North Island regional roads to be upgraded

6 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineFebruary 28, 2020

Regional roading projects that will improve safety and resilience are being brought forward as part of the New Zealand Upgrade Programme, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced.

As part of the upgrade, $300 million was allocated for regional investment opportunities.

“I spend a lot of time in the regions and one bugbear I consistently hear about is roads,” Jones said.

“Officials from the Provincial Development Unit and the NZ Transport Agency have worked together to identify which roading improvements are ready to go but required funding.

“I‘m pleased to announce $88.25 million on a major accelerated road investment plan with construction able to get under way on some projects by the end of August,” said Jones.

The North Island investment is about $62 million, with seven projects selected from Northland, the Bay of Plenty, Hawke‘s Bay and Taranaki.

This investment is expected to contribute to regional economic development while providing safer roads, safer bridges, and easier to access stopping points.

The NZ Transport Agency will contribute $1 million for operational resource support to deliver the projects on deadline.


SH1/11 Kawakawa – roundabout and resilience project $6 million

This project will replace the existing intersection with a roundabout at the intersection of State Highways 1 and 11 in Kawakawa. The primary benefit of this change is to improve safety and traffic flow. This intersection is a key connector on the Twin Coast Discovery Route, which is included as a priority route in Te Tai Tokerau Northland Economic Action Plan.

SH11/10 Intersection Puketona Junction roundabout $15 million

This project is to build a roundabout at the intersection of State Highways 10 and 11 at Puketona Junction. The primary benefit of this change is to increase the level of road safety and improve traffic flow. The project is expected to indirectly contribute to Northland‘s economic development plan through improved infrastructure attracting more visitors to the region.

SH12 and Rawene Road – intersection improvements $500,000

This project will improve the SH12 and Rawene Road intersection, to bring it up to current standards and accommodate additional right turning capacity. The intersection has a known crash history and the funding will improve its safety. The intersection is a key gateway for community and visitors accessing the Hokianga Harbour ferry. The funding will improve the reliability and resilience of the road and reduce disruption.

Bay of Plenty

SH5 Tarukenga to Ngongotaha Improvements, SH36 and SH5 roundabout $14 million

This project will improve safety and reduce congestion at the roundabout intersection between State Highways 5 and 36. The funding will be used to improve safety, ease congestion and enhance accessibility. The intersection is regularly congested during morning peak-hour traffic times. The programme of work also includes standard safety improvements along 8.1km of SH5.

Hawke‘s Bay

SH2 College Road to Silverstream $13 million

This project is for vertical and horizontal curve realignment and the addition of a passing lane along a 1.7 km section of SH2 north of Waipukurau in Central Hawke‘s Bay. It will improve the efficiency and safety of this key freight route between Hawke‘s Bay, the Manawatu and Tairawhiti and will improve the connection to Napier Port. This project will support regional economic growth by reducing travel times, improving access and efficiencies for moving people and goods along this key route.

SH2 Tahaenui Bridge $1.2 million

This project will upgrade the Tahaenui Bridge on SH2 between Wairoa and Gisborne to allow two-lane travel. This bridge is currently the only one-lane restriction on the important link between Gisborne and Napier Port.


SH43 Forgotten World Highway improvements $13.4 million

This project will improve SH43, the Forgotten World Highway. The upgrades include safety improvements, passing opportunities, a single-lane bridge upgrade and culvert replacements.

The improvements will provide resilience for the Central North Island‘s transport network, as an important alternative to SH3 between Taranaki and the Upper North Island.

The Forgotten World Highway is promoted as a tourist destination, and PGF funded sealing of the unsealed section of the Tangarakau Gorge is expected to drive GDP gains into Taranaki of up to $45 million over 40 years.

The projects are forecast to increase visitor numbers to Taranaki by around 13,000 annually.