AmourGuard™ Gate Safety Barrier – a feature for SH1 on the Northern Motorway

Tunnels are effective solutions to ease traffic congestion and manage the ever-increasing demands on motorway systems for many cities around the world. Construction of the Johnstone’s Hill tunnels on the Northern Motorway, north of Auckland, began in 2006 and opened in 2009 with the aim of diverting traffic away from the very congested SH1 coastal road through Orewa. The tunnels would eventually connect to a new motorway system that would take motorists right through to Wellsford – the Northern Express Group’s (NX2) Ara – Tuhono.

NX2 began the well-published stage one of Ara – Tuhono (Puhoi to Warkworth) in 2017 with this mammoth project expected to open to motorists in 2023.

As one of the safety features of the tunnels and this section of SH1, an AmourGuard™ Gate Safety Barrier from CSP was installed in March this year, prior to the entrance heading north. This allows the Auckland System Management Alliance (ASM), who look after the maintenance of the Auckland State Highway network, to manage emergency situations and assist with future maintenance of the motorway by moving traffic from one side of the motorway to the other.



The AmourGuard™ Gate is a heavily reinforced steel barrier system that is designed to provide emergency openings in median barriers.

  • Available in two - sizes 12 and 16m
  • Approved to NCHRP 350 TL-3
  • Contraflow traffic during maintenance or emergencies
  • Manually operated for guaranteed opening
  • Low-cost median gate / Fast installation
  • Assembled at installation point or offsite
  • Suitable as a permanent or temporary work zone barrier
  • Can be placed in most median barrier systems
  • Hinges from either end and takes less than 5 minutes for one person to open the system when required

“The installation of a gate was always in the plans,” says Hayden Wilson from ASM. “We use gates all the time, especially around tunnels, but haven’t put one in for a while. We use them to safely switch traffic from one side of the motorway to the other around and away from issues or just so we can access certain parts of motorway for repair or maintenance.”

Hayden says theAmourGuard™ Gate Safety Barrier was installed in the median barrier heading north just prior to the entrance of the tunnels. “The installation went well. We actually got to use it when we undertook the major road switch in May to allow the first section of Ara-Tuhono to be opened to the public.”

“The gate system certainly allows for contra traffic flows and will help deal with emergency situations that may arise. Let’s hope we don’t have to use it, but it’s nice to know we can if we need to.”