T Lanes Under Review


High occupancy road lanes are under review by Auckland Transport throughout the region.

This was revealed today by Auckland Transport’s key relationships manager Dr Stephen Rainbow.

He said the AT chiefs wanted a review throughout the whole region of T1, 2 etc and whether there could be more consistency.

AT has inherited the bus and transit lanes from the previous local government set-up.

The revelation came during discussion at the Auckland Council Transport Committee.

Cr George Wood, a former North Shore Mayor, raised the issue of the Grafton Bridge traffic restrictions.
He complained the signs were too small and confusing unlike the sort of signs you see on the Bridge advising of Onewa Rd.

Chair Mike Lee said that with bus lanes, if drivers stray into them, they can manoeuvre out but once you are on Grafton Bridge and discover you should not be there, there is no way out.

You can run but not hide if speed camera catch you on Grafton

Dr Rainbow said it was important to note the good news public transport story of the way the bus Central Connector enabling buses across Grafton bridge had contributed to the spectacular growth of public transport.
Mike Lee paid tribute at this point to former Council Committee Chair Ken Baguley who was dubbed the father of this project and was in the public gallery for the meeting.

Ken Baguley at the re-opening of Grafton bridge

The Committee passed motions asking that Auckland Transport conduct an audit for the operation of the restricted hours bus lanes across Grafton Bridge to:

  • Ascertain whether there’s adequate warning of drivers of no-exempt vehicles as they approach the bridge from either end and also look at the legality and practicality of the placement and obstruction of the signage in relation to drivers’ line of sight as they approach the bridge.
  • Investigate the modification of the full green traffic lights allowing traffic to enter Grafton Bridge from Park Rd Grafton and K RD to ‘green arrows’ diverting non-exempt traffic away from the bridge when the bus lane is in operation.
  • A separate motion, arising from a side discussion during the debate, asked AT to include a phone number of signage (preferably an 0800- one) to ring if you return to your car and find it towed away (something for which I have had the frustration myself!).

In answer to a Councillor’s question, Dr Rainbows said there was no automatic exemption for out-of-towners if caught driving on Grafton Bridge when they shouldn’t as had been implied in recent media comment. Any letting off of a fine was at the AT’s discretion on a case-by-case basis.




  1. Patrick R says:

    If it’s all too confusing for the poor dears behind the wheel then let’s paint the tarmac on the bridge green and make it a 24/7 buslane- no confusion, simple.

  2. Andy says:

    I live near Grafton Bridge. It’s not confusing at all, it’s just damned annoying not being able to use it during weekdays. Especially when every time I am near it I never see a bus using it.

  3. Commuter says:

    Rather than painting the whole of Grafton Bridge (and the T2/T3/bus lanes green why not just paint double green lines along the edges; it works OK in London (except the lines are red, like the buses) so it should work here. I realise that motorists here think that anything with a bit of tarmac is theirs to drive over by god-given right, but painting the whole lane green is a bit OTT, no?

  4. The Trickster says:

    For f**ks sake - how many damn signs do you need?

    There are about 6 signs on each side of the bridge including a pair at each end which have CLEARLY “NO ENTRY” and also feature “Bus Lane 7am - 7pm” - I’d have thought the “No Entry” would be enough let alone the massive gantry signs which are also both on K Rd and Park Rd.

    Seriously this is just really starting to piss me off now.

  5. KarlHansen says:

    Andy, what do you propose? Metering cars to get on, so that there’s “just not enough” to impede buses? As soon as you reopen it for general use, there’d be dozens of cars on it every light change during the peak hour, and then buses would be screwed.

    And even the delay by a single car - call it a second or two - is multiplied by all the riders on a bus. During peak hour, that may be as much as fourty or fifty people per bus inconvenienced by one guy in a car!

    Motorists should just get used to the fact that not ALL road space is for them!!!

  6. Jeremy says:

    I catch a bus that goes across Grafton Bridge every morning, there is plenty of signage there and not sure how many times the council needs to review it.

    Anyone driving over the bridge are purely ignorant and trying their luck in getting away with it. Love it when I see cars getting filmed and they deserve to get fined.

  7. Jon C says:

    @Jeremy Well said. Agree completely

  8. Feijoa says:

    I was going to ask “where are the T1 lanes?” Then I remembered that’s 99.9% of the case in Auckland. Let’s review that!

    The red lines in London are the ‘red route’ where no vehicle is allowed to stop (voluntarily) at all times — it doesn’t have anything to do with buses. Even mini cab drivers obey them because of the enforcement, which is saying a lot. Darby Street anyone? Most of the bus lanes in London are red chip IIRC.

    If drivers are still unable to see the signs it makes me worried, particularly as an occasional cyclist, since I know what’s at stake with unaware drivers about. Still, I’d like see 24/7 bus lanes and/or a change to arrows at traffic lights to remove any chance of confusion and reduce bus delays.


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