Traffic delays may occur at peak times at Kerikeri as the construction of the $14 million Kerikeri Heritage Bypass project enters its final stages over the next two months.
Contractors started this week on the construction of the Kerikeri Road roundabout at the southern junction of the 1.6-kilometre bypass route and the Far North District Council advises that traffic flow will be restricted to one-lane from 7am to 6pm during the work, which is expected to take about four weeks.
Temporary traffic lights were installed this week at the Kerikeri Road-Heritage Bypass junction, but the phasing of lights caused undue delays this morning when traffic backed up towards the Stone Store basin.
Adjustments will be made to the lights and the fine-tuning is expected to lessen delays during the next few days.
The Kerikeri Road roundabout is planned to finish before the Easter holiday break, and attention will move after Easter to the construction of the northern access roundabout planned for Waipapa Road. This also is expected to take about four weeks to complete and again traffic delays may occur during the construction phase.
"Even with our best endeavors there will still be periods when there are some delays," council Communications Officer Rick McCall said today.
"We are asking for public co-operation and understanding for the next three to four weeks while the roundabout is being installed, particularly during the early morning and after work traffic peaks. Traffic flows will revert to two-lane after 6 p.m.
"Unfortunately there are really no practical alternate routes available for people traveling to and from central Kerikeri to the Riverview area and the coastal settlements on the north-eastern side of the town," he said.
Traffic densities were expected to peak between 7 am and 9 am, when schools closed late afternoon, and again during the 4 pm to 6 p.m. period.
"We advise people to allow extra time when travelling to appointments or meeting bus or airport schedules, during those peak times,” he said.
"The Council apologies for any temporary inconvenience this project may cause- but it should all be worthwhile when the new bypass link from Kerikeri Road to Waipapa Road is completed and opened to traffic."