Tuesday, April 23, 2024

New Kāeo Bridge opens for Far North

Transport Minister, Simeon Brown, has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which he says will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North.

“This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of the local community, tourists, and freight vehicles, get to where they need to go, safely and efficiently,” said Minister Brown.

The Kāeo Bridge had been opened in a reduced capacity to allow one-way traffic earlier this month, just in time for the busy Waitangi weekend. Now the bridge is fully open to two-lane traffic in time for the Easter break. 

“Every day 5,000 vehicles use this route, including around 350 freight trucks. During the summer peak, numbers can more than double to over 10,000 vehicles. It will be a welcome relief to motorists to have the new bridge open, and I want to congratulate NZTA and the local Fulton Hogan construction team for completing it two months ahead of schedule.”

The new design, with two lanes and a roundabout at the intersection of State Highway 10 and Whangaroa Road, will make it safer and easier to travel through the intersection and over the bridge, as well as improving traffic flow. 

“We have heard from the local community that the old single-lane bridge and intersection was dangerous and that there was a serious risk of flooding in Kāeo, even before the extreme weather events of 2023.”

“At 110 metres long, the new bridge is over twice the length of the previous bridge. This will allow for a larger volume of water to move underneath it, increasing transport resilience in the region,” said Mr Brown.

Remaining work to remove the old bridge and undertake associated maintenance is expected to be fully completed by April.

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