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One-hour Delay Wednesday Afternoon, SH6 Nevis Bluff For Blasting

People who drive between Cromwell and Queenstown, on SH6, will need to build in at least an extra hour next Wednesday afternoon, 29 May.

Blasting to clear loose rocks will be underway at the Nevis Bluff between 1 and 2 pm on Wednesday, says NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi (NZTA).

“Blasting the unstable rock about 40 metres above SH6 is vital to ensure the on-going safety of road users,” says Peter Standring, NZTA Maintenance and Contract Manager in Central Otago. “The difficult nature of working high above the road on the Bluff means that extended traffic delays are unavoidable for everyone’s safety.”

Currently rock scaling/removal is underway with short delays (up to ten minutes) between the two Queenstown Lakes District towns. Earlier information here: Rockfall along with the leaf-fall on Central Otago highway | NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi (nzta.govt.nz)

  • Subject to weather conditions, there will be an extended traffic delay between 1pm and 2pm, Wednesday 29 May for blasting work.

The last time blasting work was done on the Nevis Bluff by NZTA was nearly six years ago in 2018.

Roman Alty, left, and Liam Kemp make their way up to the F4 Feature of the Nevis Bluff a week ago, setting up the rigging for access ahead of detonation next Wednesday. Roman and Liam work for Cliff Care and are subcontracted to Aspiring Highways for the work on the Nevis Bluff for NZTA.

Heading to Queenstown Airport?

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People travelling to Queenstown Airport, or with appointments either end, should aim to get through the Nevis Bluff before 1pm, or travel via the Crown Range, says Mr Standring.

Outside the extended blast delay, work will continue between 8am and 5pm Monday to Friday. People are advised to build in extra time of around 10 minutes to their journey between Cromwell and Queenstown.

Work is scheduled to continue through until Friday 14 June. Further extended blast delays will be advised with as much notice as possible, with electronic signs advertising these longer closures a day or two ahead.

The Nevis Bluff is about half-way between Cromwell and Queenstown – 25 minutes from Cromwell, 35 minutes from Queenstown.

NZTA thanks everyone for their patience and for taking care while this important safety work is completed leading into winter.

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