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Traffic switches to new deviation


State Highway 2 traffic will be switched onto the new Mangatawhiri Deviation later this week to allow traffic to bed in the new road surface that has recently been laid.

NZ Transport Agency Regional manager Kaye Clark says that only west)bound traffic will be travelling on the deviation during daytime hours. The eastbound traffic will remain on the existing highway.

“During this time a 30km/h speed restriction will be in place on the deviation, and cones will be used to form traffic lanes. These cones will be constantly moved to ensure all of the newly laid chip seal is exposed to low speed traffic. Allowing low speed traffic onto a fresh chip seal does a great job of rolling and locking the chip together and bedding it securely into the bitumen seal,” she said.

At night, both the eastbound and westbound traffic will use the existing highway.

“It is important to note that the existing highway will remain as a two way trafficked roadway, both day and night, to allow for the existing side roads to operate as they are at present. The existing temporary speed limits currently posted on SH2 will remain in place until the deviation is permanently opened,” Mrs Clark said.

Once the new road has been trafficked for a few days, traffic will be moved off the deviation to allow the contractor to complete the project.

“With the final seal down the contractor can carry out the finishing works which include installing barriers, completing final lighting, fencing, erosion control and landscaping, and the bridges being painted with graffiti guard. Once the temporary trafficking has been undertaken the highway will be closed again while  the entire deviation is swept and road marked . When all these works are satisfactorily completed, this new section of State Highway 2 will be ready to be opened,” she said.

Mrs Clark thanked the local community for their ongoing patience, and asked motorists to stick to the sign posted speed limits, taking special care when travelling through the construction site.