Dominion Rd Decisions


Dominion Rd’s bus lane and traffic congestion issue - one of the curly ones that tripped up the last Auckland Council - is finally back on the agenda.

Auckland Transport has agreed to extend bus-lanes around the Mt Roskill Village Centre, and Balmoral Village, and in the area Mt Roskill bound through to Valley Rd. These will operate only at peak times.

On-street parking, which was a critical issue for businesses and residents, will be retained, with the bus-lanes utilised for parking off-peak.

Cycleways will be included where room allows. The work will also see significant maintenance of the road surface.

Auckland Transport has begun working with landowners, businesses and the Albert-Eden Local Board on a scheme to reduce traffic congestion on Dominion Rd.

Dominion Rd is one of the busiest arterial routes in the country, carrying more than 25,000 vehicles every day.

Over the years a number of schemes have been proposed, including 24 hour bus-lanes running to and from the central city (known as a “rapid transit system”).

However, following a review by Auckland Transport and consideration of feedback from community consultation, those plans have been scaled back.

Dominion Rd: earlier debates about bus lanes

More details will follow as the project design is developed in consultation with business, other stakeholders and the Albert-Eden Local Board.

Auckland Councillor and Auckland Transport Board member Christine Fletcher says the principles agreed by Auckland Transport will ensure a system that works for residents, business and commuters alike.

She also says the lifting of designations along the route will give long awaited certainty to landowners. “This is a great example of working in partnership, listening to the community we serve and re-evaluating things accordingly,” she says.

Mrs Fletcher is also deputy chair of the Auckland Council’s transport committee.

Buses battle Dominion Rd traffic

Albert-Eden Local Board member and the Board’s transport spokesperson, Tim Woolfield, is also delighted that progress is being made.

“It gives certainty to property owners over what will, and will not, happen for the first time in years,” he says. “I am pleased that a particular focus is on the retention of on-street parking.

The chair of the Albert-Eden Local Board, Peter Haynes, says the board looks forward to working with Auckland Transport on fine-tuning the proposals.

Dominion Rd’s traffic issues  have been kicked around for ages.

A few flashbacks from a year ago:

A year ago the former Auckland City Council’s transport committee meeting gave the tick to a scheme for the upgrade of Dominion Rd that saw buses in the vicinity of Balmoral and Eden Valley shops remain on Dominion Rd instead of an earlier plan to have them deviate along yet-to-be-created roads through adjacent shopping centres.

And in August of last year 300 attended a public meeting in the Balmoral school hall organised by the Save Dominion Road campaign and the message from them was: they don’t want a “four lane highway through Eden Valley, Balmoral and Mt Roskill villages.”

In the heat of the original T2 row -which also saw the ARC oppose the council’s plans - the transport chair at the time Ken Baguley explained to AKT why the Council was moving down that path.

Related Posts

  1. Dominion Rd Protest Meeting
  2. Dominion Rd Gets The Tick
  3. Locals Fight Dominion Rd Plan
  4. Dominion Rd Plan Update
  5. Dominion Rd Fatal Accident




  1. Matt L says:

    Seems pretty uninspiring and designed not to rock the boat to much. AT should be using this as an opportunity to be more bold and look at ideas like central bus lanes.

  2. KarlHansen says:

    Interesting. I had hoped for more a “bigger bang” for both cycling and public transport, but was increasingly realising that that wasn’t going to happen. If they designed a big bang now, the construction and disaffection would still be high during the next election - one of the side effects of our horribly short 3-year election cycles.

    I hope this way, we get a good level of improvement, though obviously not a step change.

    I still don’t understand why one would remove designations that are already in place, though!

  3. George D says:

    I think there’s the possibility to expand the hours in future (7-10am, 3-6pm) and create a de-facto bus corridor.

    A little disappointed, but things aren’t going to move for a while so we might as well accept this as an improvement.

  4. Mark says:

    @Matt L - the width isn’t there for centre bus lanes - means taking all the parking off - and you still need to build centre platforms…..

    Dominion is already a successful bus corridor, and really just needs “B” traffic lights and it will be fine. There’s no too much growth going to happen at teh edn of it due to stormwater issues - and tahnks to the warehouse and McDonalds, there won’t be a growth node at Balmoral.

    So this sounds as though it will get an improvement for everyone.

  5. Matt L says:

    Mark - There is actually width for centre bus lanes and even with stops in the town centres. I have a design that would allow them and still conform to the old Auckland councils minimum requirements.

  6. Mark says:

    @Matt L - but by removing parking I assume?
    that puts 20,000 cars next to footpaths….

  7. Matt L says:

    Mark - parking would only be removed around the bus stops, outside of that there are a few possible options to retain it. Also in the town centres the idea would be to slow general traffic down as much as possible, perhaps one step below a shared space.

