Drivers face higher charges for Auckland's Northern Gateway motorway, despite the addition of more roads to the Government's tolling network.
The Transport Agency last night confirmed a proposed 10c increase for cars and motorbikes, to $2.30 a trip, and a 30c rise to $4.70 for trucks. It says the increases on November 29 will be the first for 3 years and are needed to repay by 2045 a $158 million loan raised towards the $356 million cost of the 7km road between Orewa and Puhoi.
About 5.7 million trips are made annually on the road.
The $1.20 administration charge levied on those paying tolls at designated service stations will remain unchanged, as will payments for driving on two Tauranga roads recently added to the Government's tolling scheme.
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Asked why the Northern Gateway toll was rising despite economies of scale from adding the Tauranga Eastern Link and Takitimu Drive roads to its automatic collection system, an agency spokesman said the others did not contribute to debt repayments on the Auckland motorway.
Automobile Association spokesman Barney Irvine indicated his organisation had no great concern about the toll increases, although it hoped "eye-watering" collection costs would be reduced through economies of scale.
According to an operating report for the six months to December 31, the Transport Agency allocated $1.21 for every $2.20 toll towards debt repayments, 29c on GST and retained 70c to meet collection costs.