Expect a busy summer of roadworks on New Zealand’s state highways


State highways across the motu will see a burst of activity over spring and summer, with Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency gearing up for the country’s largest-ever road renewal season.

Between late September 2022 and April 2023, more than 2,400 lane kilometres of state highway will be resealed or rebuilt from Cape Reinga to the Bluff – more than 10% of the state highway network.

“Winter is always tough on our roads, and the damage caused by the particularly heavy rain we’ve seen this winter means we have a big job ahead of us in spring and summer. 

“In terms of scale, this is the most significant renewal programme we have ever undertaken. A significant portion of this work will be in the Waikato & Bay of Plenty area, where more than 700 lane kilometres will be renewed.

“We’ll also be doing significant resealing work in Northland (over 130 lane kilometres), Gisborne (over 90 lane kilometres), Hawkes Bay (over 100 lane kilometres), Taranaki (over 70 lane kilometres), North Canterbury (over 150 lane kilometres) and other regions throughout the summer months.

“We’re committed to improving the overall condition of our state highway network, and the work you will see taking place over the next six months is evidence of that commitment,” says Neil Walker, Waka Kotahi National Manager Maintenance & Operations.

SH maintenance work completed in the financial year ending 30 June 2022

The graphic above details SH maintenance work completed in the financial year ending 30 June 2022

The level of roadworks being planned, combined with existing capital projects and recovery works in areas hit by recent weather events will mean travellers should expect regular and ongoing disruption across the region, says Mr Walker.

“Because our contractors will be delivering work during the warmer, drier months of the year, it’ll mean some level of disruption across the state highway network throughout summer. However, plans will be in place to complete this work as efficiently and effectively as possible, minimising the overall impact on people using the roads.

“Our contractors started work on isolated patches of the state highway network on 1 September, repairing the underlying road structure, ahead of resealing later in the season.

“Due to the level of activity across the network we highly recommend checking the Waka Kotahi Journey Planner before starting your journey.”

Waka Kotahi Journey Planner(external link)

Resurfacing work on SH1 the Desert Road

Resurfacing work on SH1 the Desert Road