Tauranga – Auckland Car Volumes

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This post is a look at car traffic volume changes in the Waikato going to and from Tauranga, using data  from NZTA’s State Highway Traffic Data Booklet on  Annual traffic counts.

First a disclaimer from NZTA: “The traffic data … are intended to be used as an approximate indication of traffic flow.”

Now my disclaimer: The Data Booklets give data as totals and percentages of vehicles over 3.5T, known as Heavy Motor Vehicles (HMV). The data in this post is presented as cars per day first, and most of the data is not Copy & Paste – more read and type. So if you see something that looks out of place please leave a comment.

The table below presents combined daily traffic data from SH2 & SH 29 at NZTA boundary 3/4 (Waikato/Bay of Plenty),


Change 06-13
2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Car 12,627 13,305 13,160 13,222 13,061 12,740 13,072 13,339 5.6%
Heavy 2,007 2,007 2,107 1,944 2,007 2,191 2,123 2,240 11.6%
Total 14,634 15,312 15,267 15,166 15,068 14,931 15,195 15,579 6.5%
Pop 103,881

Tauranga Census population Change

114,789 10.5%


The number to note is the 5.6% change in car volumes. This is increasing at a slower rate than population growth, which suggests the average good person of Tauranga is travelling by car less than they used to, similar to international trends as shown in this September 2012 article from the Economist and in this blog post from zooma on the European automotive industry


Looking more at traffic coming from Tauranga, we see real change in the number of cars using SH27, where car traffic has plateaued to below 2004 levels and the SH29 Kaimai-SH1 route past or through Hamilton shows nominal daily car traffic leveling off about 5 years ago.


The route that is showing growth is SH2, which is also the fast route to Auckland.

The information that people in Hamilton need to note is the reduction in people travelling to and from Tauranga to meet, socialise, share ideas and grow together.

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