Auckland is in the grip of March Madness - the annual bout of road mayhem at the start of the university semester.

Commuters are reporting long travel times and congested roads.

The madness actually started in February, when the Herald decided to test whether a car, train, bus or cycle-ride into NZME offices would get there faster.

The cyclist beat the bus by 25 minutes. The car and the train lagged behind.


Auckland Transport has several initiatives being worked on over the next few months to try and improve traffic movement around the city.

Here, the Herald looks at what is in store for the city's buses, bikes, trains and cars that may make March madness next year a little less crazy.


The new bus network to be in place by the end of the year will increase the fleet by 15 per cent and boost the distance covered by 32 per cent. This is in addition to 424 more peak trips overall per day that have been added since March 2017.

Improvements this year will see buses on the 25 busiest routes run at least every 15 minutes between 7am and 7pm, seven days a week.

Ninety-nine of the total fleet of 1300 will be double-decker buses.

Both the new Manukau Bus Station and the new Pukekohe Bus and Train Interchange are expected to open on April 8.



10.5km of more cycleways made up of five projects are currently under construction, extending or linking existing paths.

These are:
Seabrook Ave Cycleway, New Lynn, connecting with an existing shared path on Margan Ave (680 metres).
Ian McKinnon Drive Cycleway, Kingsland, from Takau St to Upper Queen St (700m).
Quay St Cycleway extension, Plumer St to The Strand, (700m).
Waitemata Safe Routes, Grey Lynn, Surrey Crescent to Garnet Rd (2km) and along Richmond Rd (1.18km).


There are 14,508 seats on city-bound morning peak (7am to 9am) services - 702 more than there was in March 2016. The main contributor has been increased frequency of services on the Western Line.

Train services are being increased at off-peak times but are at capacity for peak times until the City Rail Link (CRL) is completed (due in 2022). After the CRL is operating, trains will run every 15 minutes instead of every 20 minutes.


Real-time traffic monitoring is being expanded. The number of intersections actively managed, enabling staff to change lights in response to traffic, is being increased. The central city has been monitored since work began on the CRL and intersections near the airport are also monitored.

Live-monitoring is to be extended to key routes such as Henderson Valley Rd, Lincoln Rd, Great South Rd, East Coast Rd and Albany Highway.

Bluetooth technology is on all traffic lights enabling AT to track journeys. In the near future this will provide the capability to change settings to respond to unusual traffic flows.