Clean up for Waharoa Rd
The northern entrance to Matamata is about to be given an overdue spruce up to improve safety and hopefully its looks.
New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) is responsible for State Highway 27, the main road from Waharoa into Matamata.
KiwiRail managed the adjacent rail line and Waharoa Rd, a local road, was maintained by the district council.
NZTA and the Matamata-Piako District Council, through the Safe Roads Alliance, are planning to improve the safety of the 5km stretch of road as part of its nationwide safety retrofit programme.
The move comes after a number of people worked together to tidy up the southern entrance into Matamata.
It involved trimming trees, clearing branches and rubbish along a 4km stretch of Hinuera Rd, near State Highway 27, at the southern entrance to the town.
One of those involved, Jane Ewen, had then wanted to focus on similar work along Waharoa Rd.
Waharoa means ‘‘gateway’’ and Waharoa village stands at the entrance to Matamata.
NZTA said there were half a dozen or so tree copse/thickets between Waharoa and Matamata.
‘‘We will be installing barriers to protect road users from these hazards. As part of the installation we will prune low hanging branches to ensure road clearance is maintained. Existing pavement and line marking will remain.
‘‘In pruning the trees we will be a good neighbour and tidy up the entire copses (rather than just one side) so that the overall visual appearance is enhanced.’’
NZTA said the work would be done between March to September 2017.
The council said it would work with NZTA and KiwiRail to improve safety and the visual appearance of this stretch of road.
Jane Ewen was happy to hear work towards cleaning up the road was in the pipeline.
She hoped it would encourage those living nearby to keep the area tidy and maintained.
There had been some ‘‘amazing people’’ who had helped with work to clean up Hinuera Rd. J. Swap had helped maintain the southern entrance to Matamata on a regular basis, mowing the entire strip weekly. Rotary was the only community group to become involved in the project.
‘‘Murray Wilson had allowed us to dump the rubbish for nothing. A C Wilcox and Cecil Thompson did regular spraying, Sam Martin, as well as Jamie and John McIntyre, did some heavy chain saw work.
‘‘Of course there has been some invaluable help from my friends who know who they are that is so appreciated.’’
Jane Ewen, in a picture from August 2016, when she asked for authorities to think about cleaning up Waharoa Rd.