The first phase of the work to realign State Highway 2 through the Athenree Gorge, focused on improving road safety will end soon for the season.
The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) says workers will soon pack up for the winter after a successful construction season.
The NZTA’s Acting Bay of Plenty state highways manager, Andrew Scott says the project involves constructing a bypass away from a set of bends known as the Arden Cottage curves to improve road safety in this crash black-spot, the work is being carried out in two stages.
“Phase one of the project is just about finished, and much of the work has been done off the state highway focusing on moving existing drainage, moving 8,000 cubic metres of material to make way for the new bypass road.”
Mr Scott says construction crews are expected to be packed up by the end of June; in the meantime their focus is on finishing the remainder of the works in preparation for the second phase of the project.
The second phase will start around late spring with the focus being on connecting the newly built road (not visible from the existing road) to the highway.
He says the project should be fully completed by mid 2014.
This project is part of NZTA’s focus on reducing serious and fatal crashes by making significant investment on the region’s roads.
“We are also working with police to promote safe driving through advertising and enforcement and we are encouraging motorists to buy the safest vehicles they can afford.”
The NZTA’s website is regularly updated with information about most closures and detours at www.nzta.govt.nz/traffic(external link). This information is also available by phoning the NZTA’s free phone on 0800 4HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49), which can also be used to report any significant road issues or hazards which people may come across during their travels.
The NZTA also uses other technology to provide information to enable drivers to make better informed choices about their travel. On The Move is a free service which enables people to sign up for information about crashes, road works and driving conditions on their frequently used routes - to sign up, go www.onthemove.govt.nz(external link).