AgFest conversations valued


Feedback from the community has seen Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency contractors undertake fresh line marking at the intersection of Wainui Road and State Highway 2 this week.

Earlier this month, representatives from Waka Kotahi packed up their gumboots to attend the Ōpōtiki Eastern Bay AgFest.

Waka Kotahi Acting Portfolio Delivery Manager Jo Wilton says the team who attended the AgFest earlier this month had valuable discussions with locals and have already actioned some of the feedback.

“We passed feedback about faded line marking at the intersection of Wainui Road and SH2 on to our maintenance team, who undertook the line marking this week as a direct result,” says Ms Wilton.

The event presented a good opportunity to engage with locals on the SH2 Wainui Road to Ōpōtiki safety improvement project which is due to start early-2021. The team was kept busy throughout the day, explaining the project and taking note of ideas and feedback from the community.

In between the gumboot throwing and mussel shucking, Ms Wilton says more than 100 people visited the stall.

“Most issues raised at AgFest focused on speed, with locals saying tailgating and dangerous overtaking is a serious issue along this stretch of road.

“Within the next 12 months, Waka Kotahi will complete a technical assessment of SH2 between Paengaroa and Ōpōtiki to consider speed management as part of the Safe Network Programme.

“We will work closely with the local councils, our road safety partners and the community, as local knowledge is a vital contributor to our speed review process,” says Ms Wilton.

Other comments related to flooding issues at the SH2 / Wainui Road (Matekerepu) intersection. The project proposes to build a roundabout and raise the road to reduce the flood risk.

Comments were also made on the need for more safety barriers along this stretch of highway.

Due to the coastal nature of the road, there are serious hazards in the event of a vehicle leaving the road, including drop offs, deep ditches and trees.

“The improvements will include shoulder widening, side barriers at high risk locations and edgeline and centreline rumble strips, to help address these issues and make this stretch of highway safer,” says Ms Wilton.

SH2 Wainui Road to Ōpōtiki safety improvement project

We have almost finalised preliminary works such as surveying and determining any land and resource consents that may be required. Some initial construction work to widen the state highway between Wainui Road to Waiotahe Back Road will begin in early 2021.

Initial funding of $7.6 million means Waka Kotahi can complete some safety improvements along the state highway. Further funding is needed to finalise the designs and complete the safety improvements. This will be considered as part of the 2021–24 National Land Transport Programme.

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