A busy summer beckons for State Highway maintenance in Wellington and Wairarapa


Drivers travelling on the roads in the lower North Island over the coming months will see a lot of activity from road crews.

Mark Owen, Regional Manager Lower North Island / Top of the South, says an extensive resurfacing programme will be underway across the region.

“We have set a target of over 100 lane kilometres of resurfacing work on state highways. This is more work than we did last season, as wet weather stopped us from doing everything we wanted to do.”

It means contractors will do a significant amount of asphalt resurfacing on State Highway 1 between Wellington and Levin and on State Highway 2 between Ngauranga and Remutaka Hill. The Wairarapa region will also see extensive chipseal work at multiple locations on State Highway 2 and State Highway 53. There will also be night closures on the Wellington urban motorway for major resurfacing works.

Mark Owen says regular highway maintenance is essential if the public are to have safe roads to drive on.

“It’s kind of like what we do with our cars. In the same way we have them warranted and serviced, our contractors must inspect and maintain the highways. Regular maintenance means we can catch problems early and prevent them from being bigger and more expensive headaches later on.”

The work programme will see more road closures and detours on the state highway network. Where possible we will be combining jobs in specific areas to reduce the overall impact on the network and road users.

Mr Owen says it is necessary for the work to be done efficiently and quickly.

“We do try and do as much of these works at night as possible. Doing it when there is less traffic on the roads means less inconvenience for drivers. Full closures are also safer for road crews and let them complete the work faster. That also means fewer hassles for drivers.”

And Mr Owen appreciates road users do get frustrated by summer roadworks. However, he says there’s a good reason why they happen when they do.

“Proper permanent repairs and resurfacing can only be done when the weather is warm and dry. This work can’t be done properly or effectively during winter when the weather is wet and cold.”

“This is why summer and roadworks go hand in hand. It is simply the way it has to be done if the work is to be effective,” Mr Owen says. 

Summer Maintenance Programme – additional information

  • There may be delays on key routes. Drivers should check road conditions before they travel. 
  • The Waka Kotahi Journey Planner provides all the information you need to plan your trip. 
    Journey Planner(external link)
  • Key holiday periods are kept free of roadworks to help ease the pressure on peak travel periods.  
  • Always follow temporary speed limits and traffic controls at road works sites, and make sure you follow all instructions from road crews. Traffic controls and lower speed limits are there to keep everyone safe.
  • To stay up to date on our programme and works ahead, visit our new Wellington Transport Alliance website. Please sign up to our mailing list so you stay up to date on roadworks happening in your area.
    Wellington Transport Alliance(external link) 

Major planned works and locations

There will also be multiple other works at various locations across the region. Specific details on major works and their scheduling will be shared with the public before projects begin. 



SH2 - sections of Chapel St, High St and Opaki Rd, Masterton

Road rehabilitation and resurfacing

SH1 – Wellington to Levin & SH2 – Ngauranga to Upper Hutt 

SH1 – Urban Motorway

Resurfacing works - 20 nights of works are planned at various locations over the next six months.

Full night closures planned for major resurfacing works

SH1 – Wellington to Levin

SH2 – Ngauranga to Upper Hutt

SH1 – Terrace Tunnel


LED lighting upgrades

SH2 – Petone to Horokiwi

SH59 – Paekakariki

SH2 – Remutaka Hill


Resilience improvements - Landslide barriers and rockfall Netting

SH2 – Remutaka Hill

Ongoing regular planned night closures for essential maintenance

SH1 – Terrace, Arras, and Mt Victoria Tunnels

Regular monthly night closures for essential maintenance