It’s almost time to down tools for both Santa’s elves at the North Pole and for roadworkers across the Waikato and Bay of Plenty region.
Whilst the elves may be working right up until midnight on Christmas Eve, works across the region’s roads will mostly be finishing at midday Friday 23 December, allowing road users an undisturbed run to their holiday destination.
However, just because there are no roadworks doesn’t mean there are no delays, says Roger Brady, Bay of Plenty System Manager at Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.
“Holiday traffic will be busy at certain periods in the lead-up to Christmas, and throughout the two-week period the majority of New Zealanders have on holiday. To help with planning the best time to travel Waka Kotahi have released the Summer Journeys traffic prediction tool.
Summer Journeys traffic prediction tool(external link)
“This tool shows when key routes will be free-flowing, busy and at their heaviest. Along with the Journey Planner, which provides real time traffic updates, you can see when the best times to travel will be, and then ensure on the day that there are no issues on the network causing unexpected delays.
“Waka Kotahi wishes everyone a safe and enjoyable Christmas. Make sure you reach your destination by checking your vehicle before driving, driving safely to the posted speed limit, and enjoy the journey. We want everyone to enjoy this time with their friends and whānau,” says Mr Brady.
Bay of Plenty
- Takitimu North Link Stage One: Works are paused for the holidays. From the New Year a range of construction activities will continue between Te Puna, Bethlehem and Tauriko including Cambridge Road, Harrison Road, Wairoa Road and Minden Road, there are a number of shoulder closures and reduced speed limits. The new Harrison Road alignment will open with new seal and line marking scheduled in coming weeks, when there is consistent weather. People may notice an increase in truck movements along Moffat Road over the summer months as earthworks ramp up in the Tauriko/Bethlehem area. More information (external link).
- SH2 Bay Link: Access to Truman Lane is via State Highway 2 Sandhurst interchange only, with access to Truman Lane from the State Highway 29A roundabout closed. Follow detours and allow extra time. All Truman Lane businesses, including Baypark Stadium and Te Maunga transfer station, will remain accessible. On Matapihi Road, the left lane approaching the Bayfair roundabout will remain left turn only and the right lane will continue to be for traffic going straight through and turning right only. Temporary traffic management, including temporary speed limits will remain in place while the site is shut from 23 December to 9 January. More information. (external link)
- SH29 Takitimu Drive Toll Road: A reduced speed limit of 80km/h will be in place while contractor crews are working behind the barriers. More information(external link).
Road surface repairs will take place throughout the week commencing Monday 9 January 2023. Work will take place between 7pm and 6am each night, temporary traffic management and a reduced speed limit will be in place.
- SH29 Kaimai Range: Road surface repairs will take place throughout the week commencing Sunday 8 January 2023. Work will take place between 7pm and 6am each night, temporary traffic management and a reduced speed limit will be in place.
- SH2 15th Avenue: Work commences at the 15th Avenue/Cameron Road intersection on Tuesday 10 January 2023. Traffic management will be in place on the two northern corners, and there will be a reduced number of northbound lanes on Cameron Road. Minor delays are expected.
- SH2 Tauranga Eastern Link Toll Road (TELTR): For the Tauranga City Council led Pāpāmoa East Interchange construction project, traffic on the TELTR, just north of the Kaituna River Bridge, has three operational lanes. Whilst earthworks continue on the south side of the road, both eastbound lanes are open and normal speed applies. One westbound lane is open while work continues in the outer westbound lane. A temporary speed limit past the worksite is 70km/h. This layout will remain in place until April 2023, including over the holiday period. Work recommences on Monday 9 January. More information. (external link)
The Quayside Properties Ltd led Rangiuru Business Park Interchange project has commenced. From 6am Tuesday 10 January 2023 temporary barriers will be installed on both sides of the TELTR. This will take approximately two weeks to complete, following this the barriers will be in place for approximately nine months, with one lane available in either direction. During installation and subsequent works a temporary speed limit of 70km/h will apply through the site. More information (external link).
