The installation of a higher hand rail on the Hairini bridge finished last week means the Hairini Link Advanced Works project is now complete, says the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA).
The project to improve safety and reduce travel times near the Fraser Street /15th Avenue intersection and on nearby walking and cycling facilities was completed on time and under budget reports Kevin Reid, the NZTA's Projects Team Manager.
Work at the Fraser Street intersection included shifting existing services (water main, stormwater and gas lines, electricity and telecommunications cables), adding an extra lane at each of the intersection's four arms, reconstructing the road surface and installing advanced waiting boxes for cyclists. Cycling paths under the totara trees on 15th Avenue and a new signalised pedestrian crossing near Burrows Street were also built as part of the project.
"The installation of a higher handrail on the bridge was a late addition to the project," says Mr Reid. "It is a safety initiative designed to keep cyclists safe as they cross the bridge on the shared cycle/footpath."
The Advanced Works was the second of a four-stage project to future-proof State Highway 2A through the 15th Avenue, Turret Road corridor. The first stage was installing the traffic signals on the Maungatapu and Hairini roundabouts in 2008. The investigation into stages three and four of the upgrade covering the long-term solution for the rest of the route is currently underway.
Mr Reid says: "The investigation so far has highlighted that the solution at the Hairini Roundabout needs to provide, not only for future traffic demands between Welcome Bay and Tauranga's CBD, but also for the growing demand between Tauriko and Welcome Bay. Traffic studies are progressing to provide an accurate estimate of how many vehicles will travel between Tauriko and Welcome Bay in coming years.
"The results of this work will confirm future demands on the intersection and the rest of the Hairini corridor, and will assist in selecting the best solution."
The NZTA expects to announce the outcome of the investigation in August this year.