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Source: New Zealand Transport Agency

The first milestone in making the busy State Highway 30/Sala Street intersection in Rotorua safer will be complete this week.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency says from Friday access to the Whakarewarewa Rugby Club will be further along SH30 Te Ngae Road and the original access at the intersection will be permanently closed. 

The intersection is being upgraded as part of the Eastern Corridor Stage One SH30 project between Sala Street and Iles Road. 

Waka Kotahi Portfolio Manager Jo Wilton says closing the access to the rugby club removes one leg from the intersection and means traffic travelling along SH30/Te Ngae Road will no longer have to stop for vehicles entering and exiting the club. 

“With the access closed, we can progress with further improvements to the intersection, including a new left-turn slip lane from Sala Street into SH30, safety improvements for cyclists, and new signalised pedestrian crossings. 

“When complete, this upgrade will make the intersection safer and easier to use for all road users.” 

Ms Wilton says Waka Kotahi has worked closely with the rugby club throughout the planning process. 

“We have also resealed a section of the club’s carpark to provide additional parks and completed new line marking.” 

From Friday 17 July, entry to the rugby club will be from the new access, which has been built off the existing access to Puarenga Park and MIGS gym. 

Whakarewarewa Rugby Community Sports Inc. President Warena Morgan says the club is looking forward to having the upgraded entranceway. 

“Working with Waka Kotahi to agree on a more functional access to the club has been a smooth process, and our perspective and feedback has been valued. 

“The new access is going to be very valuable, especially on match days when the car park is heavily used.” 

Signage has been installed at the old and new access points to alert members of the public. 

Work on the left-turn slip lane at Sala Street is scheduled to start later this month. 

More information about these works will be shared in the coming weeks. 

The $17 million Eastern Corridor Stage One project is part of the Connect Rotorua programme of work to futureproof two of Rotorua’s key corridors: SH30/Te Ngae Road and SH30A/Amohau Street.

It involves upgrades of key intersections, safety improvements, some four-laning, and a new shared path and on-road cycleway. 

Construction started in February and is expected to be completed in late 2021.

The new entrance to the Whakarewarewa Rugby Club runs from the existing Mid Island Gym Sports (MIGS) access road to the club. The current access from the Sala Street intersection will be closed.

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