Why set a new speed limit?
There were several safety issues with SH6 through Luggate and these were also raised by the community.
- Current highway speeds through the town are too high.
- The highway environment through Luggate doesn’t offer consistent safety for vulnerable users such as the elderly and young children.
- The existing 70km/h speed limits at each end of the township don’t represent a safe or appropriate speed limit for these sections of highway.
- Not enough safe pedestrian crossings points.
- Increases in highway traffic especially large trucks.
- Driver behaviour.
- The current mix of 70km/h and 50km/h speed limits is confusing for drivers.
Was a 60km/h speed limit looked at?
A 60km/h limit was considered. However, strong community demand for a 50km/h speed limit, and to ensure consistency with Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency's approach to highway speed limits through similar rural townships, the decision was made on 50km/h as the safe appropriate highway speed limit through Luggate.
What consideration was given to lowering the speed limit in areas on the town boundary?
There was broad community support for further speed reductions beyond the existing township to encompass planned and future residential developments. Because of the largely rural environment in these areas, it wouldn’t, for many drivers, look and feel like a low speed environment, making driver compliance a big issue.
What are the new permanent speed limits?
During consultation we proposed a 50km/h limit to replace the 70km/h limit from 160m north of Church Road to 300m south of Church Street, and from 110m south of Hopkins Street to 430m south of Hopkins Street. This will now be the new permanent speed limit from Friday, 13 November 2020.
How were those limits decided?
There are numerous steps in the speed review process that determine the speed limit we consult on.
The first step is completing a technical assessment which takes into account the road itself, traffic volumes, the crash history, and how 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. This feedback 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 runs for a minimum of 4 weeks. Once it 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 into our decisions.
For more information about how we reached these decisions, please read our consultation summary.
What rules and regulations need to be considered?
Waka Kotahi as a Road Controlling Authority (RCA) is responsible for setting new speed limits on New Zealand’s state highways.
Setting new speed limits is a legal process, outlined in 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.
In performing this task, we are guided by the Speed Management Guide, a national framework that helps RCAs make informed, accurate and consistent speed management decisions in their communities.
When do the speed limit changes come into effect and how are the public being notified?
The new speed limit takes effect on Friday, 13 November 2020.
The new permanent speed limit will be widely advertised through the newspaper, on-line and via social media. The public will see the new speed limit signs being installed a few days prior to the new safer speed limit coming into force.
How many crashes have happened on the route?
From 2009 to 2018 there have been eight crashes on SH6 through Luggate - six since 2014.
A small change in speed makes a big difference, especially when cyclists or pedestrians are involved. Most crashes are caused by a variety of factors, 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 new permanent speed limit will have little impact on travel times. Over the 800m length of SH6 where the new speed limit applies, the extra travel time for drivers will be 10-12 seconds.
Did you consult with the public on these changes?
Yes. October/ November 2019 we consulted with the public on the proposed permanent speed limits. We received 60 submissions.