Work on a roundabout to improve safety in the Waitomo district will start in January 2015. The intersection of SH3/37 – the turnoff to the Waitomo Caves – will be replaced with a three-legged roundabout, relocated about 60 metres north of the existing intersection.
The NZ Transport Agency says the construction of a roundabout will improve safety at the intersection which has been the site of several serious crashes, including two fatal ones in 2012.
The intersection is the gateway to the world-famous Waitomo Caves and 1300 vehicles a day use SH37 to and from the Caves. The roundabout will be a safer entry and exit to and from SH37 for tourists and locals.
A roundabout is viewed as a forgiving form of intersection that encourages travellers to slow when approaching. It is also easier for road users to navigate smoothly through and find their turn off.