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Safer speed limit for SH73 West Melton, west of Christchurch


Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has set a new permanent speed limit for SH73 in West Melton, west of Christchurch.

In a month's time, from 12 October, the permanent speed limit in West Melton will reduce from 70km/h to 60km/h.

“Some of the community have been asking for speed reductions through West Melton for some time,” says Jim Harland, Director Regional Relationships for Waka Kotahi.

“There has been significant development in the area, both residential subdivisions and commercial sites, which has resulted in more pedestrian and cycling activity as well as an increase in traffic numbers.

“We had a good response to our consultation with 101 submissions, with most supporting the speed limit change as proposed. There was a clear theme throughout submissions highlighting the importance this community places on pedestrian and cyclist safety.”

Chairperson of the West Melton Residents Association Tim Schurr says the speed reduction is “a great step forward for road safety for our community.”

“We are very supportive of the work Waka Kotahi is doing to make our community safer for residents and all road users.” He thanked residents who had put in submissions and supported the association on this issue over many months.

The setting of the new permanent speed limit also included engagement with the Police, the AA, and the Road Transport Forum.

This speed review is aligned to New Zealand’s Road Safety Strategy, Road to Zero 2020 – 2030 and a programme of work delivering safety improvements, including speed management, on our highest risk intersections and roads across New Zealand. Through these safety improvements, Waka Kotahi aims to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.

New Zealand's Road Safety Strategy

Increasingly busy intersection in West Melton to get traffic signals

Community members also felt strongly that the layout of the SH73/Weedons Ross Road intersection was an issue and many suggested installing a roundabout or traffic lights to help with traffic flow and the safety of all users.

As part of the NZ Upgrade programme, funding for design and installation of traffic signals at the SH73 and Weedons Ross Road intersection was announced earlier this year.

New Zealand Upgrade programme - Canterbury package

More information on the permanent speed limit, consultation summary and submissions

Speed management background:

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