This road was last fully resealed around 12 years ago, with just short-term repairs in more recent years.
This was a critical piece of work located in a very challenging environment. The road is narrow in this part of the Otira Gorge with only around 7.5 metres between the guardrail and cliff face. This means the paving and sealing machines filled up the entire space and didn’t allow room for traffic to safely pass while the work is underway.
The area is also steep, with rock fall risk and extreme weather.
SH73 Otira Gorge is an important transport corridor connecting Christchurch to the West Coast. Closing the road means we got a lot more work done in a shorter space of time, compared with working under stop-go traffic management over multiple days and weekends.
We thank everyone for their patience while we completed this important work.