NZ Truck & Driver News

 
Manawatu Gorge replacement route decided

Manawatu Gorge replacement route decided

NZ Truck & Driver News

 April 2018   
An entirely new route across the Ruahine Ranges, between the troublesome, now-closed Manawatu Gorge road and the steep and narrow Saddle Road, is the preferred option for a new road link between the Manawatu, Tararua, Hawke's Bay and Wairarapa regions.

The so-called "Option 3" (of four shortlisted possibilities) will have an average incline gradient of 5.8%, with a maximum of 8% - compared to the Saddle Rd's 16% maximum gradient

The New Zealand Transport Agency estimates that travel time on the new road will be 13 minutes for general traffic, compared to an average 16.7 minutes through the old Manawatu Gorge road, which has been closed since a huge slip a year ago.

NZTA's Emma Speight says that Option 3 has emerged from "a thorough investigation and extensive consultation….as the safest and most resilient route, that best balances the combined needs of the communities, businesses and road users who will utilise it.

"Everybody understands just how ...

Subscribers: Please LOGIN to read the full article.

An entirely new route across the Ruahine Ranges, between the troublesome, now-closed Manawatu Gorge road and the steep and narrow Saddle Road, is the preferred option for a new road link between the Manawatu, Tararua, Hawke's Bay and Wairarapa regions.

The so-called "Option 3" (of four shortlisted possibilities) will have an average incline gradient of 5.8%, with a maximum of 8% - compared to the Saddle Rd's 16% maximum gradient

The New Zealand Transport Agency estimates that travel time on the new road will be 13 minutes for general traffic, compared to an average 16.7 minutes through the old Manawatu Gorge road, which has been closed since a huge slip a year ago.

NZTA's Emma Speight says that Option 3 has emerged from "a thorough investigation and extensive consultation….as the safest and most resilient route, that best balances the combined needs of the communities, businesses and road users who will utilise it.

"Everybody understands just how important a replacement for the Gorge is. It will re-establish a key strategic transport and freight link that supports the needs of the people and economies of central NZ."

Road Transport Forum CEO Ken Shirley says Option 3 "is the most suitable route for road freight, taking into account all the geographical challenges, proposed gradients and future resilience."

The aim is to begin construction of the road in 2020 and have it completed by 2024.

The NZTA has also committed to "advancing investigations" for a regional freight ring road around Palmerston North – this including a second road bridge across the Manawatu River. NZTA says it's a project seen by stakeholders as critical for regional economic development.

The RTF's Shirley says that ongoing investigation of the proposed freight ring road is encouraging, as "Palmerston North is becoming an increasingly important freight hub of national significance and it is vital to support this with the appropriate infrastructure."


Search Articles

NZ Truck & Driver Magazine
Read Now