Transport improvements at Melling will provide for a safer, more resilient and accessible transport system in Lower Hutt, as well as supporting flood protection and revitalisation of the Hutt Valley.
The NZ Upgrade Programme provides up to $420 million (including contingencies) to build a new interchange to improve safety, replace the road bridge over the river, and improve access to walking, cycling and public transport. The Government provided $6 million for the designation and consenting of the project in November 2019 which removes a dangerous signal-controlled intersection on State Highway 2 (SH2).
The Melling Transport Improvements are one part of the RiverLink programme, which is a partnership between Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, Greater Wellington Regional Council and Hutt City Council, consisting projects relating to flood protection, urban development and transport improvements.
The improvements at the Melling intersection ensure several key objectives of the RiverLink programme are achieved – a resilient and safer transport network for all travellers, improved access between SH2 and Lower Hutt, as well as enabling economic and urban growth.
More than 150,000 people already call the Hutt Valley their home, and with a steady increase in population, a more resilient transport system is vital for the region’s continued urban and economic growth.
The new overbridge and river bridge, connecting directly to Queens Drive, will help improve access during peak travel times, and combined with new stop banks, will build greater resilience into the transport system, by reducing the risk of flooding in Lower Hutt and around the Melling intersection.
Relocation of the railway station at Melling is part of the package. The newly relocated Melling Station will better support links to central Lower Hutt and will integrate with a new walking and cycling bridge (part of RiverLink delivered by Hutt City Council) linking Rutherford Street and the relocated station. The bridge will provide access for pedestrians and cyclists, with residents increasingly looking for different ways to safely commute daily into Wellington. The current park and ride capacity will be retained and the station precinct will include a bus hub.
Construction is expected to start in 2023.