- SH2 Tauranga Eastern Link Toll Road (TELTR) Events: SH2 will be closed between Te Maunga interchange (SH29A) and Sandhurst Drive, in both directions (heading towards Pāpāmoa and Mount Maunganui), from 8pm Tuesday 3 January to 1am Wednesday 4 January as part of the Bay Dreams event at Baypark. More information (external link).
SH2 will be closed between Te Maunga interchange (SH29A) and Sandhurst Drive, in both directions (heading towards Pāpāmoa and Mount Maunganui), from 8pm Friday 6 January to 1am Saturday 7 January as part of the Juicy Fest event at Baypark.
The eastbound lanes between Domain Road (Papamoa) and Paengaroa will be closed between 5.30am and 1pm on Saturday 21 January as part of the cycle route for the Mount Festival of Multisport. The alternative route for people driving eastbound during this time will be via Te Puke Highway. Westbound lanes will remain open under usual operation.
Western Bay of Plenty
- SH2 Waihī to Ōmokoroa: Safety improvement works continue after the holidays at five active sites: between Tanners Point Road to Kauri Point Road, Rea Road / Tetley Road intersection, Lockington Road / Matahui Road intersection, Morton Road intersection and Apata Station Road to Esdaile Road. Pavement work to complete the Rea Road / Tetley Road roundabout will take place as soon as there is consistent fine weather. Minor delays are expected. Traffic management will remain in place over the holiday period between Cannon Road and Kauri Point Road, Morton Road roundabout, and a section of SH2 north of Esdaile Road. This is due to narrow lanes and hazards that cannot be removed. More information(external link).
- SH30 Eastern Corridor Stage Two: Construction on SH30/ Te Ngae Road will be taking a break over the Christmas period, with contractors off site from Friday 23 December 2022 until Monday 9 January 2023. Temporary traffic management remains in place, including a reduced speed limit through site, no left turn lane out of Basley Road to SH30/Te Ngae Road, and no left turn from the SH30/Te Ngae Road westbound lane into Tennyson Drive; minor delays are expected. The footpath on the lake side between Iles Road and Tennyson Drive, and east of Tennyson Drive to the mid-block between Tumene Drive and Brent Road heading east on SH30/Te Ngae Road, will remain closed. People walking and cycling are asked to take extra care and follow the marked detours, using the temporary signalised pedestrian crossing at the mid-block between Basley Road and Tennyson Drive to cross SH30/ Te Ngae Road. More information (external link).
- SH30/SH33 Te Ngae Junction: The site will be shut down over the holiday period. When work recommences on the retaining wall this will not impact road users. More information (external link).
- SH33 Te Ngae Junction to Paengaroa: A temporary speed limit of 50km/h will remain in place through the Pareteriro Sun Valley curves section when the sites are unattended. More information(external link).
Eastern Bay of Plenty
- SH2 Nukuhou: Road rehabilitation has paused at a site near Nukuhou. A temporary surface has been applied, and work will recommence on Wednesday 4 January. Please drive with caution through the site over the holiday period, and obey the 50km/h temporary speed limit and temporary traffic management signage.
- SH2 Waioeka Gorge: An underslip to the road edge sees a section of road under priority give-way over the holiday period. Care is required when driving through this area.
- SH5 Reporoa: Road reconstruction commences Tuesday 10 January 2023 outside the Fonterra factory. Work will take place between the hours of 7am and 5pm, six days a week, for approximately four weeks. When works are taking place the road will be closed, with a detour via Reporoa Road and Settlers Road.
Tairāwhiti Gisborne/Hawke’s Bay
- SH35 Kopuaroa: The site remains under stop/go traffic management and a temporary speed limit of 30km/h at all times. Main improvement works to realign the highway onto more stable ground are underway. Delays are to be expected. More information(external link).
- SH35 Turihaua: A temporary speed limit of 60km/h will be in place in and around the freedom camping areas between Turihaua to Pouawa. This will be in effect between 20 December 2033 and 1 February 2023.
