The reopening of State Highway 73 through the lower Otira Gorge and past the large Deception Point slip has gone well for the past three days, says NZ Transport Agency Journey Manager Lee Wright. “Drivers have been patient, driving cautiously and glad to get the route reopened, albeit with delays.”
Traffic is being allowed through the key West Coast-Canterbury alpine pass at the top of each hour between 8 am and 7 pm this week.
The aim is to reopen to two lanes with fewer delays tomorrow, Friday, around or soon after lunchtime.
In addition, the road will be open overnight tonight (Thursday – Friday morning) with two lanes from 7 pm. At 7 am tomorrow, the one lane access and hourly openings will resume for the morning.
“The aim is by Friday afternoon, 27 January, to have two lanes open, although this will be weather dependent. Once we have the two lanes open, the restriction to daylight hours will be lifted also,” says Ms Wright.
“There will be some delays over the next couple of weeks as we complete the work so thanks to all drivers for taking care and slowing down around our crews.”
• KIWI RAIL update(external link) from 25 January.
• TVNZ coverage of the opening day: Arthur's Pass welcomes first traffic after huge landslip.(external link)
See the NZ Transport Agency's travel and traffic page(external link)
Call 0800 4 HIGHWAYS 0800 44 44 49