Long awaited safety improvements to Amberley Beach Road

 Contractors are about to start major safety improvements on the main access route to Amberley Beach

The work will centre around the widening and reshaping of the Amberley Beach Road/Hursley Terrace intersection, which Hurunui District Council Roading and Utilities Manager, David Edge, considers “an accident waiting to happen”.

“While there have been no major incidents recorded, we know the local fire brigade has been called in a number of times to pull out vehicles that have left the road there, and you only have to talk to local residents who regularly walk, jog, or cycle between the beach community and the Amberley township to hear stories about near misses.

“With increased traffic, and truck movements in particular, it was only a matter of time before the inevitable happens, and that’s not something we are prepared to wait around for. The intersection clearly needs fixing, and that’s what we’ll be doing.”

David Edge says the Council has been keen to make changes at the intersection for some time, but a lack of sufficient subsidy support from the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA), (due to the lack of serious incidents at the intersection), had put the cost of the “much needed” improvements out of reach.

“Because we now have a local business happy to pick up some of the costs, as well as contributing towards materials and labour, we are not only able to do the work but at no additional cost to the ratepayer.”

In addition to local contractors getting on board, two adjacent property owners have agreed to cede land to facilitate the road widening and safety improvements.

The Council will use funds from its Maintenance Works Budget to cover its share of the work.

Amberley Councillor Gary Cooper is pleased to see the improvements, which will enhance safety for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians, now going ahead.

“It is certainly timely, given the area continues to attract many short and long term visitors, heading to the likes of the camping ground, beach and golf course. It is also gratifying to see the local community pulling together to make it all happen.”

The project which will cost in the order of $800,000 will also include the creation of a pedestrian walkway. It will take around eight to ten weeks to complete beginning in mid-February to enable the new seal to be laid before autumn.

Motorists will need to reduce their speed to 30kph throughout the worksite during construction or consider taking an alternate route. Speeds will be monitored, and motorists are asked to take all due care and be considerate of other road users.

Upon completion, the improved section of the road will have a permanently reduced speed limit of 80kph through to Amberley Beach.

For further information contact:                

David Edge

Roading and Utilities Manager

Hurunui District Council

P: 03 314 0053