Transport Minister Steven Joyce has welcomed news that the $16.5 million safety makeover of the Rimutaka Hill Road is set to be finished in March, more than three months ahead of schedule.
He says the work, which was accelerated as part of the government’s $142.5 million Jobs and Growth package, will come as a relief to those who travel the notorious Rimutaka Hill Road.
"The upgrade will ease a number of tight curves, including Muldoon's Corner, about 500m south of the Rimutaka Summit.
"The project will improve safety on a very difficult and narrow section of road where currently heavy vehicles travelling in opposite directions are unable to pass each other.
"The Rimutaka Hill Road is the only practical road link to the Wairarapa from Wellington and is vital for both tourism and freight.
"This work will result in improved visibility and increased road widths.
Mr Joyce says Muldoon’s Corner is one of a number of large state highway projects to finish ahead of schedule in recent times, including the Victoria Park Tunnel, the Manukau Harbour Crossing and the Newmarket Viaduct.
He says the government's billion dollar boost to state highway funding has provided a secure funding pipeline which has given contractors the confidence to continue investing in people and machinery and complete projects more quickly.