Hastings Council backs opposition to Napier and Taupō speed limits

In News2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJanuary 21, 2022

Hastings District Council has placed a full-page advertisement in Hawke’s Bay Today in opposition to proposed speed limit changes to SH5 between Napier and Taupō.

Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency announced the speed limit on the road will be reduced from 100kph to 80kph between Esk Valley and the Rangitaiki Plains from 18 February.

The advertisement was prepared by Te Pohue Community Group member Kiri Goodspeed. Using an image of a road sign, it says “Stop the SH5 speed reduction”.

Hastings District Council mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said the council is leading and supporting the community response to the decision, which was announced last month by national highways management authority Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency.

“What council and the community want is the decision to have a blanket speed reduction over almost 90km of the Napier-Taupo road rescinded by Waka Kotahi,” she told Hawke’s Bay Today.

“Instead, speed reductions should be targeted at areas that have proven to be dangerous.

“We need a plan that addresses the very real problems, and a long-term plan for improvements to State Highway 5.”

The advertisement, which appeared in the paper on Thursday, follows a petition to Parliament asking Government to intervene to block the lowering of speed limits on the Napier-Taupō Highway.

The petition asks specifically that the House of Representatives “urge Waka Kotahi (NZTA) to rescind its decision to permanently lower the speed limit on SH5, between Rangitaiki and Esk Valley, from 100kph to 80kph”.