Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Restrictions remain in place for Sounds’ roads

Restrictions on vehicle length will remain for Queen Charlotte Drive and a section of Kenepuru Road in the Marlborough Sounds as repair work continues, Marlborough District Council has advised.

Council’s Planning Finance & Community Committee today approved the request for a continuation of the temporary length restrictions from the Marlborough Roads Recovery Team (MRRT). The MRRT is working closely with Council and Marlborough Roads to repair the region’s roads following the July 2021 storm event.

The MRRT sought Council approval to continue the temporary vehicle length restrictions under the Local Government Act until the storm recovery work is finished. The official Recovery Transition Period has now ended, expiring on Tuesday 3 May.

The transition period is no longer required because the MRRT is in the last stages of completing the detailed programme and timeline for re-establishing the roading network in the affected areas, Council said in a statement.

Regional Transport Committee Chair, Councillor Francis Maher acknowledged the impact the ongoing restrictions will have on the communities’ involved, particularly those in the farming sector in the Sounds who rely on trucks for movement of livestock and supplies.

“Council recognises this is incredibly difficult for those farmers. For that reason, the rural barge subsidy will continue through to June 2023 to aid those who need it,” he said.

Since the reopening of the damaged sections of Queen Charlotte Drive and Kenepuru Road following the storm, temporary length restrictions have been in place.

Queen Charlotte Drive has had a vehicle length restriction of 12.6 metres from Shakespeare Bay through to Dalziels Bridge at Linkwater in place since 1995. The continuation of the current temporary vehicle length restriction due to the July storm applies from Dalziels Bridge to the Havelock Transfer Station.

A continuation of the current temporary vehicle length restriction of 8 metres will apply to Kenepuru Road between the Onahau Bay Road (Mistletoe Bay) intersection and the Torea Road intersection.

These temporary vehicle length restrictions expire on or before 30 June 2023.

“While repair works are completed on Queen Charlotte Drive and Kenepuru Road, it is important that procedures are put in place so the recovery team can limit public use to those vehicles that can safely navigate the damaged sections of road,” said Cr Maher.

“The roading network is still under repair. The restrictions reduce the amount of traffic and the risk of further damage. They also allow the MRRT to progress repairs as fast as possible and ensure the safety of both the community and those working on the repairs,” he said.

“We realise some people will be unhappy with the continued restrictions, but the reality is the MRRT needs to repair the roads and only those vehicles that can safely navigate the damaged sections of these roads should be able to use them.”

Meetings are planned with the affected Sounds’ communities to provide further information on the planned recovery works and expected timeframes.

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