Working together at Karāpiro to keep people moving


Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is doing a lot of work along a stretch of State Highway 1 in the Waikato to deliver benefits to both road users and the local community, while ensuring that everyone can keep moving at the same time.

A new turnaround bay facility at Keeley’s Reserve is already in progress, which precedes the installation of flexible median barriers later. This is the second turnaround bay on this stretch of SH1, following the completion of one at Hydro Road earlier this year. 

Just up the road at the intersection with Gorton Road, enabling works ahead of a full road rebuild are underway. The rebuild commences Monday 2 October and will take approximately three weeks to complete. Over this time there will be a southbound closure during the day (between 7am and 7pm, including weekends) to allow construction to take place safely and effectively.

While this work will be disruptive, the benefits will be worth it in the long run, says Cara Lauder, Acting Regional Manager for Waka Kotahi.

“Closing the road to southbound traffic allows all traffic to flow continuously during the day, albeit on different roads. If we used a traditional stop/go traffic management setup we would see long delays in both directions over a longer period of time.

“This also means we have been able to get work done in multiple areas while the road is operating on a single lane of traffic. Along with the turnaround bay construction, PowerCo contractors will be laying a new cable at the Maungatautari Road end, and other road maintenance will be undertaken, such as tree trimming.

“This efficiency has a long-term benefit for road users, with reduced disruption outside the work period along with the upgrades we are delivering.”

During the road closure period the local detour is via Karapiro Road, Taotaoroa Road and SH29. Road users from further afield are encouraged to use SH2, SH27 and SH24 if travelling between Auckland and Tauranga.

Northbound road users will see temporary speed limits at each worksite, and they are asked to follow the instructions of crew members as required.

While HPMV can use the southbound detour, they are entitled to wait at the closure point, along with over-weight and over-dimension loads. These will be allowed past the site approximately every hour, with northbound traffic held as required.

Between 7pm and 7am stop/go traffic management will be in place at the Gorton Road worksite.