The NZ Transport Agency is investigating options to improve traffic congestion along Curletts Road, between Blenheim Road and Main South Road.
Curletts Road is a state highway and an important link both for commuters and freight, says the Transport Agency's Highway Manager Christchurch Colin Knaggs.
"With the change in travel patterns following the earthquakes, the number of vehicles on Curletts Road has increased from 20,000 a day to 25,000.
"In addition, traffic volumes along Blenheim Road have risen 2000 a day to 31,000 vehicles and along Main South Road by 3000 vehicles to 17,000," he says.
"This increase is causing significant congestion along Curletts Road and driver frustration."
Temporary measures in place since 2011 have been an additional tidal traffic lane which changes direction depending on the time of the day. It is controlled by manually shifting a line of cones twice a day.
Mr Knaggs says the community is now being asked for their feedback on three options:
• Option 1 – the creation of two clearway lanes, operating from 7am to 9am and 4pm to 6pm, within the existing on-street parking lanes. This option includes reinstating the central flush median and pedestrian islands. The cycle lane would not be reinstated, cyclists being encouraged to use and provide feedback on alternative routes.
• Option 2 – the same as option 1 but with the grass berms beside the footpath being sealed to provide a wider footpath for shared cyclist/pedestrian use. This would provide a safer option for cyclists accessing Riccarton High School and facilities on Curletts Road.
• Option 3 – the creation of two clearway lanes as in option 1 but at a width of 4.2 metres to be shared with cyclists. This option does not include flush medians or pedestrian islands.
"With all three options, Curletts Road could also be four lanes at all times."
Mr Knaggs says the community is being invited to a Drop-in Day at the Upper Riccarton Library on Wednesday 21 August from 3pm to 6.30pm to discuss the options with the project team.
For more information and to provide feedback, visit the website: www.nzta.govt.nz/curletts-road(external link)