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Source: New Zealand Transport Agency

Following public and stakeholder consultation, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has set a new permanent speed limit for the short section of State Highway 1 (SH1) from Templeton to Dawsons Road just south of Christchurch.

From Wednesday 3 March, the new permanent speed limit will reduce from 100km/h to 80km/h on both the northbound and southbound lanes of SH1 near Trents Road to the Christchurch Southern Motorway on and off ramps*.

With construction of the Christchurch Southern Motorway stage 2 project nearly complete and the new Dawsons Road roundabout fully functioning, the safer speed limit of 80km/h is a logical fit for the new road layout, says Waka Kotahi Director Regional Relationships Jim Harland.

“This is the most appropriate speed to balance safety and the efficient movement of traffic through this corridor,” Mr Harland says.

“Significant changes have occurred at this location. We have thoroughly examined the new environment, considered community feedback and set 80km/h as the safe and appropriate speed for this corridor.”

The lower speed limit will help to regulate the speed of traffic travelling off the new motorway and into the Templeton township. It will also create a consistent speed environment with side roads that makes sense to drivers.

Local police will be in the area on the day the new speed comes into effect and for a while after as well as electronic variable message signs (VMS), to help remind drivers of the new limit.

While the change could feel inconvenient for some drivers to start with, the drop in speed is worth it, says Road Policing Manager Acting Inspector Mike Jones.

“If you’re unfortunate enough to be involved in a crash in this area, the lower speed means you have a far greater chance of walking away, instead of being seriously injured, or worse.”

In addition to a lower speed limit, diagonal markings on the edge of the road will be repainted and extended as a traffic calming technique to visually narrow the road, signalling that drivers need to slow down. The existing passing lane will remain in place and will be monitored by Waka Kotahi and local police for speed compliance, speeds while overtaking, and the number of passing vehicles.

“Speed increases both the likelihood of crashes and the severity of crash outcomes, regardless of what caused the crash. Lowering speed limits on the road will make it more forgiving of human error so simple mistakes don’t cost lives,” says Mr Harland.

The setting of the permanent speed limits follows engagement with the Police, the AA, road user groups, and consultation with the public in recent months.

“We thank the public and members of the Templeton community who provided their feedback on the proposed speed limits,” says Mr Harland.

More information on the permanent speed limits and our consultation summary, including the submissions can be found on the project page.

SH1 Templeton to Dawsons Road new permanent speed limits

This speed review is aligned to New Zealand’s Road Safety Strategy, Road to Zero 2020 – 2030.

New Zealand’s Road Safety Strategy

Location

Former speed limit

New speed limit from 3 March 2021

SH1 – northbound direction

275m from the end of the SH1 off-ramp exiting the Christchurch Southern Motorway to 200m south of Trents Road

100 km/h

80 km/h

SH1 – southbound direction

From 200m south of Trents Road to 25m from the start of the SH1 on-ramp entering the Christchurch Southern Motorway

100 km/h

80 km/h

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