A permanent speed change to a dangerous Queenstown intersection has been approved and options for a safer bypass are now officially being considered.
The intersection is where State Highway 6 meets Tucker Beach Rd, where hundreds of people live in the Quail Rise and neighbouring subdivisions.
The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has agreed to reduce the 100kmh speed limit to 80kmh on SH6 from Stalker Rd to Hardware Lane, in Frankton. The permanent change was due to take place on Tuesday.
NZTA southern business unit manager Ian Duncan said ‘‘significant’’ safety improvements were on the way.
The agency was also looking into creating a bypass for Tucker Beach Rd and SH6 intersection under Shotover River Bridge.
A bypass under the bridge was the preferred option for creating further safety improvements, Duncan said.
‘‘The next milestone for this option will be confirmation of funding for the business case, targeted for July; subject to satisfactory progress through the business case and design stage.’’
NZTA could be in a position to tender for construction work in October this year.
Eighteen crashes were reported on the section of SH6 between 2011 and 2016 – three were serious and 13 minor.
Tucker Beach residents and the wider community had raised concerns about the safety of the intersection and had over 170 submissions to NZTA in March in favour of lowering the speed limit.
Quail Rise resident Terri Anderson said the speed change was a step in the right direction.
‘‘It’s great news but there are still other parts of the high way where it [speed change] would help.’’
Lake Hayes Estate residents also had submitted a petition to NZTA to elongate the 80kmh speed limit zone to Crown Range turn off.
‘‘There’s still room for working with people and seeing what our needs are,’’ Anderson said.
The speed limit at the SH6 and Tucker Beach Rd intersection was lowered from 100kmh to 80kmh.