Transport improvements at Melling will provide for a safer, more resilient and accessible transport system in Lower Hutt, as well as supporting flood protection and revitalisation of the Hutt Valley.
The NZ Upgrade Programme provides $258 million to build a new intersection to improve safety, replace the road bridge over the river, and improve access to walking, cycling and public transport. The Government provided $6 million for the designation and consenting of the project in November 2019 which removes a dangerous signal-controlled intersection on State Highway 2.
The Melling Transport Improvements are one part of the RiverLink programme, which is a multi-organisation programme of three separate but interdependent projects relating to flood protection, urban development and transport improvements.
The improvements at the Melling intersection ensure several key objectives of the RiverLink programme are achieved – a resilient and safer transport network for all travellers, improved access to Wellington City from the Hutt Valley as well as enabling economic and urban growth.
More than 108,000 people already call the greater Hutt Valley region their home, and with a steady increase in population, a more resilient transport system is vital for the region’s continued urban and economic growth.
The new overbridge and river bridge, connecting directly to Queens Drive, will help improve access during peak travel times, and combined with new stop banks, will build greater resilience into the transport system, by reducing the risk of flooding in Lower Hutt and around the Melling intersection.
Relocation of the railway station at Melling is part of the package. The new railway alignment will improve the reliability of the train service as well as provide more ‘park and ride’ options for commuters.
The wider Riverlink programme delivered by the two councils outside this investment package includes a new bridge linking Rutherford Street and the relocated railway station. The bridge will provide access for pedestrians and cyclists, with residents increasingly looking for different ways to safely commute daily in to Wellington.
Construction is expected to start at the end of 2022.