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What are you doing?

The NZ Transport Agency and Christchurch City Council are looking at ways to make it safer and easier to travel around the SH76 Brougham Street and Moorhouse Avenue area.

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Why are you doing it?

We know that there are problems in this area. It can be difficult to get around with commuters, freight and bus drivers, pedestrians and cyclists all competing to travel along and around the same busy area.

It’s congested at times and people have told us they feel unsafe turning on and off SH76 Brougham Street and Moorhouse Avenue because of the high volumes of traffic. We want to make changes to make it safer and easier for everyone to live, do business and travel in this area. It’s important to plan for improvements now so we can keep things moving as the city grows.

We will investigate and develop a range of treatments and options which consider all types of travel. We want to make it easier and safer to travel no matter how people choose to get around - by car, truck, public transport, walking or cycling.

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What sort of improvements are you looking at making?

We are in an early investigation stage. Right now we are looking at the problems and gathering facts before we start forming a plan.

We are focussed on improving travel for everyone, no matter how they choose to travel.

To get it right, we need the community’s help and over the next few months we will be talking to people to find out what they think could improve. We will use this feedback, alongside our research to come up with a plan for this busy area.

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Why these roads?

SH76 Brougham Street is a high volume state highway that carries the highest traffic volumes in Christchurch (up to 45,000 vehicles per day). It connects to the Christchurch Southern Motorway, that is currently being extended to Rolleston. Its eastern end serves the South Island’s principal port at Lyttelton.

Moorhouse Avenue forms a parallel route to SH76 Brougham Street. It plays a critical role as the district arterial ring road around the central city and for local east-west traffic with destinations in and around the central city. The central city is forecast to return to pre-earthquake employment numbers by 2021 (48,000) and is forecast to grow to approximately 63,000 by 2041.

Both roads provide an east-west connection for people travelling across the city. They are also crossed by a number of local roads which connect the city to the southern suburbs. Along with commuters, some of these roads accommodate main bus routes, resulting in approximately 172,000 crossing and turning movements per day.

A number of cyclists also use the area, with two of Christchurch City Council’s Major Cycle Routes as well as other cycle routes passing through the area.

The combination of different road users and movements are causing conflict and delays.

Local residents and people looking to turn on and off the roads into homes or businesses feel unsafe and customer insight work has identified issues for pedestrians, cyclists and those using public transport.

Traffic levels on SH76 Brougham Street are growing at up to 3.8 percent per annum and the Christchurch population is expected to increase by around 32 percent over the next 30 years. Meanwhile the Port of Lyttelton anticipates more than doubling its container throughput over 25 years, which will increase the amount of freight on SH76 Brougham Street.

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How much will the project cost?

The investigation (DBC) will cost approximately $1 million.

We will not have an estimated cost of the improvements until we have finished our investigations.

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What will happen next and will the public have a say?

The people using these roads have ideas and experience that can help us, and it’s important that any changes we may make fit with the way they use the road.

We will start engaging with the community and key stakeholders from November 2018 to gather ideas and share some of our early thoughts.

We will take this feedback and use it alongside our research as we begin working on possible changes, which we will share with the community in early 2019 so we can make any further tweaks/changes to the design.

We will make final decisions about the preferred option later in 2019.

We will keep stakeholders and the community informed throughout the process with regular updates and information ahead of key milestones as we progress.

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What about cyclists and pedestrians?

We are focussed on making this area better for everyone. The changes we will explore will make it easier for everyone to get around, no matter if they walk or travel by car, truck or on public transport.

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Why has this taken so long?

We want to make sure we get this right and that any changes fit into the long term, strategic plan for Canterbury. We want to invest money in the right solutions that will keep people safe and keep this region moving now, and into the future.

The NZ Transport Agency started gathering information about SH76 Brougham Street in 2015, but the scope of the project has changed since then. Christchurch City Council and the NZ Transport Agency are now working together to look at SH76 Brougham Street and Moorhouse Avenue, and the areas around these two busy roads.

We will build on the information we already have to get a clear understanding of this whole area.

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