Heavy traffic

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Heavy traffic (percentage of all traffic) 


Purpose of indicator

Noise, vibration and fumes are caused by heavy vehicles which impact on people and the natural environment. Heavy traffic counts are taken at the city’s main entrances and indicate the volume of heavy traffic present within and passing through the district.

Current information and trend

Figure 1 shows a small decrease in overall traffic since 2007, however heavy traffic increased by 3%. This is likely to reflect economic factors affecting forest harvesting and export patterns from the Central North Island which have been picking up. Trends over the past 9 years show that heavy traffic remains close to 10% of all traffic in Rotorua district.

Heavy vehicles in Rotorua district are predominantly from primary industries including the forestry, aggregate and dairy industries.  The bulk of this product is being transported to and from Port of Tauranga. Other heavy vehicle traffic travelling through Rotorua includes fuel, food stuffs and machinery/building transportation. Many heavy vehicles travel during night hours when there is likely to be less traffic. Supermarkets are generally restocked during the night and are most likely to be serviced by heavy vehicles.

Chart showing the percentage of Traffic counts and heavy vehicles 
Figure 1.
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council, 2012

While heavy vehicles are not restricted from using local roads, a new “High productivity Motor Vehicle” (HPMV) route has been formally approved on SH5/30/33 through the eastern suburbs allowing for use by trucks of larger tonnage. It is likely heavy vehicle numbers will increase on this route. Likewise the Victoria Street Arterial will likely be used by heavy vehicles as it is intended for better traffic flow and efficiency. This will mean heavy vehicles would not need to travel into the CBD unless it is their destination.

In summary

  • Heavy traffic counts have decreased slightly since 2007
  • Heavy traffic remains close to 10% of all Rotorua district traffic
  • From 2010 to 2011 there was an increase in heavy vehicles of 3%


Page reviewed: 03 Jul 2019 10:12am