SH3 Waitara to Bell Block safety improvements progress next week


Further investigations for safety improvements on State Highway 3 between Waitara to Bell Block will get underway from next week.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is carrying out ground investigations at various locations between Waitara and Bell Block to inform the design of upcoming safety improvements.

Director of Regional Relationships Emma Speight says roundabouts are proposed for four high-risk intersections between Waitara and Bell Block along with wide centrelines, new road markings and sections of road safety barrier.

“These safety improvements will help prevent further crashes resulting in deaths and serious injuries on this road and support residential growth in Bell Block and Waitara,”says Ms Speight.

“The investigative works, which involve drilling holes to test the ground conditions, will help the project team design and construct the most appropriate pavement type for roundabouts at the De Havilland Drive, State Highway 3A (Mountain Road), Princess Street and Waitara intersections.”

Work will be done 16 - 20 November, between 10am to 2pm and 7pm to 9pm to help minimise disruption to traffic. Stop/Go traffic control will be in place at some sites.

Motorists are reminded to take care when travelling through the sites and stick to the temporary speed limits.

“Waka Kotahi are committed to making this important section of highway safer and more reliable for everyone who uses it, says Ms Speight.

“We are working closely with iwi, New Plymouth District Council and local landowners to progress the roundabout designs and aim to begin construction at the end of 2021, subject to land acquisition, obtaining consents, and full implementation funding.”

Initial safety improvements for the route will get underway this summer. This includes creating a wide centreline between Bayley Street and Richmond Road to reduce the risk of head-on crashes, and the removal of the westbound passing lane. A wide centreline will be created in place of the passing lane.

Road surface repairs will also be carried out and new line markings, and rumble strips installed.

These improvements will help prevent crashes in the short term and prepare the road for sections of median barrier to be installed once the roundabouts are built.

Waka Kotahi thanks motorists and local residents for their patience during this work.

More information about the project:

SH3 Waitara to Bell Block