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New safer speed limits for urban Rotorua – SH30 Te Ngae to SH5 Hemo

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Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is committed to Road to Zero, a vision for Aotearoa New Zealand where no one is killed or seriously injured on our roads.

Following consultation in March and April 2021, Waka Kotahi has set new permanent speed limits for some sections of State Highway 5 and State Highway 30, in Rotorua.

Director Regional Relationships David Speirs says safe speeds save lives.

“Our speeds really matter. They can make a substantial difference to creating safe and sustainable communities. When speeds are safe for the road, simple mistakes are less likely to end in tragedy. That’s why we’re making the speed limit safer for everyone who uses this road.

"People told us they feel unsafe between Hemo roundabout and Waipā State Mill Road, and near Whakarewarewa School. We also heard, and agree with the feedback, the area by the Rotorua Airport isn’t as developed, so the speed limit will remain at 80km/h until things change in the future.

“Speeds on a road impact how safe other road users feel to walk, bike, or travel with their tamariki on that same road.”

Whakarewarewa School and the Board of Trustees shared their concerns about tamariki walking to/from school, near a busy state highway. As part of this review a variable school speed zone was proposed and will be implemented. The speed limit will be lowered to 30km/h around school drop off and pick up times.

From Monday 3 October 2022 the new permanent speed limits are:

Location Location description Current speed limit (km/h) New speed limit (km/h)
 Old Taupō Road /Hemo Road  SH5: 70m north of Malfroy Road (existing speed limit change point) to 258m southwest of the SH5/SH30 Old Taupō Road/Hemo Road roundabout.  50, 80  50
 Waipā SH5: 258m southwest of the SH5/SH30 Old Taupō Road/Hemo Road roundabout to 400m south of Waipā State Mill Road.  80, 100 80 
SH5/SH30 roundabout – Tarawera Road SH30: from the centre of the SH5/SH30 Old Taupō Road/Hemo Road roundabout to 100m northeast of Tarawera Road. 80, 60, 50, 70 50 
South of SH5/SH30 roundabout SH30: 193m southwest of the SH5/SH30 intersection to the SH5/SH30 intersection. 80, 100 80 
Whakarewarewa School variable school speed zone SH30: Whakarewarewa School electronic variable school speed zone, 50m west of McIntyre Avenue to 200m south of Scott Street intersection.  50 50,30 
Tarawera Road – Coulter Road SH30: 100m northeast of Tarawera Road to 90m north of Coulter Road. 60  No change 
Coulter Road – Alfred Road SH30: 90m north of Coulter Road to 185m north of Alfred Road. 70  No change 
Alfred Road – Rotokawa Road SH30: 185m north of Alfred Road to 140m northeast of Rotokawa Road. 80  No change 
SH30/SH30A Sala Street intersection SH30A: 150m west of the SH30/SH30A intersection to the SH30A eastern termination point. 70  50 

“We want everyone who uses our roads to get to where they’re going safely.  Even when it’s not the cause of a crash, speed is the difference between someone being seriously injured, killed or unharmed.,” says Mr Speirs.

The setting of the permanent speed limits follows engagement with the Police, the AA, and road user groups, and consultation with the public.

“We thank the members of the public that provided their feedback on the proposed speed limits,” says Mr Speirs.

More information on the permanent speed limits and our consultation summary, including the submissions can be found on the Speed review locations webpage.

Speed review locations - Bay of Plenty(external link)

Delivering safety improvements in speed and infrastructure are an important part of Road to Zero, Aotearoa New Zealand’s road safety strategy. They are underpinned by the internationally proven Safe System approach, which acknowledge that as humans, we all make mistakes – but these mistakes do not need to cost us our lives.

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