Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s Taranaki maintenance contractor, Downer, has delivered a large maintenance programme over the 2021/22 summer construction season, despite challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic and severe weather events.
During the 2021/22 construction season, 69.5 lane kms of state highway was resealed, 10.89 lane kms of state highway asphalted and 9.35 lane kms of state highway completely rebuilt across 145 sites. Work wrapped up in Eltham earlier this month.
Taranaki System Manager Rob Service says the bumper maintenance programme aimed to significantly improve the safety and resilience of the state highway network.
“There’s been a particular focus on State Highway 3 and State Highway 3A between New Plymouth and Hāwera this season, where long sections of highway were due for renewal. This is a key route for freight and commuters, but the road condition is impacted by heavy rainfall, high volumes of heavy vehicles and volcanic ground conditions around the Mounga ( mountain).
Three and a half kilometres of highway between Inglewood and Midhurst was completely rebuilt over three months and asphalting and resealing was carried out at a number of other sites along the route greatly improving the journey south.
In addition to the planned maintenance programme, crews have been working hard to keep the road network safe and reliable following some severe weather events that have hit the region.
“We are working hard to improve Taranaki’s state highways, but we know there’s still a lot of work to do. Another large programme is planned for next season, and we expect people to see an improvement year on year as we carry out our renewal programmes,” Mr Service says.
“Next year, we’ll completely rebuild the road at 11 sites across the networks and asphalt 16 sites.”
In the meantime, work doesn’t stop for the winter. Crews will be out keeping the roads in a safe condition during the wetter months. Work will focus on temporary repairs to the road, culvert repairs, monitoring state highways for slips and clearing drains and culverts to mitigate potential flooding risks, as well as emergency works arising from severe weather events.
People are advised to take care on the roads, keep an eye out for our crews and drive to the conditions as they work to make your roads safer.