People who travel through the Western Bay via Te Puke are being reminded of a month-long closure planned for January.
Te Puke Highway will be closed for one month from Tuesday 15 January until mid-February for installation of a culvert and some road pavement repair.
The closure, from Welcome Bay Road to Bell Road, is timed to ensure the work is completed before the start of the kiwifruit harvest season and before the new school year begins. Enabling work will begin on 8 January but will not affect traffic flows.
During the closure traffic will be detoured via Bell Road/Parton Road and Tara Road, which will add approximately two minutes to the journey time to and from Te Puke.
A temporary roundabout will be in place at the Bell/Parton roads intersection.
The detour will be well sign-posted and motorists have the option of using the tolled Tauranga Eastern Link.
The culvert is about 250 metres south of Welcome Bay Road. It has become damaged over time and is at risk of failure.
The difficult geo-tech nature of the sub-soils around the culvert has necessitated the complete closure of the road, says Western Bay of Plenty District Council Infrastructure Services Group Manager, Gary Allis.
"In order to replace the culvert we need to excavate about 30 meters in length of the road and to a depth of around five metres. It will take about a month to carry out the work which will be completed before the school year begins so the road is fully open prior to the kiwifruit season."
The work is being done by Fulton Hogan on behalf of Western Bay of Plenty District Council and the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA).
It is fully funded by NZTA as part of the agreed works when Te Puke Highway was transferred to Council from NZTA. Council apologises for any inconvenience caused by this work.
Te Puke Highway between Bell Road and Welcome Bay Road will be closed to all traffic. Residents will be provided access to properties from the Bell Road end of the closure only.
Traffic will be diverted via Bell Road, Parton Road and Tara Road, see detour map.