PM inspects 'most expensive road in New Zealand's history'

Last updated 18:14 16/05/2014
SEAN WILLIS/Fairfax NZ

Prime Minister John Key inspects how the Waterview tunnel project is tracking along.

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Prime Minister John Key stopped by Auckland's Waterview tunnel project today to check on progress.

The $1.4 billion Waterview Connection is the largest roading project ever undertaken in New Zealand. It involves almost 5km of six-lane motorway to link State Highways 16 and 20.

Key said the tunnel was an amazing piece of engineering. "Its going to be a fantastic addition to the motorway network here in Auckland."

He said the work seemed to be on the right track, on budget and pretty much on time with completion due early 2016.

"On an international basis New Zealand is doing well with some very very good people and specialist staff."

Key said the technology was incredible and he was most impressed with the tunnel boring machine, named Alice.

Alice has a cutting diameter of 14.4m and is the 10th largest machine of its kind ever built.

Key expected there would be a lot of kids holding their breath from one end of the tunnel to the other.

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