Project introduction

For Coromandel residents, businesses and visitors a functional state highway network in and around the district is vital for daily life. That’s why it’s important we prioritise the work to ensure a resilient network that continues to provide those all important connections.

  • Project type

    Bridge replacement, Road maintenance, Speed review

Project updates

Coromandel Update 10 May 2024
Coromandel Update 11 April 2024
Coromandel update - 22 March
Coromandel Update 4 March 2024
Coromandel Update - 22 February 2024
Coromandel Update - 7 February 2024

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The endless coastline and bush clad interior that define the Coromandel district and drive its economy also have a significant impact on its roading network.

State Highways 25 and 25A are vulnerable because of the unstable natural environment, and exposed coastal areas. There are few routes across the peninsula, most of which are affected by slips, while coastal areas are prone to flooding and inundation.

In recent years, and with increasing frequency, extreme weather events have impacted access to and around the Coromandel Peninsula, in particular during the summer of 2023.

While the slip which closed SH25A was the most significant, there were another 50 major slip sites and damage caused by surface flooding at multiple locations, leaving the network in a fragile state.

Repairing damage as quickly as possible is essential for ensuring the resilience of the Coromandel.

Alongside this work NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi (NZTA) works to maintain the highway and has an active highway bridge maintenance, strengthening and replacement programme. Safety is our number one priority, and we carry out regular inspections to ensure all state highway bridges in New Zealand are safe.

Coromandel recovery programme

  • About the programme

    The Coromandel state highway network suffered extensive damage and was left in a fragile condition after the extreme weather events of early 2023. 

    With SH25A closed for most of 2023, we carefully managed and prioritised our work on SH25 to minimise further disruption to peoples’ journeys around the peninsula.

    During 2023 we completed work at 32 sites along SH25/SH2. We also prioritised work on SH25A while it was closed clearing slips, replacing 23 culverts, fixed 5 major slips and undertaking crucial road maintenance along the rest of SH25A to ensure the entire corridor is safe and more resilient.  

    Repairing the remaining damaged sites as quickly as possible is essential for ensuring the resilience of the Coromandel.

    Since February 2024 teams have been working at multiple locations on SH25 around the peninsula, and on highways leading to the district.

    This work does mean disruptions for road users, and we’ll deliver the works in a coordinated manner, enabling traffic to continue to flow by balancing speed of delivery against disruption to road users.

    The region is benefiting from these works as a result of engaging with several local suppliers.

  • Project images

    Work underway to stabilise the large slip above SH25 at Ruamahunga

    Our contractors worked in a cage suspened by a crane to stabilise an underslip  near Wharekaho, pictured in January, and work neared completion in late March


What else we're working on

  • Pepe Stream Bridge

    The replacement of Pepe Stream Bridge is a priority for Waka Kotahi.

    The Pepe Stream Bridge business case to explore replacement options has been completed and approved. We now move into the next phase of project development, which is called 'pre-implementation'. Funding for this phase has been approved and includes detailed design, consenting and property investigation.

    Waka Kotahi will continue to keep the community informed as we work through this process. For more information on the process and where it’s at, you can find latest information, newsletters and the proposed designs on the Pepe Stream Bridge replacement project page.

    Pepe Stream bridge replacement project

  • Kirikiri Stream Bridge

    The Kirikiri Stream bridge, built in 1941, will be replaced to help alleviate flooding in the area. The current bridge is low and narrow with a central pier that collects flood debris, causing water to back up during storms. Replacing the bridge will help reduce the flood risk, protecting the area from the impact of severe storms.

    The replacement design is for a steel tied arch bridge, to be built slightly upstream of the current one. It will be 3m higher and will not accumulate debris underneath.

    As part of the project, the nearby intersection of SH26 and SH25A will be upgraded with a roundabout, significantly improving safety on this popular holiday route.

    We went out for tender on this project in mid-2023, however the process was unsuccessful due to the prices received being significantly higher than the available funding. 

    As a result of this, and a shift in focus to recovery and resilience due to this year’s weather events, this project will be re-tendered in 2024–2025.

    Kirikiri Stream bridge replacement project

  • Boundary Creek Bridge – one way restriction

    Boundary Creek Bridge – one way restriction

    The bridge over Boundary Creek on State Highway 25 between Thames and Coromandel has been reduced to one lane to extend its useful life.

    The bridge deck and beams, known together as the superstructure, are ageing due to sea salt spray and need to be replaced. For the bridge to remain open traffic will be directed across one lane in the centre of the bridge.

    There is no date currently scheduled for the superstructure replacement of the Boundary Creek bridge.


What's been done in recent years

  • List of past projects

    Hikuai River Bridge

    • Deck replacement completed 2022.

    Waiwawa River Bridge

    • Strengthening work completed 2022.

    Waiomu Stream Bridge

    • Foundation protection construction completed 2021.

    Maukoro Bridge

    • Footpath repairs completed 2021.

    Kereta Hill retaining wall

    • Repairs completed 2021.

    Ohinemuri River (Mataura) Bridge

    • Repairs completed 2021.

    Cloudburst Culvert

    • Retaining wall repairs completed 2021.

    Grahams Stream Footbridge

    • Cycling and walking footbridge opened November 2021.
    • Speed restricted for heavy vehicles on Grahams Stream Bridge to 10km/h in November 2022.

    Grahams Stream Footbridge


Safe speed limits

In March 2024, the Minister of Transport confirmed that a new Land Transport Rule for setting speed limits will be released for public consultation in the coming months and signed by the end of the year.

Direction of new speed limits rule announced(external link) (Beehive media release)

We remain committed to improving road safety for everyone in New Zealand. We will continue to design, implement, and maintain a transport system that uses a range of integrated safety interventions.

Speed limits have changed on SH25A and parts of SH25.

  • SH25A New permanent speed limit

    SH25A is a state highway that sits within the top one percent of the most dangerous state highways in New Zealand. This means, it has the highest number of deaths and serious injuries per kilometre of road and is high risk for people using the road. 

    In the ten-year period between 2013 and 2022 there were 6 people killed and 35 seriously injured. Most of the crashes were related to loss of control and speed.

    This is a vital strategic route for the Thames-Coromandel community. The route is narrow and hilly, with many corners and steep drop-offs. When closed, the detour route is nearly 100km, adding well over 90 minutes to the journey. 

    Due to the urgency of some speed limits related to specific operational needs, we progressed the SH25A speed limit via an alternative process, separately from the Interim State Highway Speed Management Plan.

    From Monday 19 February 2024, the new permanent speed limit for SH25A, between Kōpū and Hikuai, is 80km/h. This speed limit has been approved by the Director of Land Transport.

  • SH25 Temporary speed limits

    Due to traffic volumes and patterns changing on SH25 after the emergency closure of SH25A, Waka Kotahi conducted a speed review in response to resident and stakeholder safety concerns.

    Since mid-2023, temporary safer speed limits have been in place around the Coromandel while the recovery works are completed on SH25A and on SH25. 

    We understand there is strong community support for the SH25 temporary speed limits to be made permanent.

    Changing any speed limit is a legal process and there are numerous steps we must follow.

    We are working through what the Minister of Transport’s announcement means regarding speed management activity, including the development of future speed management plans.

    Once we have more information, we will take the appropriate steps to give effect to road safety policies the government announces, acknowledging the Minister has begun work on a new Setting of Speed Limits Rule.