- SH2 Esk River Bridge: The bridge over the Esk River on SH2, north of Napier, has been reduced to a 30km/h temporary speed limit due to recent assessments identifying the bridge does not have capacity for sustained increased travel demands. Overweight vehicles are required to reduce their speed to 10km/h within their own lane, or to follow the restriction on their permit if it is lower. More information(external link).
- SH4 Auraki Stream Road Retreat: Work to retreat the road away from a slip adjacent to the Mangawhero River is currently underway and is expected to be complete by mid-2023. For the duration of the works the road is reduced to one lane with traffic control operating under traffic signals. Works are generally undertaken away from the road, however there are occasions where traffic signals are used to keep drivers safe from hazards, with delays of up to 10 minutes.
- SH4 Te Oreore slip: Following a slip in 2019, a temporary road is in place at Te Oreore, with a 30km/h temporary speed limit in place.
- SH4 Kakatahi: Road reconstruction commences on Tuesday 10 January 2023 at a 300m section near Macintoshs Road. Stop/go traffic management will be in place Monday to Friday, between the hours of 6am and 6pm. Work is expected to take three weeks to complete. Delays are expected.
- SH4 Upokongaro to Raetihi: Crews continue to clear material from numerous slip sites. Traffic is generally reduced down to one lane past these slip sites during working hours. At sites 150m north of Burrell Road and 3km north of Burrell Road, SH4 is reduced down to one lane due to underslips with priority give way and 30km/h speed limits in place. At Aberfeldy, 1km north of Parihauhau Road, speed is reduced to 50km/h due to an underslip compromising the edge line of the northbound lane. Ground investigations commence on Tuesday 10 January at a site north of Hawken Road.
- SH2 Karangahake Gorge: The speed limit throughout the 600m section between Crown Hill Road and School Road has been reduced from 80km/h to 50 km/h, until after Waitangi weekend. More information(external link).
- SH26 Morrinsville: Road reconstruction work outside the Fonterra dairy factory will commence from the night of Sunday 15 January through to Friday morning 27 January. The road will be closed 24 hours per day in a westbound direction only, between Canada Street and Waverley Avenue, although access will be maintained for residents, trucks and emergency services. A detour will be provided for all other vehicles.
- SH1 Lichfield: Road reconstruction work near Baldwin Road in Lichfield will continue in early 2023. Over the holiday period one lane in each direction will be available.
- SH5 Mamaku: Road reconstruction commences on the passing lane area within the Mamaku Forest Park area. Stop/go traffic management and temporary speed limits will be in place for approximately two months while this work takes place. Delays are expected.
- SH1 Ātiamuri: Holiday traffic will be managed through the 4.5km site where side and median barriers are being installed south of Ātiamuri. Both north and south-bound lanes will be restricted to 50km/h. Pavement works and barrier construction between Maroa Road and Tram Road will resume in mid-January. More information(external link).
- SH1 Waitahanui: Road reconstruction south of Waitahanui recommences on Tuesday January 10 2023, at the second half of the site. Stop/go traffic management and a temporary speed limit will be in place for approximately two weeks.
- SH1 Rangipo: Road reconstruction south of Rangipo recommences on Tuesday January 10 2023. Stop/go traffic management and a temporary speed limit will be in place for approximately three weeks.
- SH1 Desert Road: Works are continuing to have the road open to two lanes by the morning of Saturday 24 December. Pre-opening checks will be undertaken on Friday 23 December to determine if the site is fit for use and safe to re-open. Works will recommence from Monday 9 January 2023 to complete final works on the walls, which will require stop/go and stop/stop traffic management.
- SH1B Puketaha: SH1B east of Hamilton is closed at the southern end of Telephone Road while options for its long-term future are investigated. Detour via Holland Road, Waverley Road and Seddon Road. More information (external link).
- SH1 Waikato Expressway - Ngāruawāhia Section: Safety and remedial works are taking a break over the holidays and temporary safety barriers have been removed to open the expressway to four lanes. Southbound traffic is now at 100km/h while northbound has a 600m section restricted to 70km/h. Work will resume mid-January. More information (external link).
