The NZTA’s traffic estimate of 14,000 vehicles a day for the toll road, without determining how much the toll will be, must surely be a wild guess. For trips outside of the holiday season, the free alternative will be just a few minutes slower. For those heading to Warkworth itself, the free alternative will actually be quicker than the toll road.
The claimed travel time of 10.7 minutes for a toll road of 18.5km in length equates to an average speed of 103km/hr – above the legal speed limit. The NZTA are going to desperate lengths in order to make this white elephant project appear viable.
Recently Peter Gluckman, the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser, called for better use of evidence in policy formation. The same principle needs to be applied to the decisions of the NZTA and their controlling Minister of Transport.