Airport to Botany and Southwest Gateway Submission Guide


Yesterday both NZTA and Auckland Transport released the much anticipated second round of consultation of both the Southwest Gateway and Airport to Botany Rapid Transit Stage 2.

For more on the projects see: Airport to Botany Rapid Transit Stage 2 Out for Consultation. HAVE YOUR SAY By December 8

Submission Guide

This post will be a loose collection of how to submit on making Airport to Botany Rapid Transit (or A2B) even better than what is being proposed. It will follow the Question template set by AT and NZTA.

The basic rule of thumb is we want AT especially to follow Concept Four not Concept Three. What is that you mean? You will see when we come to the particular question.

Where is our City at today Source: Toderian UrbanWorks

Right lets get into this.

1. What do you think of the Airport to Botany Rapid Transit preferred route?

This one I leave entirely to you on how A2B works its way through Manukau City Centre as for me the primary objective of having the route travel past the Manukau Bus and Rail Stations has been met. How A2B then routes itself from those stations to Te Irirangi Drive and out to Botany depends how you see A2B working.

A2B Route Source: Auckland Transport

For me personally I would have the A2B route continue down all of Manukau Station Road, then up the Great South Road then finally into Te Irirangi Drive with stops outside Rainbows End, McDonalds and then next to AUT South. The reason for this an not Ronwood Avenue is that Ronwood is serviced by the 33 and 361 (meaning a bus at least every 15 minutes) along an area I want to see become a Boluevard. A Boulevard not suitable for A2B. Having A2B run on the route I have suggested also triggers the potential for all that car parking around Manukau Mall to be developed.

A2B would still intersect the existing Bus and Rail station but continuing down Manukau Station Road allows better urban renewal opportunities (and easier for eventual Light Rail).

A2B (Yellow) with LRT stations (red), potential central Manukau detour, bus routes and Manukau Bus/Rail Station

2. Do you have any other comments or suggestions around the wider Airport to Botany Rapid Transit project?

I used this one to ping Auckland Transport on bus shelters for A2B along Te Irirangi Drive being inadequate (they need to be full shelters that arch right over the Bus way given the prevailing winds) and the lack of Transit Orientated Developments over the A2B Stations.

Airport to Botany on Te Irirangi Drive. Source: Auckland Transport

We have the problem of not a single agency delivering transit and Transit Orientated Developments in the same breath as seen overseas. Auckland Transport is myopic in that they can only see a Transit Line while Panuku is not exactly displaying gumption to get mid rise mix use buildings over the A2B Transit Stations especially on Te Irirangi Dirve. Consequently we lose out on guiding urban development catalysts and the Council losing streams of revenue through leasing out the TOD’s.

So with Question 2 please ping AT on the lack of TOD’s.

3. What do you think of the 20Connect preferred improvements?

This one did not need much apart from saying General Support especially the new south facing ramps for freight. If you do have other comments feel free in to leave them in the submission form.

4. Do you have any other comments or suggestions around the wider 20Connect project?

This one prompted the Meme going around that says: ONE MORE LANE WILL NOT FIX IT and shows a 28-lane highway congested. It needs to be made perfectly clear to NZTA that one more lane will never fix it at all but rather make it worse. If something needs to be done about SH20 between Massey Road and Lambie Drive then lower the speed limit to 80km/h to allow a more consistent traffic flow in heavy periods.

5. We are proposing bus priority lanes along Puhinui Road and Lambie Drive, between 6-10am and 3-7pm, Monday to Friday. What do you think about these proposed operational times?

This question had attracted my ire and this is where we need to submit the strongest to Auckland Transport that you can not have your cake and eat it too.

Where is our City at today Source: Toderian UrbanWorks

This is what Auckland Transport is proposing:

Parking proposals on A2B. Source: Auckland Transport
Parking proposals on A2B. Source: Auckland Transport

Under absolutely NO CIRCUMSTANCE should Auckland Transport be adding any addition parking along a Rapid Transit route. This is because:

  1. Adds to Localised Congestion
  2. Interferes with the running of the A2B buses (see bus lane time)
  3. It is up to the land owners to provide sufficient parking for their office workers on Lambie Drive not Auckland Transport
  4. Safety hazards for what will become a high patronised cycling and walking route
  5. Technically self-defeats A2B by encouraging car use
  6. Puhinui Road is not suffering a parking problem so why are you adding more parks on a Rapid Transit route

You can not have your cake and eat it too Auckland Transport, you either provide a transit line with walking and cycling infrastructure or you provide a car soaked carriage way encouraged by parking. Which one is it going to be? Also those who have offices on Lambie Drive, please do better in incentivising your workers to take transit not park on Lambie Drive.

Bus Lanes

Consequently we also need to submit that given the operation times of A2B and the general congestion along Lambie Drive (it is all day every single day) that the bus lanes need to be 7am to 7pm, seven days a week. None of this peak only stuff owing to AT being myopic in thinking people catch only peak time buses. This is an Airport Bus that travels through a Metropolitan Centre full of commercial and increasing residential. Travel along Lambie Drive and you find it bottlenecks any time of the day any time of the week. Travellers in the area are not stuck to the myopic 9-5 regime and the peak travelling AT thinks so.

So in your submission we need to mention to Auckland Transport the bus lanes need to be 7-7 not just peak time.

6. What do you think of the walking and cycling improvements along Puhinui Road and Lambie Drive, and what would encourage you to walk and cycle in this area?

This one was case of the provisions are adequate enough in regards to A2B as further works are being looked after by a Healthy Active Streets program that includes Our Manukau through Panuku.

But it would be worthwhile to stress again that increased parking both defeats cycling and walking as well as making both unsafe due to increased localised congestion on a main transport corridor. Again it is one or the other it can not be both.

7. What do you think about the current speed limits along State Highway 20B?


The answer to that one is: Micky Mouse.

8. What do you think about the proposed speed limit change along State Highway 20B?

NZTA wanting to make all of SH20B 60km/h for consistency sake definitely needing to happen. This is especially as Puhinui Gateway which is all zoned Industry develops and freight increases in the area. A lower speed limit on a highly used road does allow more efficient and safer flow of traffic compared to adding more lanes (owing to less stop starting). So in regards to a uniform 60km/h – can we do this tomorrow please NZTA.

For more on cycling provisions I recommend visiting Bike Auckland and asking them what they further recommend for cycling infrastructure along the A2B corridor. For the rest you can full the A2B and SH20B suggestions here:


  1. No additional parking on Lambie Drive
  2. Bus lanes operate 7-7, seven days a week
  3. Yes to 60km/h on SH20B
  4. Where are the Transit Orientated Developments with A2B especially along Te Irirangi Drive
  5. A2B Routing through Manukau is okay but can do better