Blue car travelling along along a road with a slow down sign.

Project introduction

We want everyone who uses our roads to get home safely. To prevent people from being killed or seriously injured on our roads, we want to make SH2 between the Hutt Valley and Featherston safer. We are making physical safety improvements in this area and preparing to put safer speed limits in place.

  • Project type

    Safety improvements, Speed review
  • Project status

    Construction, Design

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Project background

  • Making SH2 between the Hutt Valley and Featherston safer

    State Highway 2 is an important, busy road that carries large volumes of people and products every day, connecting Wellington and the Hutt Valley to Wairarapa and beyond.

    In the 10 years, 2011-2020 (Crash Analysis System data), there have been 2,313 crashes between Ngāūranga and Featherston. These crashes killed 15 people and left 149 people seriously injured. In 2020, there were 4 people killed, the highest number in the 10-year period.

    We need to make changes so that everyone can get around our region safely. Because of this, we’ve reviewed speeds and investigated physical changes to improve safety.

    The next step will be to create proposals for specific changes to speed limits, which will be integrated with proposed changes to the road and intersections. These will be shared publicly at the consultation stage.

    Along with the speed review there are two projects underway looking at physical safety improvements along State Highway 2.

  • Safety is a system

    Improving safety on New Zealand roads is a priority for Waka Kotahi. New Zealand’s road safety strategy, Road to Zero 2020-2030, tells us what the country needs to do to make our roads safer. It also sets us on a path to achieve Vision Zero, where no one is killed or seriously injured on our roads.

    Road to Zero’s initial target is to reduce deaths and serious injuries on New Zealand’s roads, streets, cycleways, and footpaths by 40 percent over the next 10 years. Reaching that target would mean reducing the number of people killed on our roads each year to 227, and seriously injured to 1,680 by 2030.

    There are five key focus areas under Road to Zero: Infrastructure improvements and speed management, vehicle safety, work-related road safety, road user choices and system management.

    The Safe System approach seeks to create a safe and forgiving road system that makes the safety of people a priority. It does this through four guiding principles:

    • We promote good choices but plan for mistakes.
    • We design for human vulnerability.
    • We strengthen all parts of the road transport system.
    • We have a shared responsibility.

Safety improvements programme

  • Schedule of works


    2024 onwards

    Design and build intersection improvements:

    • Moonshine Hill Road
      • Install new traffic signals, raised safety platforms, painted median and shoulders, and islands.
    • Hebden Crescent near Owen Street
      • Close intersection with SH2
      • Install new island and barrier.
    • Hebden Crescent near Liverton Road
      • Install new raised central median and barrier
      • Change intersection to left in/left out (no right turn).
    • Owen Street
      • Install new traffic signals.

    Design and build new median and side barriers on SH2 River Road from Whakatiki Street to Fergusson Drive.

    Design and build remaining intersection improvements:

    • Groundsell Crescent
    • Major Drive/Fairway Drive
    • Fergusson Drive at Silverstream
    • Whakatiki Street
    • Gibbons Street
    • Totara Park Road
    • Fergusson Drive at Maoribank
    • Topaz Street.

    Design and build improvements:

    • Featherston to Twin Bridges
    • Remutaka Hill
    • Remutaka to Twin Lakes Road.

    Install roadside safety barriers at high-risk locations and motorcycle underbarriers at Remutaka Hill section.

    Install roadside safety barriers at high-risk locations and motorcycle under barriers Featherston to Twin Bridges, and Remutaka to Twin Lakes Road.

    Add wide centrelines to reduce the risk of head-on crashes - Featherston to Twin Bridges and Remutaka Hill to Twin Lakes Road.

    Upgrade signs, markings, and delineation for the entire route.

    Consultation on Interim Speed Management plan and implementation of initial speed changes integrated with planned safety improvements.

    Development of and consultation on the first ‘full’ Speed Management Plan will begin in 2023 – further SH2 changes may be included.

    Implementation of any further SH2 speed changes.