The Pokeno to Mangatarata project has been revised to prioritise safety on the existing state highway, and include a range of short, medium and long-term improvements. This follows a re-evaluation process completed in November 2018.
Safety improvements on the existing highway will take place in the short term to reduce the crash risk. In the medium and longer term, installation of more central median and side barriers, better passing opportunities, intersection improvements to create better and safer access to local roads, and speed limits suitable for the road environment are planned.
The Pokeno interchange will be upgraded in the medium-term to improve the merge between SH2 and SH1, and the Transport Agency intends to provide extra capacity along this section.
The Mangatawhiri, Kopuku, Maramarua and Mangatarata sections – previously known as sections B, C, D and E will remain a two-lane highway (one lane in each direction) with intersection improvements such as roundabouts, and speed limits which accommodate the varied use of vehicles on the highway, such as agricultural vehicles.
The Transport Agency plans to secure designations and property for long-term solutions, subject to funding.
Timings and next steps for this project will be confirmed in early-2019.