  8. George D says:

    Let’s get the frequency up, get people using, and most importantly get retailers realising that bus customers are worth more than car ones (on aggregate). Once that happens, the parking can go.

  9. Tim Gummer says:

    “Cycleways will be included where room allows. ”

    Says it all really. The original plan was a unique opportunity to prove what continuous, separated cyclelanes could do - for non-cyclists, keen, but too scared to brave a busy road.

    I stress, haven’t seen the new plan yet, but it appears this has been tragically, but predictably diluted for several reasons:

    - The “I Luv Dom Rd’ crowd framed the debate in simplistic “four lane highway” terms, while ironically, and without a skerrick of actual urban design insight, going to bat for more parking - the well understood enemy of urban livableness. In contrast, Queen St’s on-street parking has been slowly but steadily removed and retail business increased significantly, as is the pattern internationally. Just ask Jan Ghel.
    - No stakeholders (urban designers, engineers, local business, cycle advocates etc) were made aware of Sustrans’ research in the UK and Poland showing that retailers dramatically overestimate the automotive modal share of their customers - relative to reality - much less articulated it to reassure nervous local retailers, or devise measures to protect them during a period of transition.
    - A widespread parochial perspective which fails to take into account proven international best practices for mixed mode transportation.
    - A bipartisan failure of political nerve.

    For once, the council got it right, with their plan, but lacked any kind of skillset to deal to communicate it adequately, and position it in the context of best practice in highly liveable cities around the world.

    Dom Rd, we love ya… wouldn’t wanna be ya.

  10. KarlHansen says:

    “No stakeholders (urban designers, engineers, local business, cycle advocates etc) were made aware of Sustrans’ research in the UK and Poland showing that retailers dramatically overestimate the automotive modal share of their customers”

    Actually, Tim, I was told that Council HAD done local research on just that matter (ped and cyclist share of local traffic, and I understand, possibly even of retailer revenue - though that’s harder to pin down),and had used that in their communication with the local residents and businesses.

    In the end, parking removal is still toxic for politicians in Auckland. Disappointing, BUT:

    This scheme should still likely reduce car parking somewhat (not much, but who knows, maybe 5-10%?)

    It will improve bus travel. Not by a big leap, but again, by some percent again. With the road already carrying more people on buses than in cars, that too, will be good.

    It will create some cycleways - not connected lengths yet, but one has to start somewhere (and I hope the bits they build will be higher standard, not just cycle lanes of the old style). With the worst part of the Dom Road-City route (Ian McKinnon Drive at the northern end) being sorted (by August this year!) with new walk and cycleways, we will see continual increases in cycling traffic too, I hope.

    I know you’d rather see a revolution, Tim, but incrementalism works too. Just slower, and it takes a greater toll of the advocates. But we need to stick to it anyway.

  11. Mark says:

    The issue wasn’t so much parking for businesses, but the removal of a safety/noise barrier for pedestrians.

    The pedestrians are a major component on Dominion Rd - in fact more pedestrians walked to the CBD along from Valley road via Ian McKinnon than cycle.

  12. KarlHansen says:

    Mark, I understand your concerns - you explained them several times in the past on this board and on Auckland Transport, if I remember right. And you never agreed with the argument that a 2m wide cycle lane would help buffer pedestrians from moving traffic. I don’t understand why, but hey, that seemed to be your stance, so okay, point taken.

    But I call you on the “it wasn’t so much parking for the businesses”. That was a BIG complaint the locals had, whether or not one agrees with them (and I can understand at least part of their concern). If the parking really wasn’t the issue, it could have been removed for more footpath and green space too, but I don’t think the locals would have liked that result either.

  13. Matt L says:

    Mark - Based on what you are saying you would rather a bus traveling past right next to the footpath at 50kph rather than some cars going past at 30kph. Sorry that doesn’t wash with me and I know which of those two I would prefer to be walking next to.

    Outside of the town centres pedestrians would be protected by things like trees.

  14. Mark says:

    @Karl - parking had different impacts - yes some businesses wanted it - eg late night restaurants etc - but during day with heavy traffic flows people wanted it for noise/dust etc - it does create a safety buffer in peoples minds - and all you needed was one person to step off into a bus path, and metal railings would have gone up - turning us into a london arterial :(

    @Matt L - yes a Bus at 30-50 for just a peak period on only one side of the road is liveable. To have cars next to footpaths, both sides 24/7 is too much of an impact/problem.

    Also cars won’t go at just 30km once they aren’t “hemmed” in they increase speed. That was a major flaw with the original proposal of 24/7, car lanes in the centre - they would go 60km - ie std Balmoral road speed. Yes you can do some road treatments - but not for the whole length.


Leave a Comment


XHTML: You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>