Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s Taranaki contractor, Downer, has delivered a large maintenance programme, despite many posed challenges
During the 2021/22 construction season, 69.5 lane km of state highway was resealed, 10.89 lane km of state highway asphalted, and 9.35 lane km of state highway completely rebuilt across 145 sites. Work wrapped up in Eltham earlier last month.
Taranaki System Manager Rob Service says the bumper maintenance programme aimed to significantly improve the safety and resilience of the state highway network.
“There’s been a particular focus on State Highway 3 and State Highway 3A between New Plymouth and Hāwera this season, where long sections of highway were due for renewal. This is a crucial route for freight and commuters. Still, the road condition is impacted by heavy rainfall, high volumes of heavy vehicles and volcanic ground conditions around the Mounga mountain.
Three and a half kilometres of highway between Inglewood and Midhurst were completely rebuilt over three months. Asphalting and resealing were carried out at several other sites along the route, significantly improving the journey south.
In addition to the planned maintenance programme, crews have been working hard to keep the road network safe and reliable following severe weather events that have hit the region.
“We are working hard to improve Taranaki’s state highways, but we know there’s still a lot of work to do. Another large programme is planned for next season, and we expect people to see an improvement year on year as we carry out our renewal programmes,” Mr Service says.
“Next year, we’ll completely rebuild the road at 11 sites across the networks and asphalt 16 sites.”
In the meantime, work doesn’t stop for the winter. Crews will keep the roads in a safe condition during the wetter months. Work will focus on temporary repairs to the road, culvert repairs, monitoring state highways for slips and clearing drains and culverts to mitigate potential flooding risks, and emergency works arising from severe weather events.
People are advised to take care on the roads, keep an eye out for our crews and drive to the conditions as they work to make your roads safer.
Source: Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency
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