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The Gauntlet: Issue #33

Newsletter #33 - 4 May 2017

Like most Thursdays, an influx of fresh information gave us plenty of material to work with. Unlike most Thursdays, however, we’ve needed to get a fresh set of eyes to ponder the consequences of proposals. As predicted, the consequences are daunting.


Due to a Shortland Street Special, Episode 4 of “Gutsful” (featuring the Fix Hill Street Now campaign) has been delayed by one week. It will now air on 8 June, 8:30pm on TV2.

We’re holding a screening event at The Bridgehouse on Elizabeth Street in Warkworth, starting at 7:30pm. You’re all invited to come and watch our team on the big screen. We have seen snippets of the show and it will be a hoot!

Details of the event can be found here: Please let our Facebook page know if you are interested in attending.


The owners of the land north of the Hudson Road traffic lights have been consulting neighbours about their plans. The area is zoned “General Business” and the rumours that a Pak ‘n Save are well founded. What the neighbours received in the mail were planning proposals for a Harvey Norman and Bunnings as well!

Three neighbouring large format stores to the north of the town will have a huge effect on traffic patterns. The Resource Management Act requires that the effects of a proposal be “no more than minor” and that any effects more than minor be “avoided, remedied, or mitigated.”

Take a look at where the General Business Zone sits in comparison with other current and future zones.

The timing of these proposals is the most important factor. Will they be completed before the motorway, Matakana Link, Western Collector Stage 2 (between Mansel Drive/Falls Road and Great North Road (SH1)/Matakana Link), and the Hill Street Intersection upgrades?

Currently, the biggest problem for large format shoppers is going to The Warehouse Snells Beach, needing to negotiate two right hand turns (shown with the red arrows in the diagram below). Previously, getting to Mitre 10 Mega was a problem but the upgrade of the Whitaker Rd and Woodcocks Road intersections have improved access. But what about getting to the Hudson Road traffic lights?

Using Sandspit Road at the Hill Street Intersection (via Elizabeth Street, Matakana Road, and from Snells Beach) to head north is the most difficult of the right turns at the intersection. Currently, the timing is only 8-10 seconds of green light per 120 second cycle. It only takes one truck, two vans, or three cars to want to turn right to head north for gridlock to occur at the Sandspit Rd/Elizabeth St give way – preventing left turning vehicles heading south.

If any of these three businesses open before the motorway, consider it a preview of future chaos as Snells Beach residents wanting to use the motorway will have to make the same right-hand turn.

But what about the Matakana Link? Can Snells Beach residents use that? Well, try making a right turn now at the Matakana Road/ Sandspit Road intersection. Look at the white arrows in the diagram below to see how ridiculous it is for Sandspit Road users to make right hand turns.


Timing is critical. There are minor improvements in the short term that can form a first stage of the long term major upgrade.

We’ve been tweaking the suggestions of the Snells Beach Residents and Ratepayers Association members. Here is the latest tweak.

Here is a digital terrain model of how the Sandspit/Matakana Road confluence would look.

The benefits of the design are that there is safe pedestrian access crossing Sandspit Road, there are two long lanes at the Sandspit Road/Elizabeth St give way, and there is a dedicated slip lane for Sandspit Road traffic into Elizabeth Street.


Thank you for subscribing and thank you to donors and volunteers who have got our campaign into full swing. Please contact us if you would like to donate, volunteer, or have any suggestions.

To make a donation, our bank account details are:

Account Name: “FixHillStreetNow Action Group” Bank Account Number: 12-3095-0042062-00.

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