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Motorists advised to take extra care on SH35

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Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is advising motorists to take extra care when travelling on State Highway 35 over the coming months, due to worksites and weather issues at various locations on the road.

At Busby’s Hill near Tokomaru Bay, the road will remain under a 30km/h speed restriction over winter due to frequent land movements and slips.

Senior Network and Journey Manager Helen Harris says Waka Kotahi will be repeating what worked successfully last year, by installing large concrete blocks along the side of the hill to protect the road’s surface from mud and water that flows on to the road.

“This will help prevent full closures of the road in the event of severe weather, as a temporary measure before we begin significant stabilisation works in summer 2021/22 as part of our State Highway 35 Resilience Project.”

Two other sites on State Highway 35 have been undergoing emergency repairs, which are near completion after almost a year of traffic management.

The two sites, at Mangatuna near Tolaga Bay and at Ihungia near Te Puia Springs, were severely damaged during the June/July 2020 rain events, with several slips occurring above and below the road.

Retaining walls are required at both sites, with ground anchors necessary at the Inhungia site to strengthen the retaining wall and tie it in place among the erodible geology.

“Both projects are progressing well and expected to be completed by mid-May, slightly ahead of schedule,” Ms Harris says.

“We ask motorists to please be patient with the traffic management and to follow the traffic light commands.”

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