De­lay in get­ting falls’ road­work un­der way

Central Otago Mirror - - WANAKA NEWS -

Work to clear the Diana Falls slip on State High­way 6 be­tween Haast and Makarora has been de­layed and the road is not ex­pected to open to two-lanes un­til mid-year.

NZ Trans­port Agency se­nior net­work man­ager Mark Pin­ner said "there have been some de­lays in get­ting this work un­der way as we have worked to fi­nalise what is needed on site, to com­plete the de­sign, source ma­te­rial and ap­point a con­trac­tor."

Work was ex­pected to be­gin early next month at the site which has been re­duced to sin­gle-lane traf­fic from 8am to 7pm and closed at night for the last five months.

Heavy rain­fall lashed the re­gion in Septem­ber caus­ing a ma­jor slip at the site.

Mr Pin­ner said a con­trac­tor would be ap­pointed within the next cou­ple of weeks to un­der­take the work which in­cludes in­stal­la­tion of a catch fence above the road, a de­bris fence about onethird of the way up the slip face and the blast­ing and re­moval of large rocks that were con­sid­ered at risk of cre­at­ing in­sta­bil­ity at the site.

"At this stage it is ex­pected the works will be­gin within the next two to three weeks and be com­pleted by the end of May. How­ever, weather will be a sig­nif­i­cant fac­tor in achiev­ing this date.

"It is likely that additional traf­fic de­lays will be needed through­out the day to com­plete this work, to en­sure the safety of mo­torists trav­el­ling through the area and our road crews work­ing at the site," he said.

The agency would pro­vide as much warn­ing as pos­si­ble about any de­lays to en­sure trav­ellers and busi­ness oper­a­tors can plan their travel through the area.

Mr Pin­ner says it was not known at this stage how much the work would cost.

"This will not be known un­til a con­trac­tor is ap­pointed and the spe­cific de­tail of the pro­gramme fi­nalised," he said.

Out-of­ser­vice: The huge weather forced slip at Diana Falls in Septem­ber.

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