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Phoebe Falconer answers your questions about Auckland

Ask Phoebe: Pukeko bridge's faded legs too well covered to merit replacing yet

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Pukeko Bridge. Photo / Kenny Rodger
Pukeko Bridge. Photo / Kenny Rodger

Can you find out when the legs of the Pukeko bridge will be painted, and how they will do it, being so high? They have faded now and lost their "wow" factor when seen by northbound drivers. Anton Giles, Auckland.

Sarah Azam, media manager for the Transport Agency's Auckland and Northland regions, says the paint system is still providing effective protective coating to the structure. In the interests of cost efficiency and avoiding disruption to motorway users, because the work would require the closure of some lanes, the "legs" won't be painted again until the paint system is no longer effective.

Although the paint colour on this bridge has failed prematurely from an aesthetic perspective, the protection remains. The manufacturer of the paint system has accepted this and will be supplying the paint at its cost when the replacement painting becomes a necessity. However labour and traffic management costs to paint the "legs" will need to be covered by the Transport Agency.

Are you able to find out what is going on with the new football pitches at Ngahue Reserve near Stonefields? The fields look complete but the building on the west side has had its foundations done but nothing else for six months. Claire Fletcher, Auckland.

Following is the most recent information I could find, from an article on a website called in-the-back-of-the.net, published in December. The author is Chris Ruffell, Eastern Suburbs AFC chairman, and the article is entitled "The Case for Eastern Suburbs".

"Eastern Suburbs will base [our] home games at Ngahue Reserve which is currently under construction. The two fully floodlit international sized artificial turfs and complementary changing rooms are part of the stage one development which has been completed. Stage two, which is scheduled to be completed in November 2016, includes Oceania Football Confederation offices, a full-sized international Futsal Court, changing facilities for four teams, physio rooms, clubrooms with bar, media facilities, gymnasium, a creche, floodlights to TV requirements, two separate warm-up areas and car parking for 300 cars. The stage three development involves a 260-bed accommodation facility on site."

Can you please advise if and when the Transport Agency will three-lane the bridges at Mt Wellington near Tip Top Corner on the Southern Motorway? If not, why not? Ian Bell, Auckland.

Last year the Transport Agency considered options for widening the Southern Motorway at Mt Wellington. Investigations showed that an additional lane here would have the effect of increasing congestion at the Southeastern Arterial and Ellerslie-Panmure interchanges which would negate any benefits achieved by an additional lane. Because of this the Transport Agency has no current plans to widen the Southern Motorway at this location.

However, the long-term answer to some of these congestion points is better utilisation of the entire network. One of the key benefits of the Western Ring Route when it is completed is that it will provide effective alternative options to the southern corridor, easing pressure on areas such as the Mt Wellington interchange.

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Do you have a question for Phoebe? It can be about any Auckland issue. Email askphoebe@nzherald.co.nz

- NZ Herald

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