund to invest in other important transport infrastructure projects.
The existing SH1 will be handed over to Auckland Transport (AT) some time after the opening of the new motorway. The condition of the road will be agreed as part of that hand-over process, and Waka Kotahi will work closely with AT to ensure the road is safe and fit for purpose.Close
A decision has not yet been made on tolling for Warkworth to Wellsford. We have completed the work necessary for a proposed designation of land to be put in place for a new transport corridor between Warkworth and Te Hana, but construction of the project remains approximately 10 years away. Tolling will be fully considered closer to the time of construction.Close