With traffic expected to be heavy over the Easter Weekend, NZTA is advising motorists to plan ahead to avoid expected delays.
During peak travel times, NZTA will be closing the SH1 northbound passing lanes at Waikanae and Te Horo and the southbound passing lane north of Otaki.
The closure of the northbound passing lanes will take effect from midday, Thursday 21 April and will be reopened on Saturday, 23 April by approximately 4.00pm or a time appropriate to traffic flows.
On Monday, 25 April NZTA will close the SH 1 southbound passing lane, north of Otaki, which will be reopened at about 8.00pm depending on traffic flows.
Wellington Operations Manager Mark Owen says the closure of the passing lanes, which are supported by the Police, is done for safety purposes, to reduce driver frustration and to improve traffic flows.
"The lanes will be appropriately signposted and fenced off with traffic cones.”
"If traffic remains heavy, passing lanes will remain closed longer until we are satisfied it is practical to reopen them."
Mr Owen says NZTA will be working with NZ Police to monitor congestion through Otaki and, if required, will instigate temporary traffic management measures to improve traffic flow through the town centre.
The NZTA will also be using its new Traffic Operations Centre to monitor highway traffic on 3000km of state highways throughout the lower half of the North Island.
“We’ll be better equipped than ever to help manage congestion and respond to emergencies to ensure safer and less stressful journeys for motorists over this holiday period.”
The NZTA will stop all road works on the state highway network over the long weekend from midday Thursday, 21 April until the morning of Tuesday, 26 April to help reduce congestion. This excludes any work needed to be done for emergency purposes and routine maintenance activities.
Meanwhile, Mr Owen said people should plan their journeys well in advance, drive with patience and avoid taking chances when turning or overtaking. "Driving with courtesy can keep traffic flowing smoothly and helps ensure the roads remain safe. We also encourage drivers to take breaks to avoid driver fatigue.