East West Link


The East West Link was a planned Road of National Significance announced by National in the lead-up to the 2017 election. The plan was put on hold by the Labour Government and the road was re-evaluated by NZTA. As of 13 July 2020, there has been no resolution to this process and no progress has been made for three years. The re-evaluation has not been made public.

The East West Link was identified by the Auckland Plan in 2012 as a major project to be completed by 2020.

The need for the East West Link has not gone away in the last three years. The Onehunga-Penrose area in Auckland is the engine room of New Zealand’s industrial and manufacturing economy with many of the largest distribution and logistics facilities based in the area. This area, along with East Tamaki and Auckland Airport, employs over 130,000 people and generates more than $10 billion a year in GDP.


The East West Link will provide a new transport connection on the northern side of the Mangere Inlet between Onehunga. It will connect SH20 in Onehunga and SH1 at Mt Wellington.

The four lane road (with cycleways and footpaths) crosses along the southern side of the Onehunga/Penrose business area, with connnections at Galway St, Captain Springs Road, the inland port, Hugo Johnston Drive, and Great South Rd.

The project also includes 2.7 km of widening on State Highway 1 between Mt Wellington and Princes Street, Otahuhu

The East West Link also includes environmental improvements through stormwater wetlands, a leachate containment bund along the Mangere Inlet foreshore and planting / landscaping.


The East West Link will:

  • Improve the resilience of Auckland’s State Highway network by providing a further connection between State Highway 1 and State Highway 20.
  • Significantly improve connections to air, rail and freight and sea ports.
  • Improve travel times for over 6000 trucks that travel between the Onehunga - Penrose industrial area and State Highways 1 and 20 each day. Time savings of up to 10 minutes in peak period.
  • Reduce vehicle movements on local roads by 10,000-13,000, 2,000-3,000 of which would be freight movements.
  • Significantly reduce the travel time between SH1 and SH20, in some cases by up to 19 minutes.
  • Support the growing Onehunga Town Centre by removing through traffic on Neilson Street and arterial routes (e.g. up to 27,000 fewer vehicles a day on the roads through the town centre).
  • Provide more reliable bus journey times between State Highway 20 and Onehunga, with savings of five-six minutes at peak times
  • Create better and more useable access for the community to the foreshore.
  • 5.5km of new and improved walking and cycling routes between Mangere Bridge, Onehunga and Sylvia Park and access to Otahuhu, that saves 1.6km.

Cost and timing

The project was initially estimated to cost between $1.25 and $1.85 billion. We have budgeted $1.55 billion.

You can find a copy of the Factsheet here