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Funding decision excellent news says Transit

Funding decision excellent news says Transit


Transit New Zealand is delighted by Land Transport New Zealand’s approval of funding for the $45.9 million Mangatawhiri Deviation project on State Highway 2 in the north Waikato.

Transit regional manager Chris Allen said the decision was excellent news and Transit would call for construction tenders next week.

“We’ll be able to award a contract by December this year and will be in a position to commence construction in early 2006.”

The seven-kilometre project will bypass a section of highway that has a very poor crash record and will include a three-kilometre section of four-lane expressway divided by a median barrier.

“The improved standard of road together with the median barrier will lower the risk of head-on crashes, and also provide a very good passing opportunity, which is currently lacking on this highway,” Mr Allen said.

He said the project was expected to take between three and three and a half years to construct and will be completed by mid 2009.

“The construction period will include a significant amount of time for settlement of earthworks, as the soft soils in the area will need to settle and compact before they can bear the weight of the highway.”

The project is a key part of Transit’s long-term strategy to upgrade State Highway 2 between Pokeno (SH1) and Mangatarata (SH27).

“We’re also going through the planning process for improvements to another section of the highway at Maramarua and there will be a public designation hearing for this project in September this year,” Mr Allen said

Interim safety improvements costing $3.3 million are currently being completed along the 34- kilometre stretch. These include new signs, bolder road markings, profiled edgelines and ‘clear zones’ along the road edge.

“All of these safety initiatives are a very important step towards the Government’s 2010 safety targets.”

ENDS

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