- SH1 Hillcrest: Work commences at the SH1C/Cambridge Road roundabout on Wednesday 4 January. A temporary speed limit of 30km/h will be in place, and the roundabout will be reduced to one lane in each direction. Cambridge Road and Johnsview Terrace will operate as left in/left out only. This work sees the intersection changed to traffic light controls, and is expected to be completed by mid-2023.
- SH1 Maungatautari: Safety improvements continue on SH1 south of Maungatautari Road from Wednesday 11 January. Over 1km of flexible median barrier and changes to the road layout, including the removal of the southbound passing lane, will take place over two weeks. Work will take place between 6pm and 6am, Sunday to Thursday nights. During this time southbound traffic will be detoured via Karapiro Road, Taotaoroa Road and SH29, northbound traffic will drive past the site with a 30km/h temporary speed limit in place. More information (external link).
- SH3 Ōtorohanga: Road reconstruction commences Monday 9 January 2023 at a site just south of Ōtorohanga. Work will take place between 7am and 7pm, Monday to Friday, and is expected to take two weeks to complete. During this time stop/go traffic management and a temporary speed limit will be in place.
- SH30 Kōpaki: Due to safety concerns Kōpaki Bridge is only open to cars. The detour for all other vehicles is via Kōpaki Road and SH4. More information(external link).
- SH4 Taumarunui: Following storm damage, a section of road north of Taumarunui, between the State Highway 43 intersection and Okahukura Bridge Road is under stop/go traffic management, controlled by traffic signals. Enabling works have commenced, and plans for the long-term repair of this road are currently being designed.
- SH2 Maramarua: The three eastbound passing lanes on SH2 near Mangatawhiri Road, Kopuku Road and Heaven Road will be closed from 8am to 8pm on Friday December 23, on Christmas Eve, and on Tuesday December 27 and Wednesday December 28. The two westbound passing lanes near Heaven Road and the Maramarua Golf Club closed from 8am to 8pm on Monday 2 January, Tuesday 3 January, Saturday 7 January and Sunday 8 January. Road crews will be on-site setting up for the passing lane closures from 5am each day of closure, and access to the passing lanes may be limited during this time. More information(external link).
- SH2 Waitakururu: Stop/go traffic management will be in place between 9pm and 5am on both Tuesday 10 and Wednesday 11 January 2023, to allow stormwater related work to take place. A temporary speed limit will also be in place past the worksite.
- SH3 Piopio: A slip has the road down to one lane between Mangarongo and Paekaka Roads, which is being controlled by traffic signals. Delays of 5-10 minutes are expected. More information (external link).
- SH3 Awakino Bypass: Final surfacing works have paused for the holiday period. Work will re-commence early-January, and completion is expected in February. Stop/go traffic management and a 30km/h speed limit will be present when work is taking place.
- SH3 Awakino: A slip south of Awakau Road has the road down to one lane controlled by traffic signals and a 30km/h temporary speed limit. There are various other slips in the gorge that are currently not affecting traffic, however drivers are asked to drive with caution, and expect delays at the single lane section.
- SH3 Tongapōrutu: A slip has the road down to one lane south of Tongapōrutu, which is being controlled by traffic signals. Delays of 5-10 minutes are expected.
- SH3 Te Ara o Te Ata: Mt Messenger Bypass: A 50km/h speed limit has been introduced across a 5km section of State Highway 3 at Mt Messenger. Lane closures and stop/go traffic management will still be in place intermittently. More information(external link).
For up to 48 hours following completion of chipseal sites, a 50km/h temporary speed limit will be in place until the road is swept and line marking reinstated.
The above information is accurate at the time of release. Many of the above works are dependent on a number of factors, particularly weather, and may be postponed at short notice. For up-to-date information on road works, traffic, detours and delays, motorists are encouraged to visit the Waka Kotahi Journey Planner website.
Journey Planner website(external link)
Waka Kotahi thanks motorists for their patience while we complete this essential work to keep the state highway network safe, accessible and resilient.