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We have talked to the community, the local police, road user and freight groups, and local businesses about the current speed limits and they have raised concerns that the current speeds feel too high to be safe for this stretch of road.

Why did you have to set new speed limits?

There were a number of safety issues with the state highway in this location, these had also been raised by the community. They included:

  • Regular pedestrian activity and a stopping location for tourists.
  • Crash history – Between 2009 and 2018 there have been 26 crashes on the piece of road in this speed review. This has resulted in one person being killed, three seriously injured, and another 16 receiving minor injuries.
  • Traffic volumes and heavy vehicles on this road.

What are the new permanent speed limits?

SH1 Glenavy: existing 70km/h area, from 110m north of White Street to 140m south of McLean Street – reduced to 60km/h.

SH1, south of Glenavy: from 140m south of McLean Street to 330m south of Jackson Road – reduced from 100km/h to 80km/h.

Glenavy SH1 speed review map [JPG, 379 KB]

How were those limits decided?

The speed review process involves numerous steps that help determine the speed limits we propose at consultation.

The first step is completing a technical assessment which takes into account the road itself, the traffic volumes, the crash history, and the way people are currently travelling on the roads.

Following the technical assessment, we undertook informal engagement with road user groups, members of the public, councils, AA, road transport associations, and the Police. The feedback we received from engagement helped to determine if and what we will formally consult on for proposed speed limit changes.

During consultation we ask the community and road users for submissions on any external factors, we may need to be aware of (the consultation period ran from 7 October to 4 November 2019). Once consultation closes, we analyse the submissions and review our technical assessment.

The consultation for the proposed speed limit changes is not a vote, it is about seeking valuable local and community input so that we can consider wider factors and context in our decisions.

For more information about how we reached these decisions, please read our consultation summary report.

Consultation summary report [PDF, 523 KB]

Learn about the speed review process

Setting new speed limits is a legal process, and Waka Kotahi as a Road Controlling Authority (RCA) is responsible for setting new speed limits on New Zealand’s state highways. We are guided by the Speed Management Guide, which is a national framework that helps RCAs make informed, accurate and consistent speed management decisions in their communities. We also need to adhere to the Land Transport Rule: Setting of Speed Limits 2017, which sets out the roles and responsibilities of the RCAs for reviewing and setting speed limits. 

Read the Speed Management Guide(external link) 

The Land Transport Rule: Setting of Speed Limits 2017

When do the speed limit changes come into effect and how are the public being notified?

The new speed limits take effect on 18 September 2020.

The public will be notified of the new permanent speed limits through the newspaper, on the Waka Kotahi website, via a local leaflet drop and on social media. We will also email those people who made a submission.

How many crashes have happened on the route?

Over the last ten years (2009-2018), there have been 26 crashes on the piece of road in this speed review. This has resulted in one person being killed, three seriously injured, and another 16 receiving minor injuries.

Will lower speed limits help reduce the number of crashes?

A small change in speed makes a big difference, especially when cyclists or pedestrians are involved. Most crashes are caused by a number of contributing factors, but even when speed doesn’t cause the crash, it is most likely to determine whether anyone is killed, injured, or walks away unharmed.

Won't the new lower speed limits mean the trip will take a lot longer?

The permanent speed limits will have a minimal impact on travel times. There will be approximately 30.3 seconds added to the current travel time when the new speeds are put in place.

Did you consult with the public on these changes?

Yes. Between 7 October–4 November 2019, Waka Kotahi conducted formal consultation with stakeholders and the public on the speed limits on SH1 Glenavy/Waitaki. We received 83 submissions. 

You can read our consultation summary and view the submissions:

People called for an even lower speed limit to be extended in the Waitaki village area. Why was this not done?

The changes to the current speed limits are intended to strike the right balance by providing safe and appropriate speeds that are also consistent and match the surrounding environment. The Riverside Village is very much in a rural area and is located more than 350m south of the existing town threshold. Reducing to 80km/h rather than 60km/h matches the rural environment at this location.

People suggested improvements such as double yellow lines on the Waitaki River bridge. Why was this not done?

In general, no passing lines are installed where there are restrictions to visibility.  The Waitaki River Bridge is 900m long and straight, with no visibility restrictions. Please also note that the design of the Waitaki River Bridge does not provide for pedestrians.  Pedestrians should not use this bridge.