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 Nigel D’Ath 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 D’Ath says.
For personalised information about driving conditions on their frequently used routes, motorists can check out and sign up to On The Move at www.onthemove.govt.nz(external link).
For real time information on highway conditions and incidents or to report issues on the network visit www.nzta.govt.nz(external link) 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.
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 Wright Road
Contractors are installing new guard rails on the approaches to Wright Road over the next week. Motorists are advised to drive with extra care as there is considerable turning traffic and the Katicoach and school buses stop 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.
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 month. 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.
SH35 - Opotiki to Cape Runaway
Transport Agency contractors will be working at various sites along this route in May, 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.
SH2 Waioeka Gorge
Contractors will be undertaking rock-fall protection work in the gorge over the next week. Speed restrictions and stop/go traffic management will be in place, with traffic held in both directions for up to 10 minutes at a time. Motorists are advised to plan for delays of approximately 15 minutes.
SH30/Te Ngae Road, road closure
A section of State Highway 30/Te Ngae Road in Rotorua will be CLOSED on Sunday May 15 to allow police to carry out investigations following a fatal crash.
The highway will be closed by Coulter Road (near the Owhata Shops) from approximately 7am until 9.30am.
Traffic will be detoured via Sunrise Ave, Rewarewa St, and Pohutukawa Dr.
The Owhata shops will still be accessible during the closure via Wharenui Rd (to Glenfield Rd then Coulter Rd).
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 visability. Speed restrictions and other traffic management will be in place at times on SH36 Hamurana, SH30 Lower Atiamuri, SH5 Reporoa, and SH35 Opape.
Waikato Expressway: Rangiriri
People passing through the Rangiriri Section of the Waikato Expressway are urged to drive with extra care and adhere to the reduced speed limits as there are a number of changes in the area.
Waikato Expressway: Huntly
SH1 traffic is restricted to 70km/h and there are changes to the road layout while work continues on the Huntly Northern Interchange.
The contractor has started early in this area to allow the earthworks the appropriate time to settle and account for the complexity of the interchange.
The south-bound off-ramp into Huntly will be built this year and SH1 traffic will be switched on to it.
Traffic management, including speed restrictions remain in place on the local roads connected to the Huntly section and motorists are advised to drive with care.
Urban Hamilton works
Hamilton drivers are advised to leave extra time when travelling around the city this month as road repairs and safety improvements are made on several key routes.
The work will be carried out at night between the hours of 8pm-5am. Roads will remain open but speeds may be down to 30km/h with lane closures and delays are possible at times.
First up is the busy Greenwood Street/Killarney Road intersection which will be dug up and resurfaced on Sunday night, 15 May.
The following night, Monday 16 May, the same work will be carried out at the Avalon Drive/Crawford Street roundabout.
The following week the night works continue at Normandy Avenue-Cobham Drive ahead of two nights of work at Lorne Street, which will require a south-bound detour.
The programme is:
SH1, North Waikato
Night works will take place on SH1 at Meremere next week and traffic may encounter short delays. Crews will be south of the Meremere Dragway on Tuesday night, 17 May, 8pm to 5am.
The following day and night they will be at the Whangamarino River area on SH1 with lane closures in place from 8am Wednesday to 5am on Thursday.
If weather is wet the work will be carried out on Thursday night.
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 at Waitomo village until the end of June.
SH1 Kahikatea Drive, Hamilton
Travellers on SH1 through Hamilton should be prepared for minor delays as work continues to install traffic lights at the Kahikatea Drive and Gallagher Drive intersection. A speed restriction and traffic management is in place until mid-year when the project will be complete.
The Transport Agency thanks motorists for their patience and understanding during the work.