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Pūhoi to Warkworth

Construction began on the new Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway late 2016. The contract is New Zealand’s second Public Private Partnership (PPP) for a state highway, after the Transmission Gully motorway project in Wellington.

The Pūhoi to Warkworth project will extend the four-lane Northern Motorway (SH1) 18.5km from the Johnstone’s Hill tunnels to just north of Warkworth.

It is the first stage of the Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Wellsford Road. The Puhoi-Warkworth highway is expected to open to traffic in 2022. 

The new motorway will improve journey times (especially during peak holiday periods and weekends) and freight efficiency, driving regional economic growth by providing a more efficient, resilient and safer connection. 

Under a PPP contract, the Northern Express Group (NX2) will finance, design, construct, manage and maintain the Pūhoi to Warkworth motorway for 25 years following the expected five-year construction period.  After the 25 year period, NX2 will return the highway to the project’s client, the NZ Transport Agency. 

The project has two key phases:

Design & Construct Phase – Five years with the new motorway opening in 2022. Constructors are Fletcher Construction / Acciona Infrastructure JV
Asset Management & Maintenance Phase – 25 years. Maintainers are Higgins / Acciona Concessions JV

NX2 is made up of companies with considerable experience in the design, construction, finance, maintenance and management of key infrastructure projects in New Zealand and overseas. NX2’s equity investors are the Accident Compensation Corporation and Public Infrastructure Partners II LP (managed by Morrison & Co PIP Limited), ACCIONA Concesiones and Fletcher Building.