Public submissions invited on proposed third lane on the Waimakariri bridge

The Canterbury Regional Transport Committee has resolved to notify for public submissions a proposal of the New Zealand Transport Agency to build a third southbound lane on the Waimakariri Bridge.

SH1 from Picton to Christchurch a nationally strategic route

SH1 from Picton to Christchurch is a nationally strategic route and has a critical freight task connecting the North and South Islands. The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) has been investigating the route as part of the development of the 2015-18 National Land Transport Programme.

This investigation arose from the Strategic Case for SH1 Picton to Christchurch and subsequent Programme Business Cases that have been developed in consultation with stakeholders. Background information can be found here.

NZTA proposes a third southbound lane on the Waimakariri River Bridge

As part of the package of recommendations, NZTA has proposed a third southbound lane on the Waimakariri River Bridge as a response to morning peak congestion and reliability issues, and cycle safety on the northern approach to Christchurch.

This proposed project is outlined in detail in a paper presented to the Greater Christchurch Partnership Committee (formerly called the Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy Implementation Committee) on 7 April 2017.

The NZTA is now seeking agreement from the Canterbury Regional Transport Committee to vary the Regional Land Transport Plan to include the proposed improvement to the Waimakariri Bridge.

Estimated cost of the proposal

The estimated cost of this proposal is $20 million dollars provided the southbound lane is constructed at the same time as the Northern Arterial project currently under construction.

If the southbound lane is constructed at a later date, the cost is estimated to be $34 million, due to plant and machinery needing to be brought back for a second time.

This is a multi-modal solution that is intended to improve travel time reliability and safety, and provide travel choices for higher occupancy vehicle use, public transport and cycling.

The Greater Christchurch Partnership Committee has agreed to support the construction of a third southbound motorway lane across the Waimakariri Bridge subject to the inclusion of a separated cycleway and a high occupancy vehicle lane between Tram Road and Queen Elizabeth II Drive. View the Greater Christchurch Partnership Committee meeting minutes here

Public submissions open on 13 June 2017

  • Consultation is required for any variation to the Regional Land Transport Plan that is significant when assessed against the Significance Policy set out in the Canterbury Regional Land Transport Plan.
  • The Regional Transport Committee considers that this variation would be significant and is therefore undertaking a consultation round.
  • Submissions will open on 13 June 2017 and close on 13 July 2017. The scope of this consultation process is limited to the proposed third southbound lane on the Waimakariri Bridge.
  • Hearings will be held if submitters indicate they wish to be heard in person in support of their submission.
  • A sub-panel of the Canterbury Regional Transport Committee has been appointed to consider submissions and report back to the Regional Transport Committee at its meeting on 25 August 2017 with the results of consultation and recommendations.

Have your say on the Regional Land Transport Plan variation

Public notification, telling you how you can make a submission, will appear in newspapers.  Submissions can be made at www.ecan.govt.nz/rltpvariation.  Online submissions can be made from 13 June 2017. Submissions close on 13 July 2017.