The NZ Transport Agency is advising Bay of Plenty and Waikato motorists to start their journey online and plan ahead to avoid delays.
Transport Agency contractors are out in force this month, working to make the highways safer and progress major projects such as the Waikato Expressway and Tauranga’s Maungatapu underpass.
Drivers are likely to encounter speed restrictions and other traffic management on state highways around the regions.
Transport Agency journey manager Liam Ryan says checking out the Transport Agency’s website before travelling can help people choose the best routes and times to start their journeys.
“Picking up your mouse or your smartphone before you pick up your car keys and planning your journey could save you a lot stress and unnecessary time on the road,” Mr Ryan says.
For personalised information about driving conditions on their frequently used routes, motorists can check out and sign up to On The www.onthemove.govt.nz.
For real time information on highway conditions and incidents or to report issues on the network visit www.nzta.govt.nz and click on 'traffic and travel', call 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49) or follow the Transport Agency on Facebook or @nztawaibop on twitter.
Roadworks that are scheduled to start in the next week or are currently underway are detailed below to help people plan ahead when travelling.
Waikato Expressway - Rangiriri
People passing through the Rangiriri Section of the Waikato Expressway are urged to take extra care, watch for lane changes and adhere to the reduced speed limit.
The NZ Transport Agency asks drivers to follow traffic management through the work site for the safety of themselves and contractors’ staff.
Traffic was switched to one new south-bound lane at Rangiriri on May 10. There is no change for north-bound currently but it is planned all traffic will be on the 4.8km new route later next month.
Resurfacing work on the roundabout at Tatuanui will take place on the nights of May 22 and 23. During the works traffic will be managed through the roundabout, where SH27 and SH26 meet, but delays of up to 10 minutes are possible. Hours of work are 7pm-7am.
Urban Hamilton works
Several Hamilton main urban routes are scheduled for roadworks in the coming weeks and travellers may experience minor delays.
The programme is:
SH1 north of Turangi
Safety improvement works start from 23 May for the small SH1 settlements of Waitetoko, Oruatua and Motuoapa, just north of Turangi. The existing 70km/h signage and marking will be upgraded, along with improved pedestrian/cyclist access.
SH37 – Waitomo
Safety improvements on SH37 – the road to the world-famous Waitomo Caves – are under way. Work includes road widening, installing side barriers in places, and new signage and roadmarking. It is being done in sections so people can expect minor delays between the SH3 intersection and Waitomo village until the end of June.
SH1 Kahikatea Drive, Hamilton
Travellers on SH1 through Hamilton should be prepared for minor delays as work is under way to install traffic lights at the Kahikatea Drive and Gallagher Drive. The project involves road widening and will wrap up in August.
Tauranga Eastern Link/ Paengaroa roundabout
Transport Agency contractors will be carrying out work at the Paengaroa roundabout this month and motorists are urged to drive with extra care.
A 50km/h speed restriction and lane closures will be in place from Monday May 16th while the centre of the roundabout is lowered and some vegetation is removed to improve visibility.
The work is expected to take approximately 10 days however it is weather dependent and may be postponed due to wet weather. Please drive with extra care in this area.
SH2 between Tauranga and Waihi
Motorists travelling on SH2 between Tauranga and Waihi are urged to drive with extra care as work continues on a major safety upgrade.
A section of highway between Wainui South Road and Sargent Drive is being repaired and widened, and a wire rope central median barrier installed to prevent head on crashes.
A 50km/h speed restriction is in place for the safety of workers and people are urged to stay alert behind the wheel as there will be changes to the road layout over the next month. The work is expected to be complete by late May.
SH2 Te Maunga roundabout
Lane closures and a 50km/h speed reduction will be in place on SH2 near the Te Maunga roundabout on Sunday night May 22 and from 8pm on Monday night May 23 while contractors carry out road works. Expect minor delays.
SH2 Apata north road repairs
Contractors will be carrying out nightworks on SH2 near Apata from Monday May 22 through to Wednesday May 24. A 30km/h speed restriction and stop/go traffic management will be in place from 8pm during the works and motorists are advised to allow extra time when travelling.
SH29/ Takitimu Drive and SH36/Taurikura Drive roundabout upgrade
Motorists are asked to drive with extra care when travelling through the roundabouts over the next fortnight. Tauranga City Council’s contractor is carrying out works and speed restrictions, lane closures and occasional stop/go traffic management will be in place at times from this week.
SH29 Kaimai Range
A 30km/h speed restriction and stop/go traffic management will be in place on SH29 Kaimai Range on overnight on Thursday May 25 and Friday May 26 for road maintenance.
The work will be carried out from 8pm to reduce the impact on traffic.
SH35 - Opotiki to Cape Runaway and SH2 Waioeka Gorge
Transport Agency contractors will be working at various sites along this routes in May and June, carrying out drainage improvement works and clearing small slips. Traffic management will be in place and motorists are advised to drive with extra care and expect minor delays.
Rotorua area safety improvements
Transport Agency contractors will be making safety improvements to the state highway network around Rotorua over the next month. The changes include installing safety rails, new road marking, and tree trimming to improve visibility. Speed restrictions and other traffic management will be in place at times on SH36 Hamurana, SH30 Lower Atiamuri, SH5 Reporoa, and SH35 Opape.
Eastern Bay of Plenty – water cutting
Speed restrictions and stop/go traffic management will be in place on state highways around the Eastern Bay of Plenty over the next month as contractors start an annual water cutting programme.
Water cutting with a high pressure water jet removes areas of excess bitumen that have appeared during the hot weather over summer. It helps to improve grip and prolong the life of the road. Work will start on the western side of State Highway 2 and continue on other state highway sites such as SH30 between Awakeri and Whakatane. People should expect minor delays.