Opening to traffic of Dowse Interchange exciting

The much anticipated opening to traffic of the new SH2 Dowse Interchange marks an exciting change in how people move on, off and through the state highway in Lower Hutt.

Media Release
NZ Transport Agency Wellington Regional Office
27 February 2009

Exciting change with opening to traffic of Dowse Interchange

The much anticipated opening to traffic of the new SH2 Dowse Interchange marks an exciting change in how people move on, off and through the state highway in Lower Hutt.

NZ Transport Agency Regional Director Dr Deborah Hume says with the interchange being in use from Sunday night (1 March) two thirds of the project, which improves a 2.7km of SH2 through the Hutt Valley, will be completed which is cause for celebration.

“And, with any change will be a need to settle into a new way of doing things. This is true of the SH2 Dowse to Petone Project as the interchange opening heralds the temporary 12 week closure of the Korokoro Bridge. So some Hutt Valley commuters need to be aware that their route on Monday morning will change,” Dr Hume says.

She says people that used to access SH2 from Maungaraki and Hutt Road need to prepare themselves for the new layout. “We recommends they familiarise themselves with their new route before they set off for work or school on Monday morning.”

Dowse Interchange will now be the point at which road users enter and exit the state highway for Hutt Road and Maungaraki. Traffic movements between SH2 and Hutt Road that used to happen at the Korokoro intersection will also be via Dowse Interchange. NZTA suggests that people may find it useful to visit www.nzta.govt.nz/d2p which has up to date traffic information and route maps.

Dr Hume says this is a significant point in the Dowse to Petone Upgrade project marking the culmination of 20 months’ hard work.

“That’s nearly 400,000 ‘man-hours’ on site. The quality of the construction and finishes clearly shows the team take great pride in their work, and in what they have acheived. We all appreciate the efforts they have made in keeping construction and traffic going simultaneously.”

Although Dowse Interchange will open to traffic on Monday morning there is still work being done in and around the interchange and throughout the project. Temporary traffic management will still be in place to ensure workers’ safety while the project is completed and Dr Hume asks that motorists take care as everyone gets used to the new road layout.

“We are prepared for people to take a bit of time to become accustomed to the new on and off-ramps to the state highway. People can do their part by knowing their route before they travel,” Dr Hume says.

She reminded road users that the existing Korokoro Bridge is being closed to allow construction to continue on the new Korokoro Overbridge and to lower the state highway underneath. During the 12 week closure SH2 southbound traffic will shift from its temporary lanes onto the new permanent highway. At this time Korokoro residents heading south on SH2 will do so via Dowse Interchange while access from SH2 southbound to Korokoro will be via Priests Avenue. This shift will be advised closer to the time.

The Dowse to Petone project remains on programme for completion in early 2010.

ENDS

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