Saturday, April 20, 2024

Ministerial praise for SH6 repairs effort

Associate Minister of Transport, Kieran McAnulty, has praised the efforts of Waka Kotahi following the reopening of State Highway 6 between Blenheim and Nelson overnight.

In seven weeks, crews have repaired five major sites along the highway between Hira and Rai Valley after they suffered damage in August’s severe weather event.

“I was able to visit the site earlier this month to check in on progress and seeing the repairs in person made it even clearer to me how major the damage had been, with whole sections of the road having to be rebuilt from the foundations up,” said Mr McAnulty.

“On top of the repair work Waka Kotahi has also used the time the road was closed to increase the resilience of the route.”

As part of the $15 million repair job, more than 30 new culverts were installed, along with new erosion protection measures.

“To get that done in the timeframe available speaks to the skill and dedication of the crews involved. Thank you to the 120 contractors who have been working on the site through all hours and weather to keep things on track to reopen the road on time,” said the Minister.

“Having this route reopened will make a big difference to the Marlborough and Nelson communities and businesses as they gear up for their busiest tourism month in January.

“I want to acknowledge the disruption the community has faced with the road closure. We really appreciate your patience as Waka Kotahi have undertaken this job within an incredibly quick time frame to get the road reopened in time for Christmas.”

Mr McAnulty said central government agencies had worked alongside local Mayors and councils to ensure people in affected communities had access to school, healthcare and other support.

“That work was crucial to make sure residents and businesses were supported while this essential work was carried out,” he said.

“With this link restored, residents, businesses, and road users can look forward to better times ahead after a very challenging year.”

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