Media Release Not The Holiday Highway


9 April, 2014

Media Release: For Immediate release

SH1 is not a Holiday Highway but a Road of National Significance

In response to recent media comment that the planned improvements to SH1 is a Holiday Highway to enable affluent Aucklanders to travel faster to their holiday homes north of Auckland, the NZ Chambers of Commerce would like to make the following response. 

Tony Collins NZ Chambers of Commerce Northland’s chief executive says “The Chamber believes this is a strategically significant asset.  Northlanders and Aucklanders alike justifiably deserve a secure and safe land transport route linking their regions.  This road is vital to the economic and social well-being of our region.  Anything that can be done to make the road safer and ensure it is always open, should be supported.”


“The road between Puhoi and Wellsford is widely acknowledged as a dangerous stretch of road and the government plans to spend $2 billion dollars over the next 20 years on improving it.  There are those that argue that at an estimated return of $1.10 for every dollar spent, the economic benefit is not sufficient to justify the expense.  This estimate does not however take into account the potential reduction in road deaths and associated savings to health services.  Over recent years this on average 5 or 6 people a year are killed on this stretch of road.  Generally driver behaviour is given as the direct cause of these deaths but often it is not the victim who is at fault.  It is however the victim’s families who suffer the long-term consequences.” 


“However at present there is no alternative way to travel between the two centres and although it has been dubbed the ”Holiday Highway”, Northlanders travel this road daily for all sorts of reasons.  It is used to move goods in and out of the region, for business people in the course of their work and to provide access to health and education services that may not be readily available in Northland, to name but a few.  Yet this road which is a vital part of Northland’s economic and social well-being, contributes to the death of 4 or 5 people from our communities each year.  This issue is too important to allow to become entangled in petty and personal politics.  It is a matter that should be supported by all Northlanders”.


Tony Collins| CEO | NZ Chambers of Commerce Northland

027 444 1010


Back to top