Melling transport improvements

  •   Why are improvements to transport needed at Melling?

    The Melling transport improvements aim to:

    • provide resilient transport choices allowing all people and businesses to safely and reliably move to, from and within our city centre
    • improve flood protection for the Lower Hutt city centre and areas south of the city to enable better resilience for people and property
    • support urban regeneration and economic development
    • improve walking and cycling options, plus access to public transport.

    We understand Lower Hutt can get very congested at times, and traffic signals in a 100 km/h environment create a safety and crash risk particularly for vehicles queued to turn right onto Melling Bridge from SH2. We also understand people see SH2 as a barrier to walking and cycling around the city.

    RiverLink is a once in a lifetime project, and the partnership of Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika, and Ngāti Toa Rangatira, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), and Hutt City Council (HCC) will make Te Awa Kairangi ki Tai (Lower Hutt) a more connected, resilient and vibrant city.

  •   What options were considered for the Melling intersection?

    The RiverLink team explored 43 options for a new interchange at Melling/SH2.

    The key factors we considered were:

    • the interchange form (i.e. diamond, roundabout, etc)
    • options for connecting Tirohanga Road and Harbour View Road
    • where to locate the bridge and how it connects to Hutt City
    • impacts to the space for the Hutt River
    • how the interchange would connect to Hutt City.

    Three options were shortlisted and rigorously developed for the interchange design:

    • diamond interchange directly connecting to Queens Drive
    • diamond interchange with an indirect connection to Queens Drive
    • diamond interchange directly connecting to Melling Link.

    After seeking community feedback, and considering technical advice, we selected the diamond interchange connecting directly to Queens Drive as the preferred option.

    Our investigations showed us that this option:

    • has the best fit with the City Council’s urban design plans for the city
    • would be the easiest for people to find their way around
    • unlocked opportunities for better flood protection outcomes by moving the Melling bridge away from the narrowest part of the river
    • could be built with less disruption than options that connected with Melling Link.

    This option was also the most preferred by people who indicated a preference.

  •   Why do you propose to have traffic signals on the new interchange?

    Our work shows that if we build a roundabout, like at the Dowse interchange, the traffic leaving Lower Hutt in the evening peak would block the traffic flows coming into the city from Wellington. The queues would eventually extend back onto the highway which would create a safety hazard. Our work has found that traffic signals are needed to manage the uneven flow of traffic through the interchange especially during peak travel times. The traffic lights will be synchronised to optimise the traffic flows.



  •   What is RiverLink?

    Waka Kotahi, Hutt City Council (HCC) and Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) are working collaboratively on a programme to improve the resilience, accessibility, efficiency, and safety of the Melling intersection and the wider transport network.

    RiverLink involves three separate but interdependent projects:

    1. Flood protection (GWRC)
    2. Making Places urban development plan (HCC)
    3. Melling intersection improvements (Waka Kotahi).

    For more information and frequently asked questions about RiverLink, please visit the RiverLink website(external link).