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Waterview Connection

Underground and over-ground – connecting SH20 to SH16 with the Waterview Connection

The Waterview Connection is the New Zealand Transport Agency’s most ambitious roading project to date and the final motorway connection required to complete Auckland’s Western Ring Route. It comprises twin 2.5km motorway tunnels plus associated connecting roading infrastructure and, at Great North Road in Waterview, a large interchange of ramps.

Boffa Miskell has been responsible for leading the delivery of landscape architecture, urban design and architectural outcomes (with Warren and Mahoney) for the Well-Connected Alliance, which is responsible for overall delivery of the project. This work has included design input to all motorway structures and buildings; rehabilitation of open spaces including creek rehabilitation and re-alignment works, ecological restoration work and planting; construction of pedestrian and road bridges, sports facilities, two skate parks, a large playground, and a BMX track; installation of public art, signage and way-finding systems; and recognition of heritage and cultural areas.

The design utilised a palette of materials inspired by the patterns, colours and forms found in the local volcanic geology to recognise and augment the natural heritage around the suburbs of Mt Roskill, New Windsor and Waterview. Aspects of the motorway corridor, such as planting, noise walls, and structures, were designed to relate clearly with the surrounding landscape.

The project has involved extensive stakeholder liaison with local community representatives and public interest / volunteer groups. Community liaison sessions were held regularly for design workshopping and for project updates. A series of open days, drop-in sessions and volunteer planting days kept the community informed and involved in the project. Community design workshops were held on all key aspects including the form, layout and appearance of all structures and new public facilities, and the arrangement of the new parks, stream rehabilitation works, planting and artworks.

A network of over 10 km of shared paths and footpaths connect over-ground across the rejuvenated parks and reserves. The Waterview Shared Path, which traces over-ground the underground route of the tunnels, will become the final pedestrian and cyclist link between SH20 and SH16 and will further enhance the off-road network with side spurs to local roads and neighbourhoods and will also include artworks, interpretive signage and landscape finishing.

Our role

Urban Design, Landscape Architecture, Architecture, Creek Rehabilitation, Ecology, Stakeholder & Community Consultation, Iwi Engagement, Public Art, Heritage, Stormwater Design, Motorway Structures Design, Playground design, Skateparks and BMX, Sports Facilities, Parking, Signage and Wayfinding, Interpretive Signage, CPTED, Active Transport Modes, Coastal Boardwalks.

The facts

ClientThe Well-Connected Alliance
Project teamAlex Smith
Caroline Patton
Kieran Dove
Mark Lewis
Sarah Collins
Peter Whiting
Worked with

Warren and Mahoney (sub-consultants to Boffa Miskell for Architectural work), The Well-Connected Alliance, comprising of The NZ Transport Agency, Fletcher Construction, McConnell Dowell Constructors, Parsons Brinkerhoff, Beca Infrastructure, Tonkin & Taylor and Obayashi Corporation.

Project date2012 - 2017
AwardsTripartite Award - Los Angeles Business Council Architectural Awards 2019
Gold Award | Architectural and Urban - Good Design Australia 2019
Category Winner | Infrastructure - NZILA Resene Pride of Place Landscape Architecture Awards 2019
Gold Pin & Supreme Purple Pin | Built Environment - Best of Awards 2018, Designer's Institute of New Zealand
Supreme Winner | Connecting with our Community | Teaming Up - GEM Awards 2016