Source: New Zealand Transport Agency
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is urging people to provide feedback on proposed changes to speed limits on over 500km of New Zealand’s state highway network, aimed at making the roads safer for everyone who uses them.
The proposed changes in the Interim State Highway Speed Management Plan were released for public feedback on 14 November. The four-week consultation period finishes on 12 December, with just under 1,000 submissions received to date.
Vanessa Browne, Waka Kotahi National Manager Programme and Standards, says it’s important that those who want to have their say on the proposals make their views known.
“The feedback we receive from the public on these proposals will be considered by Waka Kotahi alongside our own analysis and the feedback we get from partners, interested groups and organisations. All of that information will help to shape the final shape of the Interim State Highway Speed Management Plan.
“The changes to speed limits which we’re proposing are significant, and they are also carefully targeted. We’re proposing to lower speed limits on 552km of state highways at 444 locations across New Zealand, including on 125km of highways outside 269 schools and 11 marae. That represents about 4% of the total 11,000km state highway network. We’re not proposing blanket reductions in speed limits, but rather targeting sections of the state highway network where lower speed limits can make a big difference in reducing crashes, or where communities are asking for lower limits,” Ms Browne says.
Once the final plan is approved, the speed limit changes and other safety improvements will be delivered over the following two years through to mid-2024, and by the end of 2027 for schools.
- As part of Road to Zero, New Zealand’s road safety strategy, all road controlling authorities are adopting a new approach to speed management. Waka Kotahi is the road controlling authority for New Zealand’s state highways, while councils and Auckland Transport are the road controlling authorities for local roads.
- Speed management is a fundamental pillar of the ‘safe system’ approach to road safety, which is recognised internationally as the most effective way to reduce deaths and serious injuries. Alongside the speed management plan, Waka Kotahi is also delivering large programmes of work as part of Road to Zero to support the other safe system pillars – safer roads and roadsides, safer vehicles and safe road user behaviour.
- During the current three year National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) funding period, $2.9 billion is being invested in Road to Zero activities to reduce deaths and serious injuries across New Zealand. This record investment is enabling a range of infrastructure safety improvements such as the installation of life-saving median and roadside barriers, the construction of new roundabouts, intersection safety upgrades and safety improvements to high-risk road corridors, in addition to the introduction of safer speed limits as well as targeted Police enforcement of unsafe driving.
- The speed management plans being developed by Waka Kotahi and local authorities will be aligned with the delivery of the infrastructure safety improvements set out in the NLTP.
- People can access information on the Interim State Highway Speed Management Plan and submit feedback by visiting the Waka Kotahi website: www.nzta.govt.nz/ISMP