Matt Greenop on motoring

Matt Greenop is editor of Driven magazine

Matt Greenop: Thoroughly sick of thoroughfare mess

Traffic on Auckland's northwestern motorway.
Traffic on Auckland's northwestern motorway.

Commuters look forward to school holidays even more than the kids, I think. There's an assumption that if the hordes of mums on drop-off duty aren't turning school zones into warzones everything will be running Barry White-smooth. The first couple of days of this most recent lot were fine - then on Thursday, as everyone headed towards work for the last time this week, it all turned to custard.

Auckland's motorway system has shown itself to be a bigger nightmare than even the most seasoned commuter would give it credit for.

A crash before rush hour suddenly turned the usual 7-9 o'clock asylum into a whole morning of depressing standstill. This shouldn't really happen in a supposedly advanced city like Auckland. One crash, everyone's day is ruined, and not a Spongebob backpack in sight.

There are other options than braving the network of nastiness - public transport. I've used it, as you probably have too. But I'm not going to make a habit of it, because we've all seen what goes on when those wondrous systems hit a glitch.

Everything stops.

We buy cars so we don't have to use public transport, and even the day of gridlock on Auckland's motorways last year didn't put most people off. I doubt that the pre-Anzac run into the office will either. Sure, we'll gripe and grizzle about it at great volume, but at the end of the day we're held to ransom by those who plan to have consecutive major roadworks on nearly every thoroughfare to town.

What should be done? Let us know on or at - if you've got home from work yet, of course. It's school holidays, so shouldn't take that long.

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- NZ Herald

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