On Sunday drove up to Feilding and back, so got to drive on the Kapiti Expressway for the first time. Was hugely impressed.
First of all it is a beautiful route. With its elevation you get great views of the countryside and NZTA have done a good job of planting trees in various areas. I was surprised by how few houses you see along it.
Secondly was nice to see the many cycleways and walkways alongside it, or passing over it. A great addition to the local community for those who like to cycle and walk.
Finally it was so quick. The time from Paekakariki to Peka Peka is heaps faster. The combination of two lanes the entire way plus no 50 km zones and no traffic lights cuts the time by around a third.
At peak times there will still be congestion until the four laning from the airport to Levin is complete. But it is already making a huge difference for non peak travel.
In a few years people will be amazed there was such opposition to it. The same goes for the Motorway Te Aro extension a few years back. The usual suspects fought against it for over a decade, but who now would want to go back traffic onto the motorway having to go up Vivian Street rather than Kamo Drive, where it flows so much quicker.
Anyway if you’re a Wellingtonian and yet to drive on the Kapiti Expressway, I predict you’re in for a treat.