Daily closures for Waioeka Gorge road renewals


Daily closures will be in place for a section of the Waioeka Gorge on State Highway 2 to allow critical road resealing to take place from Wednesday 18 October.

When work commences the road will be closed from Waioeka Pa Road to Matawai between the hours of 7am and 5pm each weekday, for approximately eight weekdays. During the day there will be three opening periods of 20 minutes each, at 9am, 12pm and 2pm. 

Road width through the Gorge is narrow, and the confined space makes it challenging to allow road users past the machinery required to reseal roads. Safety of road users and road workers is a core value for Waka Kotahi and Higgins, the road maintenance contractor undertaking the work. Significant planning has taken place to find the best time and method for completing the work while allowing traffic to travel through the Gorge. 

The decision was made to allow time following the 143rd Poverty Bay A&P Show this weekend for vehicles returning home with animals to make their way unimpeded. At the same time contractors working on the Gisborne side of SH2 are taking a break from foam bitumen stabilisation work over the second half of October, minimising overall disruption for journeys south of Ōpōtiki. 

Should there be a significant period of poor weather the closures may be postponed. Road users are advised to check the Waka Kotahi Journey Planner on the day of travel to confirm the availability of SH2 and the surrounding state highway network. 

Journey Planner(external link)

Following the closures there will several days of resealing completed at sections with more width. This will be completed under stop/go traffic management with temporary speed limits. Overall almost 20 lane kilometres will be resealed across 24 sites. 

All chipseal sites require time to allow the new seal to bed into the existing road surface. During this time the road will be unmarked with a temporary speed limit, and cones delineating the newly sealed area. Road users are asked to adhere to any signage, temporary speed limits and instructions from crew members. 

Waka Kotahi acknowledges that this work will be disruptive, however in this instance closing the road is the only way to undertake the work safely. 

Table showing status of SH2 Waioeka Gorge while the closures are in place


Road status 

Prior to 7:00am 


Between 7:00am and 9:00am 


Between 9:00am and 9:20am 


Between 9:20am and 12:00pm (midday) 


Between 12:00pm (midday) and 12:20pm 


Between 12:20pm and 2:00pm 


Between 2:00pm and 2:20pm 


Between 2:20pm and 5:00pm 


After 5:00pm 


Note: Work will pause for Labour weekend. The road will remain open from 2pm Friday 20 October. There will be no work on Labour day, with a return to work on Tuesday 24 October.