Penlink project another step closer to construction

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineDecember 18, 2020

In another step towards the start of construction, NZ Transport Agency has awarded a contract for professional services on the Penlink project to build a connection from the Northern Motorway (SH1) to the Whangaparaoa Peninsula.

Penlink is part of the NZ Upgrade Programme‘s $6.8 billion investment to ‘save lives, get our cities moving and boost productivity in the country‘s growth areas‘. Through the NZ Upgrade Programme, the government is investing $3.48 billion in seven projects to transform Auckland‘s transport system to manage growth. 

GHD has been appointed as principal‘s technical advisor for Penlink and is tasked with further developing the preliminary design before construction. GHD will also help NZ Transport Agency to finalise the specifications for the project and assist through the procurement process for the appointment of construction partners who will enter an alliance to design and build the new road. 

“Getting GHD on board will help the project gain new momentum as we work towards the start of construction. It‘s great to have their skills and expertise contributing to the project,” says NZ Transport Agency senior manager project delivery, Andrew Thackwray. 

The two-lane, proposed tolled state highway with a separated shared walking and cycling path will support growth north of Auckland, allowing more reliable transport access to wider Auckland.  Penlink will take congestion pressure off the Silverdale interchange, Hibiscus Coast Highway and Whangaparaoa Road. The new transport link will also provide greater capacity, supporting planned growth in Silverdale, Wainui, Dairy Flat and the wider Hibiscus Coast in the next three decades. 

The appointment of GHD follows the award of a contract for principal‘s environmental advisor in July to Boffa Miskell, who will be responsible for monitoring the ecology and marine and freshwater life in the area before and during construction. This will ensure the project meets all resource consent and designation conditions.

Boffa Miskell carried out the first round of freshwater ecological surveys to measure water quality in October. This monitoring was undertaken by qualified and experienced freshwater ecologists at the identified permanent stream areas. They also carried out the first marine surveys to monitor the conditions of macroinvertebrate and fish communities.

These surveys will help the project to plan and mitigate potential adverse effects on the freshwater and marine environments as a result of the construction works. 

“These are important steps towards getting on with building this important project, which will improve people‘s journeys and support Auckland as it grows.”