|Maintained by NZ Transport Agency|
|Length||126.5 km (78.6 mi)|
|Northwest end||SH 1 near Okaihau|
|Southeast end||Marsden Point|
State Highway 15 (SH 15) is a New Zealand state highway in the Northland region of the North Island. It is 126.5 km long and provides an alternative route to SH 1 between the Kaikohe and Whangarei areas; a spur also links SH 1 with the Marsden Point Oil Refinery and Northport.
Prior to 1930, the recommended route by the Automobile Association, from Whangarei to Kaitaia was via Mangakahia and was named Highway 1. Approximately 90 years later a formal designation has been re-instated. The current SH 1 south of Kawakawa was only a rough clay road in the 1920s. Also known as the Northland Inland Freight Route it was declared a state highway in August 2016. Formerly administered by the Far North District Council and Whangarei District Council, in May 2015 the NZ Transport Agency agreed to include it to the state highway network after lobbying from the local authorities and industries given its significance to the regional forestry industry and its connectivity to the regions port near Marsden Point. Of the newly declared state highway, 96 km is former council administered roads, 8.5 km was from the former SH 15A and the remainder shared as concurrencies with SH 1, SH 12 and SH 14.
State Highway 15 commences at SH 1 near Okaihau. It follows Te Pua Road for 7.4 km before intersecting SH 12 and turns west, where is shares a concurrency for approximately 2 km into the town of Kaikohe. SH 15 then turns south at Mangakahia Road where it travels on mostly rural road through forestry, changing orientation from a south to a southeast direction, for approximately 70 km where it intersects SH 14. It shares a very brief concurrency with SH 14 and then leaves it to continue southeast on Otaika Valley Road for approximately 10 km where it ends at Loop Road where a short connection of the northern part of Loop Road meets SH 1.
From this point SH 15 shares a concurrency with SH 1 southbound for approximately 20 km where it arrives at the Ruakaka roundabout. The last 8.5 km section of SH 15 is part of the former SH 15A spur which was renamed as part of the new declaration. This highway travels northeast along Port Marsden Highway for 8.5 km, terminating at the entrances of Northport and Marsden Point Oil Refinery. The first 3 km of this section of highway runs along the route formerly taken by the southern end of One Tree Point Road, which was significantly realigned as part of its upgrade to highway status. The next 3 km of the highway uses a section of road which was newly built as part of the creation of the highway, whilst the final 2.5 km uses an existing road which was formerly the northern end of Marsden Point Road.
Former SH 15A
|Location||Ruakaka to Marsden Point|
|Length||8.5 km (5.3 mi)|
SH 15A was a former state highway which is now part of the southeastern spur of SH 15 connecting SH 1 near Ruakaka to Marsden Point. For many years 15A was a peculiarity since there wasn't any corresponding SH 15. This is because the original SH 15, which used to connect SH 1 with the former site of Port Whangarei, had its highway designation revoked in December 2003. SH 15A was created six months later, in June 2004, to provide a highway connection to the new site of the port at Marsden Point.
Former SH 15
The first designation of SH 15 was declared in 1997; however it had its highway status revoked in 2003. SH 15 was 4.5 km long and connected State Highway 1 with Port Whangarei. The highway started at a junction with SH 1 in the suburb of Raumanga, and ran along Rewa Rewa Road, Kioreroa Road and Port Road before terminating at the entrance to Port Whangarei. The route had its highway status revoked in December 2003, as part of the closure of Port Whangarei to commercial shipping and the opening of Northport at Marsden Point. Six months later, in June 2004, SH 15A was gazetted to provide a highway link to the new port facilities at Marsden Point.
- Motor Year Book North Island Road Guide 1927 4th edition Wellington Automobile Club
- "Change in status for Northland Inland Freight Route a boost for region". www.NZTA.govt.nz. 28 May 2015. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
- "New state highway for Northland". Scoop.co.nz. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
- "Renumbering a State Highway and Declaring a State Highway—State Highways 15A and 15, Northland". NZ Gazette. 28 July 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
- "SH 15 factsheet" (PDF). Retrieved 1 August 2016.
- "Revoking Sections of State Highway and Declaring New Sections of State Highway – 11 December 2003". New Zealand Gazette. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
- "Revoking Sections of State Highway and Declaring New Sections of State Highway – 17 June 2004". New Zealand Gazette. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
- "Revoking Sections of State Highways Declaring New Sections of State Highway". New Zealand Gazette. 26 June 1997. Retrieved 5 July 2016.