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Project introduction

The Transport Agency has identified a preferred option for a new State Highway 3 route to connect the Manawatū, Tararua District, Hawke’s Bay and northern Wairarapa, to replace the closed SH3 Manawatū Gorge route.

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Replacement route

Map showing the preferred replacement route. For more information, contact the project team on

Te Ahu a Turanga: Manawatū Tararua Highway map

Road features

Length: 12.4km
from Woodville to Western Gorge entrance
Gradient: Average gradient of 5.8%
Travel time:
13 mins (general), 18 mins (freight)
from Woodville to Stoney Creek Road
Completion: 2024
Safety: 4-Star **** KiwiRAP


Key milestones

Milestone Date Action
Announcement of preferred alliance July 2019 Completed
Notice of Requirement Hearings March 2019 Completed
Lodgement of Notice of Requirement (NoR) for road corridor November 2018 Completed
Public information sessions (project update, including road corridor issues and mitigation) November 2018 Completed
Detailed business case Mid 2018 Completed
Public information sessions (preferred option presented)

July 2018

Preferred option announced Early 2018 Completed
Public information sessions (short list options presented) October 2017 Completed
Public information sessions (long list options presented) September 2017 Completed