Meanwhile, since the roads are clear...
Posted: 07-Apr-2020 |
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is moving to complete an essential road repair on the south side of the Brynderwyns Hills to ensure the safety and resilience of State Highway 1 to Northland.
The northbound passing lane has been closed and the road reduced to one lane in each direction since last July while two failed retaining walls under the road were replaced, says Northland System Manager Jacqui Hori-Hoult.
"We were about to re-seal the road to complete the repair when the COVID-19 lockdown took effect on March 26. This is a significant route for Northland and there is a real risk to the safety and resilience of the road if it's left in its current state and the weather turns bad."
"Laying down the final seal will 'waterproof' the road to ensure water doesn't get into the newly-built retaining walls and undermine the repairs."
The work will be carried out over three days, starting Monday 6 April. Crews will begin preparations on Monday to remove the temporary metal barriers on Tuesday. On Tuesday night the new asphalt will be laid, with road marking completed on Wednesday. The road should be open to traffic on Wednesday, weather permitting.
During the work, the highway will be reduced to a single lane with traffic controlled by manual stop/go operators.
"Working in bubbles and social distancing means the job will take a bit longer but the safety and well-being of our workers is a priority."
"If we don't act now and there is heavy rain, the repaired retaining walls could fail again and, worse case, close SH1 over the Brynderwyn Hills. That would force essential freight movers to take a long detour on local roads to get in and out of Northland."
The National Road Carriers Association (NRC) says restoring this section of SH1 is great news for the freight sector.
"We appreciate the Transport Agency has moved to complete this work despite the current COVID-19 restrictions. This is a critical route for the Northland economy, so we are keen to avoid using detours that add costs and disrupt our ability to deliver freight in a timely and safe manner, says Paula Rogers, NRC Commercial Transport Specialist.
Auckland Transport (AT) continues to ensure that Auckland's roads remain safe, as we continue under COVID-19 lockdown.
Although all routine work - such as footpath renewals, road re-surfacing and new road building - are now on hold, AT will continue to operate essential services.
The following have been classed as essential services and will continue during the time that we remain at Alert Level 4.
Pothole repairs, roadside drain and intersection sweeping, clearing of critical catchpit grates, maintenance of regulatory and safety signage, unsealed road maintenance (grading and re-metalling as required), monitoring and maintenance of construction sites that have been closed under Alert Level 4, responding to crashes, spillages, fallen tree branches, slips and providing temporary traffic management as required.
Auckland Transport's portfolio delivery director for maintenance and renewals, Alan Wallace, says that AT will continue to perform the work necessary to ensure the safety and operation of the network – although work at this time has been scaled back.
"We will continue to clear leaves from any critical roadside catchpit grates to minimise the risk of property flooding," Mr Wallace says.
Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says the vital road maintenance will ensure that Aucklanders are able to safely travel to essential work, or to access essential services.
"It's important that people who have a vital need to get around the city are able to do so safely and without unnecessary delay," he says.
"However, I remind Aucklanders that they should stay at home unless they are travelling for essential reasons – so that we can break the chain of COVID-19 transmission."