Travellers on State Highway 1 out of Blenheim should expect a change to the road layout in the week starting Monday 22 June, when northbound traffic will be directed onto the new Ōpaoa River Bridge.
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency System Manager Andrew James says this switch will allow the next phase of construction to begin, including tie-in works at each end of the bridge.
“The Ōpaoa River Bridge is a vital piece of infrastructure and improving resilience has been a key priority for Waka Kotahi. The new structure is stronger, safer and looking fantastic.
“The exact time and day of the switch isn’t yet confirmed as it is weather dependent, but once it happens, northbound motorists will simply be directed onto the new route as they continue their journey.”
Drivers should be aware that traffic management and reduced temporary speed limits will remain in place as construction activities continue.
“While our crews continue to work on this important project, we’re asking drivers to keep to the posted speed limits and take care around the site,” says Mr James.
Southbound traffic will be diverted onto the new bridge in the coming weeks – aiming for the middle of July.
Once both lanes have been switched onto the new bridge, the team will then begin the remaining pavement and landscaping works, including preparing the old bridge for use as a walking and cycling facility. A completion date later this year is yet to be confirmed.
When complete, the project will offer a more reliable, resilient, safer route for freight transport and travellers on State Highway 1.
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