The NZ Transport Agency is urging people heading away for the long weekend to plan ahead and avoid delays by checking out the Highway Hotspots information, available on a new interactive map at www.nzta.govt.nz/hotspots.
Traffic volumes are typically significantly heavier at the beginning and the end of long weekends and holiday periods, so the Transport Agency’s travel information team has crunched the numbers from previous holiday periods to show where and when traffic is likely to be heaviest so people can make more informed decisions about the best time to travel to avoid the queues.
Transport Agency journey manager Liam Ryan says thousands of people are expected to hit the roads in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty region over the long weekend.
“For example, last Queen’s Birthday weekend traffic peaked in our usual busy locations on SH2 near Mangatawhiri, returning over the Kopu-Hikuai Road (SH25A) and through Huntly on SH1,” he says.
“If everyone plans their travel in advance, and thinks about the best time to get on the road, it will ease stress and reduce the need to hurry, making for a safer and more enjoyable journey.
“We know from previous holiday periods that people are using our previous holiday hot spot information to help plan their travel, but we also want to remind people that the hot spot predictions, which are based on previous congestion times, should be used alongside real time travel information."
“We will have a range of technology and teams of people working throughout the break to monitor traffic flows and incidents on the state highway network to provide up to the minute and accurate information on the best times to travel and less congested routes."
Weather will also play a big role in determining the busiest peaks for people returning home again, so using real time travel information is the best way to get up to date and accurate information about email notifications about road and traffic conditions. Check the Traffic and Travel pages at www.nzta.govt.nz
Mr Ryan says roadworks would be put on hold across the Bay of Plenty and Waikato regions over the long weekend, however some work would continue at the intersection of SH3 and SH21 near the Hamilton Airport.
“Our contractors are putting the final touches on a new roundabout to ensure it is finished for Fieldays,” he says.