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Ramp signals are essentially traffic lights that manage traffic flow from two-lane on-ramps onto the motorway during peak periods and other busy times. The signals operate only when they are needed to improve traffic flows; at all other times they stay off. Widely used internationally, ramp signals have been shown to reduce congestion and improve traffic flows. This results in more consistent travel times, safer merging and fewer accidents.

Managing Auckland’s traffic

Ramp signalling is one initiative we've introduced to help manage the increasing traffic volumes on Auckland's motorway network. We've worked closely with Auckland's local and regional councils and Auckland Transport to install 61 ramp signals on the southern, northern and northwestern motorways.

How ramp signals work

Electronic sensors built into the road detect when traffic becomes heavy, then activate the ramp signals.

When lights are red, vehicles stop and wait for the green signal. When lights turn green, two cars (one from each lane) can drive down the ramp to merge easily with motorway traffic. Ramp signals run on a fast cycle, with only a few seconds between green lights.

Other measures

Learn about other measures we use to help keep traffic moving efficiently on our state highways, through:

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