Hang tight, Queenstown commuters.
New Zealand Transport Agency’s southern boss says two major roading projects will alleviate Queenstown’s traffic woes by the end of next year.
Jim Harland believes the new $22 million Kawarau Falls bridge and capacity improvements to the Frankton BP roundabout will go a long way to addressing the resort’s rush-hour problems.
He says the Queenstown council’s eastern access road, which will bypass the BP roundabout, will also help – although there is no definitive start or completion date from the council for that project.
Harland: “We’re confident our two projects will certainly make a difference.
“Improvements are targeted to the BP roundabout by the end of next summer. That will make a noticeable difference to people who are stuck in traffic.
“Then, as the Kawarau Falls bridge and eastern access road come on stream, there’ll be further improvements as well.”
Harland attended the second meeting of the Queenstown Transport Governance Group, held yesterday afternoon.
The group, which consists of the agency, Queenstown’s council, Otago Regional Council and Queenstown Airport, aims to provide “clear and united leadership around transport matters” in the district.
There is no push to change the timetabling of the improvements, he says.
“We’re basically wanting projects to be completed as soon as they can be within the current timetables. Most of them have a good reason why they’re on that timetable.
“We certainly want to see them completed by the timeframes that have been agreed and, if possible, bring them forward, but it’s often not possible because of the construction season.”
While this meeting provided a “refresher” on the various projects, at the next meeting the various representatives would discuss the broader picture of future transport in the district.
The group will meet quarterly.
Otago Daily Times